Arnold Schwarzenegger is 75 years old now, and the Predator actor has lived the best of almost all worlds. From being an Austrian Military veteran; making a name in Hollywood; retiring from a successful bodybuilding career; driving his favorite tanks in his 70s, to becoming the Governor of California, the man has lived his wildest fantasies.
But again, there’s still something that the Total Recall actor regrets after some soul-searching. Back in time, Schwarzenegger used the phrase, “girlie men” to insult his political rivals who were not up for taking risks. Even though the actor received a standing ovation from politicians like Rudy Giuliani and Dick Cheney, he was scared of being terminated by cancel culture.
Arnold Schwarzenegger Admitted Of Being Short-Sighted
Arnold Schwarzenegger may not be scared of anything in this world, but as he continued his career in politics, the Austrian meathead did opt for some introspection. In a 2004 speech at the Republican National Convention as California’s governor, the former bodybuilder famously said:
“To those critics who are so pessimistic about our economy, I say: don’t be economic girlie men.” Really shoehorned the self-referential joke in there, and now it has its own Wikipedia page.
After almost two decades, the seven-time Mr. Olympia, regrets using the term, admitting that he is scared of being terminated by cancel culture. He admitted in a 2018 interview:
“At the time it felt like the right thing to do. It was in my gut. I improvised it. I called them girlie men because they weren’t willing to take risks. They were afraid of everything. Politicians in general want to do little things so there’s no risk involved. But it was shortsighted. In the long term, it’s better to not say that, because you want to work with them.”
While the term literally refers to “Men who are prissy; not excessively masculine,” The Terminator actor did clarify later that he used it for political opponents who weren’t willing to take risks. He first used this term to describe George H.W. Bush’s opponents in the late 80s. Interestingly, the term was used against the man himself in a Saturday Night Live sketch.
Arnold Schwarzenegger Chose Politics To Make Mends
Despite the controversial speech, Arnold Schwarzenegger managed to serve as the Governor of California from 2003-2011. The actor also mentioned in the above interview that his regret for using the term, “girlie men” was based on the “partisan nature of its use, not the term.” He added:
“When you can reach out across the aisle and work together, you can get much more accomplished, rather than ‘girlie men’ or ‘fuck you or ‘it’s my way or the highway.”
The Pumping Iron star also accepted that he chose politics to make mends, and did not hesitate to admit that he “stepped over the line several times”. As he became the governor, several women came forward and accused him of groping them against their will. While he denied most allegations, he did accept “behaving badly sometimes.”
Despite getting into politics, Schwarzenegger is still the old hunk, who’d prefer going to office in his tanks, and bullying boys, of course, if it were still the 80s. Even though the actor regrets his behavior towards women, he surely isn’t sorry for representing misogyny and homophobia throughout his era.
Source: Vanity Fair