During the promotion for his latest film, 'Cold Pursuit', Liam Neeson shocked the world with the unexpected admission that he experienced violent and racist thoughts after the rape of a loved one. The Irish actor revealed this dark secret in an interview with the Independent, responding to a question regarding the reconciliation of the mentality of his character, a man who seeks revenge after the murder of his son. Neeson responded saying, "There's something primal; God forbid you've ever had a member of your family hurt under criminal conditions... I'll tell you a story. This is true."
Neeson thus began his confession, in which he revealed, without disclosing the victim's identity, that a woman very close to him was raped: "She handled the situation of the rape in the most extraordinary way. But my immediate reaction was... I asked, did she know who it was? No. What colour were they? She said it was a black person."
With this small detail of the criminal's identity, the actor confessed, full of remorse, to the way in which his anger allowed violent and racist thoughts to overwhelm him: "I went up and down areas with a cosh, hoping I'd be approached by somebody, I'm ashamed to say that, and I did it for maybe a week, hoping some 'black bastard' would come out of a pub and have a go at me about something, you know? So that I could... kill him."
During the interview, Neeson appeared completely aware of the seriousness of his declarations. The actor was fully repentant and openly accepted the full weight of the blame: "It was horrible, horrible, when I think back, that I did that. And I've never admitted that, and I'm saying it to a journalist. God forbid."
Despite having allowed his anger to have taken over during that time, the actor is now fully acknowledges that violence is not the answer, especially when it concerns hatred of an entire group of people for an isolated incident. "It's awful, but I did learn a lesson from it, when I eventually thought, 'What the fuck are you doing' [...] I understand that need for revenge, but it just leads to more revenge, to more killing and more killing, and Northern Ireland's proof of that. All this stuff that's happening in the world, the violence, is proof of that, you know. But that primal need, I understand."As is only to be expected after such a momentous revelation, the actor has received an enormous amount of backlash criticising Neeson's mentality and questioning whether he would have ever carried out the actions which he described having a desire to commit.
Liam Neeson being ready to take any Black life over what one person allegedly did just shows how meaningless and inconsequential black lives are to some.? Frederick Joseph (@FredTJoseph) 4 de febrero de 2019
Even him telling the story demonstrates a level of privilege and understating that there may not be repercussions.
It's terrible that Liam Neeson thought about committing a hate crime. However, it should be noted, Mark Wahlberg ACTUALLY committed hate crimes.? Hari Kondabolu (@harikondabolu) 4 de febrero de 2019
Liam Neeson is today's example of snatching defeat from the jaws of victory.? Jemele Hill (@jemelehill) 4 de febrero de 2019
It is too early to say whether these declarations will have a lasting impact on Neeson's career, but it is certain that nobody will look at the actor in the same way again. The only consolation comes from knowing that Neeson has accepted the terrible weight of this moment of anger, and reformed his ways.