Wednesday, October 28, 2009
EXCLUSIVE: silencing from Christian liberals
A year ago, in weather warmer than this and a political climate much colder, I sat at this very chair, next to this very window, on this very aging laptop, and tapped out an article for a national and prominent Christian magazine, one I will not name.
I had pitched them a story idea: the silencing of Christians in Hollywood. And they bit, full incisors into juicy, journalistic skin.
Could I have it to them in ten days? They asked.
I could certainly try.
And so I went to work. I interviewed Andrew Klavan and Lionel Chetwynd and Bob Parks and John Nolte and Phyllis Chesler and Andrew Breitbart, just weeks before he launched BigHollywood and eventually BigGovernment, becoming the voice of alternative journalism by exposing ACORN. I even talked to a man my mother has adored since 1957 when he appeared as the handsome romantic lead in "April Love" - Pat Boone, who chatted with me via his motel room while attending the Republican National Convention.
I chased these sources down because of two very important interviews that sent the story in a new direction. Two Christian pastors, men who lead large denominations heavily stacked with Hollywood players, explained to me a simple truth: It isn't Christians that are rejected, it's conservative Christians. There is a very simple yet cutting line between what Hollywood embraces and what Hollywood despises. And the cutlery of choice is conservatism.
I submitted my story on deadline. And it was rejected. Why? Here's what they said:
"Really appreciate all your work on it. The main issue is that the majority of this article talks about conservatives in Hollywood, as opposed to Christians. As you and I had talked about, those overlap to some extent, but we really want to make the focus on faith—(the magazine) doesn't take a stance on conservative vs. liberal, plus the article almost makes it seem like Christian = conservative, which we certainly don't want to do nor agree with."
So the truth didn't fit into their talking points. I didn't create the meme, I reported it. Conservative Christians are bullied in Hollywood into silence. Liberals are not. I cannot change that fact. I also don't feel self-righteous enough to suppress it. As Christians, do we not want truth? Or do we, instead, crave acceptance?
But the magazine doesn't take a stance. That's why their publisher interviewed Obama and McCain in the next issue, endorsing the liberal candidate. They don't take sides, except when they do.
I've held the story on this very aging laptop, sitting on this very antique desk, next to this very small window, for a very exacting time. Now I'm going to post it here. Why now? I honestly don't know. It simply seems time. And I really need the memory space.
So now: I give you "Hollywoodn't."