If nothing else, I find it encouraging. I wholly understand that it is improper (and borderline criminal) to put much stock in anything Lindsey Lohan does, but the latest turn of events is encouraging. This past week, she endorsed Mitt Romney.
Nor is she alone in her embrace of the Massachusetts Mannequin. More and more folks in the entertainment industry are coming out of the closet, so to speak, and throwing their hat in Mitt’s corner. Doing so means they are risking inevitable animosity from their peers, death threats from underoo-marauders online, and the possibility of being blacklisted in their respective industries by future employers who overwhelmingly support the Democratic party. It is laughably ironic that racial bias along the line of Samuel Jackson’s “I voted for Obama because he’s black” statement is tolerated and lauded, while freely offering support for conservatives makes one a Hollywood leper.
Thus far the tally reads Lindsey Lohan, Nicki Minaj, and Stacey Dash as the newest members on Mitt’s bandwagon. Not exactly Team America, but I’d like to congratulate these few, these happy few. It takes guts to stand up in a hostile environment and say “I was an idiot four years ago, but I’m not going to make that mistake again.” There is nothing more vindictive and vociferous than the Tolerance Gestapo once scorned, as this trio has doubtless discovered.
The reason why this is such an encouraging development has nothing to do with the character of the celebrities involved. I find it encouraging because I walked a similar path years ago and I know where it leads. To frame it as a classical metaphor, I escaped from Plato’s Cave and have spent the subsequent time trying to help others to escape. I know what they’re going through and what they’re experiencing, albeit in much smaller scale.
As a recovering liberal, I’ve been in my right mind for about seven years now. Much like the escapees of Plato’s Cave, one day I realized that the images I’d been staring at for 20+ years were just shadows, perverted reflections of reality. This realization was prompted by a burgeoning discovery that many of the catechisms of Liberalism, which I had learned by rote and dutifully spread to other mouth-breathers, were pernicious illusions meant to distract and mollify.
I realized that no matter how righteously the politician crusades against the ills of society, they do so for their own benefit. When that becomes an a priori truth, it’s much more appealing to support the guy who (though mostly full of bullroar) wants to minimize the amount of power he has over my life. I learned that the sacred cows of Liberalism (all people are good at heart, the status quo must go, violence is to be abhorred, etc) were nothing but tired, foot-sore plow horses ready for their trip to the glue factory. In short, I learned that Liberalism is intellectually and sociologically dead, drowned in the river of tears it has elicited throughout history and suffocated by its own hypocrisy and intellectual bankruptcy.
I have a feeling that many of these high-profile defectors have been going through a similar realization for years and this election offered an opportune time to jump the next bathtub-raft to Florida. If I could get these neophyte conservatives together in a room for a focus group, I would ask them one question: Has the reaction to your endorsement contradicted your growing suspicions or edified them? If their experience is anything like mine, then they’ve peeked behind the mask and seen the ugly reality which lurks beneath. As the inside of Helen Thomas’s shower curtain knows so well, some things once seen can never be forgotten.
These celebrities have a choice before them: Which do they prize more liberty or security? Truth or comfort? Integrity or approval? It is hard for professionals who make their living by seeking and attaining the approval of others to act in a manner guaranteed to engender disapproval. I hope that they will realize that some things are more important than a career; that truth, and He in whom it rests, matters more than a paycheck or a docile Twitter feed.
Surely we’ve seen people who have taken each fork in the road. For every Kirk Cameron, there’s a Ray Boltz. Hopefully the courage which helped them speak out and the curiosity which led them to question their own assumptions will continue to lead them towards the light at the mouth of the cave, and away from the timeless mummer show which is modern Liberalism.