Most of us started out leftists in some form — man is a social animal, after all, drinking up social and behavioral cues from the ambient culture. Whether through hard experience, careful inquiry, unmerited divine grace, or some combination of the three, most of us repented of those errors. Some of us have shared our stories before: Dr. Charlton here, Daniel from Out of Sleep (now tragically defunct) here, Bonald here; in the same thread at Out of Sleep, several more of us (including Kristor and myself) posted our own stories.
The common thread running through them seems to be that there was some fundamental personal incompatibility with leftism present in us apostates from the church of leftism. Dr. Charlton relates his constitutional inability to escape from the natural law, despite his formal disbelief in it; Bonald could never see leftism’s embrace of casual, loveless sex and divorce as anything but a desecration; Kristor was baffled by the B.S. fed him by his New Left friends and shocked at last out of his liberal pretensions by the divorce of his (“ultra-liberal”) parents; and I was deeply impressed, even from a young age, by the simultaneous liberalism of my own family and the deep, profound dysfunction of their lives, both individually and collectively. A secondary theme is that of the movement away from liberalism as a kind of awakening, a gradual stirring of the soul from its slumber. There are no lights-on-the-road-to-Damascus stories to be found here but, rather, stories of halting and incremental movements toward penance and conversion. A third theme, implicitly but unavoidably imbedded in all of them, is that liberalism works best for those who are intensely committed not to think about it too carefully.
But there are more than a few of us here at the Orthosphere, and most of us don’t have blogs. So, at the risk of turning into a “Liberals Anonymous” group-therapy session, what’s your story?