'Never got weird enough for me': Why this conservative's column will end after a 12-year run
The American Conservative (TAC) is cutting senior editor Rod Dreher's column was recently published for the last time after 12 years of success, Vanity Fair reports.
Per Vanity Fair, according to two sources familiar with the matter, the column's extensive stint — described as one of the most bizarre diatribes in opinion journalism — came to an end after "one particular reader" believed Dreher's posts "had simply gotten too weird."
Vanity Fair reports:
That disgruntled reader was Howard Ahmanson Jr., the heir to a California banking fortune and the sole benefactor of Dreher's six-figure salary at TAC, which is published by American Ideas Institute, a nonprofit. This unique funding arrangement—a single donor choosing to cover one writer's entire salary—was paired with an even more unusual editorial arrangement: Dreher was allowed to publish directly on TAC's site without any revisions or legal oversight, according to the two sources.
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The sources noted the first clear "red flag" Dreher waved, in Ahmanson's opinion, occurred in 2021 when the writer published a blog "debating circumcision," saying, "All us boys wanted to stare at his primitive root wiener when we were at the urinal during recess, because it was monstrous. Nobody told us that wieners could look like that.”
Moreover, Vanity Fair reports:
He has warned that so-called sissy hypnosis porn is 'profoundly evil;' detailed the 'formal' Catholic exorcism of a friend's suicidal wife; and recalled—in unsettling detail—the time he witnessed a Black classmate's uncircumcised penis.
One of the knowledgeable sources paraphrased Ahmanson, saying, "At some point, he basically decided, 'This is too weird.'" He decided, "'I don't want to read this or pay for this anymore.'"
Dreher said he will likely carry his beloved blog to a Substack, while remaining an editor at large with TAC.
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Vanity Fair's full report is available at this link (subscription required).
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