I don’t generally like to use the “S” word, but according to Chicks on the Right, they really do:
Whenever we post pop culture stories on our website, or talk about celebrities on our radio show, we inevitably get complaints from readers and listeners that we should cover more serious topics, that we should “stick with politics” and ignore celebrity news altogether.
Meanwhile, the pop culture stories and celebrity pieces we feature get 10 times the traffic, attention, and comments. That’s a pretty big disconnect, and it exemplifies what we mean when we say that conservatives suck at pop culture. It is, in many ways, a love-hate relationship.
I’d argue that we suck much less than we used to, but pop culture and conservatism have a less than harmonious relationship. Of course liberals took over the megaphone of pop culture in the 60s and 70s, and conservatives have been on defense ever since. And as we know, any team continually on defense is eventually going to lose the game, and right now conservatism is losing.
The Chicks understand the electoral implications, ones we’re living with right now:
Conservatives need to engage in the pop culture war, because pop culture wins electoral wars now. We must get better at the game, because pop culture impacts politics in ways that conservatives have underestimated for far too long.
And yes, it is a war, and the only way we will beat our enemies is to be better at it than they are. That means many more conservatives involved in and making money from pop culture. Commenting on it, as we do ad nauseum, in the end accomplishes very little. As the Chicks say, “We can’t just view it as a morality-destroying force. We need to become as adept as liberals are at mobilizing people with it.”
They use a phrase that conservatism has been mostly blind to until very recently, that is we need to develop talent:
That included using pop culture – developing talent across all mediums (TV, film, music) so that the conservative message can be delivered in ways that reach people where they live.
Of course this doesn’t mean we try to make pedantic sermonizing entertainment, but that the conservative worldview and values, those diametrically opposed to our progressive friends’ views, are part of the national conversation, especially for the low information voters who get their primary influence from pop culture.