‘Gone With the Wind’ Is Momentarily Taken Off of HBO Max

Last week I attempted to watch Gone With the Wind and quit the movie five minutes into the film due to its highly insensitive material that had me practically seething and in genuine shock. I wrote a post sharing my experience (I Tried to Watch ‘Gone With the Wind’ but I Couldn’t Do It) and how baffled I was that a film with such racist themes could be still available to stream.

Well, apparently, HBO Max realized the insensitivity of having such a movie on their streaming service at such a time in America and decided to (temporarily) remove it. I was thrilled at the service’s decision to do that and even though it will be returning to the service at least it will have a disclaimer ahead of time.

I understand those who would hate for these classics to be removed from society, for if HBO Max starts removing films like Gone With the Wind does that mean movies like Lawrence of Arabia, a film that has white men portraying Muslims, should be banned as well? It easily could be a neverending spiral of deletion but hey, the world is changing. Maybe it’s time what we show future generations should change too.

I thank you for reading and I hope you have a spectacular day.

9 thoughts on “‘Gone With the Wind’ Is Momentarily Taken Off of HBO Max”

  1. It’s a path we are heading down that may have no return. At some point someone has to say you are going too far. I’m sure there are many books that someone has an eye out for to have removed, I could probably rattle off 40 movies or more, television shows, then we get into live performances, should comedians be censored for the content of their acts.

    The problem is the 1st amendment works both ways, it cannot be used to promote one set of views without allowing for a different view. You cannot make history go away, or revise it to make it sound better. A lot happened in the past, a lot will happen in the future. All we can do is try to be better.

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    1. It’s true…so many things from the olden days have been insensitive but for those movies that are particularly offensive it’s nice to see a bit of action taken. But I totally understand what you’re saying.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. I lack both the perfect wisdom to think I know what the perfect solution is as well as the bravado to pretend I do. I do think that taking it down absent some kind of context was the right call, but I don’t know where to go from here. The closet racists are likely to ignore/dismiss any context we add to it… but at the same time, I think there’s teaching value in acknowledging that, yes, racism is a thing, it’s not a thing that’s gone away, and that pretending it’s gone away and/or simply surrendering to an idea that there’s nothing we can do about it, doesn’t really help.

    Yes, people have a First Amendment right to be racist a-holes, but there’s a strong tendency among closet racists to think that also means they get to do this with complete impunity. That’s a small bit of progress from the days where they’d kill black people for calling them on it (more openly than cops do so now, anyway), but it’s still not where we want to be. Closet racists still want to assert this as a last bastion of dominance, and aren’t comfortable with the idea that in an equal world, other people get to tell you that you’re being an a-hole, and if those people are your employers, that may extend to a First Amendment right to refuse to associate their business with you. Read: yes, you can be fired for being racist, and that’s just fine. Don’t wanna get fired? Figure out a better way. They’re required under the Fourteenth Amendment not to close their business or make it hostile to Those People, so if you’re a liability to that, they can and will get rid of you.

    As to the films… I actually do sort of agree that erasing them from history in pseudo-Orwellian fashion would potentially clear the way for future generations to not be brain-polluted with this stuff, but their parents and grandparents are still going to pass on their racist attitudes and, most likely, show them these things with a martyr complex attached to it. We can’t (successfully) pretend that stuff never happened. I think we need to find a way to turn it into a teaching opportunity — people should see this in schools with a clear warning up front, “this is NOT ok, this is part of how we as a culture told black people for centuries that they are not fully people. We’re going to acknowledge this and understand why it’s not ok, and no, your opinion that there’s no big deal here will not get you a passing grade.”

    I suspect that putting these disclaimers on the services *might* help… closet racists are obviously going to ignore or dismiss those, and they’ll likely find a way to do so in schools, too. We’re probably in for “the schools are brainwashing our kids to be politically correct!” debates over even what I’m suggesting about teaching them, which of course is code for “we’re racist, we don’t want our kids figuring that out and asking us about this, and if we’re being totally honest we’d rather they were racist too because That’s Just Our Traditional Way Of Life Under God’s Will.” They’ll pretend it’s free speech, or it’s just their religion, or whatever. Racists are quite clever in finding pretexts to cling to their prejudices. Sometimes you can accidentally get through to them… but the old farts are likely a lost cause on this, and focusing on later generations is where we’ll ultimately win the battle.

    Well… that and the fact that white people won’t be the voting majority any more in about 15-25 years. And even a casual stroll down the AM dial will quickly disabuse you of any notions that that eventuality doesn’t scare the holy snot out of them. So I’m… just gonna stop now before this wall of text gets even grimmer than it already is. 😞

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    1. Lol. There’s no reason to erase history completely. That would be foolish considering that in the future that type of hatred could rise again…but that doesn’t mean we, as a progressive society, need to highlight films with such insensitive values as well.

      When you went to the Classic Movies section on HBO Max they had ‘Gone With the Wind’ highlighted as if it was a great movie, not caring to acknowledge the fact that it contains demeaning values for those who look like me. I have no problem with it being on the streaming service as long as (like Disney+ did) they alert people of the bluntly racist material they are about to watch.

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      1. Yeah. That’s a pretty rough way to lose your innocence on old movies… like I said, I’ve never made myself watch it from start to finish, but I know very well that it’s egregiously offensive. But yeah… if Megyn Kelly wants her white supremacism, she can go to Amazon, rentals, or what have you. We should put it out there in some respects, but with an indication that this isn’t okay.

        Liked by 1 person

  3. What is interesting to me is the notion that slavery was abolished with Lincoln. It may have been in the US, but not everywhere. My father in laws father was from England. When he was young his father had died and since his was forced to place him into a group home. When he was 12 he was shipped off to Canada to work as farm labor for a family. He was given a roof over his head and fed in exchange for working the farm. This happened to thousands of kids, I believe 60,000 or possibly more just from Bernardo’s orphanage. When he was 16 he had gotten word that his aunt had come to America and was living in New York city, he did not know at the time his mother had died 2 years prior. If I recall what my father in law had dug up researching, he would have gotten some money when he turned 18 and had the papers saying that he was free to leave. He walked away from the farm at 16 years old, and walked and caught rides to New York from Canada, over 400 miles with the clothes on his back. He could have been stopped at any point and sent back.

    England did this up until the 1970’s. So Slavery was alive and well in the world, even from a country you would not expect it from.

    https://www.theguardian.com/society/2017/feb/27/britains-child-migrant-programme-why-130000-children-were-shipped-abroad

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Wow, what an incredible story. Yes, we got our “freedom” but if you look at the past two weeks we are still far from satisfied from the way we’ve been treated even over a hundred years after the Emancipation Proclamation.

      The racism has to end and I’m glad the world is deciding to try and do something about it, even if it takes baby steps. 🙂

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      1. Absolutely. My entire family going back to the 1890’s until the late 1970’s was from Camden. We’ve all seen the good reguardless of race, and the bad, reguardless of race. There are bad people of any color that live to see the hate continue. And that is not just average people on the street. Many of the “leaders” of all groups live for these chances to have their face in the news.

        A good step for all would be to stop listening to those that call for violence and destruction, and listen to those that want to sit down and talk about how to move forward

        Liked by 1 person

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