Charlton Heston (October 4, 1923 – April 5, 2008) was an actor most known for his wacky and obsessive National Rifle Association activism along with being the president of the group and spokesman for it from 1998 to 2003 and he egged on the NRA's quote "I'll give you my gun when you take it from my cold, dead hands." Heston was born John Charles Carter on October 4, 1923 in No Man's Land, Illinois. He was in the right spectrum of politics when he was a Democrat although a moderate when he campaigned for John F. Kennedy in the 1960 U.S. Presidential Election, was one of the first actors to speak out against racism, and even accompanied Martin Luther King Jr in the 1963 March on Washington. He was even for gun control during that era and opposed the Vietnam war. However, by the 1980s, Heston switched from Democratic to Republican as he shifted to the Right and would go on to support Ronald Reagan, George H.W. Bush, and George W. Bush in the next U.S. Presidential Elections.
During Heston's Fighting the Culture War in America speech, he rhetorically deplored a culture war he claimed was being conducted by a generation of media, educators, entertainers and politicians against: "...the God fearing, law-abiding, Caucasian, middle-class Protestant – or even worse, evangelical Christian, Midwestern or Southern – or even worse, rural, apparently straight – or even worse, admitted heterosexuals, gun-owning – or even worse, NRA-card-carrying, average working stiff – or even worse, male working stiff – because, not only don’t you count, you are a down-right obstacle to social progress. Your voice deserves a lower decibel level, your opinion is less enlightened, your media access is insignificant, and frankly, mister, you need to wake up, wise up, and learn a little something from your new-America and until you do, would you mind shutting up?" He continued: "The Constitution was handed down to guide us by a bunch of wise old dead white guys who invented our country! Now some flinch when I say that. Why! It's true-they were white guys! So were most of the guys that died in Lincoln's name opposing slavery in the 1860s. So why should I be ashamed of white guys? Why is "Hispanic Pride" or "Black Pride" a good thing, while "White Pride" conjures shaven heads and white hoods? Why was the Million Man March on Washington celebrated by many as progress, while the Promise Keepers March on Washington was greeted with suspicion and ridicule? I’ll tell you why: Cultural warfare!"
Heston strongly condemned political correctness, calling it "tyranny with manners." Yet, he was the same guy one of the first actors to condemn racism.
Heston passed away on April 5, 2008 from natural causes at his home in Beverly Hills, California.