…at least to the right-libertarian crowd.
You can’t go through a single conversation about books, science fiction, anything without Heinlein being invoked as if he’s some kind of deity, or as if his future history is somehow prophecy (even though it was kinda poorly strung together later as a retcon to make them all in the same universe). You see his books talked about in almost the same fashion as SJW millennials do with… yes, Harry Potter.
Yes, the average right-libertarian’s facebook page looks almost like the sign above when it comes to Robert A. Heinlein. The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress proves government should get out of our lives! In both cases, I gotta tell people — it’s not real.
While Heinlein’s work tends to have a bit more political philosophy in it than Harry Potter, in both instances they are taken to extremes for “the cause” which just cause onlookers to eye roll because it’s yet another instance of the same thing being repeated. And it glosses over that Heinlein’s obsession with free-sex relationships in later books gets borderline on downright creepy. You don’t usually hear those being championed in these circles.
Whether you’re a Harry Potter’d millennial or a right-libertarian Heinlein obsessee, the solution remains the same: read another book.
Edgar Rice Burroughs and Poul Anderson often present better archetypes for living. As was mentioned on Twitter today, ERB’s Mars/Venus stories amount to a young strapping man exploring and working hard, and he topples evil dictatorships by just his sheer willingness to fight. We don’t have that anymore, and it’s something you can’t really find in protagonists in Heinlein books. Anderson presents positive aspects of military service and loyalty in his Fire Time or Young Flandry series, and gives some awesome Deus Vult In Space action in The High Crusade. But these books never get referenced in terms of policy, debate, or anything else. Why not?
The breadth of reading is what stretches our imaginations and will enable us to come up with better, more creative solutions than the same talking points regurgitated about a couple of authors. Let’s develop some new references so we don’t look like dated millennials.
If you find me amusing or heck are even offended, another book you could check out is my The Stars Entwined, just out a couple of weeks ago to positive reviews. It tackles themes of loyalty, love, war, and what it means to be human. Kinda like a lot of Heinlein books. Check it out here.