Heroic figures, icons, who were thought to rise above the petty partisan politics of the hour have shown themselves to have been partisans all along. And while that is just fine for some partisans, for others, it is a chip away at their identity and their fixed view of the world. The idea that someone or some institution could be transcendent provides both a sense of unity and security that allows partisan rivals to find common ground.

In the 18th century warfare was more or less believed to have a limited field. And civilians in towns and villages or cities were not part of the battle or the battlefield. In fact, leading up to the 20th century, it was not uncommon for fields of battle to be outside of towns and villages, owing in part to the way both sides had to line up in rows and columns. This technological necessity made people more or less accustomed to the idea that battlefields were not everywhere. War could only touch some places.

And so it has been with partisan politics. We could fight over politics, but everyone would enjoy a nice holiday meal or watch their favorite team. In fact, sports rivalries transcended politics and, for many, were actually more relevant. You could dish on someone else’s political party, but don’t trash their team.

But in America today, people on the left have tended to gravitate toward positions of influence in all things educational and entertaining. What is more, the leftward partisan actually wears his or her politics on their sleeve: for them politics is the prime engine of human society and government is the vehicle for progress.

To the left, your politics says a lot about your character and value, hence their tendency to favor fellow partisans in hiring.

For conservatives it is business, churches, and the family, that are the prime mover of human progress. Government is, for many, a necessary evil. Your politics says almost nothing about you in their eyes. They tend to hire whomever looks good on paper and wouldn’t dream of looking into their politics.

Most of the icons and heroes of sports and entertainment are surrounded by decision-makers for whom your politics matters. The pressure to at least give lip service to the leftward party line is real. For some, the conversion to the left is real, for others it is a default that ensures their access to the “right people.”

Matters have come to a head. We see an icon like Stevie Wonder literally shilling for the left and their claim that America is a racist nation. We see the entire NFL defending players who disrespect the flag and national anthem to “protest” the entire country, and basically accuse us all of being racists.

For conservatives, there are few icons or heroes. They are being asked to accept not merely that Stevie Wonder is a great singer, but his support for the lie that America is fundamentally a bad country, full of racists and killer cops. (That is more how people interpret what he is saying.) We are asked to accept the ideology of the singer, actor, or athlete in the same way they were asked to accept the ideology of the people who gave them access to platforms for stardom.

Not one NFL team owner has disavowed the flawed premise of these protests. An ENTIRE league, a sport that was loved by hundreds of millions of Americans, has essentially agreed that America is a bad, racist country. It’s as if we have gone back 200 years and made no progress, the way these protesters are putting it.

(Again, others will argue that this is not what is being said, but not only is it being interpreted by many that way, the NFL and the players are not positively affirming that this is not true or that America is basically good. And how could they? People who love this country and think it is good could not bring themselves to not stand with hand over heart during our national anthem.)

This is the age of discontent. For half of the population, or more, there is no place where leftward partisanship isn’t demanding acceptance or obedience at pain of some sort of shunning or shaming.

Almost all the entertainers are in accord: if you don’t support the left, you are bad, and your country that you love is garbage. If you fail to agree, you will be made fun of in sitcoms, and you will be put on blast in some song. One feels as if you aren’t wanted as a fan unless you agree with their politics. The NFL has not said one thing in deference to offended fans who don’t cotton to the disrespect they are seeing for their country by over-paid athletes.

Movies are political statements. Sporting events are now platforms for accusing America and Americans of racism. The left have taken over all the major platforms. And now they have turned everything into an opportunity to force you to accept their beliefs and abandon your own. They even want you to give up your love of country. Perhaps they even want you to give up your love of God.

But now, if you protest their protest, if you ask them not to disrespect you or your country, if you demand that entertainment and sports not be used to push a single political agenda, you are a racist. Can you imagine what they would do if a Christian bowed to pray at a football game….wait…the NFL did not rush to defend that when Tim Tebow did that. And when entertainers poked fun at him and ridiculed him, his team owner didn’t have a moment of solidarity or unity to show support for his rights. The NFL only support leftward partisans thumbing their nose at America.

Meanwhile, a dam has burst. Conservatives are seeing that T.V., movies, music, sports, and even education are all distractions, and all employed for the left against conservatives and against America. There is a realization that icons and heroes we all loved turned out to be not merely imperfect and human, but nasty people who have really despised us all along. To Stevie Wonder, you conservative white people who bought his records were always nothing but racist bums, and the country you thought he loved was just a white supremacist hellhole.

Sure, I’m paraphrasing. But I am describing how people are feeling about these heroes, not what they are literally saying. The left are so fond of word pretzels that it’s hard to nail them down on anything. What we hear, however, is a constant drumbeat of fault-finding and nitpicking that is usually followed by demands for more tax revenue, more rules and regulations, and generally more power for the left and less power for you.

The aim has been to hem you in, to really put you in a squeeze where everywhere you turn the constant drumbeat of political propaganda is turning your brain to mush. Well, that was the idea.

And now the brave icons and heroes, whose records and movies we sopped up like soup, have come out and finally revealed their true identity: political activists who merely use their position of public trust they gained by not being political in order to push their politics. Considering how leftist U2’s Bono has become, how can a conservative enjoy U2 music? It is tainted now.

The heroes are falling in the age of discontent. Who knows what will follow, perhaps some smart people will start producing sports, education, and entertainment that either appeals to conservatives or respects them and treats them with dignity.