This is a conversation I have been having with conservatives and Republicans for a year plus now…. Is the New Left holding Hollywood, Sports and the Media hostage? Is Entertainment in the bag for the New Left? Are sports heroes the enemies of conservatism? Is the media the problem?
These are questions I’ve been avoiding for nearly two years. Not because I think it is a topic that is too tough for me… But because it is a topic I barely care about. I’m the Millennial Republican, I’m not the pop-culture Republican. Maybe the reason I am so willing to be so publicly Republican —many of the, ahem, younger “conservatives” I know are deep in the closet about their conservative beliefs— is because I don’t have much to lose in a social sense by politically outing myself. OMG the gang at Coachella will collectively shriek “eeeeeewwwww” because I am, gasp, a Republican!!!!!! Big deal. My mind, my values, my politics, are not for rent!
I’m not cool. I never have been. I am cool with not being cool. I don’t run with a pack. I was once asked not to speak at a “Free Speech” event aimed at a cool “youthful” (o.k. most of them were older than I am, but they thought of themselves as “young!!!!!”) Libertarian-leaning crowd because I am too blunt. Essentially, I’m not cool. Big deal. It is a big deal to some people. I can understand that. It can be scary to be alone. No wonder 25% of Americans have supposedly contemplated suicide over the last 6-ish months of shut-down. We’re alone. We’re human. We didn’t evolve to be alone. Some time ago I accepted that I might have to choose between being alone and feeling free enough to express my ideas instead of the ideas of the crowd. I accepted that. Maybe it was a narcissistic act on my part. But I don’t like fakes. And I don’t like myself when I am being fake. And if I mouthed someone else’s ideas and ideals just to fit in with a crowd I would be a fake. And what would the point of that be?
So it makes sense that I really don’t care much about pop culture. I don’t find it interesting. Pre-shutdown I was always too busy with work to keep up with celebrity gossip, post shut-down I just don’t care. (Anyway… I have to say, the ongoing political soap opera of 2020 is way more interesting that the fourth divorce of a third rate singer who was popular five years ago.)
But pop culture means a lot to a lot of people. It should. Culture has value. Pop culture may be the last cultural experiences that a vast majority of Americans share. Sports matter. Baseball, football, basketball, pro golf. Country stars and pop stars. Reality t.v. stars. (I’m still wrapping my head around the concept of an entire breed of famous people famous for being famous.)
The fact is that television, YouTube, maybe even their own talent… has made stars of some people. Most Americans at this point probably know more about the activities of the average reality t.v. star than they do about their own first cousins.
And pop culture is overwhelmingly in the bag for the Democrats. Heck pop culture campaigned for Hillary Clinton back in 2016. And in 2020 the stars lined up like a single minded army the minute after Pete Buttigieg dropped out so Biden could snake in a victory over Senator Bernie Sanders in the primary.
For my part I don’t really care how, or whether, “Hollywood” chooses to weigh in on this election, or any other election. I truly believe in free speech. Which means I believe in the free speech of people whose ideas I think are utter nonsense. We are Americans… we should all be able to express our ideas.
Sadly, I think some people aren’t expressing their own ideas. There is a big difference between speaking out, and mouthing a few words to fit in with the crowd. As an “open Republican” in one of the bluest counties in California I KNOW every time I express a political opinion I risk a death threat. To be honest I’m not that scared by the ravings of a leftwing housewife. Come on? Please? A 57 year old housewife in Santa Venetia wants me to “be afraid, be very afraid…” Umm…. I’m more worried that my local supermarket will run out of Halloween candy before I can stress eat because so far October has sort of sucked. (Plus, I’m legally obligated to wear a mask practically anywhere I appear in public so I don’t have to worry about acne. I might as well eat ALL the candy.)
But… I feel sorry for a lot of celebrities these days. They risk losing their livelihoods if they don’t become better attack dogs for the Biden campaign than any member of the Biden family. Think about that… Imagine being an actor or actress —I actually, as a Feminist Republican, like the feminine version of certain job descriptions, Rita Hayworth was an actress… she wasn’t an “actor”…. please, give due respect to the ladies— and KNOWING that you may never work again if you publicly voice moderate or, gasp, conservative, political values.
Sure… Clint Eastwood is a known “Republican” and he could probably get a feature film about burlap production mentioned as an OSCAR contender, but he also catapulted somewhere beyond the realms of normal stars decades ago. Think of Angie Harmon… Don’t remember her? She used to be on Law & Order. Good, solid working actress. A public quote about her conservative values and I haven’t seen her in anything other than re-runs in YEARS. Her career has been on the back burner since 2017. Three years is a lifetime in the world of entertainment.
And that is what does matter. Mouthing leftwing platitudes, being pro DNC, has become a litmus test for working in Hollywood, or sports, or entertainment or even, gasp, media. If you are on television, or want to be on television, if you aren’t a Biden surrogate, if you don’t have a paid contract with Fox news you may never be seen.
For a long time I didn’t care about this. Big deal if Katie Perry campaigned for Hillary Clinton. Big deal if Kirstie Alley didn't have much of a career. (Kirstie Alley is pro-Trump by the way.)
But… it sort of IS a big deal. I don’t actually think pop stars deliver votes. In fact I think the march of aging stars declaring they will “move to Canada” if Trump is re-elected is a sort of pathetic proof of life statement. Like…. wow, I didn’t know Jane Fonda was still alive? O.k. Or that guy , from that band, that stopped being relevant before I was born, he’s re-locating to Australia if Trump is re-elected. Whatever.
But it is a big deal if these people aren’t expressing their OWN ideas. There is a difference, a big difference, between nailing your flag to the mast, and nailing your flag to the mast because if you don’t your house will be burned down and your career will be ruined.
The New Left is the enemy of free speech. The New Left is the enemy of artistic expression. The New Left is the enemy of ordinary America.
But I don’t think Hollywood is the enemy. I don't think sports stars are the enemy. I see the Hollywood crowd as hostages. They are trying to save their own lives. I can understand that. So how about this… instead of wasting energy saying we’ll boycott Hollywood, we get Trump re-elected and then we save Hollywood? Blink twice? We’ll rescue you… You should have the option of voicing your own opinions. Or voicing no opinions. Come on? Do we really think the average actor or actress has deep opinions about whatever? This is America, we should allow our stars to be shallow and selfish. We shouldn’t allow anyone to be suffocated by the lying mob. (By the way, the media —other than the New York Post and the Epoch Times— is totally in the bag.)
America deserves better. In two weeks we go to the polls to save America, after that we need to save sports and entertainment and rebuild the media.