A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

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Entry from July 23, 2017
“I am free of all prejudice. I hate everyone equally”

"I am free of all prejudice. I hate everyone equally” (or “I don’t discriminate. I hate everyone equally") is a saying that has been printed on many images. The saying was credited to American comedian and actor W. C. Fields (1880-1946) in the Saturday Review on January 28, 1967. However, this is 20 years after Fields died, and earlier citations have not been found.

The saying was probably inspired by a Peter Arno (1904-1968) cartoon in The New Yorker magazine on February 2, 1952. A man at the bar declared himself free of prejudice:

“I hate everybody, regardless of race, creed, or place of national origin!”


Wikipedia: Peter Arno
Peter Arno (January 8, 1904 – February 22, 1968) was a U.S. cartoonist. He contributed cartoons and 99 covers to The New Yorker from 1925, the magazine’s first year, until 1968, the year of his death. In 2015, New Yorker contributor Roger Angell described him as “the magazine’s first genius”.

Wikipedia: W. C. Fields
William Claude Dukenfield (January 29, 1880 – December 25, 1946), better known as W. C. Fields, was an American comedian, actor, juggler and writer. Fields’ comic persona was a misanthropic and hard-drinking egotist, who remained a sympathetic character despite his snarling contempt for dogs and children.

Wikiquote: Misanthropy
Disputed
I don’t have prejudice, I hate everyone equally.
. Attributed to H. L. Mencken, in The Mammoth Book of Jokes (2006) edited by Geoff Tibbals; no earlier citation yet located.

The New Yorker archive
FEB 02, 1952
PAGE 20
:",,1" “"-, , f ‘t’ ;, >( “þÅ it ‘tj, # .. ‘y { “1 hate evprybody, regardless of race, creed, or place of national origin!” A. ,,”.... “Y-. ‘f L ,

ebay
1952 I Hate EVERYBODY Regardless of Race Creed Peter Arno New Yorker Bar Cartoon

28 February 1952, The American Israelite (Cincinnati, OH), “As We Were Saying: Of Peter Arno’s Cartoon and Poor ‘America Plus’” by Robert E. Segal, pg. 1, col. 1:
Peter Arno’s character-at-the-bar, shouting: “I hate everybody, regardless of race, creed, or place of national origin!”. was a wonderful cartoon cocktail served up just ahead of Brotherhood Week.

Google Books
America’s Press Conference of the Air
By Lawrence Edmund Spivak
Kraus Reprint
Volume 1
1957
Pg. ?:
And when it comes to race, color, and creed, he (Abraham Lincoln—ed.) was a very, very distant relative to that man at a bar that after a tall glass of beer said: “Here’s to— I hate everybody, without regard to race, creed, or color.”

Google Books
The Open and Closed Mind:
Investigations into the nature of belief systems and personality systems

By Milton Rokeach
New York, NY: Basic Books
1960
Pg. 145:
The fact that all these correlations are positive reminds us of a New Yorker cartoon of a few years back, showing a man sitting at a bar with drink in hand. He is saving: “I hate everybody, regardless of race, creed, or color.”

7 October 1962, The Sunday Herald-Leader (Lexington, KY), “Prejudice and Possibilities,” pg. 61, col. 4:
CHANGING PATTERNS OF PREJUDICE, by Alfred J. Morrow. Chilton Books, $6.95.
The New Yorker once carried a cartoon of a man at a bar with a drink in his hand. “I hate everybody,” he was saying, “regardless of race, creed or color.”

That kind of prejudice is, of course, easy to recognize.

Google Books
28 January 1967, Saturday Review, pg. 19:
W. C. Fields said, “I am free of all prejudice. I hate everyone equally.”

14 June 1967, The Post-Crescent (Appleton, WI), “UCC Delegates Told ‘Five Crises Facing World Today,’” pg. A11, col. 4:
There are too many who live the philosophy expressed by W. C. Fields: “I am free of all prejudice. I hate everyone equally,” the church leader concluded.

25 June 1968, Orlando (FL) Evening Star, “On the Town” by Jean Yothers, pg. 1-B, col. 2:
I WISH I’D SAID THAT: “I am free from all prejudice. I hate everyone equally.” (W. C. Fields)

3 October 1968, Courier-Post (Camden, NJ), “Bob Gibson Buttons Up New Record” by Ray W. Kelly, pg. 1, col. 1:
GIBSON has a variety of buttons that would make vendors like Andy Day turn to hubcap stealing. There were such nifties as: (...) and “I’m not prejudiced. I hate everyone.”

20 April 1972, Philadelphia (PA) Inquirer, “Dialogue isn’t debate” by Sydney J. Harris, pg. 9, cols. 1-2:
The only honest statement about prejudice was made by W. C. Fields, who once declared: “I am free of all prejudice—I hate everyone equally.”

Google Books
The New Yorker album of drawings, 1925-1975
New York, NY: Viking Press
1975
Pg. ?:
“I hate everybody, regardless of race, creed, or place of national origin!”

Google Books
The Oxford Dictionary of American Quotations
Selected and annotated by Hugh Rawson and Margaret Miner
New York, NY: Oxford University Press
2006
Pg. 434:
I am free of all prejudice. I hate everyone equally. —W. C. Fields, in Jerome Beatty, Jr., Trade Winds, column, Saturday Review [Jan. 28, 1967]

Twitter
J.S.Zolliker‏
@zolliker
“I am free of all prejudices. I hate everyone equally.” - WC Fields.
7:07 PM - 2 Aug 2007

Google Books
Peter Arno:
The Mad, Mad World of The New Yorker’s Greatest Cartoonist

By Michael Maslin
New York, NY: Simon and Schuster
2016
Pg. 180:
Fellow cartoonist Robert Kraus supplied “I hate everybody, regardless of race, creed, or place of national origin” (February 20, 1952).

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityGovernment/Law/Politics/Military • Sunday, July 23, 2017 • Permalink