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10 Most Hated Men in America

Updated on June 18, 2017
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Current events, international affairs, government and American history are a few of the prime interests of Kelley.

O.J. Simpson
O.J. Simpson

Shakespeare: In time we hate that which we often fear


The most hated men in America can be hated for just one reason or many: conceit, arrogance, criminality, heartlessness, cruelty, ugliness, cowardice, indifference, avarice, misogyny, miserliness, thoughtlessness - or you name it. And keep in mind, all the men on this list are American citizens and still alive. Thus, you won’t find on this compilation Hitler, Stalin, Al Capone or Ted Bundy. Nor is the list in any particular order, because it’s not the intent of the author to name the most hated man in America.

Also bear in mind the author does not hate any of the people on this list. The list simply reflects a perception that perhaps tens of millions of people may hate these guys. Of course, at some point in time, all of these men may mend their ways and become much more likeable folks.

Please keep reading!

Bernie Madoff
Bernie Madoff

1. Bernie Madoff


Bernie Madoff committed the largest investment fraud in the history of the US, cheating many investors for at least $18 billion. This financial scam, a so-called Ponzi Scheme, may have started as long ago as the 1970s and lasted until 2008. Madoff’s game was designed to make huge profits for investors in a relatively short period of time, but there never were any investments; in fact, the business may never have been legitimate in any way. The U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) investigated Madoff’s company, Bernie L. Madoff Investment Securities (a family business more of less), back in the early 2000s, but didn’t find anything incriminating. However, the FBI finally caught up with Madoff in 2008 and he was convicted of numerous felonies and sentenced to 150 years in prison.

Rick Snyder
Rick Snyder

2. Governor Rick Snyder


While governor of Michigan from 2011 to 2015, Rick Snyder appointed several people to manage the water supply for the city of Flint, Michigan. Then in 2014, in an effort to save $5 million, one of these managers switched the source of Flint’s water supply from Lake Huron to the Flint River, a body of water heavily polluted with trihalomethanes, very corrosive industrial compounds. Soon, it became known these chemicals leached lead from old water pipes, giving lead poisoning to many of Flint’s residents. Governor Snyder was blamed for the contamination, and four families filed a federal class action lawsuit against Snyder and other state officials (criminal indictments were also filed). Snyder apologized for the incident and asked the federal government to declare a state of emergency in Flint. At one point, Snyder pledged to drink Flint’s tap water for 30 days, helping prove the water was safe to drink, but Snyder reneged on his promise, instead going to Europe.

Bill Cosby
Bill Cosby

3. Bill Cosby


Bill Cosby has had an illustrious career as an American entertainer, actor, author and producer. Starting in the 1960s, Cosby was a stand-up comedian and soon starred in TV shows such as I Spy. Then, in the 1970s, Cosby created and produced the TV show Fat Albert and the Cosby Kids, a TV series that ran for more than 10 years. And, in the 1980s, Cosby starred on The Cosby Show, a sitcom that dominated the ratings well into the 1990s.

Nevertheless, since 2000 more than 50 women have made allegations of gross sexual misconduct by Cosby, to summarize, saying that since the 1960s he drugged and raped these various women. Most of these accusations cannot be adjudicated because of the statutes of limitations, but one is actionable. Cosby stood trial for aggravated indecent assault in June 2017, and a mistrial was declared by the judge. Apparently Cosby will be brought to trial again for this charge later in the year.

Edward Snowden
Edward Snowden

4. Edward Snowden


A computer professional by trade, Edward Snowden has worked for the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) and as a contractor for the United States Government. In 2013, Snowden leaked to the public thousands of documents belonging to the National Security Agency. These documents involved global surveillance disclosures for the US and foreign governments such as that of the UK. Snowden was later indicted by the US Department of Justice for violating the Espionage Act of 1917 (heavily amended over the years), causing him to flee the country. And then Snowden engineered many subsequent “leaks” for thousands of documents belonging to the Department of Defense. Snowden claims he peruses every document and only publicizes ones that seem within the public interest. Just exactly how “revealing” these documents are has been the subject of great debate in the US and elsewhere.

Cover of OJ's book
Cover of OJ's book

5. O.J. Simpson


Almost everybody knows that in 1995 O.J. Simpson was acquitted of murder charges in a case which, at the time, was considered a so-called trial of the century. Charged for the murder of his wife, Nicole Brown-Simpson and her friend, Ronald Goldman, Simpson seemed to have gotten away with murder, although he was found guilty in a subsequent wrongful deaths lawsuit, totaling $33.5 million in damages. Then in 2007 O.J. and three other men were arrested for armed robbery, kidnapping and other felonies. It seems O.J. had hoped to get back some of the sports memorabilia that had been taken from him for civil reparations. The following year, “The Juice” was convicted of the aforementioned charges and given a sentence of 33 years in prison, with a minimum of nine years without parole. And, over the years, Simpson has had numerous other legal entanglements.

Martin Shkreli
Martin Shkreli

6. Martin Shkreli


American entrepreneur and pharmaceutical executive Martin Shkreli, beginning in the early 2000s, has worked as a hedge fund manager of MSMB Capital Management and as the CEO of several different pharmaceutical companies in the US. When Shkreli was the CEO of Turing Pharmaceuticals, a company he also founded, he because infamous in 2015 for raising the price of the antiparasitic drug Daraprim, useful in the treatment of malaria. The price of Daraprim went from $13.50 per pill to $750, prompting the media to call him “the most hated man in America.” Also, Shkreli has been involved in other exorbitant price hikes for prescription drugs, one of which is Thiola (an increase of $1.50 to $30 per pill). Also in 2015, the FBI indicted Shkreli for securities fraud, accusing him of using a pyramid scheme during his dealings at MSMB Capital Management.

Barry Bonds
Barry Bonds

7. Barry Bonds


It seems safe to write that baseball player Barry Bonds won more awards for his hitting and fielding prowess than any other MLB player in history. Perhaps his most impressive records were for hitting home runs: 73 in a season (2001) and 762 in a career. Certainly Bonds was one of the greatest baseball players of time – or maybe THE GREATEST BASEBALL PLAYER OF ALL TIME. But Barry Bonds played during the so-called steroids era (late 1980s to early 2000s), when many professional baseball players were accused of using anabolic steroids, admitted to using them, or were caught using them and then suspended. Be that as it may, Bonds only admitted to using “the cream” and the “clear,” both of which contain steroids, but never admitted to injecting steroids. When Bonds’ career ended after the 2007 season, he was indicted for perjury and obstruction of justice in the BALCO steroids scandal. He was convicted, though the charges were eventually overturned. Moreover, Bonds had the reputation of being an arrogant braggart, hated by many players, coaches and fans.

Jared Fogle
Jared Fogle

8. Jared Fogle


A former spokesperson for Subway restaurants and, at one point, commonly known as “the Subway Guy,” Jared Fogle generated his 15 minutes of fame by losing over 200 pounds while eating little more than Subway sandwiches – that is, minus the mayonnaise and other high caloric condiments. Then somewhat famous, Fogle worked in Subway’s advertising campaigns from 2000 to 2015. But Fogle’s fame turned to infamy when he was investigated for paying for sex with minors and receiving child pornography. Fogle copped a plea and was sentenced to 15 years in federal prison; in addition, he was heavily fined. Incidentally, in 2002, Fogle was the subject of an episode of the TV show South Park, entitled “Jared Has Aides.” Fogle said he was flattered that an entire episode was made about him, constituting high praise!

Kanye West
Kanye West

9. Kanye West


Kanye West is one of the most successful pop artists of the twenty-first century. He’s won numerous Grammy Awards and Rolling Stone magazine included three of his albums on its list of the “500 Greatest Albums of All Time”. Moreover, Time magazine included him on its compilation of the 100 most influential people in the world (in 2005 and 2015). But Kanye’s outspoken nature has rubbed many folks the wrong way. During the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, Kanye said President W. George Bush “didn’t like black people,” greatly insulting Bush, though Kanye apologized afterward. Then in November 2013, Kanye said that President Obama’s performance was lacking because he didn’t have the Jews’ money and influence. Also, during award shows in the years 2004, 2007, 2009 and 2015, Kanye spoke depreciatively of award winners Britney Spears, Gretchen Wilson, Beck and Taylor Swift. And many other artists have been disparaged by Kanye’s actions, monologues or interviews. Lastly, in the fall of 2016, during performances, Kanye ranted at people and walked out of at least two concerts, eventually cancelling the rest of the tour because of exhaustion and depression.

Donald Trump
Donald Trump

10. Donald Trump


One of the wealthiest people in the world, Donald Trump won the Presidency of the US in November 2016, beating Hillary Clinton in the Electoral College, although Clinton won the popular vote by more than two million, making Trump the fifth President who was elected without winning the popular vote. Trump was elected even though he was greatly unpopular, even considered a joke candidate by many, a kind of satirical character worthy of parody on such shows as Saturday Night Live. During the campaign Trump was combative, defensive, arrogant, pompous, argumentative, offensive, accusative, abusive, vulgar, sexist, crass and xenophobic. At one time or another, Trump appeared to be a racist, an internet troll, a misogynist and/or a fascist. Moreover, many women claimed to have been accosted or even sexually assaulted by Trump. Yet, somehow, Trump was elected President of the US. It appears accurate to point out that tens of millions of people hate Donald Trump, but an equal amount, more or less, voted for him and may even like him.

Please leave a comment!

© 2016 Kelley

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    • lions44 profile image

      CJ Kelly 6 months ago from Auburn, WA

      Interesting list. Sharing

      I have to disagree on Bonds. He did get a job in baseball (although he got canned last month) and he will work again. Despite fans hating the PED situation, I believe most would vote him into the HoF.

      Same Kanye West. He's nuts but probably not hated in an OJ type fashion. I bet he garners some sympathy going forward .

    • jackclee lm profile image

      Jack Lee 6 months ago from Yorktown NY

      I have to disagree on Snowden and Trump.To some Snowden is a hero for exposing NSA lawbreaking. Trump was elected by 40 million voters...

    • MVKilgore profile image

      M. Victor Kilgore 6 months ago

      I don't love Trump, but despise the "values" of the Clinton crime family even more...therefore, the lesser evil (imho) got my vote.

    • Kosmo profile image
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      Kelley 6 months ago from California

      Thanks for the comment, lions44. We'll have to wait and see what happens to Kanye and Bonds, and for that reason this list is very changeable. As for somebody like Madoff, he isn't getting off this list until he dies. Later!

    • Kosmo profile image
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      Kelley 6 months ago from California

      Thanks for the comment, jacklee 1m! It's hard to figure what's going to happen to both Snowden and Trump. Snowden could get sent to prison, while Trump could be impeached; or maybe they'll do somewhat better. Hey, over the months and years, this list will change, which is good. Later!

    • jackclee lm profile image

      Jack Lee 6 months ago from Yorktown NY

      How about putting George Soros on the list instead? Here is a super rich guy who made his money by manipulating currency and convicted of crime in France and using his ill gotten money to buy elections and influencing public policies...the worst of his crime in my opinion is to fund anarchist groups like OWS and BLM to create chaos and cause riots and unrest... and putting police in harms way.

    • Kosmo profile image
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      Kelley 6 months ago from California

      Thanks for the comment, MVKilgore! The candidates for president weren't the best I've ever seen, but Trump was simply too disrespectful to be elected president, particularly when he insulted John McCain by saying he was no hero because he was captured by the enemy. Trump's terrible character will get him impeached. Later!

    • Kosmo profile image
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      Kelley 6 months ago from California

      As for George Soros not being on this list, I almost put him here, and his name may end up here yet. Stay tuned. At any rate, I didn't want to include just criminals or political figures, for rude celebrities can be just as contemptible, can't they? Later!

    • Zeron87 profile image

      Zeron87 6 months ago

      Love the list. Definitely a lot of disgusting human beings here who are either cheaters, liars, or who don't value human life. I have to say though, this list IS based off people's subjective feelings of hate, but Colin Kaepernick appears to be the odd-man-out on this list. He's the only one standing for (well, in this case kneeling for) human rights instead of being a jerk or a criminal. It's sad a protestor for the mistreatment and unapologetic murders of group of people is one of the most hated people in America. Also, just a grammar mistake I noticed, but if black is being used to refer to a particular race, shouldn't it be treated as a proper noun? Still, an interesting read.

    • Kosmo profile image
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      Kelley 6 months ago from California

      Thanks for the comment, Zeron87. You are right about saying that "black" should be a pronoun and therefore capitalized; however, it is not in general, for whatever the reason. As for Colin Kaepernick and his stance on racial relations in the US, I've tried to be as objective as I can. He certainly has the right to speak out or demonstrate any way he sees fit - that's the American way.

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