We’re all guilty of it. You see a great video of a personality going on a rant about *insert topic here* and that individual completely crushes it. He/she says everything you’re thinking. You’re thrilled because they articulated your thoughts. They got you. They translated your feelings into into words. You share the video on Facebook. People notice. More clicks. It’s an unending cycle and how much of the media thrives. Find a pretty face, have him/her appeal to a certain audience and voila! Success.
Don’t get me wrong. There’s nothing necessarily wrong with that. If you’re speaking the truth, I’ll say amen right along with ya. But at what point did we stop focusing on principles and become blindly devoted to personalities? Sure. There are certain media personalities we’ve come to know, love and trust. Again, that’s not necessarily wrong, but at some point, we have to ask ourselves why we admire who we admire.
That brings me to Tomi Lahren. I don’t know her personally. I’ve watched her videos on occasion. I’ve agreed with some of her “Final Thoughts” in the past. But it’s not always about agreeing with someone on a certain subject. You shouldn’t blindly follow someone just because you agree with him/her, just as you shouldn’t completely disown someone because you disagreed on one thing. (And yes. I’m absolutely including us in this.)
By now you’ve heard about Tomi Lahren’s controversial statements on “The View.” She told them she was pro-choice, and a bunch of people in the conservative world flipped out, for various reasons.
Her pro-choice identity isn’t brand new information. She’s indicated such before, although she kind of misled her audience. Here, we have a case of Tomi telling her audience exactly what they wanted to hear.
— The Reagan Battalion (@ReaganBattalion) March 17, 2017
Can you say “all over the map”? It’s feigned outraged. She can’t seriously go after Lena Dunham for wanting to “murder” a fetus AND go on “The View” and be all, “I can’t sit here and be a hypocrite and say I’m for limited government but I think the government should decide what women do with their bodies.” It’s either murder or it’s not. I’d absolutely love for Tomi to explain the clip above. Did she mean that? Was that even her own rant, or did someone write it for her? How can you use those harsh terms like “baby-killing” and “murder” and months later, suggest that the rest of us are hypocrites for expecting the government to prevent said murder? How does she reconcile that?
Another group is upset because of how Tomi chose to defend her pro-choice stance in hostile territory. Instead of simply explaining why she was pro-choice, she implied that small government individuals are hypocrites. She suggested she’s the one with the sound principles. Everyone else has some explaining to do. Definitely not her though.
— The View (@TheView) March 17, 2017
“I’m pro choice, and here’s why. I am a constitutional, you know, someone that loves the Constitution,” Lahren said. “I’m someone that’s for limited government. So I can’t sit here and be a hypocrite and say I’m for limited government but I think the government should decide what women do with their bodies. I can sit here and say that, as a Republican and I can say, you know what, I’m for limited government, so stay out of my guns, and you can stay out of my body as well.”
Ya hear that? The rest of us have some reconciliation to do.
I take issue with that. What’s the fundamental role of government, above all else? Preserving and protecting our unalienable rights– the unalienable rights given to us by our Creator. That– at the BARE MINIMUM– is the government’s purpose. You can’t proclaim to be the founding documents’ #1 fan and deny the basic rights guaranteed in those documents to the most vulnerable. One could argue that the government has the duty to protect the rights of an unborn child. You’re meaning to tell me the government shouldn’t stop someone from murdering someone else? If you can’t defend life, what are you even doing?
Protecting the unborn isn’t a case of big government gone awry. It’s actually the opposite – it’s an example of the government doing what it SHOULD. That’s actually a rare instance. One to behold. One to treasure. That’s a case of the government actually carrying out one of its original purposes. *gasp*
Me personally? I’m not cheering The Blaze for suspending Tomi Lahren. I’m also not on #TeamTomi.
So I’ve got some “me” time tonight. Anything good on TV? 😂 #TeamTomi
— Tomi Lahren (@TomiLahren) March 20, 2017
Yeah, she started herself a hashtag. Take that as you will.
I don’t think she should be silenced for speaking her mind, but I don’t think that’s why so many people are frustrated with her. It’s a “this is the final straw” kind of thing. People are sick and tired of a seemingly vapid millennial serving as the voice of conservatism. This is about Tomi exhibiting her stunning inability to articulate conservatism without a script in front of her. This is what happens when a young political personality person is thrust into the spotlight and given a generous salary. This is the brand of “conservatism” you get.
The Resurgent posted an article on this phenomenon too, and it’s so on the money. I’m compelled to share part of it:
And there’s a reason why it usually doesn’t end well when someone who lacks any meaningful or serious understanding of political philosophy and ideology is thrust in front of a camera and promoted as a conservative spokesman. They are pitifully unprepared to exercise the disciplines of reason and discernment. Just look at the sorry spectacle of Tomi Lahren.
In a culture that bizarrely worships youth and beauty, it is unsurprising that Lahren’s rise to fame has been meteoric. And make no mistake, Tomi has certainly demonstrated a talent for increasing her notoriety with provocative commentaries timed to coincide with significant national controversies. Her prolific use of social media has propelled her to over 664,000 followers on Twitter, and earned her invitations onto numerous television news and commentary programs.
If gaining popularity and getting your face on TV were the primary objectives of conservatism, she would be a rock star. But since the movement has always been about the supremacy of our ideas, it’s what she says on TV that matters most. And that’s the great danger of this emerging movement of pop culture “conservatism” driven by followers and web traffic, rather than principles. It’s only a matter of time before it casually defecates in the right’s dinner plate with the whole country watching.
Exactly. I don’t have enough thumbs to express my approval.
At this point, I really only see two explanations for Tomi’s statements on “The View,” and either way, it doesn’t make her look good.
She either 1.) Lacks true understanding and/or principle or 2.) Simply caved to the pressure on “The View.”
Which is it? And does it matter? Either way, Tomi doesn’t represent me, and she certainly doesn’t represent conservatism.
I get it. We don’t want to be like the liberals who snub whoever gets out of line, but you have to remember. Conservatism– unlike liberalism– is based on a core set of principles. That’s what makes us different. We’re not just about toeing the party line. Our core principles unite us. They mean something. That’s what makes us steadfast. So it’s a much bigger deal when someone– like an “independent thinker,” as Tomi likes to call herself– comes out and craps all over one of those immovable principles.
I know what you’re thinking. “You supported TRUMP! He’s not a principled conservative!” I understand the argument, but I think that’s a bad comparison. It’s not exactly apples and apples. When you’re voting, you have a limited choice. (And for what it’s worth, I didn’t vote for Trump in the primaries for the very reasons I stated above.) I hate to state the obvious, but it was either Trump or Hillary. A guy who would maybe possibly embrace conservative principles and a corrupt woman who had no intention of doing so. (I write this as I watch Trump’s principled SCOTUS nominee, Neil Gorsuch, answer questions in his confirmation hearing.) Another difference? Many conservatives aren’t blind Trump supporters. If he does something unconstitutional, we won’t hesitate to call him out. But at the end of the day, it was a choice between two. There are dozens of political pundits out there. It’s not like you have to pick between Tomi Lahren and Rachel Maddow.
I’ve tried to give Tomi the benefit of the doubt. I really did. But after seeing this tweet, I’m more convinced than ever that she truly doesn’t understand the basic concept of principles.
I speak my truth. If you don’t like it, tough. I will always be honest and stand in my truth.
— Tomi Lahren (@TomiLahren) March 18, 2017
Do you see the problem there? “My truth.” Gosh, just looking at that phrase makes my eyes bleed. There is no such thing as “my truth.” You can’t have your own truth. That defies the very definition of truth. Again, that’s a fundamental difference between conservatives and liberals. To them, truth is subjective. It’s about emotions, feelings and personal experiences. There’s absolutely no stability in that way of thinking.
Tomi and I are almost the same age, but even I’m willing to admit that I DON’T know it all. I’m young. I still have a lot to learn. But what makes me able to stand firm in the face of adversity? 1.) Those I surround myself with (Chickdom forever) and 2.) My principles. They’re unmoving. Truth itself doesn’t change as you age. It’s not relative. That’s why I take issue with Tomi. She’s turning into an advocate for relative conservatism. Relative conservatism lacks depth. It’s partially a product of the times. You know. The self-obsessed look-at-my-boobs Kardashian culture. Let’s be honest. Tomi appeals to the generation of individuals who get their news from the latest viral internet meme. Heck. Tomi is one of those individuals. During an interview with the Daily Caller, she actually admitted she’s not a “reader” and doesn’t have the attention span to read a book. I think her exact words were “I have a very short attention span” and “sitting down with a book is very difficult for me.”
But back to this whole cult of personality thing. Everything– to some degree– is personality based. Tomi’s a pretty girl. She speaks well on camera. Her videos reach a lot of people. But shouldn’t there be more than that? Like, I don’t know. Depth? (Or AT LEAST the ability to articulate your views without making half of the people in your movement sound like hypocrites on the freaking View.)
No Tomi. I’m not part of the “conservative police” coming after you over your pro-choice views. I don’t look down on you because of your age or because you’re a woman, have blonde hair, tanned skin and are “generally an attractive person.” (Her words, not mine. That’s how she described herself.) This isn’t about your appearance or gender. No one’s saying you can’t have a career. But it wouldn’t hurt to listen to constructive criticism and realize where other people are coming from. Instead of trying to get the #TeamTomi hashtag going, spend time reading history books. Figure out who you are and what you believe. Hash out those principles. If you want to prove that you’re not vapid, senseless, and unprincipled, get some chops. Cute soundbites will only get you so far in life, and beauty doesn’t last forever. That’s where Actual Wisdom and Actual Knowledge come in handy.
The future of conservatism is bright, but needless to say, I don’t think it looks like Tomi Lahren.