[Order David Horowitz’s new book, ‘The Radical Mind: The Destructive Plans of the Woke Left’: HERE.]
I remember the first conversation I had with David Horowitz, though I am sure that he does not. I was a young undergraduate student at Georgia State University majoring in philosophy and English literature. I was working up to 45 hours a week in two – sometimes three — jobs to put myself through school. This was before I won a full scholarship to pursue a Ph.D. in philosophy. One of my side gigs then was repurposing my philosophy papers into newspaper editorials. I was doing all of this while attending university full-time. A newspaper editor gave me Horowitz’s telephone number (this was in the 1990s) and suggested that I call him. Horowitz had just started a new magazine called Heterodoxy, devoted to exposing the excesses of political correctness on university and college campuses across the United States. I acquired a few copies of the burgeoning magazine, read them, and cold-called him.
I don’t think David had any writing opportunities for me at Heterodoxy back then. But here is what I remember, and it has left me with an indelible imprint on my mind and a lasting respect and personal fondness for David Horowitz: he spoke to me about my plans for my future. I told him of the few articles I had published in the United States despite having worked as an investigative journalist in Jamaica before emigrating to America. He spent quite a bit of time telling me I might have a long struggle ahead, but that I was to keep on writing. He encouraged me to never give up. He said that, based on my articulacy in speaking with him, he could tell that I had talent. He laid out how difficult the publishing world could be not just for a young writer, but for all writers.
A lot of people know David Horowitz as a fiery personality. And he is a brilliant intellectual with a fiery disposition. I say this with affection; however, I remember him being possessed of a paternal gentleness and nurturing demeanor towards me. Although I would not be able to contribute to the magazine, in the end that was irrelevant. In our short conversation David had managed to make me feel like an accomplished writer. This, it must be emphasized, does not consist merely in heaping praise on a young writer. It is speaking to a young writer in a non-patronizing and non-condescending manner such that he is made to feel that he is already part of the pantheon of the community of writers. Our conversation made me feel that I was ready for the struggle, the rejections, the enjoyment of the process of writing itself, apart from the outcomes of my efforts. All this Horowitz communicated to me. Our conversation left me with a sense of excitement and exhilaration because I realized my vocational calling was not just affixed to getting published; it involved a spiritual and aesthetic approach to the art of writing itself. I began to see what a writer’s life truly consisted of.
I would not speak to David until some 27 years later when I was awarded a Shillman Journalism Fellowship at the Horowitz Freedom Center where I am now a proud columnist filled with gratitude towards him and Dr. Bob Shillman for giving me a permanent platform to express my views. I had gone on to become a professor of philosophy for well over two decades, and the author of five books. There is, however, no greater thrill than writing my articles for FrontPage Magazine, largely because David has given me a great deal of freedom to simply be true to my political sensibilities and my vision in the pages of his magazine.
I’ve gone on to devour almost every book Horowitz has written, and I have had the pleasure of reviewing quite a number of them for this magazine. Throughout his career David has established himself as one of the most preeminent and brilliant public intellectuals in both the 20th and 21st centuries. He’s also been—to my mind—one of the most defamed and slandered scholars and intellectuals in this country. He is often accused of being a racist and Islamophobic. Nothing could be further from the truth. Horowitz is simply a principled thinker whose philosophical views and sensibilities are forged in the crucibles of hard facts. And I can think of no other publisher (and I’ve by now worked with plenty) who has offered black conservatives a chance to develop themselves as thinkers and writers.
In his latest book: The Radical Mind: The Destructive Plans of the Woke Left, Horowitz, with indefatigable rigor and solid research, unmasks the nefarious agenda of the Woke Left in its attempt to destroy American civilization. The book is an intellectual tour de force written for a broad readership. And in reading it, one can understand why irrational and evil people would defame Horowitz. He simply states the truth as it exists in objective reality.
For example, in debunking the plethora of lies around the issue of race, Horowitz rightly points to the myriad programs that exist for the advancement of black Americans in the United States. Whether it is the United States government spending seven billion dollars to send a black woman to the moon for no other reason than her skin color; or pointing to the ways in which the welfare state has destroyed the black family; or noting that the slave trade actually existed in Africa where slaves were bought and auctioned by fellow Africans and then sold to Europeans; or showing how DEI programs end up granting a status to blacks that exists nowhere else in the world – Black Skin Privilege in the United States — Horowitz takes no prisoners, and he proves that facts ought not to care about feelings. If you want to find out why black lesbians in the United States are among the most privileged groups in America, read The Radical Mind. If you still think that systemic racism against blacks exists after the passage of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, or that the United States is today a White Supremacist nation, Horowitz explains by way of several examples why this is putatively false.
Readers are perhaps not aware that five hundred million Muslims approved of the 9/11 terrorist attacks on the United States, or that the student organization Students for Justice in Palestine (SJP) is funded by the American Muslims for Palestine (AMP) which is funded by Hamas. Merely by revealing the disgraceful fact that American campuses harbor a terrorist organization within their folds, Horowitz incurred the wrath of many Progressives.
In The Radical Mind, Horowitz outlines the agenda of the Progressive left as it seeks to inflict a sustained racist attack on white Americans. He proves that Democrats are not soft on crime; they are pro-crime—citing numerous examples of how left-wing city officials across our nation deliberately fail to prosecute roving gangs of criminals that terrorize small businesses in smash-and-grab robberies.
Whether it is Bernie Sanders, Nancy Pelosi, or the radical leftist, antisemitic Squad in Congress consisting of Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez, Rashida Tlaib, Ayanna Presley, Ilhan Omar, and Cory Bush, Horowitz unearths the overt ways in which these Progressives are part of the socialist-communist criminal axis that advocates theft and expropriation of private property in America.
The book is not just critique, though. Horowitz shows why the concept of equity and equality are untenable concepts by way of discussing the genius of Elon Musk and tying creative genius to the overall well-being and prosperity of all Americans. He celebrates the spirit of capitalism and its ability to make blacks and women the freest and most privileged groups in the world today. Yes, you will find Horowitz’s formidable intellect permeating every page; but it is an intellect that also celebrates the best within America and, a fortiori, the best within each of us. As bankrupt as much of our culture is, Horowitz, in his inimitable manner, leaves you feeling that you can and should suffuse the world with your own personal agency; and that if you undertake that responsibility of fighting to preserve liberty and freedom in the United States, you can alter the destructive trajectory the American civilization (taken hostage by the nihilistic Left) seems to be pursuing.
What I find remarkable is the way Horowitz is able to cover so much ground in such a relatively short book. From the nature of government and the rationality of an undemocratic Senate, to the logic behind the Electoral College, the role that the Italian philosopher and communist Antonio Gramsci played in cultivating the sensibilities of today’s Progressives, to a measured discussion of the persecution of Donald Trump, to a biographical account of his early days as a Leftist revolutionary, along with a profound analysis of the destructive nature of wanting to change the world by an appeal to the slogan that the moral arc of the universe bends towards justice—Horowitz gives us a comprehensive and well-integrated philosophic discussion of the principles behind the nihilism that governs today’s relativistic Woke culture, and deep-dive analyses of current events as they unfold. There are fundamental principles that guide the book that are consistent and logical such that, if you follow them, one should be able to predict with accuracy what Horowitz’s position on any subject might be in the future.
But you never know. Horowitz’s mind is nuanced and complex. Just when I thought I had figured out the mind of David Horowitz he comes along with a new book that is more insightful than his previous works and chock full of deep analyses of the malarkey that passes as received wisdom in our culture. Even if one disagrees with any of the ideas and conclusions drawn in Horowitz’s new book, there is much to recommend by way of simply watching a brilliant mind at work. He offers us a method of cognition, and of moral and political reasoning, that teaches us how to think efficiently. As a teacher of logic this is a wonderful gift from a writer. In this book, too, to use an apt metaphor, Horowitz is like an elegant battering ram that ruthlessly destroys the shibboleths which turn folks from rational thinkers into sentimental adherents of Woke nonsense.
I hope to read a dozen more forthcoming books from this often-unsung hero in American intellectual life. For now, it was a delight to sit with a book that, like a cup of strong morning coffee, you wished never had to come to an end.