Last night on the Colbert Report, I was introduced to The Atlasphere, a dating service for devotees of Ayn Rand’s novels Atlas Shrugged and The Fountainhead. Colbert did a funny bit about the website. He said, “The Atlasphere is the best place for Randians to find the one they love, other than their bathroom mirror.” But it all focused on the egomaniacal aspect of this group. I admit that this is the most defining aspect of the Rand’s movement. But when it comes to sexuality, it is not.
In both The Fountainhead and Night of January 16th, the hero rapes the heroine. Which begs the question: what sane woman would want to meet a man who loved The Fountainhead. A researcher in abnormal psychology? Somehow I doubt it will be a woman who holds “the values of reason, independence, hard work, and personal integrity.”
Yes, yes, Ayn Rand was a deeply troubled person. And it is her commitment to a bizarre mixture of fascism, anarchism, and Hollywood romanticism that makes her so popular among mostly ignorant aspirants. But like Christians, Randians have to do a lot of work to distinguish between what they like and what they don’t. And that’s just fine. You have to do that with any dogmatic system. (And Objectivism is certainly that!) But that doesn’t mean I’d trust anyone dating on the basis of Rand’s creepy pro-rape writings.
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