Thursday, April 28, 2016

New from David Horowitz, The Black Book of the American Left — Volume VI: Progressive Racism

At Amazon, The Black Book of the American Left — Volume VI: Progressive Racism.

And from the book's website, "Introduction to Volume VI: Progressive Racism":

Progressive Racism photo Progressive Racism_zpsyaqcexjg.png
This is the sixth volume of my writings called The Black Book of the American Left. It is also one of the most important, as its subject—race—goes to the heart of the most problematic aspect of America’s history and heritage, and is thus the focus of the progressive assault on America and the American social contract. For obvious reasons, progressives have largely concentrated on one race in particular—American blacks, or “African-Americans” as they have come to be known through at least five permutations of political correctness in my lifetime: “coloreds,” “Negroes,” “blacks,” “persons of color” and—only then— “African-Americans.” The injustices of slavery and segregation and the historic sufferings of this community form a factual basis for the progressive indictment, which systematically ignores the historic gains—unprecedented and unparalleled—of this community because of America’s tolerant and liberating social contract.

The first essay in this volume, “The Reds and the Blacks,” explains how this indictment fits the left’s melodrama of “oppression” and “social justice,” and is merely an extension of Marx’s discredited formulas of “class oppression.” Parts I & II of the text that follows address the falling-away of the civil rights movement from the mission and values championed by Martin Luther King. An introduction, “Memories in Memphis,” is the account of my visit to the “National Civil Rights Museum” housed in the motel where King was murdered. This visit provided a summary moment in my efforts to understand these historic events. “Memories in Memphis” first appeared as the opening chapter in Hating Whitey and Other Progressive Causes. The original title of this book published in 1999 was “Hating White People Is a Politically Correct Idea.” This was an accurate description of the culture promoted by the new leaders of the civil rights movement, and—equally important—was the undeniable thrust of what was being taught in university curricula devoted to the malevolent race, gender and class “hierarchies,” which tenured leftists falsely claimed as structures of American society. The book was rejected by my publisher, Basic Books, whose editor told me, “We will never publish a book with that title.” His response indicated how completely the literary culture had succumbed to the new dispensation. I had to find an obscure publisher in Texas to get the book in print, and thus the upshot of trying to right an injustice was a dramatic diminishment of my career as an author.

Both essays, “The Red and the Black” and “Memories in Memphis,” were written in 1999, and the opening chapter of Part II, “The Race Card,” two years earlier. All the other chapters in this volume are organized in chronological order to form a running journal of the conflicts that followed the transformation of the civil rights cause. Until then it had been a movement to integrate African-Americans into America’s multi-ethnic democracy. In less than a decade it had become a movement led by demagogues to refashion racial grievances into a general assault on white people and on the country they were said to “dominate.” In its core agendas, the new civil rights movement was an assault on the basic American social contract, and in particular the 14th Amendment, with its commitment to equal rights under the law and thus to race-neutral standards and race-neutral governmental practices. Post-King civil rights became a movement to institutionalize racial preferences—the same kind of discriminatory practices that characterized segregation—and to recreate a race-conscious political culture in which blacks and a handful of designated minorities were singled out as the groups to be racially privileged. On other the side of the coin, whites were made targets of exclusion, suspicion and disapprobation.

Part III recounts an effort I undertook in the spring of 2001 to oppose a campaign by the left to gain reparations for slavery. This was a cause that had been first proposed in 1969, during the civil rights era, and rejected by every major civil rights organization. At the time of the proposal there were no slaves alive to receive reparations, while the vast majority of Americans who would be forced to pay reparations were descended from immigrants who had arrived in America well after slavery had been abolished. The clear goal of the radicals who launched the reparations campaign was to indict America as a racist society, and to sow the seeds of racial conflict. It was also an obvious shakedown effort of the kind that had come to characterize the civil rights leadership of Jesse Jackson and Al Sharpton. In the winter of 2001, I published an account of these battles titled Uncivil Wars: The Controversy Over Reparations for Slavery, which explained why the issue of race was at the heart of the left’s assault...
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