Secrets and Scandals: 32 Dark Facts About Famous People

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1Mother Theresa

Mother Theresa

Mother Theresa’s “hospices” saw a much lower standard of care than many people who donated had thought. They had poor standards compared to developed nations. Hospices should have medically trained professionals to try to minimize suffering, but her “hospices” had medically incompetent nuns making medically bad decisions. They didn’t even boil the needles they used, which led to a lot of unnecessary suffering. According to Mother Theresa, “the most beautiful gift for a person is that he can participate in the sufferings of Christ.”

2. Mark Wahlberg was addicted to cocaine by the age of 13 and he had committed 20-25 offenses by the age of 21. In 1988, at the age of 16, he served only 45 days in prison for an unprovoked, racially motivated attack that left one of his two victims blind. He was initially charged with attempted murder. At the age of 21, he fractured the jaw of a neighbor in an unprovoked attack.

3. John Lennon was a bad father to his first son, Julian Lennon, going as far as to refer him as being “born out of a bottle of whiskey.” It is also known that he was physically abusive towards women, including Yoko. He once almost killed his friend Bob Wooler. He was drunk at the time and left Wooler hospitalized with broken ribs and only stopped beating him when he realized he was “actually going to kill him.”

4. Carl Sagan was not a great father to one of his kids. One of his sons talks about how absent a father he was. This double take on Sagan comes from “Carl Sagan: A Life” by Keay Davidson. According to the book, Sagan was a disloyal friend, a cynical careerist, a security risk, an abusive husband, a scientist who eschewed experiment, an educator who avoided students and a goofy pothead.

5. It has been proven that Martin Luther King Jr. plagiarized a good part of his thesis. Boston University, where King received his Ph.D. in systematic theology, conducted an investigation that found he plagiarized major portions of his doctoral thesis from various other authors who wrote about the topic. Martin Luther King Jr. also engaged in extramarital affairs throughout his life. He understood and believed in the biblical prohibition against sex outside marriage. It was just that he “had a particularly difficult time with that temptation.”

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6Tim Allen

Tim Allen

In 1978, Home Improvement star Tim Allen was caught trying to smuggle a pound of cocaine through a Michigan Airport. He pleaded guilty to drug trafficking charges and face life imprisonment, but served only two years for providing the names of other dealers. In 1997, he was also arrested for DUI and was sentenced to one-year probation.

7. During Franklin D. Roosevelt's presidency, Supreme Court consistently ruled portions of the New Deal unconstitutional. To threaten the court, Roosevelt proposed a bill to pack the court by expanding its size. Since the Constitution doesn't enumerate the size of the court, FDR felt he could simply add members to the court until the court was amenable to his policy. This directly threatened to snuff out the independence of USA’s highest court and he lost a great deal of political support for having proposed it.

8. English writer Charles Dickens was known among other things, for social commentary in his novels. He once even expressed his belief that “Virtue shows quite as well in rags and patches as she does in purple and fine linen.” He separated from his wife after 22 years of marriage when he fell in love with an 18-year-old actress. His wife went through two miscarriages and bore him 10 children before being dumped. He went on to publish a letter in numerous newspapers in which he accused his wife of being responsible for the separation, and calling her stupid, morbidly depressed and a bad mother.

9. Rudyard Kipling, who wrote ‘Jungle Book,’ also penned the poem “The Covenant”. In it he urged the loyal people of Northern Ireland to fight for their cause against the IRA. He donated £30,000 to the UVF (Ulster Volunteer Force), a paramilitary group which did not want to see Irish Independence. Backing the militants instead of the actual legitimate party brought guns into Irish politics, which ended the constitutional parties, leaving the future of Ireland to radicals. He was also sympathetic to General Reginald Dyer who was responsible for the Jallianwala Bagh Massacre in Amritsar. When Dyer was relieved of his command, Rudyard helped raise over 26,000 pounds for his homecoming prize.

10. Gandhi admitted in his autobiography to hitting his wife when he was young and indulging in carnal pleasures out of lust, jealousy, and possessiveness, not genuine love. He slept with 2 naked 18-year-old girls at night to test his willpower, when he was old. He, holding fast to his principles, refused to let the people in his area inoculate their children against smallpox, due to the role cattle played in creating the vaccine. Many children died. Gandhi refused to let doctors administer penicillin to his wife, which led to her death, yet accepted quinine to save his life.

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11Christopher Columbus

Christopher Columbus

Christopher Columbus was not a nice man. He a terrible navigator and believed Earth was not perfectly round, but “shaped like a woman’s breast”, with the nipple part, highest and closest to Heaven, being in America. Crown had promised significant lifetime pension to the first person on the voyage who sighted land, who was Martín Pinzón, the captain of the Pinta, but Columbus convinced everyone that he had sighted the land a day before but forgot to tell anyone. He enslaved the natives and set them to work digging gold. If somebody didn't make quota, he'd cut one of their hands off and make them wear it around their neck. Later, he did a brisk trade in sex slavery. He is also said to have been the one who brought Syphilis back to Europe and allowed its quick and rapid spread.

12. Nobel Prize winning physiologist Ivan Pavlov is known as the father of classical conditioning, but he wasn't the friendly, bell-ringing dog-lover everyone thinks he was. He surgically implanted spigots in the dog’s jaws to measure their saliva and fed them under very restrictive conditions (strapping them down, etc.). He did the same things on human children. Believed to be street urchins, these children had spigots surgically added to their cheeks and were strapped down with a chute leading directly to their mouth. Pavlov would ring a bell and drop a cookie/biscuit down the chute into the child's mouth. There's even film footage of these experiments on children.

13. Jackie Chan cheated on his wife with ex-Miss Asia 1990 Elaine Ng Yi Lei and got her pregnant. She gave birth to a girl. He has never admitted to having a daughter with her, though he has acknowledged their affair. He is a staunch supporter of China's communist party and thinks that Taiwanese democracy is “the biggest joke in the world,” and believes Chinese citizens need to be “controlled” through censorship, “otherwise they’ll do whatever they want.”

14. The books of Theodor Seuss Geisel a.k.a Dr. Seuss were always moral and quasi-political exercises. His value as an analyst of the psychology of his time, the late 1950s, is readily appreciated. Transgression and hypocrisy are the principal themes of ‘The Cat in the Hat’. Though there was a moral to all of his stories, he never managed to write a book to address the private anguish he went through when his once-happy marriage floundered in middle age. Dr. Seuss had an affair while his wife suffered from cancer and depression. She killed herself when she found out about the affair and he married his mistress a few months later.

15. President Lyndon B. Johnson was not your average president. Though he was constantly occupied by the fate of the free world, quite prominently he was very concerned about the state of his penis. He was not hesitant to show it off in public. If anyone walked in when he was at a urinal, he would swing around still holding his member, which he liked to call "Jumbo," hooting once, “Have you ever seen anything as big as this?” There is even an actual recording of Lyndon Johnson ordering pants while he was the President. He gave explicit details on how he needed his pants to accommodate his nuts and bunghole better (his words).

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16Pablo Picasso

Pablo Picasso

For Pablo Picasso, his complicated relationship with women provided inspiration for countless paintings, drawings, and sculptures. He thought women were “either goddesses or doormats”. Dora Maar, one of his lovers, called him “an extraordinary artist but morally worthless.” He once said, “Women are machines for suffering.” He had several mistresses and he demanded that they be submissive and shorter than him. One of his mistresses killed herself and two of them became emotionally traumatized and insane. He was also horrid to his wife. He once he made his ex-wife divorce her husband so she can re-marry him again, but he proceeded to marry another woman 6 years younger than her (who was already 40 years younger than Picasso), as a revenge.

17. Thomas Edison invented very few of the things people think he made. He had a small team of people he would pay next to nothing to come up with ideas which he would then patent and take credit for. He did not invent the light bulb. Electric lights had already existed for more than 70 years before he filed his patent in 1878. He once waged a negative press campaign on Nikola Tesla in order to sell his DC system and undermine Tesla. In fact, he electrocuted and killed an elephant called Topsy to prove that AC electrical system was dangerous. He once offered Nikola Tesla $50,000 to improve his DC motor. Upon completion, Edison failed to pay and scoffed, “You don't understand American humor.” In spite of all this, he should be credited with making most of “his inventions” commercially viable.

18. Grover Cleveland is known to be the only American president to have served two non-consecutive terms in office and he's remembered as a courageous and honest statesman. But before he became President, he sexually assaulted a married woman “by use of force and violence and without my consent.” She became pregnant, and in order to cover up the scandal he had her committed to an insane asylum and had her child sent to an orphanage. His wife, Frances Clara Folsom, was also the youngest first lady, who married him at the age of 21. She was the daughter of Oscar Folsom. Oscar was a longtime close friend of Grover Cleveland. Cleveland met Frances Clara Folsom at the age of 27, shortly after she was born. When Oscar Folsom, died in an accident, Grover Cleveland was made the trustee of his estate and oversaw the upbringing of Frances Clara Folsom.

19. Composer Beethoven had a terrible relationship with his sister in law, calling her “The Queen of the Night” and spent 10 years of his life trying to take her son Karl away from her. Eventually, he was able to tarnish her reputation to the point where he got custody of Karl. He was a terrible and abusive father to the kid. When Karl had to wear a truss for a testicular hernia, Beethoven confessed to having once pulled him by it when he was mad.

20. Rock-n-roll pioneer Chuck Berry bought a restaurant in Missouri in 1990 and shortly after that he was sued by several women who claimed that he had installed a video camera in the ladies' bathroom to film them. He opted for a class action settlement with 59 women and it cost Berry over $1.2 million. When police raided his house they found videotapes of women using the restroom, and one of them was a minor.

21Boy George

Boy George

English singer Boy George was hired by BBC for The Voice as a mentor, ignoring his criminal history. In 2008, George was convicted of the assault and false imprisonment of Audun Carlsen, a Norwegian model who initially stood for a photography session with George, but on their next meeting George handcuffed him to a wall, beat him with a chain and threatened him with sex toys. Audun Carlsen managed to free himself and ran to a police station in his underwear for help. George was sentenced to 15 months of imprisonment for these offenses.

22. Floyd Mayweather has a long history of domestic violence. He has been accused of violence against women with alarming frequency. He pleaded guilty in two of those incidents, and in another, he was convicted only to have the charges dismissed four years later. Mother of one of his victims claimed, he “swung open a car door, hitting her jaw, pushed her into the car and punched her several times in the face and body.”

23. Aerosmith singer Steven Tyler took legal custody of 16-year-old Julia Holcomb. He got her mother to sign her over to him under the pretense of enrolling her in a better school. They immediately became an item, and Tyler moved her into his apartment in Boston and conceived a child with her. Tyler pressured her into getting an abortion, at roughly five months, a week within the limit at that time.

24. In 1985, Johnny Cash was responsible for starting a wildfire in Los Padres National Forest in California which destroyed several hundred acres of national condor reserve and killed forty-nine of the refuge's 53 endangered condors. To put it in perspective, before the fire there were 110 California Condors anywhere in the world. Johnny Cash killed almost half of them. Cash claimed that the fire was caused by sparks from a defective exhaust system on his camper, but his nephew thinks that Cash started a fire to stay warm and in his drugged condition failed to notice the fire getting out of control. When a judge asked Cash why he did it, he said, “I didn't do it, my truck did, and it's dead, so you can't question it.”

25. In 1956, Elvis Presley was billed as “the Nation’s Only Atomic-Powered Singer” but people hardly know about King's troubling obsession with virginal girls. Shockingly, he preferred girls who were barely more than children. He would meet up with the heads of his fan club, who were primarily underage girls for “slumber parties” where he allegedly molested them. He also met his future wife Priscilla when she was 14 and he was 24. They began dating pretty much straight away, to the horror of her parents. They maintained they did not have sex until their wedding night, when she was 22.

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