I dislike him for several reasons, some of which are listed in his CNN obituary as praise. "He seldom deviated from heroic roles, often set in the West or on the battlefield" manages to capture two of his failings; great actors can play villains as well as heroes, and I dislike his portrayal of a war hero while carefully avoiding service during the second World War.
Again from the obituary: "This is all evidences an enduring love for Wayne that may surpass even his esteemed contemporaries: Humphrey Bogart, Clark Gable, Cary Grant and Katharine Hepburn, whose centennial was earlier this month." I sincerely hope this isn't true. All four of those listed could out-act Wayne cold. Bogart was a better actor blind drunk, and was adventurous enough to play villains and morally conflicted characters. Gable, Grant, and Hepburn will all live on through their works, which show several sides of the human condition.
John Wayne nostalgia stinks to me of the Baby Boomer cowering insecurities which lead them back to a past when heroism was simple and unthinking.
I'd much rather have mourned the fiftieth anniversary of Bogart's death back in January. As his dying words tell us "I never should have switched from scotch to those damn martinis."