John Howard Lawson quotes

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John Howard Lawson

Birthdate: 25. September 1894
Date of death: 11. August 1977

John Howard Lawson was an American writer. He was for several years head of the Hollywood division of the Communist Party USA. He was also the organization's cultural manager and answered directly to V.J. Jerome, the Party's New York-based cultural chief. He was the first president of the Writers Guild of America, West after the Screen Writers Guild divided into two regional organizations.

Lawson was one of the Hollywood Ten, the first group of American film industry professionals to be blacklisted during the 1950s McCarthy era.

Quotes John Howard Lawson

„You believe in freedom of speech for communists because what they say is true. You do not believe in freedom of speech for fascists because what they say is a lie.“

—  John Howard Lawson

Speaking to the rest of the Hollywood Ten during their preparation for testimony, in answer to a hypothetical prosecution ploy, "Do you believe in free speech for fascists?" From Odd Man Out: A Memoir of the Hollywood Ten by Edward Dmytryk (1996, Southern Illinois University Press, Carbondale, IL).

„I am not on trial here, Mr. Chairman. This committee is on trial here before the American people. Let us get that straight.“

—  John Howard Lawson

(Directed at Committee Chairman, J. Parnell Thomas), testimony before the House Committee on Un-American Activities (HUAC) of the US House of Representatives (October 27, 1947).

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