I have a really interesting political point of view, and it’s not always something I say too loud at dinner tables here, but you can’t go from a $2,000-a-night suite at La Mirage to a penitentiary and really understand it and come out a liberal. You can’t. I wouldn’t wish that experience on anyone else, but it was very, very, very educational for me and has informed my proclivities and politics every since….
Downey was referring to his time in prison for drug use. I don’t know if Downey has embraced the full spectrum of conservatism, which includes the pro-life view. But I’ll take this as a signal, along with the report of another huge conservative convert, playwright, David Mamet, that the liberal stranglehold of Hollywood is losing its grip.
Don’t know Mamet? Neither did I. Reported World magazine on him in its April 19/26 issue:
It was treated as a coup for the right: a cultural icon renouncing the creed of his liberal comrades-in-art. If not a household name, David Mamet’s work is common knowledge, as prize-winning playwright, screenwriter and/or director of Speed-the-Plow, Wag the Dog, Glengarry Glen Ross, The Spanish Prisoner, Ronin, and more.
He has published fiction, essays, and children’s stories, drawn cartoons for the Huffington Post, created a TV series and Ford commercials. Made a dent, in other words. That’s why his coming-out sent shock waves through the arts and letters community.
Conservatives cheered his intellectual honesty and welcomed him to the ranks. “The right has gained an artist,” exulted novelist Andrew Klavan. Left-leaning commentators rolled their eyes. “David Mamet is a little sissy,” according to one blogger. “Let’s stop with the fake conversions. You just don’t like paying your taxes.”
The vortex of all this comment was Mamet’s essay in the Village Voice, March 11: “Why I Am No Longer a ‘Brain-Dead Liberal.’” Its subtitle could be, “What was I thinking?”…
A guest on Fox & Friends this morning, whose name evaded me, reported Heidi Montag and Angie Harmon as newly noted conservative stars, joining Jon Voight, Patricia Heaton, and a few others.
Of all these, I only know Heaton to be pro-life, but ultimately whoever is a serious conservative student must conclude that social conservatism is the basis of fiscal conservatism, and the cornerstone of social conservatism is the pro-life issue. So I welcome these influential celebrities at whatever place they’ve arrived in the conservative spectrum.
[Photo of Downey courtesy of the NYT; photo of Mamet courtesy of MSNBC; photo of Harmon courtesy of Yahoo TV]