Americans feared foreign radicals, Communists, and labor
unrest. Immigrants were especially blamed for bringing ideas with them and the press called it the “Red Scare.”
Raids were ordered on homes and offices suspected of Communists, many were imprisoned and deported without a trial. Labor
workers were not allowed to strike for better conditions due to the ban on strikes during the war. Meanwhile the laborer hours
were too long, low wages, and prices for goods were increasing due to the sudden demand for products. Boston police and U.S.
Steelworkers both attempted strikes in the 1920s and lost. Election of 1920, “Return to Normalcy,” Pro-business
policies, Secretary of Treasury (Andrew Mellon) created Mellon Plan to cut income taxes in half for the wealthy and by one
percent for the poor, Isolationist Party, raised tariffs on imported goods, “Ohio Gang” a nickname for friends
Harding hired to work with and were caught taking bribes for leasing oil-rich public land to private companies (called the
Teapot Dome Scandal) Automobile: registered cars went from 8 to 23 million, gave boost to oil industry, major U.S. Industry,
Henry Ford adopted the “assembly line.” Other industries: mass production, “scientific management,”
revolutionized American business. Farming: getting large, more efficient, more mechanized, 13% of farmers had tractors, farmers
took a “businesslike” attitude, farmers suffered overproduction, bankruptcies, and little assistance from the
government. Household: linoleum, washing machines, vacuum cleaners, electric irons, electric sewing machines, ready-made clothes,
canned food, sliced bread, freed women from housework. Transportation: rapid transit, streetcars, subway, elevated systems,
telephones in every middle-class home, airplane industry, 43 airlines operating, Charles Lindbergh flew solo across the Atlantic
Ocean. Mass advertising influenced values to consumer spending versus saving, sold consumer goods: health, beauty, wealth,
and youth. Credit System: buying on credit, installment plan made consumption possible for many. As consumers bought more
goods, it helped fuel the money into the economy. Americans thought immigrants were Communists, they were taking away job
opportunities for themselves, were radicals, and anarchists. Racial discrimination existed with the Ku Klux Klan, who hated
those not white, not Protestant, and not American. Garveyism rejected the white society and tried to bring Africans back to
Africa and African heritage, developed by Marcus Garvey. As people moved from rural to urban communities, the traditional
value system was deteriorating. The Scope Trial argued if the Theory of Evolution should be taught in school, against traditional
rural values of the Christian Bible. The Prohibition Amendment: drink in the rural communities was thought of as a sin, where
as in urban and immigrant lifestyles it was a part of social life
Teapot Dome Scandal
Background: Origins of the scandal date back to the popular conservation legislation
of presidents Teddy Roosevelt, William Taft and Woodrow Wilson, specifically as to the creation of naval petroleum reserves
in Wyoming and California. Three naval oil fields, Elk Hills and Buena Vista Hills in California and Teapot Dome in Wyoming,
were tracts of public land that were reserved by previous presidents to be emergency underground supplies to be used by the
navy only when the regular oil supplies diminished. The Teapot Dome oil field received its name because of a rock resembling
a teapot that was located above the oil-bearing land. Many politicians and private oil interests had opposed the restrictions
placed on the oil fields claiming that the reserves were unnecessary and that the American oil companies could provide for
the U.S. Navy.
The Scandal: One of the
politicians who opposed the conservation was Senator Albert B. Fall who became Warren Harding's Secretary of the Interior
in 1921. Fall, upon becoming the Secretary of the Interior, convinced Secretary of the Navy Edwin Denby to turn the control
of the oil fields over to him. Fall then moved to lease the Teapot Dome to Harry Sinclair's Mammoth Oil Company and the
Elk Hills reserve to Edward Doheny's Pan American Petroleum Company. In return for leasing these oil fields to the respective
oil magnates Fall received "gifts" from the oilmen totaling about $400,000. Fall attempted to keep actions secret
but his sudden improvements in standard of living drew speculation. The scandal was first revealed to the public in 1924 after
findings by a committee of the U. S. Senate. The individual within the Senate who took charge of investigating the alleged
wrongdoing by Fall was Thomas J. Walsh, a democrat from Montana. Albert Fall had made legitimate leases of the oil fields
to the private companies but the taking of money was his undoing.
Consequences on the Involved: Lasting throughout the 1920's were a series of civil and criminal suits related
to the scandal. Finally in 1927 the Supreme Court ruled that the oil leases had been corruptly obtained and invalidated the
Elk Hills lease in February of that year and the Teapot lease in October of the same year. The navy did regain control of
the Teapot Dome and Elk Hills reserves in regards to the courts decision. Albert Fall was found guilty of bribery in 1929,
fined $100,000 and sentenced to one year in prison. Harry Sinclair who refused to cooperate with the government investigators
was charged with contempt and received a short sentence for tampering with the jury. Edward Doheny was acquitted in 1930 of
attempted to bribe Fall. Results of the Scandal:
The Teapot Dome scandal was a victory for neither political party in the 1920's. It did become a major issue in the presidential
election of 1924 but neither party could claim full credit for divulging the wrongdoing. The concentrated attention on the
scandal made it the first true symbol of government corruption in America. The scandal did reveal the problem of natural resource
scarcity and the need to protect for the future.
Mata Hari was born Margaretha Geertruida Zelle in
Leeuwarden, the Netherlands as the first of four children. Margaretha's father was a hat maker by trade, but having
invested well in oil, he had enough money to spoil his only daughter. At only six years old, Margaretha became the talk of
the town when she traveled in a goat-drawn carriage that her father had given her. In school, Margaretha was known to be flamboyant,
often appearing in new, flashy dresses. However, Margaretha's world changed drastically when her family went bankrupt
in 1889 and her mother died two years later. After her mother's death, the Zelle family was split up and Margaretha, now
age 15, was sent to Sneek to live with her godfather, Mr. Visser. Visser decided to send Margaretha to a school that trained
kindergarten teachers so that she'd have a career. At the school, the headmaster, Wybrandus Haanstra, became enchanted
by Margaretha and pursued her. When a scandal broke out, Margaretha was asked to leave the school, so she went to live with
her uncle, Mr. Taconis, in The Hague.
In March 1895, while still staying with her uncle, 18-year old Margaretha became
engaged to Rudolph ("John") MacLeod, after answering a personal ad in the newspaper (the ad had been placed as a
joke by MacLeod's friend). MacLeod was a 38-year old officer on home leave from the Dutch East Indies, where he had been
stationed for 16 years. On July 11, 1895, the two were married. They spent much of their married life living in the tropics
of Indonesia where money was tight, isolation was difficult, and John's rudeness and Margaretha's youth caused serious
friction in their marriage. Margaretha and John had two children together, but their son died at age two and a half after
being poisoned. In 1902, they moved back to Holland and were soon separated.
Margaretha decided to go to Paris for a
new start. Without a husband, not trained in any career, and without any money, Margaretha used her experiences in Indonesia
to create a new persona, one that donned jewels, smelled of perfume, spoke occasionally in Malay, danced seductively, and
often wore very little clothes. She made her dancing debut in a salon and instantaneously became a success.
and others interviewed her, Margaretha continually added to the mystique that surrounded her by spinning fantastic, fictionalized
stories about her background, including being a Javanese princess and daughter of a baron. To sound more exotic, she took
the stage name "Mata Hari," Malayan for "eye of the day" (the sun). Mata Hari became famous. She danced
at both private salons and later at large theaters. She danced at ballets and operas. She was invited to the big parties and
traveled extensively. She also had a large number of lovers (often military men from a number of countries) who were willing
to provide her financial support in exchange for her company.
During World War I, her frequent traveling across international
borders and her varied companions caused several countries to wonder if she was a spy or even a double-agent. Many people
who met her say that she was sociable, but just not smart enough to pull off such a feat. However, the French were confident
that she was a spy and arrested her on February 13, 1917. After a short trial in front of a military court, conducted in private,
she was sentenced to death by firing squad. On October 15, 1917, Mata Hari was shot and killed. She was 41 years old.
Hollywood legend says that William Randolph Hearst
shot Thomas Ince in the head by mistake. He really wanted Chaplin. As the story goes, Hearst suspected that Davies and Chaplin
were secretly lovers. In order to keep tabs on the two, he invited them both on board The Oneida. Supposedly, he found the
couple in a compromising clinch and went for his gun. Davies' screams awakened Ince who rushed to the scene. A scuffle
ensued, followed by a gunshot and Ince took the bullet for Chaplin.
An even more colorful account of the shooting came from Marion Davies' secretary, Abigail Kinsolving, who claimed
that Ince raped her that weekend on board the yacht. Of course, things became even more interesting when, several months
later, the unmarried Kinsolving delivered a baby, and died shortly after, in a mysterious car accident near the Hearst ranch.
Two bodyguards, employed by Hearst, found her body, along with a suspicious looking suicide note. Her baby, a girl, was
conveniently sent to an orphanage supported by Marion Davies.
Charles Chaplin always denied even being on board the yacht. Published reports cited "acute indigestion"
as the cause of death, but rumors began circulating immediately to the effect that Ince had been the victim of foul play.
The fact that the body was cremated without an autopsy and no inquest was ever held only fuelled speculation about what "really"
happened aboard the Oneida on November 15, 1924, speculation which continues to this day.
Thomas Ince has largely been forgotten now but he was
an ambitious producer and director, and one of the early pioneers of silent films. He teamed up with D.W. Griffith and Mack
Sennett in 1915, to form the company which became Culver City Studios.
In 1924 he died, supposedly of a heart attack, but in decidedly mysterious circumstances, during a birthday party
in his honour aboard the yacht Oneida, belonging to William Hearst, the newspaper magnate. The party guest list included Charlie
Chaplin, film actress (and Hearst mistress) Marion Davies, and gossip columnist Louella Parsons.
Ince and Hearst were in the middle of tense business negotiations
and Chaplin was said to be romantically interested in Davies (a rumor of which Hearst was painfully aware) so the atmosphere
aboard the yacht was not calm. Prohibition was in full swing but bootleg liquor was available on board Hearst's yacht
and large quantities of it were consumed.
John Thomas Scopes (August 3, 1900 – October 21,
1970), was a teacher in Dayton, Tennessee, who was charged on May 5, 1925 for violating Tennessee's Butler Act, which
prohibited the teaching of evolution in Tennessee schools. He was tried in a case known as the Scopes Monkey Trial.
Scopes was born and raised in Paducah, Kentucky before moving to Illinois as a teenager. He was a member of the class of 1919
in Salem, Illinois, which was also William Jennings Bryan's home town. After he had earned a law degree at the University
of Kentucky in 1924, Scopes moved to Dayton where he took a job as the Rhea County High School's football coach, and occasionally
filled in as substitute teacher when regular members of staff were off work.
Scopes' involvement in the so-called
Monkey Trial came about after the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU) announced that it would finance a test case challenging
the constitutionality of the Butler Act if they could find a Tennessee teacher willing to act as a defendant. A band
of businessmen in Dayton, Tennessee, led by engineer and geologist George Rappleyea, saw this as an opportunity to get publicity
for their town and approached Scopes. Rappleyea pointed out that while the Butler Act prohibited the teaching of human evolution,
the state required teachers to use the assigned textbook, Hunter's Civic Biology (1914), which included a chapter on evolution.
Rappleyea argued that teachers were essentially required to break the law. When asked about the test case, Scopes was initially
reluctant to get involved, but after some discussion he told the group gathered in Robinson's Drugstore, "If you
can prove that I've taught evolution and that I can qualify as a defendant, then I'll be willing to stand trial."
By the time the trial had begun, the defense team included Clarence Darrow, Dudley Field Malone, John Neal, Arthur Garfield
Hays and Frank McElwee. The prosecution team, led by Tom Stewart, included brothers Herbert Hicks and Sue K. Hicks, Wallace
Haggard, father and son pairings Ben and J. Gordon McKenzie and William Jennings Bryan and William Jennings Bryan Jr. Bryan
had spoken at Scopes' high school commencement and remembered the defendant laughing while he was giving the address to
the graduating class six years earlier.
The case ended on July 21, 1925, with a guilty verdict, and Scopes was fined
$100. The case was appealed to the Tennessee Supreme Court. In a 3-1 decision written by Chief Justice Grafton Green the Butler
Act was held to be constitutional, but overturned Scopes' conviction on a technicality: the judge had set the fine instead
of the jury. The Butler Act remained until 1967 when it was repealed by the Tennessee legislature.
Scopes may have actually
been innocent of the crime to which his name is inexorably linked. After the trial Scopes admitted to reporter William Kinsey
Hutchinson "I didn't violate the law," (DeCamp p. 435) explaining that he had skipped the evolution lesson and
his lawyers had coached his students to go on the stand; the Dayton businessmen had assumed he had violated the law. Hutchinson
did not file his story until after the Scopes appeal was decided in 1927. Scopes also admitted the truth to the wife of the
Universalist minister Charles Francis Potter. After the trial, Scopes accepted a scholarship for graduate study in geology
at the University of Chicago. He then did geological field work in Venezuela for Gulf Oil of South America. There he met and
married his wife, Mildred, and was baptized in the Roman Catholic Church. In 1930, he returned to the University of Chicago
for a third year of graduate study. After two years without professional employment, he took a position as a geologist with
the United Gas Company, for which he studied oil reserves. He worked, first in Houston, Texas and then in Shreveport, Louisiana,
until he retired in 1963.
“The Illinois Slush-Fund Scandal of the 1960s.”
This was just one example of the large number of excesses within intercollegiate athletics in the United States during the
20th century. In many of these situations there have been serious questions of moral turpitude on the part of many of those
who were directly or indirectly involved. Although great attention is usually accorded to these occurrences by the media,
it should be kept in mind that most colleges and universities have been relatively free from such rule infractions. This particular
case began approximately on December 16, 1966 when Big Ten Athletics Commissioner, Bill Reed, announced that alleged athletic
irregularities at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, would be investigated at the request of President David D.
Henry. This unprecedented request came after he had learned about the existence of a “slush fund” that had been
developed over the years from money donated by local business and well-to-do alumni.
The events leading up to this disclosure,
and what transpired thereafter, were treated largely in chronological order as follows: the resignation of the Director
of Athletics at Illinois, and the seemingly unrelated disclosure of the alleged irregularities and events surrounding this
disclosure; the following period of several months during which a great variety of opinions. news releases, accusations,
and counter-accusations were made; the appointment of a new athletic director during the period in which the Big Ten
investigation was being carried out; the decision of the Big Ten upon conclusion of the investigation, and the hue and
cry that followed it: the appeal by decision that three coaches must resign and that a number of athletes would lose
eligibility: the resignation of the three coaches,
and the “life must go on” aftermath, and the situation
in retrospect with several conclusions. What happened at Illinois in the 1960s merits historical analysis in the 1980s now
that it is possible to achieve some historical perspective. If the overall situation in the United States had improved generally.
such a tale might just be for the historical record, not forgetting the tragic “fall-out” impact on the lives
of so many people. However, this University and so many others don’t seem to have learned much judging from ongoing
violations that have continued down to the present day. “If men could learn from history. what lessons it might teach
Eddie Fisher, whose huge fame as a 1950s
pop singer was overshadowed by scandals ending his marriages to actresses Debbie Reynolds and Elizabeth Taylor, has died.
He was 82. His daughter, Tricia Leigh Fisher of Los Angeles, told The Associated Press that Fisher died Wednesday night
at his home in Berkeley of complications from hip surgery. "Late last evening the world lost a true America icon,"
Fisher's family said in a statement released by publicist British Reece. "One of the greatest voices of the century
passed away. He was an extraordinary talent and a true mensch."-
Eddie Fisher, whose matinee-idol looks and
smooth, romantic voice made him one of the most popular singers of the 1950s, and whose busy love life stole headlines in
1959 when he divorced Debbie Reynolds to marry Elizabeth Taylor,
Fisher's clear dramatic singing voice brought
him a devoted following of teenage girls in the early 1950s. He sold millions of records with 32 hit songs including "Thinking
of You," "Any Time," "Oh, My Pa-pa," "I'm Yours," "Wish You Were Here," "Lady
of Spain" and "Count Your Blessings." His fame was enhanced by his 1955 marriage to movie darling
Debbie Reynolds - they were touted as "America's favorite couple" - and the birth of two children. Their
daughter Carrie Fisher became a film star herself in the first three "Star Wars" films as Princess Leia, and later
as a best-selling author of "Postcards From the Edge" and other books.
Carrie Fisher spent most of 2008
on the road with her autobiographical show "Wishful Drinking." In an interview with The Associated Press, she told
of singing with her father on stage in San Jose. Eddie Fisher was by then in a wheelchair and living in San Francisco.
When Eddie Fisher's best friend, producer Mike Todd, was killed in a 1958 plane crash, Fisher comforted the widow, Elizabeth
Taylor. Amid sensationalist headlines, Fisher divorced Reynolds and married Taylor in 1959. The Fisher-Taylor marriage lasted
only five years. She fell in love with co-star Richard Burton during the Rome filming of "Cleopatra," divorced Fisher
and married Burton in one of the great entertainment world scandals of the 20th century.
Fisher's career never
recovered from the notoriety. He married actress Connie Stevens, and they had two daughters. Another divorce followed. He
married twice more. Edwin Jack Fisher was born Aug. 10, 1928, in Philadelphia, one of seven children of a Jewish grocer. At
15 he was singing on Philadelphia radio.
After moving to New York, Fisher was adopted as a protege by comedian
Eddie Cantor, who helped the young singer become a star in radio, television and records. Fisher's romantic messages resonated
with young girls in the pre-Elvis period. Publicist-manager Milton Blackstone helped the publicity by hiring girls to scream
and swoon at Fisher's appearances. After getting out of the Army in 1953 following a two-year hitch, hit records, his
own TV show and the headlined marriage to Reynolds made Fisher a top star. The couple costarred in a 1956 romantic comedy,
"Bundle of Joy," that capitalized on their own parenthood.
In 1960 he played a role in "Butterfield
8," for which Taylor won an Academy Award. But that film marked the end of his movie career. After being discarded
by Taylor, Fisher became the butt of comedians' jokes. He began relying on drugs to get through performances, and his
bookings dwindled. He later said he had made and spent $20 million during his heyday, and much of it went to gambling and
drugs. In 1983, Fisher attempted a full-scale comeback. But his old fans had been turned off by the scandals, and the younger
generation had been turned on by rock. The tour was unsuccessful.
He had added to his notoriety that year with
an autobiography, "Eddie: My Life, My Loves." Of his first three marriages, he wrote he had been bullied into marriage
with Reynolds, whom he didn't know well; became nursemaid as well as husband to Taylor, and was reluctant to marry Connie
Stevens but she was pregnant and he "did the proper thing." Another autobiography, "Been There, Done
That," published in 1999, was even more searing. He called Reynolds "self-centered, totally driven, insecure, untruthful,
phony." He claimed he abandoned his career during the Taylor marriage because he was too busy taking her to emergency
rooms and cleaning up after her pets, children and servants. Both ex-wives were furious, and Carrie Fisher threatened to change
her name to Reynolds. At 47, Fisher married a 21-year-old beauty queen, Terry Richard. The marriage ended after 10 months.
His fifth marriage, to Betty Lin, a Chinese-born businesswoman, lasted longer than any of the others. Fisher had two children
with Reynolds: Carrie and Todd; and two girls with Stevens: Joely and Tricia.
"Watergate" is synonymous with
a series of events that began with a botched burglary and ended with the resignation of a U.S. President. The term itself
formally derives from the Watergate building in Washington, D.C., where, on the night of 17 June 1972, five burglars were
arrested in the Democratic National Committee offices. Newspaper reports from that point began revealing bits and pieces of
details that linked the Watergate burglars with President Richard Nixon's 1972 reelection campaign. The president and
his chief assistants denied involvement, but as evidence of White House complicity continued to grow, the U.S. Congress was
compelled to investigate what role the Watergate matter might have played in subverting or attempting to subvert the electoral
The U.S. Senate, by a 77-to-0 vote, approved a resolution on 7 February 1973, to impanel the Senate Select
Committee on Presidential Campaign Activities to investigate Watergate. Known as the Ervin Committee for its Chairperson,
Senator Sam Ervin, the Committee began public hearings on 17 May 1973, that shortly came to be known as the "Watergate
Television cameras covered the Watergate hearings gavel-to-gavel, from day one until 7 August.
319 hours of television were amassed, a record covering a single event. All three commercial television networks then in existence--NBC,
CBS, and ABC--devoted an average of five hours per day covering the Watergate hearings for their first five days.
The networks devised a rotation plan that, beginning on the hearing's sixth day, shifted coverage responsibility from
one network to another every third day. Any of the three networks remained free to cover more of the hearings than required
by their rotation agreement, but only once did the networks choose to exercise their option. All three networks elected to
carry the nearly 30 hours of testimony by key witness and former White House counsel John Dean.
Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) aired the videotaped version of each day's Watergate hearing testimony during the evening.
Many PBS station managers who were initially reluctant to carry such programming found that as a result of the carriage, station
ratings as well as financial contributions increased.
As the Ervin Committee concluded its initial phase of Watergate
hearings on 7 August 1973, the hearing's television audience had waned somewhat, but a majority of viewers continued to
indicate a preference that the next hearing phase, scheduled to begin on 24 September, also be televised. The networks, however,
felt otherwise. The Ervin Committee continued the Watergate hearings until February 1974 but with only scant television coverage.
Television viewers were attracted to the Watergate hearings in impressive numbers. One survey found that 85% of all
U.S. households had tuned in to at least some portion of the hearings. Such interest was not universal, however. In fact,
Special Prosecutor Archibald Cox had argued that television's widespread coverage of Watergate testimony could endanger
the rights of witnesses to a fair trial and in doing so, could deprive Americans of ever hearing the full story of Watergate.
The Ervin Committee refused Cox's request to curtail coverage, saying that it was important that television be allowed
to carry Watergate testimony to the American public firsthand.
On 6 February 1974, a new phase of Watergate began
when the U.S. House of Representatives voted 410-to-4 to authorize the House Judiciary Committee to investigate whether sufficient
grounds existed to impeach President Nixon. If so, the Committee was authorized to report necessary articles of impeachment
to the full House.
The Judiciary Committee spent late February to mid-July 1974 examining documents and testimony
accumulated during the Senate's Watergate hearings. When this investigatory phase ended, the Judiciary Committee scheduled
public deliberations for 24-27, 29 and 30 July to debate what, if any, impeachment recommendations it would make to the House.
Three articles of impeachment eventually were approved by the Committee, recommending that the House begin formal impeachment
proceedings against President Richard Nixon.
The decision to televise Judiciary Committee meetings was not immediate
nor did it meet with overwhelming approval. Only after several impassioned pleas from the floor of the U.S. House that such
an extraordinary event should be televised to the fullest extent did the House approve a resolution to allow telecast of the
Judiciary Committee's impeachment deliberations. The Committee itself had final say on the matter and voted 31-to-7 to
concur with the decision of their House colleagues. One major requirement of the Judiciary Committee was that television networks
covering the committee not be allowed to break for a commercial message during deliberations.
The Judiciary Committee
began its televised public debate on the evening of 24 July. The commercial networks chose to rotate their coverage in the
same manner as utilized during the Senate Watergate hearings. What's more, the commercial networks telecast only the evening
portions of Judiciary Committee deliberations, while PBS chose to telecast the morning and afternoon sessions as well. As
a result, television viewers were provided nearly 13 hours of coverage for each of the six days of Judiciary Committee public
Eventually, the full House and Senate voted to allow television coverage of impeachment proceedings
in their respective chambers, once assurances were made that the presence of television cameras and lights would not interfere
with the president's due process rights. Final ground rules were being laid and technical preparations for the coverage
were underway when President Nixon's resignation on 9 August 1974, brought the impeachment episode to an end.
Pop star George Michael is embroiled in another sex
scandal – this time involving a romp in a London park. The 43-year-old singer was caught last week emerging from the
bushes after a late-night rendezvous with a stranger.
“I don’t believe it! F*** off! If you put those pictures in the paper I’ll sue!,” Michael
reportedly screamed at a photographer for the News of the World. Pictures of the red-faced star were plastered all over the
Sunday edition of the British tabloid. Michael was found inside Hampstead Heath park, a popular nighttime destination for
men cruising for sex with other men. He engaged in sex acts with Norman Kirtland, a 58-year-old unemployed van driver.
Sex in public places is illegal, but Michael has not
been charged because he was not caught by police. In 1998, the former Wham! frontman was busted for flashing an undercover
cop in a Beverly Hills public washroom. "I don't even like George Michael. And I didn't recognize him immediately,”
Kirtland told the News of the World. “He sort of came up and got close. He looked kind of brown so I said to him, ‘You're
not totally English, are you?' “We just started kissing. He did it very well. That was one of his major points.
Then it was fondling and mutual pleasuring. It wasn't full sex but it was fantastic." Michael went to the park after
visiting the home of his long-time lover Kenny Goss. He spent two hours cruising before hooking up with Kirtland. When confronted
outside the park by the News of the World, the singer reportedly insisted: "I'm not doing anything illegal. The police
don't even come up here any more. I'm a free man, I can do whatever I want. I'm not harming anyone." Michael
was caught earlier this year slumped at the wheel of his car near London’s Hyde Park. Cops found a quantity of drugs
in the vehicle. A few weeks later, he crashed his car into another after reportedly falling asleep at the wheel.
"In the annals of film history, no celebrity better
illustrates the fragility of stardom than Roscoe "Fatty" Arbuckle. In 1919, Arbuckle was one of the most successful
comedians in silent film. Two years later, accused of the rape and murder of a young actress, Arbuckle instantly became a
national symbol of sin. An outraged public boycotted Arbuckle films, tore down movie posters, and demanded his conviction.
For Arbuckle, who was found innocent in 1922, the scandal meant the end of a career. For the movie industry, it meant the
beginning of self-censorship. And for many Americans, it represented the loss of a dream: as disappointed fans quickly learned,
stars were very different from the heroes they portrayed on screen.
In his movies, Arbuckle typically portrayed a bumbling yet well-meaning hero who saved the day by pie-throwing, back-flipping,
and generally outwitting his opponent. In spite of his bulky, 250-pound frame, Arbuckle proved to be an able acrobat--a skill
he had perfected during his days in vaudeville. Abandoned by his father at the age of 12, Arbuckle earned his living performing
in small-town theaters and later, in the Pantages theater circuit. After nearly 15 years on stage, though, in 1913 Arbuckle
found himself out of a job, the victim of declining public interest in vaudeville. Almost by chance, Arbuckle wandered into
Mack Sennett's Keystone film studio, where he was given the nickname "Fatty" and put to work. During his three
years at Keystone, Arbuckle starred in the popular Fatty and Mabel series with actress Mabel Normand, and gained a reputation
as a slapstick comedian. By 1917, when Arbuckle left Keystone to run his own production company, Comique, under the supervision
of Joseph Schenck, he had become a nationally-known star.
At Comique, Arbuckle directed some of his most acclaimed comedies: Butcher Boy (1917), Out West (1918), and Back
Stage (1919), which starred friend and fellow comedian Buster Keaton. In 1919, lured by a million dollar a year contract,
Arbuckle agreed to star in six feature films for Paramount and began an intense schedule of shooting and rehearsals. But Paramount
ultimately proved to be a disappointment. Dismayed by his lack of creative control and his frenetic schedule, Arbuckle went
to San Francisco for a vacation in September 1921. On September 5, Arbuckle hosted a party in his room at the St. Francis
Hotel--a wild affair complete with jazz, Hollywood starlets, and bootleg gin. Four days later, one of the actresses who had
been at the party, 27-year-old Virginia Rappe, died of acute peritonitis, an inflammation of the lining of the abdomen that
was allegedly caused by "an extreme amount of external force." Suspicion fell on Arbuckle, who was accused of raping
Virginia and causing her death. Arbuckle was charged with murder and detained in San Francisco.
Meanwhile, news of the Arbuckle scandal sent shockwaves throughout
the country. Theater owners withdrew Arbuckle films, and preachers gave sermons on Arbuckle and the evils of Hollywood. Paramount
suspended Arbuckle's contract, and Will Hays--the "czar" of the movie industry, who had been hired to clean
up Hollywood's image in the wake of the scandal--forbade Arbuckle from acting in any films. In the eyes of the public,
Arbuckle was guilty as charged. But Arbuckle's trials told a different story. After two mistrials, Arbuckle was declared
innocent in March 1922. This decision, however, meant little to moviegoers, who continued to speak out against Arbuckle in
spite of his acquittal. In December 1922, Hays lifted the ban on Arbuckle, but it was too late: Arbuckle's career as an
actor had been ruined.
strong public opinion prevented Arbuckle from appearing on screen, Arbuckle managed to find work behind the camera, and between
1925 to 1932 directed several comedies under the pseudonym William Goodrich ("Will B. Good"). By 1932, though, bitter
memories of the scandal had faded, and several of Arbuckle's friends published an article in Motion Picture magazine begging
the public for forgiveness and demanding Arbuckle's return to the screen. Later that year, Jack Warner hired Arbuckle
to star in six short films, but soon after the films were released, Arbuckle died on June 30, 1933, at the age of 46. Arbuckle,
who had never recovered from the stress and shock of the scandal, spent his last years wrestling with alcoholism and depression.
Although the official cause of Arbuckle's death was heart failure, Buster Keaton said that he died of a broken heart.
The Fatty Arbuckle scandal, though, was more
than a personal tragedy. Motion pictures--and the concept of the movie "star"--were still new in the early 1920s,
and the Arbuckle scandal gave movie fans a rude wake-up call. For the first time, Americans saw the dark side of stardom.
Drunk with fame and wealth, actors could abuse their power and commit horrible crimes--indeed, as many social reformers had
claimed, Hollywood might be a breeding ground for debauchery. In the face of this threat, the movie industry established a
series of codes controlling the conduct of actors and the content of films, which culminated in the Production Code of the
1930s. The industry hoped to project an image of wholesomeness, but in the wake of the Arbuckle scandal, the public remained
unconvinced. Although American audiences still continued to be entranced by the Hollywood "dream factory," they
would never put their faith in movie stars in the way they had before 1921."
The mysterious Grigory Efimovich Rasputin, a peasant
who claimed powers of healing and prediction, had the ear of Russian Tsarina Aleksandra. The aristocracy could not stand a
peasant in such a high position. Peasants could not stand the rumors that the tsarina was sleeping with such a scoundrel.
Rasputin was seen as "the dark force" that was ruining Mother Russia.
To save the monarchy, several members of the aristocracy attempted to murder the holy man. On the night of December
16-17, 1916, they tried to kill Rasputin. The plan was simple. Yet on that fateful night, the conspirators found that Rasputin
would be very difficult to kill.
II and Tsarina Aleksandra (the emperor and empress of Russia) had tried for years to give birth to an heir. After four girls
were born, the royal couple was desperate. They called in many mystics and holy men. Finally, in 1904, Aleksandra gave birth
to a baby boy, Aleksei Nikolayevich. Unfortunately, the boy who had been the answer to their prayers was afflicted with "the
Royal disease," hemophilia. Every time Aleksei began to bleed, it would not stop. The royal couple became frantic to
find a cure for their son. Again, mystics, holy men and healers were brought in. Nothing helped until 1908, when Rasputin
was called upon to come aid the young tsarevich during one of his bleeding episodes.
Grigory Efimovich Rasputin was a peasant (muzhik), born in the Siberian town of
Pokrovskoye on January 10, probably in the year 1869. Rasputin underwent a religious transformation around the age of 18 and
spent three months in the Verkhoturye Monastery. When he returned to Pokrovskoye he was a changed man. Though he married Proskovia
Fyodorovna and had three children with her (two girls and a boy), he began to wander as a strannik ("pilgrim" or
"wanderer"). During his wanderings, Rasputin traveled to Greece and Jerusalem. Though he often traveled back to
Pokrovskoye, he found himself in Petrograd (St. Petersburg) in 1903. By then he was proclaiming himself a starets, a holy
man, who had healing powers and could predict the future. When Rasputin was summoned to the royal palace in 1908, he proved
he had a healing power. Unlike his predecessors, Rasputin was able to help the boy. How did he do it? That is still greatly
disputed. Some people believe Rasputin used hypnotism; others say Rasputin didn't know how to hypnotize. Part of Rasputin's
continued mystique is the remaining question as to whether or not he really had the powers he claimed to have.
Having proven to Aleksandra his holy powers,
Rasputin did not remain just the healer for Aleksei; Rasputin soon became the confidante and personal advisor of Aleksandra.
To the aristocrats, having a peasant advising the tsarina, who in turn held a great deal of influence over the tsar, was unacceptable.
In addition, Rasputin was a lover of alcohol and sex - both of which he consumed in excess. Though Rasputin appeared a pious
and saintly holy man in front of the royal couple, others saw him as a dirty, sex-craved peasant who was ruining Russia and
the monarchy. It didn't help that Rasputin was having sex with women in high society in exchange for granting political
favors. Nor that many in Russia believed Rasputin and the tsarina were lovers and wanted to make a separate peace with the
Germans (Russia and Germany were enemies during World War I). Everyone was talking about the need to get rid of Rasputin.
Attempting to enlighten the royal couple about the danger they were in, many influential people approached both Nicholas and
Aleksandra with the truth about Rasputin and with the rumors that were circulating. To everyone's great dismay, they both
refused to listen. So who was going to kill Rasputin before the monarchy was completely destroyed?
Thelma Todd rose to fame as a comedic actress alongside
the Marx Brothers, Laurel & Hardey, and Buster Keaton. Although well known in her day, she is now remembered for the manner
and mystery of her death rather than for her achievements in life.
Todd arrived in Hollywood in 1926 and over the next 9 years she made seventy films, mostly as a foil for comics such
as Harry Langdon and Charley Chase, as well as six with Laurel and Hardy. Her best were two with the Marx Brothers 'Monkey
Business' and 'Horse Feathers'.
Her lively and flirtatious on-screen personality was more than matched by her riotous private life. She had so many
drunken car crashes going from party to party, that the studio had to insist she have a chauffeur. Her marriage in 1932 to
playboy Pasquale "Pat" DiCicco quickly degenerated into a series of drunken brawls and they divorced in 1934.
In addition to her film career, Thelma was also
involved in the restaurant business, where her path crossed that of Lucky Luciano, the New York mobster who was trying to
gain a foothold on the West Coast.
1935, at the peak of her poppularity, the 30-year-old actress was found "slumped over the steering wheel of her Lincoln
Phaeton Touring car." Her demise was first declared a suicide, then an "accidental death from carbon monoxide poisoning."
The fact that she drank heavily and often passed out in her car after a binge supported this conclusion.
With blood at the scene, a high blood-alcohol content, and
clean shoes (while the area outside the car was muddy), many believed it to be murder. While the theory was largely ignored
by the LAPD, suspects ranged from Todd’s highly possessive boyfriend, director Roland West (who was thought to have
locked Todd in the garage to keep her from going to a party) to the most likely suspect, “Lucky” Luciano, who
wanted to involve Todd’s club in illegal gambling against her wishes.
Roland West was said to have later confessed the murder to a friend, but his only
punishment was a closing of ranks by Hollywood’s elite so he never worked in motion pictures again.
Who killed Thelma Todd? Officially, no-one knows, but she did cross
Lucky Luciano. When discussing with him the possible use of her resaurant by his mobsters Thelma once shrieked 'Over my
dead body! ' 'That can be arranged',
Luciano was heard to reply.
Brigadier John Dennis Profumo, 5th Baron Profumo OBE
(Mil), CBE (30 January 1915 – 9 March 2006), informally known as Jack Profumo, was a British politician. His title,
5th Baron, which he did not use, was Sardinian. Although Profumo held an increasingly responsible series of political posts
in the 1950s, he is best known today for his involvement in a 1963 scandal involving a prostitute. The scandal, now known
as the Profumo Affair, led to Profumo's resignation and withdrawal from politics, and it may have helped to topple the
Conservative government of Harold Macmillan.
his resignation, Profumo began to work as a volunteer cleaning toilets at Toynbee Hall, a charity based in the East End of
London, and continued to work there for the rest of his life. Eventually, Profumo volunteered as the charity's chief fundraiser.
These charitable activities helped to restore the fallen politician's reputation; he was awarded a CBE in 1975, and in
1995 was invited to Margaret Thatcher's 70th birthday dinner. He was a member of Boodle's club in St James's,
London from 1969 until his death.
while still serving in the army, Profumo was elected to the House of Commons as a Conservative Member of Parliament (MP) for
Kettering constituency, Northamptonshire at a by-election on 3 March. Shortly afterwards he voted against the Chamberlain
government in the debate following the British defeat at Narvik in Norway. (This defiance on Profumo's part enraged the
Government Whip, David Margesson, who wrote to him a letter containing the following: 'I can tell you this, you utterly
contemptible little shit. On every morning that you wake up for the rest of your life you will be ashamed of what you did
last night.') Profumo was the youngest MP at that time, and by the time of his death he was last surviving member of the
1940 House of Commons. At the 1945 election Profumo was defeated at Kettering by a Labour candidate, Dick Mitchison. Later
in 1945 he was chief of staff to the British Mission to Japan. In 1950 he left the army and at the general election in February
1950 he was elected for Stratford-on-Avon in Warwickshire, a safe Conservative seat.
Profumo was a well-connected politician with a good war record, and (despite Margesson's
above-mentioned outburst) was highly regarded in the Conservative party. These qualities helped him to rise steadily through
the ranks of the Conservative government that was elected in 1951. He was appointed Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry
of Civil Aviation in November 1952, Joint Parliamentary Secretary to the Ministry of Transport and Civil Aviation in November
1953, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for the Colonies in January 1957, Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State at the
Foreign Office in November 1958, and Minister of State for Foreign Affairs in January 1959. In 1954 he married the actress
Valerie Hobson. In July 1960, Profumo was appointed a Secretary of State for War, (outside of the cabinet) and a member of
the Privy Council.
In July 1961, at a party
at Cliveden, home of Viscount Astor, Profumo met Christine Keeler, a model with whom he began a sexual relationship. Profumo
ended it after only a few weeks but rumours about the affair began to circulate. Since Keeler also had sexual relations with
Yevgeni Ivanov, the senior naval attaché at the Soviet Embassy, the "Profumo Affair" took on a national security
dimension. In December 1962, a shooting incident in London involving two other men who were involved with Keeler led the press
to investigate Ms Keeler, and reporters soon learned of her affairs with Profumo and Ivanov. But the British tradition of
respecting the private lives of British politicians was maintained until March 1963, when the Labour MP George Wigg, claiming
to be motivated by the national security aspects of the case, taking advanatage of Parliamentary Privilege, referred in the
House of Commons (i.e. under immunity from any possible legal action) to rumours that Profumo was having an affair with Keeler.
Profumo then made a personal statement in which he admitted he knew Keeler but denied there was any "impropriety"
in their relationship.
did not prevent newspapers publishing stories about Keeler, and it soon became apparent to Macmillan that his position was
untenable. On 5 June 1963 Profumo was forced to admit that he had lied to the House, an unforgivable offence in British politics.
He resigned from office, from the House and from the Privy Council. Before making his public confession Profumo confessed
the affair to his wife, who stood by him. It was never shown that his relationship with Keeler had led to any breach of national
security. The scandal rocked the Conservative government, and was generally held to have been among the causes of its defeat
by Labour at the 1964 election. Profumo maintained complete public silence about the matter for the rest of his life, even
when the 1989 film Scandal and the publication of Keeler's memoirs revived public interest in the affair.
"The whole of time would not be long enough to
tell you of my joy in being married to you. Joy is not measured just by lovely things: the birth of babies, the song of birds
heard together, the fun of holidays - the lyrical-love of lying with you. Joy is to be found, too, in the relief after pain
shared, in the good news following bad, in the knowledge of greater closeness after disaster." -from the 10th wedding
anniversary letter of Valerie to John Profumo, 1965.
Approximately a decade later, in 1962, Marilyn Monroe
died of what was officially ruled an accidental overdose of sleeping pills. And in the words of a television biography, “almost
instantly, the lurid circumstances of [her] death made national headlines around the world. . . . Marilyn Monroe was dead.
Marilyn the Myth was born. The supposedly idyllic life stars lived was being steadily exposed as false through both fictional
tragedies and actual scandals, yet paradoxically the public did not turn against the stars but only focused their fascination
in a slightly different way. Singer and songwriter Elton John immortalized the unique cult of fame that overshadowed Monroe’s
death in his 1973 song “Candle in the Wind,” when he wrote of his own youthful feelings toward her: “Your
candle burned out long before / Your legend ever did.”2 Rather than serving to separate the hero from the star, in fact,
scandals only bound the two more closely together, lending a tragic, martyred cast to the star’s image. The public’s
adoration of their stars did not diminish. Their perception of their heroes as ideals, however, began to fade. Well into the
throes of drug addiction by the time she was thirteen, Drew Barrymore attempted suicide by cutting her wrists with a kitchen
knife. Rosemary Clooney was addicted to prescription drugs and, after two embattled marriages to José Ferrer, was admitted
to a psych ward. Francis Ford Coppola takes lithium. Patty (Call Me Anna) Duke is a manic-depressive.
No longer do stars try to hide their personal lives from the public,
and every scandal, every lie is exposed in the short run. Thus today’s public holds very few illusions about the lives
of their star-heroes. Although stars are still “living heroes,” the relationship between the two terms has changed:
rather than admiring stars for their heroic achievements and personal qualities, the public simply envies them for their lifestyle—their
immense power, wealth, and fame. Even after the real-life heroism of September 11, a profound cynicism persists toward the
hero as ideal, and this cynicism is reflected in the portrayal of the fictional hero in current American films. It is a portrayal
that perpetuates the problem of mistaken identity noted earlier, but in reverse, with heroes being identified with the stars
that portray them, rather than vice versa.
Every older generation recycles the same panics about
girls decade after decade, century after century. The 1940s and ‘50s, for example, brought a barrage of governmentsponsored
docudramas featuring lusty teen girls seducing and robbing innocent men, laughingly gunning down motorists, dying in gunfights
with cops. “They start with stealing lipstick, finish with a slaying!” blared “frank truth” films
like Girls Under 21, Girls of the Night, So Young So Bad, Delinquent Daughters, and Girls in the Night. Bestselling early-1950s
books blazoned gun-brandishing teen girls and titles like The Young and Violent, Jailbait, Juvenile Jungle, Teenage Crime
Wave, Live Fast Die Young, and (my favorite) I’ll Fix You. Major magazines like Life, Reader's Digest, and Ladies
Journal warned that hundreds of teenage
“pickup” girls as young as 12 were making “the sex delinquency of young girls” the worst problem cities
faced. “Are These Our Children?” (Look, 1942) and “Boston’s Bad Girls,” (Pic, 1943) clarioned
“Everytown, USA,” terrorized by girls gone berserk: “Arrests for drunkenness of girls are up 40 per cent…
prostitution, 64 percent… truancy cases are up 400 percent… sex offenses involving teen-age girls, up 200 per
cent… the average age of offenders is fifteen…” We also see a new round of books by Gen Xers citing their
own sad examples. Courtney Martin and a number of self-proclaimed feminist authors claim today’s troubled young female
stars… Lindsay, Britney, Paris, Nicole, Amy, etc… suffer from alcohol, drug, and
mental problems unheard-of in Hollywood of yore. David Letterman grills Nicole
Richie: “What’s wrong with young Hollywood today?” Today? Remember Judy Garland, Mary Pickford, Patsy Cline,
Bette Davis, Veronica Lake, Rita Hayworth, Billie Holiday, Joan Crawford, Betty Grable, Maria Callas, Marilyn Monroe, Greta
Garbo, Lana Turner, and a few thousand others in Hollywood’s perpetual roster of drinking and misery (and the leading
men were much worse). Even Audrey Hepburn, an actress of exemplary behavior and temperament, swallowed some brandy to warm
up one cold day in Paris on the set of How to Steal a Million and wound up crashing a Fox studio car through the portable
stage lights—an incident seen as amusing in 1965 but would have been splashed as a Dr. Drew-tabloid horror story today
Like the authors above, I could simply spout my personal prejudice—which, from three decades of work in communities,
families, wilderness work projects, and teaching, is that today’s girls are remarkably well-adjusted and enjoyable as
a generation and would make remarkable leaders. But what I “see” and what I speculate about young women today,
along with whatever self-flattering views I might harbor about my morals and adolescence, tell you about me, not about “girls
today.” As a certifiable Baby Boomer, it pains me to confess: My head does not contain the totality of the universe.
John Jeremy Thorpe (born 29 April 1929) is a former
British politician who was leader of the Liberal Party from 1967 to 1976 and was the Member of Parliament (MP) for North Devon
from 1959 to 1979. His political career was damaged when an acquaintance, Norman Scott, claimed to have had a love affair
with Thorpe at a time where homosexual acts were illegal in Britain. Thorpe denied these claims and was charged with conspiring
to murder Scott, though he was acquitted of these charges in 1979, shortly after losing his seat in the general election.
In 1965, he became Liberal Party Treasurer and, following
Jo Grimond's resignation as leader in 1967, he won the resulting party leadership election with the support of 6 of the
12 Liberal MPs. Thorpe's style, in contrast to Grimond's intellectualism, was youthful and dynamic, and was sometimes
ridiculed as too gimmicky. He was, however, a staunch defender of human rights, as exemplified by his prominent role in the
Anti-Apartheid Movement. He was also a key figure in the campaign for Britain to join the Common Market. A colourful character,
Thorpe was renowned for his assortment of Edwardian suits, silk waistcoats and trilby hats, as well as being a noted raconteur
and impressionist. Thorpe's unconventional lifestyle was reflected in his 1968 marriage a month after his son was born.
His party leadership was not immediately successful. The 1970 general election was a disaster for the Liberals; they fell
from 13 seats to 6 (winning three, including Thorpe's, by tiny majorities). But between 1972 and 1974, Thorpe led the
Liberals to an impressive string of by-election victories, at Rochdale, Sutton and Cheam, Ripon, the Isle of Ely, and Berwick.
In the February 1974 general election, the Liberals got 19.3% of the vote. During the campaign, some opinion polls at times
even placed the party as high as 30%. This was a great improvement over the 8.5% the Liberals got in the 1966 General Election,
before Thorpe's election as leader.
rumours about Thorpe's sexuality dogged his political career. Norman Scott, a former male model, met Thorpe in 1961 while
working as a stable lad. He later claimed that he and Thorpe had a homosexual relationship between 1961 and 1963, when homosexual
acts were still illegal in Britain. Scott's airing of these claims led to an inquiry within the Liberal Party in 1971,
which exonerated Thorpe. Scott, however, continued to make the allegations.
In October 1975, Scott was walking on Exmoor with a Great Dane bitch (called "Rinka"), which had been lent
to him by a friend for protection. Scott was confronted by Andrew "Gino" Newton, a former airline pilot, who was
armed with a gun. Newton shot and killed the dog, then pointed the gun at Scott, but it apparently failed to go off. Newton
was convicted of the offence in March 1976.
his court appearance, Scott repeated his claims of a relationship with Thorpe, and alleged that Thorpe had threatened to kill
him if he spoke about their affair. Scott also sold letters to the press which he claimed to be love letters from Thorpe.
One of these included the memorable line "Bunnies can and will go to France", which supposedly showed Thorpe using
his 'pet-name' for Scott in connection with a promise to find Scott a well-paid job in France.
The scandal forced Thorpe to resign as Liberal Party leader on 9
May 1976. He was replaced temporarily by his predecessor Jo Grimond and then permanently by David Steel. Andrew Newton was
released from prison in April 1977, and then revived the scandal by claiming that he had been hired to kill Norman Scott.
On 4 August 1978, Thorpe was accused along with David Holmes (deputy Treasurer of the Liberal Party), George Deakin (a night
club owner) and businessman John Le Mesurier (not the actor or the athletics coach) of conspiracy to murder. Thorpe was also
separately accused of inciting Holmes to murder Scott. The trial was scheduled to take place a week before the general election
of 1979, but Thorpe obtained a fortnight's delay to fight the election. However, the scandal had become too much, and
Thorpe was defeated.
Divine Brown, the former streetwalker who made headlines
for her famous 1995 encounter with Hugh Grant has publicly thanked the actor for “changing” her life – because
she was able to carve out a “wonderful” new existence after the almost career-ending scandal. Hugh Grant’s
celebrating his 50th birthday this week, so its only fitting that a UK tabloid decided to flick through the phonebook and
see what his old friend Divine Brown has been up to since her infamous car session with the hunk Brit 15 years ago.
“The other night I was thinking: ‘I wonder
if he thinks about that night.’ I know he loved it. He kept calling me Cherry Red because my lips were red, my shoes
and clothes were red,” Brown yapped to The Daily Mail on Sunday. “Even my underwear was red. He kept complimenting
me on my lips and my feet. I guess he has a foot fetish, too,” Divine laughs. Recalling the infamous events on the night
of June 27, 1995, she said she thought Grant was an undercover vice cop as he circled in his white BMW with a baseball cap
pulled down over his face.
running from him. I thought he was a cop. He kept circling the block and pulling up in front of me. There were lots of beautiful
girls out there that night, but he just wanted me.” Grant, then 34, was fined $1,180 dollar and placed on two years’
summary probation for the offense, which in turn shot Brown to fame.
Divine says that since being picked up by the English actor on Sunset Boulevard in 1995 – while he was in a
relationship with Liz Hurley – she has made $1 million in publicity deals. Divine, now 41, earned more than $1.5 million
from media interviews and guest-show appearances. In the days following Grant’s arrest, Divine appeared on nearly every
major radio and television talk show in America, including Jerry Springer, Judge Judy, and The Howard Stern Show.
“That was the trick that changed my life. The
event that earned me a million dollars… the fuss afterwards scared me right there and took me off the game…
I have the most wonderful life now. I’ve got a nice new home… there’s no pool but there is a picket fence.
I thank the Lord every day. I was always attracted to the glamorous life and that half an hour with Hugh Grant made me able
to buy all the things I’d dreamt of having. That film Pretty Woman seemed to be what my life was about. Hugh Grant was
my Richard Gere.”