Coming Out As Conservative

Mom, Dad… I’m conservative.

During the 2016 election, I was an avid progressive liberal. I despised Trump and everything he stood for, which to me was racism, sexism, homophobia, and every other buzzword. I fed straight into the narrative that a Trump presidency meant the Holocaust 2.0. Yet here I am, roughly a year later, supporting the Trump administration in a prosperous America. What changed, and what effect did this have on my social life?

Well, to be fair, I was never your perfect leftist. I mean, sure, I was more than willing to be a defender of minorities in America, but I still had some personal dignity. I never drank the Kool-Aid with white privilege. I was never seduced into thinking racism was a whites-only doomsday device. I still maintained my beliefs that individuals should be treated as individuals, not numbers or groups — and that’s what lead me away from the leftist utopia. Identity politics are one of the cornerstones of progressivism in the West today: the idea that to solve social issues, you must do so based on groups, not individuals — all white people oppress all black people, all men are radically more privileged than all women, and so on. Of course, this isn’t true. It may be true in individual cases, but the accusation that all men are oppressors or sexist or whatever is absolutely false. My firm beliefs in individual liberty led me to call myself a classical liberal. I started watching more anti-feminist videos from creators like Sargon of Akkad and Blaire White. This only furthered my journey.

After months of self-examination and realizing that the real opponent in the culture wars were the leftists, I realized that I was a libertarian, as I harbored such beliefs as individual liberty and minimal government. More research into my new ideology opened me up to ideas like the free market and even conservative ideas such as protection of the Second Amendment and the persecution of political correctness. This was the turning point of my intellectual metamorphosis — my crossover from left to right. I was no longer a progressive, apologetic, politically correct feminist ally; I was a dangerous, conservative, capitalist libertarian machine.

My political compass standings, April 2017 vs. November 2017.

After taking more pride in my new identity, I began to become a fan of more right-wing commentators: Steven Crowder, Milo Yiannopoulos, Lauren Southern, etc. I took pride in my socially-liberal, economically-conservative party, and that I found a group of people that I agreed with, that I could find not only intellectual enrichment and encouragement, but also humor and compassion — friendship. However, my transition did not go over so well in my social circles off the Internet.

I live in a city where our mayor is a fierce defender of social justice and even barred Trump from entering our city. I’m proud of where I live, just not who lives in it. My surroundings are also disproportionately left-wing — stickers reading “Fuck Trump” can be found plastering walls; our annual Pride parade can reach numbers into the hundreds of thousands; we’re even home to the African Peoples’ Socialist Party. My contemporaries are also wildly liberal, as well, with my conversion proving that some people are not okay with being friends with a conservative, or can’t even stand to be within five feet of me (then again, I’m terribly political). I’ve even noticed a change in how my family members treat me; disapproving looks were shot my way when my grandfather and I engaged in a private conversation about our conservative views on abortion on Thanksgiving. So why do I say all of this? To prove that, yes, it is risque to be a conservative in our Western society. I touched on the perks of being a liberal in this piece, calling it “liberal privilege” — a play on all the privileges and oppression the left has conjured up to make itself feel more special. Of course, I don’t actually believe there is an inherent privilege to being liberal, just like you aren’t predetermined to have a political opinion until you have it. You’ll be treated differently in different areas, depending on what’s popular there; but in my experience of being on both sides, I was treated better as a liberal than I was a conservative. But none of that matters. I chose to be a conservative, so I’ll take the consequences.

I chose to be a conservative, so I’ll take the consequences.

For some odd reason, the principle of diversity is a must in a liberal society. We must have all sorts of people, ranging from male, female, black, white, Asian, fat, skinny, poor, rich, and what have you. But, as I’ve stated in the past, there’s one kind of diversity the left won’t even touch. It threatens everything they fight for. It would topple their authoritarian culture, and usher in a new one, setting up a new economy where the currency is a solid idea. This diversity is intellectual diversity.

The left claims to be patrons of the ultimate tolerant society, accepting anyone from any walk of life — as long as they don’t disagree with me. God forbid anyone question the State! God forbid we have dissidents! Yes, my dear snowflakes; this kind of diversity is crucial to realistically have this super-tolerant, multi-faceted society you all want so bad. And, unfortunately, that means putting up with rotten conservatives like me. Our guaranteed right to free speech — the First Amendment — is one of the only things delivering us from complete cultural collapse in America, from an authoritarian-like society where one set of ideas is accepted and the other is shunned. When you’re part of the majority — cough, cough, Democrats — these rights are nearly invisible, as they’re not being threatened. However, to conservatives and libertarians across America, in academia, in media, even in industries dedicated to inclusivity, these rights are being threatened with infringement and annihilation. We may not like it, but to keep our democratic republic and our equal representation in society, we must put up with those who disagree with us — all of them.

The Free Speech Movement in the 1960s at UC Berkeley, now one of the most liberal and oppressive universities in the country.

Is coming out as conservative as dangerous as coming out as gay? Maybe not. Or maybe it is in some places. (California, probably. Let’s be honest.) The point is that this shouldn’t even be a question. We’ve come so far in this country to achieve real tolerance and acceptance. Let’s not throw that away with real, but unseen intolerance and dissent. I’m not saying you’ve got to agree with me; I’m just asking you to put up with me.

Mike Lee is an editor for Liberation Day. As a cultural and conservative libertarian, he writes about the importance of free speech and intellectual diversity.

Follow Mike on Gab here.