About six months ago, I signed with a Christian literary agent to represent me and the book I am writing. Yesterday, I wrote about why I’m deleting my Twitter account. Last night, my agent “fired” me for being too conservative. Because I stood up for free speech and voiced that EVERYONE should have the right to express their opinions, whether gay or straight, atheist or Christian, black or white, I was told to go elsewhere. My agent has every right to do this, but it is a saddening reminder that I am now considered so “fringe” in my beliefs that no one wants to touch me with a 10-foot pole.
I have to admit, the people-pleaser in me was kind of devastated. The fact that because someone doesn’t agree with me politically, they won’t work with me professionally is distressing. Can you imagine a defense lawyer denying representation to someone because they differ in political stances, even though the client is innocent?
Should I just remain silent?
It sure is tempting to just unplug from the world; delete my Facebook, Instagram, SnapChat, YouTube, Pinterest and any other social media I’m on. It’s tempting to just stop writing and be silent, because the more I share my thoughts, the more it seems I am seen as a polarizing, extremist Christian. Maybe that’s a reflection on me and my inability to portray my thoughts effectively. Or maybe it’s just the calling God has placed upon my life–to speak the truth, to stand up for my convictions, and to do it unabashedly.
The fact that I lost my representation based on my personal beliefs seems kind of absurd. My agent was very cordial and respectful in her email to me. But she was also clear in saying that she believes my husband and I are way off in our understanding of the First Amendment, and that she was most definitely not the right agent for me.
Let me clarify a bit
For those who may have misunderstood my premise and thought I was supporting Milo because I agree with his agenda and/or think I’m saying that Twitter shouldn’t be allowed to have rules:
My blog post specifically said that Twitter has every right to have whatever rules they want. However, I also believe they should equally discriminate. Twitter is not a neutral platform, and should acknowledge themselves as that. I don’t even LIKE Milo. I think he’s a jerk (I think I said that in my article, too?). He WAS a bully. But I believe he should have the freedom to express himself that way, and if Twitter is going to delete him, they should delete many, many others who are violating their TOS.
It’s not just about Milo
This is about a platform misrepresenting itself as being a free market to air opinions. And at its core, it’s about fighting for everyone to have the freedom of expression–whether they are liberal, conservative, black or white, atheist or Christian. Milo was banned when he called Leslie “illiterate.” I agree–it’s mean, and I know he had already said many hateful things toward her. However, is that just the straw that broke the camel’s back? Calling someone illiterate is not hate speech, in my opinion. If he was threatening her life, then I agree–something would need to be done.
Supporting Milo’s right to express his opinions does not mean I agree with what he is saying.
My agent has every right to disassociate herself from clients who she doesn’t agree with. But the world we live in is disheartening: it has become a place where many of us fear sharing our opinions because we may be fired or refused representation.
Ultimately, God is in control. I’m not overcome with grief, or feeling inadequate, or questioning my beliefs. I have always presumed that if one door closes, another (usually better) door opens. And this is no exception. Sometimes being obedient to God is uncomfortable, but we were never guaranteed comfort. And I consider it an honor to continue to stand up, even when it’s more pleasant to just sit down.
So whoever knows the right thing to do and fails to do it, for him it is sin. ~James 4:17