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Former Child Stars Who Turn Conservative or Fundie

When a child star's career is over, the vast majority of them simply fade into oblivion, finding work outside of the entertainment industry and only resurface for some reunion show or a "Where Are They Now" segment. A few become train wrecks, even less are able to transition into adult roles. And while Hollywood is supposed to be a hot bed of liberal Godless activism, when we hear about a former child stars political or religious ideology it seems its almost always of the conservative and evangelical Christian variety. Examples:

Shirley Temple

Kirk Cameron

Danny Bonaduce

Rick Schroder

Scott Baio

Willie Aames

Lisa Whelchel

Rick Segall

Jack Wild

Candace Cameron

Keith Thibodeaux

Lance Kerwin

Are there any you can think to add to the list that are not there? I have a theory as to why this happens, but would like to hear from others as to what their take is on it.

replies 54Sep 24, 2012 8:32 AM +00:00

jodie foster

will wheatan

replies 1Sep 24, 2012 8:40 AM +00:00

Susan Swift (Audrey Rose, Harper Valley PTA) is now Rush Limbaugh toady "Susan in Glendale."
replies 2Sep 24, 2012 8:44 AM +00:00

R1, I hope you're trying to be facetious, though if you are, you've failed miserably.

Wil Wheaton is extraordinarily (and vocally) liberal, and Jodie Foster is a solid Democrat.

replies 3Sep 24, 2012 8:51 AM +00:00

Maybe they didn't "turn conservative", OP. Maybe they always were or came from conservative homes.

replies 4Sep 24, 2012 8:58 AM +00:00

I was answering the OP's request for people who did NOT fit his mold... and 2 more would be the girl from Blossom and the girl from Wonder Years.

All four are good solid liberals.

replies 5Sep 24, 2012 9:17 AM +00:00

R4 its possible they have come from conservative homes, although someone growing up in a conservative home doesnt mean they are going to be a conservative adult. As far as them always being conservative, I have a hard time believing a child of 6 is very aware of politics in any direction.

replies 6Sep 24, 2012 9:18 AM +00:00

R5 I did not ask for people who do not fit the mold. I asked for people who I may have overlooked.

replies 7Sep 24, 2012 9:23 AM +00:00

Kirk and Candace Cameron and Lisa Whelchel were from very conservative religious homes. Kirk SAYS he turned conservative, but it's not true--he was always conservative and became much more conservative as he grew older.

And Lisa is very gay-friendly, despite her conservativeness otherwise.

replies 8Sep 24, 2012 9:23 AM +00:00

I'm going out on a limb and am guessing that Kirk and Candace came from a fundie background. Rick Schroder turned fundie for pussy.

replies 9Sep 24, 2012 9:28 AM +00:00

ok whatevs! Then consider the 4 names I added as contrary to your theory. Here's another: Alison Angram.

replies 10Sep 24, 2012 9:30 AM +00:00
And Lisa is very gay-friendly

I'm so gay-friendly, I even married a gay man! Top that, bitches!

--Lisa W
replies 11Sep 24, 2012 9:43 AM +00:00

Whelchel found Jesus in 1973 or something like that. She was very steadfast in her faith but didn't show the zeal of the newly converted such as Cameron when he forced the producers of "Growing Pains" to change scripts and fire people.

replies 12Sep 24, 2012 10:11 AM +00:00

I actually thought Schroeder was always pretty conservative, even in his 20s.

replies 13Sep 24, 2012 10:25 AM +00:00

For every Shirley Temple, there is an Elizabeth Taylor.

For every Kirk Cameron, there is a Michael J. Fox.

For every Danny Bonaduce, there is a Ron Howard.

For every Lisa Whelchel, there is a Brooke Shields.

And so on....

What's your point, OP?

replies 14Sep 24, 2012 10:35 AM +00:00

R14 perhaps the point is are there any you can think to add to the list that are not there? I have a theory as to why this happens, but would like to hear from others as to what their take is on it.

Seeing how that was clearly stated, I do wonder what your point is.

replies 15Sep 24, 2012 10:44 AM +00:00

You better not fuck with Susan Swift, you godless liberals, because she was promoted by GOD to be the mother of 7 children. She used to be a lawyer but then she was promoted to being a MRS.

Sadly she can't seem to get many comments on her blog with the ranting and raving. She makes Michelle Bachmann and Ann Coulter seem halfway sane. Wow.

replies 16Sep 24, 2012 10:48 AM +00:00

Not a conservative - a cuntservative.

Get it right.

--Jodie Foster, stating some pretty clear boundaries.
replies 17Sep 24, 2012 10:51 AM +00:00

They are hasbeens who wish they could have some of that tax money back. Or racist, like Scott Baio.

replies 18Sep 24, 2012 10:58 AM +00:00

Clint Howard, the uglier less talented Howard brother. There was a thread about him a year or two ago. His conservatism stemmed from a Christian conversion that occured around the time he was hitting bottom due to a cocaine addiction.

Rather than thanking his lucky stars that he has a name and a brother with clout which have kept him employed when he would otherwise never be, he blames his lack of success in Hollywood to his conservatism and liberals' refusal to hire him for it. When you think of it, it really is an addict's perspective of alternating entitlement and victimization. Howard just found another vessel for his whiney ways.

Of course, his brother could be no more different. The successful one who kept him employed, the one with his head screwed on straight, with the nice marriage and family is the liberal.

If I'm not mistaken Willie Ames conversion experience resulted from his addiction, too.

replies 19Sep 24, 2012 11:29 AM +00:00

I just took a look at Howard's IMDb page. With the exception of a period in the late eightis, this jerk has worked steadily since 1963.

replies 20Sep 24, 2012 11:33 AM +00:00

The addiction angle is what I think is in play with some of these. Either they are scared they will end up as a train wreck, so they turn to religion to keep them on the straight and narrow. Or, they became a train wreck and used religion to get clean.

replies 21Sep 24, 2012 11:58 AM +00:00

Doesn't Bonaduce also fit the addiction angle or is his conservatism related to being a loud-mouthed radio shock jock?

replies 22Sep 24, 2012 12:40 PM +00:00

OP -- You've provided plenty of names (and a bit of attitude).

Now let's hear your theory.

replies 23Sep 24, 2012 12:56 PM +00:00

My pulled-out-of-my-ass theory as to why former child stars become arch-conservatives is this: They can't cope without a domineering parental figure.

They're so used to having a stage parent or director tell them what to do that independence frightens them, and they seek substitutes in an authoritarian God or "leaders".

This is an extension of my theory about all arch-conservatives, BTW.

replies 24Sep 24, 2012 1:30 PM +00:00

Are former child stars who undergo "conversions" different from people who experience such a change as adults? Fundamentally, I don't think so.

I think what motivates people who undergo these changes is fear, plain and simple. Even Lisa Whelchel at the age of 7 or whatever. Children are naturally fearful and will buy the idea of a Christian salvation from the eternal pit of hell easily without understanding the difference between being human and being "sinful" or mean which kids are just by virtue of beings kids sometimes.

Imagine someone like Kirk Cameron whose shift over to the rabid variety of Christianity occured just after puberty. Sinful thoughts, sinful feelings probably about boys. Shit, he's going straight to hell in a handbasket so he'd better ante up on the God stuff as protection.

The fear of losing your money, your posessions and your life to an addiction. This is huge stuff. Addicts and alcoholics experience huge swings of emotion and crippling anxiety, sometimes.

Even some usually sensible Catholics still feel horribly guilty if they accidentally eat meat on a Lenten Friday and do all sorts little prayer rituals. They're, of course, not nutters to begin with, but IMO it's the same type of cleansing, only on a smaller scale.

Maybe for someone like Voight it was having been a horrible parent who abandoned his wife and kids for hedonistic Hollywood that caused guilt and recrimination and his solution to assuage these feelings (or fear for his mortal soul, whatever) is to stick to conservative values. It sounds like he had a Polish Catholic upbringing...

Of course, there are those who are just so irredeemably fucked up for one reason or another like Kelsey Grammer and Ted Nugent and those who see financial motives.

replies 25Sep 24, 2012 1:54 PM +00:00

Conservatism appeals to those who feel threatened and have little reasoning power or social skills. These poor souls are courted by those who want to create a hostile country that is always fearful and ready for war. Child actors most often miss out on becoming educated and rely on their acting skills to appear less doltish. There are a few exceptions, but when one lists those with anachronistic points of view, you will generate a list of "the none too sharp." When any degree of success, fame and or wealth is added to these dolts, they become very mean and cruel because they know how stupid they are and keeping any of these qualities and benefits will invariably prove futile, they feel they are always being put down. All of the people currently listed by the OP fit this description perfectly.

replies 26Sep 24, 2012 2:12 PM +00:00

Jack Wild was right wing? Huh?

replies 27Sep 24, 2012 3:33 PM +00:00


replies 28Sep 25, 2012 1:47 AM +00:00

Susan Olsen is a right-wing nutjob and a total bigot. I was facebook friends with her for awhile but got sick of all the daily anti-Mexican posts. I thought she was nice at first, but being Mexican myself, some of the shit she said totally offended me and found her to be quite a racist.

replies 29Sep 25, 2012 6:26 AM +00:00

Anti-Mexican is her flavor of the day. When she did talk radio, she routinely went off against Asians and blacks.

replies 30Sep 25, 2012 7:15 AM +00:00

Little Cindy Brady is now a raging bigot?

replies 31Sep 25, 2012 9:22 AM +00:00

Yes indeed she is. A freeper.

replies 32Sep 25, 2012 9:23 AM +00:00

Is Candace Cameron much like her brother Kirk?

replies 33Sep 25, 2012 9:39 AM +00:00

Oh, wow. This is the only inkling from her Wiki page:

In the Fall of 2008, Olsen appeared on Fox Reality's Gimme My Reality Show, in which celebrities compete to win their own reality show. Susan used this show to make a statement about animal rescue, a cause with which she is involved

It says this about her and Robert Reed:

Olsen continued to develop a wonderful on- and off-screen relationship with him, as well as with Florence Henderson, who played her television mother

Which could have been written by her, for all we know. She needs to be exposed. A nice "Where are they now?" feature in People.

replies 34Sep 25, 2012 9:39 AM +00:00

I met Shirley Temple's daughter Lori through Phil Anselmo back in the 90's, she was playing bass in the Melvins. Total junkie mess, she made Courtney Love look like Taylor Swift. I don't remember her parents being fundie but her dad was military, they practically kidnapped her and sent her off to rehab. I think she's an artist now.

--Phil's bitch boy
replies 35Sep 25, 2012 9:46 AM +00:00

OP, one more to add to your list: Kurt Russell. He was quite the conservative when younger, though living all these years with Goldie Hawn may have mellowed him.

replies 36Sep 25, 2012 10:43 AM +00:00

I assume out lesbian Sara Gilbert is a liberal.

replies 37Sep 25, 2012 11:12 AM +00:00

I think a lot of them do this in reaction to the 'anything goes' acting scene they witnessed, and the exploitation. Also, I think someone like Kelsey Grammer is conservative because of his sister's murder.

replies 38Sep 25, 2012 11:21 AM +00:00

They never did well in school because they were acting. Consequently they never learned how little they know.

replies 39Sep 27, 2012 3:24 PM +00:00

Jodie Foster and (I think) "baby Peggy" grew up to be conservative.

replies 40Sep 27, 2012 3:32 PM +00:00

Jodie Foster grew up conservative? I thought her mom was just a drunk. If she was a conservative one, it explains Jodie...

replies 41Sep 27, 2012 3:43 PM +00:00

Don't forget Sarah Michelle Geller

replies 42Sep 27, 2012 3:49 PM +00:00

MTM, sadly

--Buck would have never voted democratic!!
replies 43Sep 27, 2012 3:55 PM +00:00

We've all remarked on poor or middle-class voters who vote for the interests of the monied classes, and IMHO there's a lot of that in a former child star's psyche.

It's very easy for a former child star to believe that they truly belong to the rich-and-famous class, and their real life is just a temporary setback.

replies 44Sep 27, 2012 5:15 PM +00:00

Danny Bonaducie is a fundie? God, that's pretty gross.

replies 45Sep 27, 2012 5:22 PM +00:00

Mickey Rooney is a late to the party Jesus freak too. Sad.

replies 46Sep 27, 2012 6:52 PM +00:00

You'd think otherwise, being that he made so many movies with that fag hag, Judy Garland.

replies 47Sep 27, 2012 6:58 PM +00:00

Foster and Gellar aren't conservative.

replies 48Sep 27, 2012 7:03 PM +00:00

Yeah; it's intense Mel loyalty & friendship on Jodi Foster's part; I don't hear a thing about her following his politics, though.

JF not only refused to shun him; she spoke out for him (ok; some biz concerns too--pity she couldn't complete & keep on ice a few years)--but Mel Gibson must have been a dam good friend to her.

It may be a factor in Robt Downey Jr's embracing Rebublicanism too(he even attended the previous convention, tho absent from Tampa). After waking from years of addiction he was likely apolitical, Mel Gibson--who remained *his* friend even when he hit bottom--must seem the antithesis of Senior: a supportive father-figure, always there to help. Heck; his wife could also be conservative.

Frankly, this question -- IMVHO -- ios a bit superficial, but this is my Write A Lot of Stuff Day ;-)

--Lady Wishfort
replies 49Sep 29, 2012 3:10 PM +00:00

Jodie is not a conservative.

replies 50Sep 29, 2012 3:17 PM +00:00

Jimmie "JJ" Walker is a fundie and he is also the boyfriend of Ann Coulter.

replies 51Sep 29, 2012 3:21 PM +00:00

Bradley Gregg

replies 52Sep 29, 2012 3:35 PM +00:00

R48 Sarah Michelle Gellar is a registered Republican

Link below

Offsite Link
replies 53Sep 29, 2012 3:40 PM +00:00

R35, parents whose daughter has become a "total junkie mess" might well take radical steps to rescue her, even if they don't practice ultra conservative politics or fundamentalist religion. I know a liberal atheist who did the same thing when his daughter was abducted by her violent husband.

Shirley Temple's second husband, the late Charles Black (not Lori's father), was a Republican businessman in San Francisco & she's been active in the GOP, but I've never heard that either of them adopted extreme political or religious views.

replies 54Sep 29, 2012 4:09 PM +00:00