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The Dukes of Hazzard: Singing Duke Boys Banned

The Dukes of HazzardTimes have certainly changed. There was a time when an appearance by the stars of the hot Dukes of Hazzard series would have caused a stampede of fans. Now, over 20 years after the classic series went off the air, it appears that some feel about as warmly about “the Duke boys” as Boss Hogg.

The Dukes of Hazzard was an incredibly popular series that ran on CBS from 1979 until 1985. The show followed the adventures of Bo and Luke Duke as they evaded the corrupt Boss Hogg and his inept police force. The adventure series inspired two spin-off shows (an animated version and a short-lived series centered around dimwitted Deputy Enos), and two reunion movies in 1997 and 2000. The series starred John Schneider, Tom Wopat, Catherine Bach, Denver Pyle, James Best, Sorrell Booke and, of course the Duke car, the high-jumping General Lee. A film remake hit theaters in 2005 and a prequel DVD movie was released this month.

Actors Schneider and Wopat have each had successful careers outside of The Dukes of Hazzard. Schenider has worked on many TV shows and films as well as played Jonathan Kent for five seasons on Smallville. Wopat starred with Cybill Shepard on the Cybill sitcom, and has appeared on Broadway in Glengarry Glen Ross and in a long run of Annie Get Your Gun, first opposite Bernadette Peters, then Susan Lucci and Reba McEntire.

Though Wopat was the one to release a couple of music CDs, both former Dukes have a history of singing performances. They sang several times on The Dukes of Hazzard and even sang the Dukes theme together on the 2006 TV Land Awards. But it seems these days that not everyone is so fond of the duo.

The Cincinnati Pops Orchestra has recently cancelled a planned Dukes-themed event that would have featured Wopat and Schneider performing. The cancellation is said to be due to pressure from some in the Ohio community who feel The Dukes of Hazzard was a racist and offensive program. A statement released by the orchestra said, “We decided that some of the messages conveyed in the program are not consistent with the efforts of the Pops to reach out to all members of our community.”

Edith Thrower, the president of the Cincinnati branch of the National Association for the Advancement of Colored People (NAACP), said she was contacted a few weeks ago by the Pops conductor who wanted a reaction to the planned July 14th event. Thrower said, “I contacted our national office and was advised that it would be best if we didn’t support an effort like this. It’s very clear how we feel about the Confederate flag and the long and arduous fight we have conducted to get rid of that symbol of a very unpleasant time in our history.”

Former Georgia Congressman Ben Jones (who played mechanic Cooter on the series) was dumbfounded by the action. He believes the cancellation amounts to a “blacklisting of these guys out of some kind of political correctness that is just plain wrongheaded.”

Democrat Jones continued, “These guys are great people and great singers. To not use them because they were part of a show that some misguided people find racist is just wrong. This is a benign family show loved by people of all ages and races. I have fought racism and bigotry my whole life and worked in the civil rights movement, and there is nothing racist about it.”

For his part, though he and Wopat had been contracted to appear the event, Schneider says he doesn’t want to start a feud over the decision. He said, “It’s a huge shock to me that in this day and age people could be so narrow-minded, especially professional people.” Schneider continued, “I would like for people to examine their motives, however, and their knee-jerk reactions to someone else’s prejudice and bigotry.”

Hmmmm. I can honestly say that I don’t recall the Dukes series being racist in any way. Now, mindless? Well, that’s another story entirely. Tell us what you think and stay tuned! TV Series Finale home page

 

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{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

Scott September 21, 2010 at 9:23 am

I agree with all of the previous posters. “The Dukes Of Hazzard” a racist show? WHAT?!?!?!? You have got to be kidding me!!!!!

My father and I have been watching the entire series over the past few months, and let me just say, what a breath of fresh air it has been! We who are old enough to remember watching the show in prime time are so thankful that we were around in that more innocent era. An era totally devoid of garbage like “Family Guy”, “South Park” and “The Simpsons” (even just one of these shows is WAY more offensive than any of Boss Hogg’s nefarious schemes!!!), where there was nothing wrong with being kind to folks, helping out your neighbors, good manners, respecting your elders, etc. Today, there’s a complete disregard of all of that! Young people today could stand to watch this fine show and learn some valuable lessons from it!

So to Cincinatti and the hyper-sensitive NAACP: Please get a life!!!! Even many black folks agree; they LOVE the show! Over 30 years and millions of viewers later, it is a tried and true, out-and-out classic! And y’all know just what you can do with your “political correctness”!!! To be nice, just “cuff it and stuff it” and leave The Dukes Of Hazzard” alone!

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Carlos September 12, 2010 at 11:28 pm

I am black and I enjoyed watching the Dukes of Hazzard back in 1979 right out of college. The show wasn’t racist. I watched this show along with Miami Vice on Friday nights. The U.S. has gone downhill with political correctness. We are doomed folks!

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Michael Wagner April 22, 2010 at 5:49 pm

One more thing the flag was ment to show they were rebels against the system not other people. Uncle Jeese even said “A stanger is just a friend you never met.” Don’t take offence about the show the flag and horn are for the South, Southern Pride and not racism.

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Michael Wagner April 22, 2010 at 5:45 pm

I grew up on the “Dukes of Hazzard” I own all of the shows and for heaven sake it was never racist. They had so many different types of people on that show and some were recuring stars like Sharriff Little. Why any people think Dukes was a racist show is far beyond me. I’ve lived in the North my whole live and had grown up by the southern values because of this show. I respect all people and think that there is truely no difference between us genetically just mentally. So you lay off the racist crap and leave Dukes of Hazzard alone oh and to Ashley Cross if you need help fighting for Dukes give me a call.

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Ashley Cross January 21, 2010 at 9:28 pm

I can’t believe it! “The Dukes of Hazzard” was the greatest family show of the 1980s and they are most certainly NOT racist. People who hate the series or think the show’s racist doesn’ t realize it taught a lot of family values. I’m only 19 and I have the entire series on DVD. I learned a lot from them. A few things I learned was how to say “please”, “thank you”. Call someone “ma’am” or “sir” and watch my language. I can’t believe someone would say the show is racist just because of the General Lee. I’m from the North and I LOVE this series. I will fight for the series along with many other “Dukes” fans.

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Cerebral Overload March 9, 2009 at 12:59 pm

It won’t end until people let it. Political correctness is a load of shit. It amounts to self-censorship; making us scared to say something that might offend someone, some-fucking-where in the world. I’m offended by a lot of stuff, but that doesn’t mean I want to crusade against the people engaging in whatever activities I don’t agree with. As long as no one is being killed, and their own actions aren’t hindered by the actions of others, what you say or do should have no bearing on anything.

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Richard September 21, 2008 at 8:59 pm

Dukes of Hazzard

Man that show rocks. I still watch the dvds. I am 35 years old and been watching it when i was 13. Tom and John I wish some how you guys can bring the show back. Man I love the car, actors. Please e-mail me back.

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GUILLERMO NI March 27, 2008 at 5:23 pm

I think that black people is loosing the opportunity to get integrated with White and Hispanic Americans. Futile demonstrations against The Dukes of Hazzard and Dixie sounds as ridiculous and Anti-black as American racist Spring Thomas, who presents blacks as animals.
Black People of America don’t hear black racists, they manipulate you to get their own goals, not yours. They favor the advance of Asians and Hispanics over you.

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Jason Lee December 16, 2007 at 12:34 pm

Ignorance is funny. I think you ignorant people all need to grow up and stop being so petty over sensitive issues. The dukes of hazzard was not a racist show. Slavery was how long ago…? Those living today are not soley being affected by it today. Your relatives don’t count. Get over it! You want racial connotations watch sanford and son!! Honkey, and whitie. Freedom of speech and the right to watch what we want is being dictated by people with an unfair advantage. Where does it end!

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Mary October 31, 2007 at 12:35 pm

Thank you for an entertaining
program. My husband is a stroke survivor and he is able to use the tv control &(oh boy does he) and that is great. He was a big (not fat)man, loved his Harley, fishing in Manitoba, Canada, Night Club Owner/Oper. (beer drinker,& smoker.)Never drugs. Livestock buyer. Wife, children & grandchildren. Tom had JUST retired. Count your blessings young people and get and keep your priorities straight. Grams….

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Logan August 9, 2007 at 9:08 pm

You Damn Yankees are in for a living hell when I get through with you The Dukes Of Hazzard is a Family Show and the kids are mad at you for doing this and so am I don’t come down to the south or you will get an ass kicking

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John V. Williams August 8, 2007 at 10:19 pm

I grow up watching The Dukes Of Hazzard on tv. The NAACP wants it banned from tv. The NAACP can go to hell.

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jimmy June 17, 2007 at 9:53 am

How anyone person or groups of people feel about the Confederate Battle Flag and the South is totally irrelevent to the people in the Southland, so hold on “you ain’t seen nothing yet”. Oh and by the way y’all can keep Cincinatti and her people nawth of the ohio river we don’t need nor want you in the South, we don’t speak the same language and have absolutely nothing in common with damnyankees. Long live the South!!!!!!!!!!!

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Sandy Scott May 10, 2007 at 7:13 am

To be frank,

Racism is never going to get any better because there are too many over sensitive idiots running the show. There was nothing racist about the Dukes of Hazzard. It was a wholesome family show and having a Confederate Flag on the top of the General Lee is part of southern history, like it or not. It doesn’t mean you are a racist. The Dukes were good wholesome people. If anything, it made more of a statement about the south than anything. We like to think we have evolved but we haven’t because everyone is “offended by something.” Well I am offended by the rap and hip hop garbage I hear every night, when sitting in my home, coming from some teenagers speakers. Artists like Enimem and others offend me, so perhaps they should be banned from every playing in my state simply because it isn’t my cup of tea. Remind me to never visit Cincinatti again.

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Willie May 1, 2007 at 10:37 pm

what a joke!!! All this over a flag and some southern slang?

D.O.H. always had enthic folks on the show. I’ve seen just about every episode, I don’t recall any racist remarks whatsoever!

Even one the stars, Cathy Bach is half mexican for cryin’ out loud.

At the rate this world is going, we’re going to politically correct ourseleves out of living and existence.

what next? will we outlaw white bed sheets because the Klan used them at one point in time?

these days it’s sad times…it’s sad times!

If someone offered me a ride in a time machine to go back to a simple place in time… say to Hazzard county when it was all clean fun…I’d go in a heartbeat!!!

give em’ H^ll Cooter!

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