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With Jim Herd's disasterous reign as the chair of the National Wrestling Alliance booking committee a memory better off forgotten, a lawyer for Ted Turner's Superstation TBS named Jim Frey was inexplicably promoted to fill the void left behind. He wouldn't hold the position long, as soon therafter a colorful legend --and promotional genius -- by the name of "Cowboy" Bill Watts was signed to a deal as the new Vice President of Wrestling Operations for World Championship Wrestling. Jim Herd quietly resigned and was moved elsewhere within the Turner Organization.

If Turner brass would have read comments made by Watts in an interview several months earlier, they could have saved themselves the trouble of hiring him in the first place. Ironically, it was a future employee of World Championship Wrestling named Mark Madden who would fax a transcript of Watts's controversial interview to Turner darling and professional baseball homerun king Hank Aaron a short time after "The Cowboy" first put his imprint on World Championship Wrestling.

"Horrible" and "despicable" were the two words emphasized most by Aaron in discussing Watts' statement. Amid controvery, Watts and Turner Sports would soon part ways.

The question of whether Bill Watts's was in fact a bigot or simply a man who spoke too openly about his honest opinions on social issues has always intrigued wrestling fans. Statements have ranged from "Bill Watts was the type of guy, if he's gonna call you a n-----, he's gonna call you a n----- to your face" (Charles "2 Cold Scorpio" Scaggs) to "Bill Watts saw only one color, green". The truth may never be known, and it probably isn't particularly relevant anyway.

Perhaps in no other instance was Bill Watts' straddling this thin line more dangerously than in an interview with
The Pro-Wrestling Torch Newsletter in the summer of 1991. The following are the statements that would eventually lead to the departure of Bill Watts from World Championship Wrestling.

AN EXCERPT FROM: Torch Talk Interview With Bill Watts: 1991

"If you want a business and you put money in, why shouldn't you be able to discriminate? It's your business.
If free enterprise is going to make or break it, you should be able to discriminate? It should be that, by God, if you're going to open your doors in America, you can discriminate. Why the fuck not?

That's why I went into business, so that I could discriminate. I mean, really. I mean I want to be able to serve who I want to. It's my business. It's my investment ... I can't tell a fag to get the fuck out. I should have the right to not associate with a fag if I don't want to. I mean, why should I have to hire a fuckin' fag, if I don't like fags? Fags discriminate against us, don't they? Sure they do ...

Do blacks discriminate against whites?
Who's killed more blacks than anyone? The fuckin' blacks. But they want to blame that bullshit Roots that came on the air. That Roots was so bullshit. All you have to do if you want slaves is to hand beads to the chiefs and they gave you slaves. What is the best thing that has ever happened to the black race? That they were brought to this country. No matter how they got here. You know why? Because they intermarried and got educated. They're the ones running the black race.

You go down to the black countries and they're all broke. Idi Amin killed more blacks than we ever killed. You see what I mean. That's how stupid we are. But we get all caught up in this bullshit rhetoric, And so, it's ridiculous what's happening to our country.

Lester Maddox (former Georgia governor and defiant restaurant operator) was right. If I don't want to sell chicken to blacks I shouldn't have to. It's my restaurant. Hell, at least I respect him for his stand".

Our latest poll at The Pro-Wrestling Chronicle asks if you think Bill Watts should have been pressured out of Turner Sports due to his comments. The poll can be located on the right menu bar.


  1. Anonymous J. Botter 

    Bill Watts is a Grade A moron.

  2. Anonymous BottomlessJack 

    LOL Bill Watts rules! Now am I gonna be fired because I agree with what he was saying?

  3. Anonymous FRQSTR=18819522x198205:1:4320|18819522|18819522|18819522|18819522 

    Wow what a dumbass Bill Watts was. I had always wanted to read his Torch comments to gain my own perspective and I'm gald I just did I had no idea how dumb he really was.

  4. Anonymous Batman 

    Considering Vince latest 'pushing the envelope' booking aka. losing his mind, you wonder if Vince has taken a page out of Bill Watts book.

  5. Anonymous thetidehascome 

    Wow, J. Botter and the person who posted the third comments use ad-hominems against Watts.

    Whether we want to realize it or not (most can't be honest, such as Botter for one), he's right. Blacks would be in Africa today, going into civil wars against their own kind, being at a higher risk to being exposed to HIV and begging the western/predominantly White nations for billions of dollars because they can't handle their own affairs without us.

    Without Whites and the Blacks who sold them in, Martin Luther King Jr. would be saying "I have a Dream" with a bone through his nose. Despite having the easiest access to goods and services in the world, Blacks are so pathetic in the United States that even Black Africans look down on them. When they don't get their way, they whine about racism when they kill themselves more than anyone else, and according to the Justice Department, 9:10 interracial hate crimes are Black on White.

    I agree with him completely. It's too bad he's one of the few Americans with the balls to say this in public. Out of every ethnicity in the world, Blacks are the lowest of the low. Whites made them and they hate us for it. Ironically, I doubt many Blacks in the US could even make it for six months in Africa without dying of either disease or another tribal Black killing them off. Moreover, many African Blacks would love to come here and actually do something with themselves, as they actually care. Most Blacks in America are too lazy to even give a damn. Consider this, almost 90% of the Blacks vote Democrat. Is it because they are liberal? The answer is: since when do Blacks care for rights other than their own? I mean, surely no one suggests they care for gay rights, by and large. The fact is they only care about getting that welfare check, in which they suck up the welfare system more than any other race, PER CAPITA, than anyone else.

    1:3 Blacks go to prison. What does that tell you? 1:6 Hispanics go to prison (an even better number when they have far more struggles than Blacks, by and large) and 1:16 Whites go to prison. That pretty much closes the case.

    Are there Blacks who should be respected? Sure, many, such as several of my overachieving friends and politicians like Alan Keyes. That's because they are successful as individuals. The horrible thing is almost all Blacks should be looked down on. They deserve it. This isn't the first time I've said this. My Black friends agree. They need to get over it because it is the year (at that time) 2005. They are either too lazy or too stupid to get things done on their own.

  6. Anonymous awe 

    that was harsh ^^

  7. Anonymous Brendan 

    Really? I just thought it was an ignorant and stupid and comment.

    Kinda like what Bill Watts said...

  8. Anonymous futureproof 

    I was the third person who posted (yeah I screwed up) and I obviously don't agree at all with what thetidehascome said. While I admit Bill Watts does have the freedom of speech to give out his opinions, it doesn't entitle him the right to enforce these opinions and use it against the very wrestlers who work hard for him to make him money. Not being comfortable with associating with 2 Cold Scorpio may be one thing, but to supposedly call him "the n word" and use it against him is another thing. This is business and you shouldn't let personal feelings interfere with how things are run.

  9. Anonymous Editor 

    On Bill Watts as a racist, the comment by Charles Scaggs is ambigious enough where it isn't certain if Watts called him a derogatory racial slur, or if Scaggs simply meant he was the type of person who would do it to his face if he were going to rather than behind his back. On Watts, Ron Simmons has said in an interview "I didn't see him wearing the pointy white hat... that is the only thing I didn't see him do. I never caught him wearing the pointy white hat." This seems to suggest Watts had prejudices.

    On the other side of things, Watts is close friends with Ernie Ladd, who played in the NFL and was one of the early black legends of professional wrestling in America. He's also pushed black babyfaces hard in almost every territory he has been in (JYD in Mid-South, Ron Simmons in WCW, Ahmed Johnson in the WWF) and believed in these stars to carry his business. Obviously business decisions and to a lesser extent friendships don't really say much in regards to the prejudices or lack there of of an individual.

    On the interview that Wade Keller did with Bill Watts, Dave Meltzer of The Wrestling Observer Newsletter had the following reaction:

    "I not only read it when it came out, but more importantly, I heard it, in its context. Wade Keller made me listen because he couldn't believe it. Nor could I. I can only say if you heard the tone and context of the discussion, Watts comes across far worse than just reading the written words. I believe he's since pretty well intimated that he himself admits those viewpoints he had at the time are not the viewpoints he has now".

    Meltzer, for what it is worth, doesn't believe Watts to be a racist, nor does Scott E. Williams who worked with Watts on his recently released Biography.

  10. Anonymous BottomlessJack 

    Tide Comes said it best, I can't top that. Good job.

  11. Anonymous Brendan 

    Everyone has the capacity to change, if Bill Watts looks back on the things he said, and feels differently now, more power to him.

    It's one of the reasons I'm looking forward to his book. One of the many.

    Now, as far as he booked african-americans as babyfaces... I've heard that a lot when it comes to defending Bill Watts.

    I've always thought it was traditional to book african-americans as babyfaces, mostly to deflect any calls of racism. Granted I think this tradition was strongest in the 70s and early 80s and then began to fade as more WWF outlandish characters came in vogue.

    Someone correct me if I'm a bit off here, but I'm having a hard time thinking of a african-american heel from that time period. I think Ernie Ladd worked heel once in a while...?

  12. Anonymous Brendan 

    Everyone has the capacity to change, if Bill Watts looks back on the things he said, and feels differently now, more power to him.

    It's one of the reasons I'm looking forward to his book. One of the many.

    Now, as far as he booked african-americans as babyfaces... I've heard that a lot when it comes to defending Bill Watts.

    I've always thought it was traditional to book african-americans as babyfaces, mostly to deflect any calls of racism. Granted I think this tradition was strongest in the 70s and early 80s and then began to fade as more WWF outlandish characters came in vogue.

    Someone correct me if I'm a bit off here, but I'm having a hard time thinking of a african-american heel from that time period. I think Ernie Ladd worked heel once in a while...?

  13. Anonymous BottomlessJack 

    Ladd was heel, Butch Reed was the main heel for a while there in the early 80's also for Watts. Everyone else were used as faces...

    JYD, Sonny King, Brickhouse Brown, Iceman Parsons, Master G (George Wells), The Snowman Eddie Crawford, Mark Ragin (what little push he had).

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