Klavan On The Culture

JonesFest Shows How It's Done

Every year on the second Saturday in June, Karen “Snakebite” Jones (@snakebitejones) and her family throw a music festival — the JonesFest — up in beautiful Santa Ynez. The festival attracts musicians and music lovers from all over the country.

This year, the festival’s 20th anniversary, Karen wrote me to tell me that my pamphlet “The Crisis in the Arts,” had had a major effect on how she conceived her mission to do “heavy damage to the idea that conservatives are bigoted crab-asses.” This is enormously gratifying to me, I confess.

Like most of the conservatives I know, I’m not looking for power over anyone. I’m looking only to take arms against the sea of government oppression that rises in human history as regularly as the tide, that tide that seeks to drown individual freedom in the name of some imagined higher righteousness.

The arts forge the conscience of our race. If the arts don’t speak for freedom — if the arts don’t speak for the individual — if the arts don’t serve as an antidote to the induced psychosis of identity politics — no election will matter in the long run. You can get my pamphlet here, but before you do, watch the JonesFest video, listen to the music, see how it’s done.

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