Hugh’s response was, “Racism, war, bigotry, but sex itself? No. What a sad and cold world this would be if we weren’t sexual beings. That’s the heart of who we are.”
Earlier this week Playboy’s founder passed away peacefully in his sleep. It’s been said that he won’t be going to a better place because even if he goes to heaven, can that really surpass the life he had on Earth? After all he had the most famous harem in the form of the Playboy Mansion. He probably died with a belly full of wine and a maiden’s mouth around his cock, as Tyrion Lannister once said in Game of Thrones when he was asked how he would like to die.
Hugh Hefner changed America when he introduced Playboy Magazine in 1953 at the age of 27. (Fun fact: He was married at the time to the first woman he had ever slept with.) He challenged America’s straitlaced views on sexuality. He championed causes like abortion rights, which was daring in an era where doctors refused contraceptives to single women. And he was a firm believer in freedom of speech. He once said, “You couldn’t talk politically. You couldn’t use obscenities. What Playboy represented was the beginning of a break from all that.”
Playboy Magazine wasn’t all about attractive women. Men surely enjoyed the pictures of gorgeous naked women but they also read the articles. The magazine has interviewed many influential figures, like Martin Luther King Jr., Bette Davis, and Steve Jobs.
Here’s what Martin Luther King Jr. had to say about the topic of death in 1965:
“If I were constantly worried about death, I couldn’t function. After a while, if your life is more or less constantly in peril, you come to a point where you accept the possibility philosophically. I must face the fact, as all others in positions of leadership must do, that America today is an extremely sick nation, and that something could well happen to me at any time. I feel, though, that my cause is so right, so moral, that if I should lose my life, in some way it would aid the cause.”
Bette Davis about abortion in 1982:
“I believe abortion is better than having 10,000,000 children you can’t support… When I was a child, born in 1908, education taught you that your destiny was to marry and have children. Just because you’re a woman — but that is not your destiny. There are many great women who were just never meant to be mothers, that’s all.”
And Steve Jobs about communication in 1985:
“We want to qualitatively change the way people work. We don’t just want to help them do word processing faster or add numbers faster. We want to change the way they can communicate with one another. We’re seeing five-page memos get compressed to one-page memos because we can use a picture to express the key concept. We’re seeing less paper flying around and more quality of communication. And it’s more fun.”
If you’re curious for more in-depth Playboy interviews, a quick google search will serve you well.
Let’s conclude this post with another fun (and possibly creepy) fact: Hugh Hefner is buried next to Marilyn Monroe. In 1992 he bought a crypt right next to hers. Some see this as a touching gesture because Playboy Magazine’s first issue featured a photo of Marilyn Monroe on the cover. But here’s what he once told the LA Times: “I’m a believer in all things symbolic. Spending eternity next to Marilyn is too sweet to pass up.”