Two prominent, conservative Hollywood producers have resigned in anger after it was revealed that members of their TV Caucus were caught on tape admitting (and even celebrating) the liberal bias in film and television.
Lionel Chetwynd and Norman Powell both resigned separately from the Caucus for Producers, Writers & Directors, which The Hollywood Reporter (THR) describes as "an honor society founded in 1977 by Norman Lear, James Komack, Aaron Spelling, Richard Levinson and others to promote creative freedom and quality and diversity in television."
Chetwynd and Powell quit on principle after some of their colleagues in the caucus gave damning statements to Ben Shapiro for his new book, "Primetime Propaganda: The True Hollywood Story of How the Left Took Over Your TV."
Powell, who once ran CBS Entertainment Productions, sent a statement to THR:
"Certainly the fact that our industry has a liberal bias is no surprise," he said. "What is troubling is that now it seems discrimination is an acceptable practice to stifle divergent opinions. Speaking out against this is specifically on the Caucus Mission Statement. Our First Commitment is 'promoting the artistic rights of the creative community,' not solely the rights of the liberal creative community."
Chetwynd, whose TV credits include "DC 9/11: Time of Crisis" and "Ike: Countdown to D-Day," was much more scathing in his resignation. His was in the form of an open letter to the Caucus, and he targeted remarks made by Vin Di Bona, creator of "America's Funniest Home Videos," who admitted the TV industry is anti-conservative and that he's happy about it:
"Mr. Shapiro interviewed a large number of our Hollywood notables on the subject of diversity -- not the sacrosanct melange of race, religion, gender orientation and the like, but a more challenging diversity: that of opinion and policy," he wrote. "The vast majority felt quite comfortable endorsing discrimination against those whose political philosophy was not rooted in the reflexive Leftism of Hollywood."
Chetwynd, in fact, was instrumental in bringing prominent Republicans, like John Thune, Tom Ridge and Eric Cantor, to speak to the Caucus, invitations he now views as an "embarrassment."
"I knew most of my fellow members looked upon the political positions of these people as distasteful; what I now understand is the disgust was not for their views, but for their very person," Chetwynd wrote. "Such people, Mr. Shapiro's sources make clear, must be silenced and it is therefore proper to make them suffer discrimination."
Of Di Bona and others who were caught on tape tolerating political discrimination in Hollywood, Chetwynd writes: "Shame on all of them. Their sickness is an infection that belongs in Europe of the 1930s."
Chetwynd acknowledges that he has spoken to Di Bona, whom he refers to as "a Caucus leader," and has forgiven his remarks, but it didn't alter his decision to leave the group.
"Until now, the Hollywood culture kept mean-spirited and odious persecution carefully discussed out of earshot of we lepers; now, however, there appears to be no problem in openly admitting to cheap and easy prejudice," Chetwynd writes.
"If the Hollywood Left has no compunction in publicly proclaiming its creed," writes Chetwynd, "then for the sake of those Americans who have a different vision for our country, someone must shout, 'Stop!'"
[...]"As I believe you're aware," he writes to his former Caucus colleagues, "I experienced overt blacklisting for my views as a
conservative -- at the very hands of those who piously deplore the blacklisting of Communists in a former day."
Near the end, THR notes, he writes, "I no longer belong in your midst. I shall miss you all."
Read the full report from THR.