Have any of you been dumped on Facebook for being racist, homophobic gun toting morons lately? Have some of your tolerant, diversity seeking “Progressive“friends tossed you under the bus for having the temerity to express a conservative opinion based on facts?
I got un-friended on Facebook a few months ago by comedienne Elaine Boosler. Out here in the real world I wasn’t really “friends” with Ms. Boosler. We had met a few times and I think we may have shared a stage or two somewhere along the way but that was it. Our Facebook friendship was almost as brief. When I disagreed with one of her political postings I was soon scratched from her “friend” roster. It seems that Ms. Boosler does not like to have her opinions challenged. She is one of many “Progressives” who believe in diversity of appearance but not of thought. Fair enough! You want to be narrow minded and intellectually lazy so you don’t have to defend your opinions that is your right as an American. Second in my mind only to the right to be as stupid as you want to be is the right to put your fingers in your ear when someone who disagrees with you is so rude as to start throwing facts at you.
A little more hurtful was another “progressive” friend who electronically dumped me last week. For many years when I lived in California I had supported this person artistically because I thought she was talented, and I still do. I helped her find gigs and talked her up to bookers and agents when I could.
I got a terse message from this now former Facebook friend. The message was, “Go f#*@ yourself!” The reason for this dismissal; I expressed a conservative viewpoint in a comment to something she had posted. She had posted a negative message about Sean Hannity insulting Elena Kegan’s appearance. I posted back that I agreed that personal appearance attacks are lowbrow and said I hoped she was as vocal about her distaste for personal attacks when the left was doing it to Sarah Palin. My ex-friend said that there had never been and appearance based attacks on Ms. Palin, (I know, I know) and could I supply some links to back my position. I did with a link to the Letterman “slutty airline attendant” line. She posted back that that was just one example and when I when I took the discussion off the public board and sent here a personal message with several more links I got the GFY brush off.
This whole episode got me to thinking about the bigger question; what is the cost of being openly conservative in show business? A few years ago another friend who is a television producer told me about going to a meeting at a studio where a major “suit” went on for fifteen minutes during a creative meeting about Rush Limbaugh and how they would never hire anyone who listened to “that moron.” My friend is a “closet conservative” and since he was in the middle of trying to make a deal at that studio he kept his mouth shut. Another friend has a job as a casting director on a show and is very careful never to express a political opinion even though many lunch discussions are strongly anti-conservative.
I look folks like Dennis Miller, a guy who I have admired for years, and Drew Carey and wonder what their brash conservativism has cost them. There used to be a cost if you were a drug addict or gay in Hollywood. Now those things are career boosters. A few years back when I was still in Hollywood some people would attend recovery group meeting to “network” with those there for help. Being seen at AA or CA was a career move. Does anyone think Ellen DeGeneres’ coming out has hurt her? I may not remember correctly but I seem to remember her sit-com was on life support until she came out on the show and on Oprah. I wouldn’t doubt if there were a few “ersatz” gays in Hollywood these days. Meanwhile if you are conservative or Republican in show business you better have a two bedroom closet because you are going to be there for awhile.
If you want to join my Facebook group for those dumped online for being too right http://www.facebook.com/#!/group.php?gid=122238941127462&ref=ts follow this link and post your story.