Conservative commentator Dennis Prager faced what many other conservative commentators have faced. He was unwelcome in a place that should have been inviting simply because he thinks the wrong things. As a result, leftists called for a boycott of the symphony he was slated to guest conduct.
It shouldn’t have happened, but it did…
…and it went precisely nowhere. From Prager’s column at National Review:
The sustained efforts of individuals, organizations, and the media who oppose everything people like me stand for – America as an exceptional nation among the nations of the world; the unique contribution of the Judeo-Christian value system in shaping America and the best of Western civilization; sustaining Western civilization as a moral imperative; preserving the American Trinity of “Liberty,” “In God We Trust,” and “e pluribus unum”; promulgating the American and Judeo-Christian belief that race is insignificant; and an openness to all points of view – to shut down my conducting appearance with the Santa Monica Symphony Orchestra at the Walt Disney Concert Hall tomorrow night have failed.
Other than two rows of seats, as of this writing, the Walt Disney Concert Hall – with 2,265 seats – is sold out.
First, Disney Hall is sold out. And with every seat costing between $40 and $100 dollars, a significant amount of money will be raised for the orchestra.
Second, only about seven of the orchestra’s 70 players refused to play. Moreover, many other musicians asked to join the orchestra that night, including members of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Orchestra.
Third, the orchestra’s widely admired and loved conductor, Guido Lamell (who is also a violinist with the Los Angeles Philharmonic), and the board of directors of the orchestra, located in one of the most liberal-Left cities in America, held firm. The board unanimously re-invited me after the letters and articles attacking me came out. This was particularly significant since they had only narrowly – five to three – voted to invite me in the first place. To their everlasting credit, these people put the interests of their orchestra, of music, and of tolerance ahead of their political and social views – and they did so well before they had any reason to believe the hall would be sold out. Indeed, few expected it.
This is great news, and not just for Prager.
As he points out, this was just another attempt by the left to prevent someone they disagree with from doing, well, anything. They want to effectively shun people like Prager in an effort to “other” him and those like him.
The Santa Monica Symphony Orchestra, however, looked at the demands and opted to continue on its course. Whether they felt the SJWs had finally crossed a line or not remains to be seen, but they didn’t back down. That matters. A lot.
Could this be the sign we’ve been hoping for — that the social justice jihadis have finally gone way too far? That too remains to be seen. What doesn’t is that Dennis Prager will be a guest conductor and the symphony will make a mint because of it.
That’s a big win right there.