Glenn K. Beaton is a writer and columnist living in Colorado. He has been a contributor to The Wall Street Journal, RealClearPolitics, Powerline, Instapundit, American Thinker, Fox News and numerous other print, radio and television outlets.
For years, a public high school football coach made a practice of saying short prayers after football games. He prayed whether he won or lost. Some of his players typically joined in, and some didn’t.
For that, he was fired.
This has been a long drive for the left. It started on their own 2-yard line about two centuries ago with Karl Marx scorning the masses he pretended to champion by mocking their “opiate” of religion. Marx and his fellow travelers preferred the opiate of opiate.
Marx’s antipathy toward religion gained traction in the Soviet Union. Revealing one’s faith was a detriment to advancement in the Communist Party, and the Party controlled everything. The faithful had their property confiscated and they endured open ridicule and ostracism by institutions such as schools, employers and the media. (Does this sound eerily familiar?)
Readers will remember the Aspen Times. They’re the little but old – venerable, we’re told – newspaper of Aspen. These days it’s a hard left rag in a hard left town of limousine liberals who are screwed, swindled, salved and soothed by the local Stalinists in an obscene spectacle something like a Mexican donkey show.
One of the frequent perks for Aspen Times editors and reporters, as for many other members of the ruling Aspen establishment, is housing subsidized by the limo-libs for dimes on the dollars – often slopeside.
I was the token conservative columnist with the Aspen Times for seven years. But I grew a little big for my britches. Over that time, I became the most-read columnist in the newspaper. Then I started to become more-read than even front-page news. I was occasionally the very most-clicked item in the newspaper.
Ah, but that wasn’t their goal. I was hired not to succeed in offering a viewpoint contrary to the Aspen leftwing establishment, but to be a token. So, on Christmas Eve in 2019 they fired me. By email.
It’s a biological fact that, generally speaking, males in relation to females are naturally larger, more physical, more ambitious, stronger, faster, cruder, stinkier, hairier, more competitive and hornier. Those traits are wired into them as tightly as the DNA in their Y chromosome, and are all awash in the testosterone hormone produced in their testicles.
At times, those traits can be problematic. At other times, they can save the day, save the world, or save a child.
We’re here to mark that day in history when the Allied armies joined in battle to reclaim this continent to liberty. For four long years, much of Europe had been under a terrible shadow. Free nations had fallen, Jews cried out in the camps, millions cried out for liberation. Europe was enslaved and the world prayed for its rescue. Here, in Normandy, the rescue began. Here, the Allies stood and fought against tyranny, in a giant undertaking unparalleled in human history.
I figured that Tom Cruise playing “Maverick” in the sequel to Top Gun would be all woke. He’d also be at least bi or gay, and probably trans. Look what Hollywood did to Star Wars.
After all, something like 20% of attention starved, navel-gazing, influence-susceptible college students with too much time on their hands – I’m talking about the movie-going crowd – now “identify” (whatever that means) as something other than what used to be called “normal.” And is still called “normal” by statisticians, given that only 2% of the population at large fall outside that category.
I further figured that in the unlikely event that Cruise was neither woke, nor gay, nor bi, nor trans, then he’d just be a cinematic strawman to remind us that biological male masculinity is toxic, primitive and, worst of all, uncool to everyone. (Except, men might observe, to healthy women. Try getting laid with a limp wrist etc.)
I was wrong. Either Hollywood has changed or maybe we’ve passed peak wokeness and peak sexual deviance (I use that term “deviance” in the statistical sense — I make no judgments about your bedroom habits).
That said, Maverick is not exactly MAGA-rick. Thankfully, overt politicking has been kept out of the film.
The closest we have to politics is the rumor that Hollywood edited out a scene showing Mav in his iconic jacket preserved from the first movie – the one with, among other things, the flag of Taiwan on it – for fear of offending the Chinese who regard Taiwan as a breakaway province that is really part of China. But then the producers reinserted the scene albeit for only a brief second.
I wonder if this was a strategy cooked up by the movie marketing department, or was really the decision and spontaneous turnaround that it’s portrayed to be. Either way, I like it.
Back to Mav, the aging Naval Aviator. The word “Aviator” deserves upper case in this context for reasons of culture if not grammar. They’re the best of the best. Special Ops like the Navy Seals and the Army Green Berets are plenty tough and I advise against a bar fight with them, and Air Force pilots are no slouches, but – hey! – Naval Aviators land jets on boats. Their eyesight, judgment, reaction times, testosterone levels, decision-making, testicles and killer instincts are the best.
In a day when we mock such traits and suppress them in our sons (and then wonder why some of those boys snap) we still value such traits in the particular men, and also a few women now, who are willing to die to kill an enemy who wants to kill us.
The original Top Gun movie was in 1986 when the Soviets still terrorized and tyrannized Eastern Europe and a year before President Reagan demanded at the Brandenburg Gate that they “tear down this wall.” (Did that movie influence him?) There’s a lot of water under the bridge and people through the wall since then. Wokeness accounts for exactly nothing of that victory for humanity.
If naval aviation didn’t exist, we’d have to invent it just to preserve our species. A memorable line in this movie is when Maverick’s commanding officer scolds him that his kind are headed for extinction because future wars will be fought by drones operated remotely by dweeb-like soldiers thousands of miles apart with no danger to their own selves.