Over the course of his career, actor Kevin Sorbo has faced intense discrimination for his conservative beliefs. He’s been outspoken about Hollywood’s propensity to blacklist based on conservative and Christian ideas. In an interview with The Blaze, he said the entertainment industry is comprised of “some of the least tolerant people you’ll meet.” Now he’s finding convention organizers outside of Hollywood appear to be worse.
Ever since the election of President Trump, the Left has gone to greater extremes in blacklisting, creating a hostile environment for conservatives wanting to work in the arts. Instead of quietly discriminating as they’ve done in the past, now they’re pushing to shame artists and actors over associations, including blacklisting people like Sorbo from public appearances.
Comic conventions often host celebrity guests from science fiction and fantasy films to drive attendance by offering autographs. Genre actors’ careers are often built on appearing at these conventions, where they charge for autographs, photographs, and speaking.
That revenue stream is now in jeopardy for conservative and Christian actors. On January 12, Cliff Galbraith, the founder and purveyor of the East Coast ComicCon in New Jersey, announced on Facebook he would not allow Sorbo a place at the convention: “He’s pals with Sean Hannity. I just can’t do it.”
No Work for People with Varied Political Views
This ban marks the latest incident in a string of escalating leftist vigilantism in trying to purge conservative artists from the marketplace. In 2017, prolific comic book writer Chuck Dixon told The Federalist, “I am blacklisted at Marvel [over politics] and have been for 15 years.” In 2018, the stakes have been raised, as Sorbo’s banning marks the first time the organizer of a public event openly discriminated against an actor over conservative associations.
It’s odd that this is happening to Sorbo now. He hasn’t been featured in the news lately, nor has he changed his behavior. He is slated to appear in several independent, Christian-themed films, but it’s nothing out of the ordinary for his career in recent years. He has starred dozens of films, most notably “The Legend of Hercules” television show and the heartwarming Christian film “God Is Not Dead” in 2014. That he’d be targeted now for convention appearances is more a symptom of the Left’s rabid bigotry than anything he’s done.
There are very few outspoken Republicans or Christians in Hollywood, because the blacklisting is so extreme it prevents people from acting or even producing films. Even legends like Clint Eastwood run into problems trying to get their films made, simply because their political views don’t fully reflect Hollywood’s extreme leftism.
Sorbo Wasn’t Even Planning to Attend the Convention
Even stranger about this convention situation is that Sorbo says “I have never heard of them or tried to get into their tiny little Con.” If this is true, the comic convention created a controversy out of thin air. It’s unclear why. It makes little business sense to signal to conservative convention-goers that they’re not welcome. A statement like this creates a public relations mess in the best case, and in the worst case, causes people to shy away from attending.
Comic professionals are already voicing solidarity with Sorbo’s plight. Timothy Lim, the creator and artist of the popular children’s book “Thump: The First Bundred Days and an artist for Alt-Hero,” stated on his Twitter, “People, return in kind: spend your entrance fee on a convention that doesn’t discriminate based on political affiliation.”
The Left has mistreated Sorbo for years because he isn’t afraid to speak up for his beliefs. IMDB.com has a full list of “Racist or conservative actors to avoid,” created by users urging Hollywood to continue blacklisting. Sorbo is the top actor on this list, which doesn’t include details about why certain actors were listed, which means the list amounts to a smear.
Contrary to the way Hollywood presents him as bigoted and frightening, Sorbo has a reputation of being cordial and fan-friendly. He’s a frequent attendee of several different comic-cons, including the popular Dragon*Con in Atlanta. One fan on Twitter said of Sorbo, “He is the nicest guy ever. Always love running into him at Dragon Con.” Unfortunately, his fans at East Coast ComicCon won’t be able to enjoy his presence.
“I would love to debate [the Left] on government… or anything for that matter. Throw a few facts, stats and truth at them, they freak out,” Sorbo told The Federalist. But he’s unlikely to receive an honest dialogue when would-be participants go around announcing they won’t even allow him in the same room.
No Christians Allowed Here
These scorched-earth tactics aren’t new to culture or isolated to Sorbo. Anyone who voices support of President Trump or Christian morality faces hostile treatment from the entertainment industry. It’s become an epidemic eerily akin to the blacklisting of communists in 1939.
Dan Gainor is familiar with these problems, and has been working to fight for free speech at the Media Research Center, a right-leaning think tank dedicated to promoting conservative culture. “This kind of hysterical liberal panic and censorship have become a cultural crisis. Liberals now want a national safe space and want to ban conservatives from TV, movies, colleges, and now even conventions,” Gainor said in regards to the Sorbo banning.
Sorbo isn’t fazed. He’s committed to fighting for his rights as an artist and as an American. “[It’s] too funny,” Sorbo said. “I love the lefty insecurity. Ooooh, they are so brave. I guess I scare them and they need to hide in their safe spaces. Tell the commies I am fine not being part of their so-called Con.”
With the Internet providing alternative outlets for distribution, the elites running Hollywood, publishing houses, and conventions are all afraid of losing their power structures. Consumers do have the ability to make our voices heard like never before. As conservatives and Christians face increasing discrimination, we have the choice to support places like East Coast ComicCon, or to support creators and artists like Sorbo who are brave enough to speak freely in the face of adversity.