The mission of the David Horowitz Freedom Center is the defense of free societies whose moral, cultural, and economic foundations are under attack by enemies both secular and religious, at home and abroad.
Over 15 years ago, the Dutch Parliamentarian Geert Wilders was receiving death threats from Islamists and he and his family had to be moved to a safe house to live under 24-hour guard. On top of that, his own government was suing him for “hate speech.” In the face of these attacks, he never relented in speaking out for freedom and for standing tall for the very things that the Freedom Center was founded to defend.
It was because of this that in March of 2009 the David Horowitz Freedom Center extended an invitation to Wilders to come and speak at two Freedom Center events in Los Angeles. The April 2009 events, his first ever visit to Southern California, featured packed houses where Wilders captivated the crowd with rousing speeches in defense of Western Civilization.
Over the next 15 years we would have Wilders speak another six times, from Florida to California, always to packed houses and always to thunderous applause. In 2008 we awarded Wilders our FrontPageMag Man of the Year Award for his steadfast courage and bravery in speaking for Western values in the face of not just strong criticism, but Fatwas and death threats.
When Wilders was sued by the Dutch government for hate speech, the Center enthusiastically set up a program where donations could be passed through directly to help him pay his mounting legal fees in this defense. A lot of money was raised, and the Center was proud to play a role in his eventual victory in these slanderous lawsuits.
It was in 2019 that the IRS opened an investigation and audit of the Freedom Center, referencing a Washington Post article that claimed that the Freedom Center was funneling money to Wilders to help mainstream “White Nationalism”, and supporting his political activities. Not a single penny that was raised for Wilders was used for any political activity, every single donation was used specifically to pay the legal costs for these defamation lawsuits.
But no matter, that IRS Audit, which is now in its fifth year has turned into a witch hunt with the IRS claiming the Center “electioneered” in 2016 because we published articles at FrontPageMag that supported the idea of having a secure border, a sovereign nation, and a free people. We never told any reader who to vote for or who to vote against. It was clear from the beginning, from Wilders to Trump, that the IRS had an agenda.
Wilders is also one of the primary reasons the Breakers Resort in Palm Beach refused to offer any further contracts for the Center’s Restoration Weekend. They were concerned about the “controversial nature” of some of our speakers and the security concerns involved, singling out Geert Wilders. Wilders did have to travel with a team of Dutch Secret Service, though our guess is that many dignitaries that visit the Breakers require security as well.
The IRS Audit has drained us, both in costly legal fees for five years running but also in the loss of some of our major donors. We are in the stretch run, the IRS by mid-2024 will decide the fate of the Freedom Center. As of today, however, the Center is still a 501c3, still pursuing our mission and still proudly supporting the polices of any individual who stands up against what David Horowitz described as the “Unholy Alliance” of Islamists and the Left, who in their hatred seek the destruction of our great Judeo-Christian Civilization. That includes the defense of a great hero of our time, Geert Wilders.
And with all that being said, if we had the choice again today, we would invite the future, hopeful, Dutch Prime Minister in a heartbeat. In fact, Geert Wilders always has an open invitation to come and speak at any Freedom Center event.