Harold Hutchison / Dec. 23, 2019

Conservatives Must Get on Pop Culture Battlefield

The Right is still losing ground in the culture war because we’re not really on all fields.

While there have been gains in many areas in the political and government realm, the fact is, Patriots seem to be losing ground — still. While Patriots have often focused on news, politics, and legislation, many have forgotten a very crucial arena on the battlefield of ideas: Pop culture.

Why does pop culture matter? We’ll give you a number: three million. That’s how many people follow Laura Ingraham, a Fox News opinion host, on Twitter. Alyssa Milano, whose acting career has seen better days, has 3.7 million on an account that regularly trashes the Second Amendment and anyone who doesn’t follow the hard-left agenda she supports. Want to see what an A-list figure in pop culture has? Take one look at Kim Kardashian West, who has 62.7 million Twitter followers.

Short version: Pop culture is where ideas can spread. This is one reason why the Sinclair-Tribune merger should have been allowed to go through. Entertainment, daytime talk, and broadcast news are fields where the Left doesn’t have much opposition.

If Sinclair had the chance to evolve into a broadcast network, it would arguably create a right-of-center contender on a field that the Left previously had to itself. We can only look to how Fox News emerged as the top cable network, simply by giving conservative points of view a fair hearing. The vitriol that comes from the likes of Elizabeth Warren shows just how much that one network changed the landscape. Now imagine what a broadcast network could do, taking the fight on a much wider front.

Why has ignoring pop culture been a big mistake? Because often pop culture is about stories, and the ability to tell a good story is an advantage in advancing political agendas. For instance, look at the high-powered help Hillary Clinton received in 2016. While Donald Trump did win, it was close. The fact that Hollywood had gone all in for Hillary was a big reason why the popular vote went the way it did.

When people wonder why conservatism seems to fail to conserve things more often than not, they have to look at how pop culture can shift things and make some honest assessments of the situation. Take a look at the storylines on various hit shows — and look closely. For instance, what do they say about people who are pro-life? In the shows created by Shonda Rimes, main characters had abortions with no regret or debate.

The good news is that some aren’t waiting for a broadcast network. Turning Point USA has Poplitics, which runs a five-minute show on social media. This show is a good start in getting on the pop culture battlefield, but it needs to expand. There must be more than just a show or two — conservatives need to get into all aspects of pop culture.

After all, not everyone is a political junkie.

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