He's The Terminator
He can make you laugh
Arnold Lives the American Dream
If Arnold's filmography
doesn't make you love him, or at least convince you to like him, his
personification of the "American Dream" should do the trick without
causing much fear, pain, or discomfort.
Arnold was born in Thal, Austria, and came to the United States in 1968 at
the age of 21. He spoke little English. In 1970, he won his first of seven
Mr. Olympia titles for bodybuilding. Arnold progressed through the world
of bodybuilding as a champion.
Schwarzenegger then turned his attention to acting - isn't that the
American way? While he grabbed a few bit parts here and there, it was his
role in Conan the Barbarian that propelled his career into high gear and
his role in The Terminator made the jump to hyperspeed..
During this time Schwarzenegger had his fair share of romances with
beautiful women, but it was in 1977 that he met his future wife, Maria
Shriver. Shriver is from the Kennedy clan - the American royalty and
perhaps folks should have realized early on that Arnold would become more
than just a pretty face speaking bad English.
Even as his English improved - or perhaps in spite of his poor English -
Arnold continued to become a bigger and bigger Hollywood star. With his
toothy grin that was full of cheese and charm, Arnold became a force to be
reckoned with in the guise of an action hero. The love and adoration of so
many for this man became memorialized when Arnold received his own star on
the Hollywood Walk of Fame and his handprints and footprints were
permanently cemented in front of Grauman's Chinese Theatre.
When Arnold turned his attention to politics, in truth, most of the world
- even his fans - probably rolled their eyes and snickered. Arnold has
long been a staunch Republican - bucking the norm for the Hollywood elite
who embrace the liberal philosophy of Democratic party politics. For his
gumption and determination to stick to his guns (well, not literally) and
follow the politics and philosophies that suit him despite the choices of
his peers - Arnold deserves some kudos. Maybe not outright love, but
definitely some points.
Arnold gave a speech at the 2004 Republican National Convention, detailing
his own story of immigrating to America and casting his lot with the
Republican party. He spoke without shame or fear of derision (which is
something to be admired) about hearing a speech given by Richard Nixon
during the 1968 Presidential race.
Arnold recalled that Nixon spoke about free enterprise, ending government
intervention, lowering taxes and creating a stronger military. He was
impressed by the philosophy and after asking someone what political party
Nixon belonged to, decided then and there he would be a Republican just
like Nixon. Well, maybe not just like Nixon. At least let's hope not.
It was in 1988 - during the Presidential election - that Arnold first came
into the public eye with the Republican party. He accompanied then-Vice
President George H.W. Bush at a campaign rally and was later appointed as
chairman of the President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports - a
role which he held from 1990 to 1993.
This wasn't enough of the political arena for Arnold and he wasn't close
to being finished - his political career was not going the way of The
Terminator. Eventually the big guy did what many had speculated he would
do - he jumped into politics in a big way.
Did Arnold run for the local school board? How about a County
Commissioner? Maybe a small-town Mayor? Those are good choices for normal
peons and nobodies who want to dabble a little pinky toe into the world of
public service and potential corruption. Nay, not enough for "The
Republicanator" - Arnold Schwarzenegger decided to go whole hog, no small
potatoes for this guy.
Arnold threw himself into the ruckus surrounding the recall of California
Governor Gray Davis in 2003. After the people of California voted to oust
Davis (with a swift kick to the pants and a sharp jab to the dignity, no
less), Arnold Schwarzenegger was elected as the 38th Governor of the State
of California. There was some political stuff in between the recall and
the election of the new Governor of course - getting on the ballot,
campaigning, proving to the world that he was more than just a pretty face
reciting lines with an accent - but Schwarzenegger managed to do it.
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