osewalrus (osewalrus) wrote,
osewalrus
osewalrus

Link Harvest: Jonathan Krohn, Conservative No Longer

A fascinating article in Politico. Krohn achieved brief fame in 2009 when, at age 13, he attended CPAC and made an impromptu speech as a call to arms for conservatives. A video of this went viral, prompting Krohn to author a book called Defining Conservatism which was promoted by serious conservative thought leaders such as Newt Gingrich.

But then a funny thing happened. Krohn started reading a bunch of non-conservative thinkers on general philosophy. He then realized he really didn't know enough at age 13 to have definitive opinions as he had expressed and that he was merely repeating what he heard from others. So he decided to take a step back, do some deep reading and thinking, and take the time to formulate his own ideas.

Krohn does no claim a conversion. Rather he claims he could not possibly have known enough at age 13 (or even now at age 17) to know with certainty what he himself really thought and believed. A few interesting tidbits.

1. Krohn attributes his initial speech and certainty to being "inundated with conservative talk in Georgia" and then gradually realizing that while he "knew enough to talk about" things, he didn't "know enough to have a conversation."

2. Krohn encounters the modern frustration of being pegged in some people's mind as permanently the 13 year old in the video. This problem is not unique to Krohn. It has always been a problem in the sense that many people form opinions about you and then ignore any changes. But the Internet culture, with its ability to capture an isolated moment in time, create instant fame, and trap that moment in digital quality forever has added a whiole new dimension to this.
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