Thursday, April 28, 2011

Why Liberals Should See (and Like) Atlas Shrugged Part 1

by Michael Shermer

Huffington Post

April 27, 2011

Yesterday a liberal friend of mine told me (in response to my query) that he would never go see the film Atlas Shrugged Part 1 because he read a review in the Los Angeles Times that was critical, and that in any case the author of the novel on which the film is based, Ayn Rand, is a fascist beloved by conservatives because she justifies their greed and selfishness.

In response I made a comment about allowing a newspaper to dictate your opinions (that went unnoticed), but his response is, in fact, not uncommon among those who have never read Atlas Shrugged (or anything else by Ayn Rand) and just go by what they've heard. Okay, well hear it here: go see Atlas Shrugged Part 1, read the novel, and judge for yourself because, in fact, liberals will find much to respect and admire in Ayn Rand, who was a champion of individual rights, was outspoken against racism and bigotry and discrimination against minorities, and most notably was way ahead of her time in championing women's rights and demonstrating through her novels (and now the film) that women are as smart as men, as clever as men, as hard working as men, as ambitious as men, as moral as men (well, okay, more moral than men), and can accomplish any task, achieve any goal, and even run an industrial enterprise as good as if not better than men. What's not to like about that?