J. Edgar Hoover

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John Edgar Hoover (1895-1972) was the controvertial director of the FBI. A staunch opponent of Communism, liberalism, organized labor, and homosexuals, Hoover served as director for 48 years. He founded the FBI's 'public enemies' program, under which such criminals as John Dillinger, Bonnie Parker and Clyde Barrow were killed. He enforced prohibition when it was in effect. Hoover especially disliked Martin Luther King and kept him under constant surveillance. He reportedly cheered when King was killed.

Hoover seemed to have a blind spot when it came to the Mafia, repeatedly stating that organized crime didn't exist. Some speculate that the Mafia was blackmailing Hoover, threatening to reveal evidence of his long standing homosexual relationship with his roommate Clyde Tolson. The truth is ambiguous, though Hoover's reputation as a homosexual and cross dresser has tarnished his memory.

References

Lambert, Pam, "Hoover Unveiled," People, March 22, 1993

Summers, Anthony, Official and Confidential: the Secret Life of J. Edgar Hoover, G.P. Putnam & Sons, New York, 1993.

Urquhart, Sidney, "Partners for Life," Time, February 22, 1993

Wilson, Gahan, The Big Book of Weirdos, Paradox Press, New York, 1995