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Conservative coping mechanism: the secret resume

By See-Dubya  •  July 24, 2008 01:37 AM

We stopped our unpacking today to host a longtime friend who was visiting from Europe. She’s an unusual sort–an academic, a conservative, and a Christian. I took her through the NRA museum up in Fairfax this afternoon, and this evening out on the porch we discussed a lot of politics. I’ll spare you the details*, but there was one thing she told me that I thought was worth sharing.

Our friend is active in conservative politics in her country, and has held some advisory positions. And just to clarify, that’s not a euphemism for some job title like “Exalted Cyclops” or Obersturmgruppenfuhrer for some fringe White Nationalist rabble–I mean mainstream, right-leaning politics, in small roles that demonstrate responsibility and civic-mindedness. Things she’s enjoyed doing, and is justifiably proud of.

Those don’t show up anywhere on her resume. At least, not on her regular resume. See, my friend keeps two resumes. One is her “straight” resume, which doesn’t mention the party activities.

But then, she confided, she also has her “conservative” resume.

And I laughed, because on my hard drive, I have exactly the same thing.

Now, you might point out that having different versions of your resume isn’t so unusual. Obviously when you’re applying to any kind of job, you’ll need to tailor your resume to meet the requirements the employer might be looking for. Duh: we do that. But this is different–they’re the sort of general CV’s we might bring along to a professional conference to hand out.

And though we’re on different continents and in different professions, we each decided instinctively to omit some valuable experience from our resumes–because of a fear of retaliation for our political beliefs.

I sort of doubt that we’re the only conservative professional-types who do this. Hey, maybe liberals do it too. Yet I’ll bet there are very few of them who would omit, say, an internship at Brookings. On the other hand, I’ll bet there are an awful lot of young conservatives applying to grad school or jobs in journalism or judicial clerkships asking themselves, “should I really include that internship at Heritage?” or “maybe they don’t need to know how involved I was with the Federalist Society…”

In the big picture, it has usually been a lot worse. For much of history and over much of the globe, being on the wrong side of a political divide meant not just difficulty in one’s career, but an end to it–or even jeopardy to one’s property, freedom, or life. Such is the way of things, and my friend and I are lucky to live where we can still believe, worship, and speak out as we see fit with only minor consequences.

Nonetheless, it’s a little difficult to take this crap from the adherents of leftist orthodoxy, who praise themselves incessantly for their openness, tolerance, and so-called diversity. It looks to me like those blacklists Hollywood complains about are alive and well, in many different industries, but nowadays it’s not communists on the lists. Even if most liberals out there would be willing to give conservatives a fair shake, my friend and I have independently come to the conclusion that there are more than enough out there who won’t.

Fortunately conservatives in Hollywood, at least, seem to be doing something about it.

*Actually, I won’t spare you–I’ll just steal enormous chunks of it and stretch it into several blog posts…


{Post by See-Dubya}

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