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David Horowitz and “Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week”

There is an important post today at The Progress Report about the “Islamo-Fascism Awareness Week” program run by David Horowitz at college campuses this week.

The whole crusade is counter-productive in a number of ways, but it’s cleverly planned.

Of course, mislabeling international terrorism is not a great idea. What we are dealing with bears little resemblance to definitions of fascism, and tying it to Islam as a religion rather than toward the violent radicals of any religion (or none) is misleading and just mean. Terrorism is a method, not a religion.

The real intent of Horowitz’s program is to attack the political left – he really must have had an amazing conversion experience.

Meanwhile, voices like his move the entire discourse more toward the right. Fox News starts to look centrist… Oh yeah, other speakers scheduled for campus appearances: Ann Coulter, Robert Spencer, Rick Santorum. It’s about academic freedom….riiiiiight.

I’m glad Bertrand Russell isn’t alive to see his formerly Marxist aide turned into this…

Bertrand Russell, a longtime hero of mine, won the Nobel Prize in Literature in 1950 – “in recognition of his varied and significant writings in which he champions humanitarian ideals and freedom of thought.”

But Russell was an amazing character; maybe he would be more sanguine about it…

It is a waste of energy to be angry with a man who behaves badly, just as it is to be angry with a car that won’t go. – Bertrand Russell

Horowitz has claimed such things as that there are 50,000 American professors who are “anti-American” and “identify with the terrorists,” that John Kerry was happy to see Communists win in Vietnam, that the Senate Intelligence Committee “exonerated” President Bush’s claim in the 2003 State of the Union address that Iraq sought uranium from Niger, and the like. His backers are interesting, too.

Horowitz’s ability to co-opt the language of oppression and turn a supposedly theoretical manifesto into his personal soapbox would put even the most emo slam poet on your campus to shame. –Amy Schiller, “Indoctrinating You?” CampusProgress.org.

Sad to say, he’ll be spewing at Emory today. No-one can claim it’s not a place for open debate, right? Sigh. I’m not fooled by the framing. I’ll take a cue from Bertrand Russell; since Horowitz’s aims and methods are repugnant to me, I simply won’t be participating in these events. Sometimes it’s a time to protest, sometimes it’s a time to vote with your feet. I’m hoping for a lot of no-shows.

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