A Note on the Culture Wars

Ernesto “Che” Guevara


I’ve never understood why so many consider this image of Che Guevara a chic and iconic fashion statement .  He was a murderer, a tyrant, and, very possibly, a sociopath.  Thus far, thankfully, Josef Stalin, Pol Pot, Jeffrey Dahmer, Josef Mengele, and Adolf Hitler have failed to dent the best-dressed list, though Mao Zedong (a repellant and amoral man who was responsible for the deaths of approximately sixty-five million people) enjoys a strange quasi-acceptance among some.


Antonio Banderas as “Che,” the narrator in the film version of Andrew Lloyd Webber’s “Evita”


Now, a new television series will apparently seek to make the KGB fashionable.  (Maybe I’m too old:  I was for this country when the Gulag wasn’t cool.)


Gael García Bernal played the young Ernesto Guevara in the 2004 film “The Motorcycle Diaries”


My admiration for Hollywood knows no bounds.  Truly, its actors, directors, producers, and scriptwriters provide the moral compass of our time.  And they went overwhelmingly for Barack Obama.  Which may perhaps be one of the reasons that Mr. Obama’s announced measures in the wake of the Newtown massacre — notwithstanding his prior insistence that “everything is on the table” — focus very largely on guns and gun owners and relatively little on the culture of violence fostered by Hollywood and by video games.  (Those who “bitterly cling to guns and religion,” as Mr. Obama once described them, mostly voted against him.)



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  • Strategoi

    I just read a book about Che, and I agree with you. You might also want to add he treated his women like crap to do his revolutions. He would have a baby or four of them and divorce his wife to continue the revolution.
    But to give him credit, he really did believe in his beliefs. I wonder if he could have been disillusioned if he had lived long enough to see things happen the way they did as Communism keeps people poor.

  • Scott W. Clark

    I’m afraid he wouldn’t. He’d just say that the measures didn’t go far enough, that the people implementing them were never for the revolution, that they didn’t get rid of enough of their enemies and on and on. He was a True Believer and they can never be brought to see the truth of it. Shades of what we’re being subjected to right now.

  • John Ziebarth

    I have a confession to make: I admire Che so much that whenever I see his icon being worn by someone I have an overwhelming desire to shoot them!

    • danpeterson

      Ah, a true disciple of the master.