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Jane Fonda has never been afraid to speak her mind -- but she says that QVC is afraid to let her do it. On Saturday, Fonda wrote an angry note on her blog, blasting the home-shopping channel for canceling her scheduled appearance. Fonda was supposed to do a promotional spot for Prime Time, her book about healthy aging -- not exactly controversy bait. But the 73-year-old actress claims that QVC caved to right-wing extremists still peeved about her 1972 anti-Vietnam War campaign.
"The network said they got a lot of calls yesterday criticizing me for my opposition to the Vietnam War and threatening to boycott the show if I was allowed to appear," writes Fonda. "I am, to say the least, deeply disappointed that QVC caved to this kind of insane pressure by some well funded and organized political extremist groups. And that they did it without talking to me first.
"I have never shied away from talking about this as I have nothing to hide," she continues. "I could have pointed out that threats of boycotts are nothing new for me and have never prevented me from having best selling books and exercise DVDs, films, and a Broadway play."
Fonda became a controversial symbol for the anti-war movement after posing for a photo with a Vietnamese anti-aircraft gun, making it look like she was shooting down American planes. Though she was actually visiting American POWs -- and later apologized for the "thoughtless" photograph, saying she didn't understand the implications -- she has never been able to escape the derogatory nickname "Hanoi Jane." However, Fonda now says that she's done apologizing.
"Bottom line, this has gone on far too long, this spreading of lies about me!" she writes. "None of it is true. NONE OF IT! I love my country. I have never done anything to hurt my country or the men and women who have fought and continue to fight for us. I do not understand what the far right stands to gain by continuing with these myths."
She ends the blog entry with a thank-you to her supporters, including "my Vietnam Veterans friends."
QVC has not commented on Fonda's story, saying only that she was cut from the program due a "change in scheduling."
Assuming Fonda's story is true, we're a little shocked that this kind of animosity towards her still exists almost 40 years after the controversy in question. She still has strong anti-war views, but they didn't stop her from becoming one of the most beloved celebrities of the '80s -- and we don't see how they factor into her books and fitness DVDs. Her book is all about looking good when you're older -- and if that's not bipartisan, then what is?