There’s weird and then there’s w e i r d
©2020 Roy Edroso
Don’t know if you’ve seen Graham Gallagher’s recent story at The New Republic, “Elite Conservatives Have Taken an Awfully Weird Turn.” It takes an angle that is unusual in contemporary political commentary — or rather takes the sort of attitude many of us have toward conservatives, and usually express in jokes and snide comments, more seriously than I think we usually take it ourselves. Sample:
The right is getting weirder… American voters see the political parties as equally extreme in policy, ignoring evidence that Republicans have moved right much faster than Democrats have moved left. However, a party fixated on genital sunning, seed oils, Catholic integralism, European aristocracy, and occultism can alienate voters not because of its positions but because of how it presents them — and itself. Among the right’s intellectual avant garde and media elites, there is a growing adoption of habits, aesthetics, and views that are not only out of step with America’s but are deliberately cultivated in opposition to a national majority that the new right holds in contempt.
Gallagher cites some “weirder” behaviors adopted by prominent rightwingers which you may or may not know about: Enrollment in trad-cults like the Knights Templar, loud opposition to such modern ideas as womens’ right to vote and (as if it were a principle rather than a lifestyle choice) vegetarian food; fads like “testicular tanning,” etc.