David Horowitz

David Horowitz’s Archives: The Smearing of “The Patriot”

Posted on December 16 2010 6:45 am
David Horowitz is the editor-in-chief of NewsReal Blog and FrontPage Magazine. He is the President and CEO of the David Horowitz Freedom Center. His most recent book is Reforming Our Universities

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“In the schools in which I have subbed and then taught, very few students stand for the pledge of allegiance unless coerced to do so by their teacher. Most of the students have either African, Latin American or Asian ancestry. When an occasional student does stand, I ask, in a friendly manner, if she or he can tell me of any moment in history where the inhabitants of this land actually enjoyed ‘liberty and justice for all,’ and beyond the words of the pledge, to show me any proof that such was ever intended.”

In other words, for Blankfort and his comrades, gone is the role of public education as an assimilator of immigrants and minorities into the American culture; gone, too, is the task of integrating them into the opportunities offered under the umbrella of “the American dream.” It has been replaced by a more subversive, anti-American mission: warning them against the very society their parents had embraced.

The students are addressed not as members of a free community freely choosing their futures, but as though they were dragged to these shores and kept here in chains. Thirty years ago no teacher would have thought to abuse his authority over school children in this manner. But now educational institutions all the way from university to kindergarten have been thoroughly politicized by a “post-modern” left that respects no institutions and no standards, and for whom everything is political, including the lives of small children.

This is an authentic movement of sedition, and it is new as well. My father was a Communist teacher during the 1930s and ’40s, unfairly purged in the McCarthy era from the New York City school system. But not for an act like this. For he did not, so far as the record shows, violate his classroom trust; nor did he intrude his personal political agendas into his lessons. Even though my father belonged to a conspiratorial party that took its orders from a foreign power, it would have been absolutely unthinkable for him to attack America in its promise as today’s leftists reflexively do.

My father belonged to a party whose slogan was “Communism is 20th Century Americanism,” and he believed it. The socialism of which he and his comrades dreamed was incompatible, of course, with the American founding. But in their minds the future to which they aspired was going to be a completion — not a rejection — of the American idea. Accordingly, they named their organizations after American icons like Lincoln and Jefferson, men now routinely demonized by the left as “racists” and (in Jeffersons case) “rapists.”

Even though what Communists like my father really wanted was a “Soviet America,” they would say when challenged (and I actually did say when I was young and among them): “We’re the true patriots; we want America to live up to its ideals.”

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