August 18, 2018

Pat Boone

By Don Willis

Just a few years back, one of the hottest items for the press was "Pat Boone, a Christian." He then was one of the most talented and upright persons of this generation. Pat entered into show business, upholding many commendable moral principles, i.e. opposition to dancing, kissing, etc. Many wrote in those days begging Pat not to enter the movie industry, for it would eventually destroy him and his influence. but when one is making "good," to deter him seems impossible. Pat was a star in his own rights. His voice was outstanding, and I, personally, enjoyed hearing him sing. But still those voices of warning would sound out, "Pat, the ground upon which you stand is dangerous."

I remember when this "wholesome" lad got his own television show. Very soon, dancing was brought into practice, and Pat had to go along. In his book, "Twixt Twelve and Twenty," Pat tells of a party given for young people, a swimming party. Mixed bathing has been questioned for years, and assuredly must lead to wrong emotions.

The sky exploded! Pat made a movie in which he portrayed a drunken lover. He appeared half-clad before his beautiful lover, and because she spurned his love, he stumbled, home drunk, in one scene of the movie. (It was reported in the daily paper that Pat did that scene so well that the first take was used!)

In the October 26, 1963 Wichita Eagle, one of the Drive-in shows gave a large display of a double feature with Mr. Boone. I want to quote some of this ad: "Hot as a pistol, and twice as deadly. MEET BAD BOY BOONE. He's a roving eyed drifter a hard drinking, stogie smoking, woman chasing sex symbol in a silk Italian suit, a boyish grin and a nervous smile . . . He's a new, cynical, tough-as-nails Pat Boone... in a pair of hard-hitting movies that'll have you grinding your teeth, biting your nails and gasping for breath --" Another quote, "Here's Bad Boy Boone . . . on the prowl, on the lam -- and in trouble with that Suzie Wong Gal!" Oh, yes, also in the ad, "Not for Children!"

In a Gospel Guardian of 1958, William Wallace quoted a young starlet's thoughts on brother Boone, "He's what I would like to be. He stands for what a Christian should be, especially one in show business. He is using his talent to the fullest extent" (Vol. 9, Num. 48, p. 759). I now ask you to read the above advertisement. Is this the influence that a Christian should exert?

Young people, in this world you will find a great number of problems that you must face and conquer. But do not follow the example of this young man. He started out wholesome, pure, and casting a lot of good influence; but with the fall of his morals, he now is encouraging drinking, smoking, mixed bathing, petting, girl chasing, etc. "Evil companions corrupt good morals" (1 Cor. 15:33).

Truth Magazine VIII: 8, p. 1
May 1964