A small but vocal band of critics has forced an actress to bow out of a stage production purely because of her political views. It's a brand of McCarthyistic bullying that the national media would (rightly) condemn if the politics of principals in the controversy reversed. But don't hold your breath for a firestorm of outrage in the case of Maria Conchita Alonso, a conservative/libertarian Latina actress who has strayed from the liberal reservation by not merely voting for conservative Republicans but cutting a campaign commercial with one.
Seema Mehta of the Los Angeles Times reported this morning:
Maria Conchita Alonso, who starred in movies such as “The Running Man” and “Moscow on the Hudson,” said Sunday that she had resigned from a play because of threats of boycotts and protests over her support for Assemblyman Tim Donnelly, a Republican gubernatorial candidate and a founder of a Minuteman border-patrol chapter.
“I said, ‘Well, you know the ... production doesn’t need to be hurt by me,” she said in an interview. “I told them, ‘Listen, it’s the best for everybody.’ ”
Alonso had been set to appear in a Spanish-language production of the Vagina Monologues in San Francisco in February. Last week, she appeared in an online campaign video for Donnelly, a tea party favorite, saying she supported his calls to return film production to Hollywood, increase domestic energy production and reduce government interference in citizens’ lives.
Mehta further noted that Alonso admits she doesn't agree with Donnelly on everything, such as his stance on hunting, but that overall she thinks he's a good guy and supports the Tea Party conservative's bid for Golden State governor:
Last week, Alonso appeared in a bilingual online campaign video for Donnelly. In the video, she held her Chihuahua, Tequila, as she translated some of Donnelly’s remarks into Spanish, and paraphrased others for laughs.
“Politicians and big government are killing our prosperity,” Donnelly says in the video. “They’re driving business out of our state, pushing welfare costs through the roof and driving our schools into the ground.”
Alonso, looking alarmed, translates these remarks as: “We’re screwed.”
Alonso has been criticized over the video from not only the left, but also on the right. She said that while she doesn’t agree with all of Donnelly’s positions, such as his views on hunting, she believes he is a good man with an open mind.
“I do think he’s an honest man,” she said. “We don’t agree on everything, like I don’t agree on everything with my boyfriend.”
Mehta didn't mention this, but Alonso differing with Donnelly on hunting is humorously dealt with in the video itself, which you can watch in the embed below:
Making the story all the more interesting is that Alonso was drummed out of a production which is thoroughly liberal and feminist: The Vagina Monologues. Wouldn't it have spoken volumes if the director and producers of the production had refused to let Alonso resign and came out with a full-throated, public defense of Alonso that welcomed the protests and gloried in the controversy that it engendered.
It seems that would have been the truly bold and truly (classically) liberal stand for Ms. Alonso's colleagues to make. Instead Ms. Alonso is graciously trying to be the bigger woman by bowing out of a production she had every right to insist to continue in or to be publicly fired from for all the wrong reasons.