When Barack Obama became President, I [David Horowitz] knew America was in deep trouble. Here’s why. I was a leftist as early as I can remember. I was raised in a Communist family and surrounded by radicals my entire childhood. I could hardly be anything else!
As an adult in the 1960s, I was a leader of the New Left and editor of Ramparts, a fanatically anti-war, anti-capitalist magazine. My friends were some of the best-known radicals in America. But something happened that changed my life.
A friend of mine, named Betty Van Patter, was murdered by the Black Panthers in 1974. I had referred her for a job as bookkeeper for the Panthers in Oakland, California. When she discovered things they didn’t want outsiders to know, she ended up floating in a river, dead.
Like so many of today’s leftists, I had thought of people like the Black Panthers as especially virtuous because of their “victim” status and their so-called fight for social justice. It was hard to believe they were just murderers and thugs. But when Betty was killed, the evidence against them was too strong for me to resist.
Most of my friends refused to believe it. When I told Betty’s own adult daughter who had killed her mother, she replied, “The Panthers are good people.” As a leftist, she could not accept the truth.
I was forced to question my most basic beliefs, and that began my long and difficult journey to sanity. I lost most of my friends and became the target of their vicious hatred, which lasts to this day. But I gradually gained an appreciation for America’s culture and history, for our economic system and the worship of God and especially for our freedom.
In 1984 I horrified those who knew me previously by publically declaring my support for Ronald Reagan, and in 1988 I launched an organization in order to alert more people to the terrible destruction the left was wreaking throughout America – in schools and colleges, in the media, in government, even in the churches. That organization is now called the Freedom Center.
How Leftist Think!
Many of today’s radicals are the very same people who were working to overthrow “the system” back then. Just as important, the techniques and strategies they developed back in the 1960s and ‘70s have resurfaced. If you want to defeat Communism, you need to understand the people and how they operate.
Most importantly, their GOAL is to SEIZE POWER, no matter what they claim. All of their agenda items from health care to environmental protection to saving the economy are just their means of accumulating power.
They see the world in terms of “haves” and “have-nots,” and they believe WEALTH must be REDISTRIBUTED to make everyone equal. Exactly what Obama said: “Spread the wealth around.” The Obama machine has spent millions of taxpayer dollars to finance a takeover of the American workplace, and our health care, and to stifle the independence of the America people, towards that end. And in the service of that belief they are willing to commit hideous atrocities, or to avoid seeing the atrocities committed by others.
I’ve seen how easy it is for leftists to believe terrible LIES, and to follow people who are moral monsters while denying the evidence of the own eyes and ears. Why didn’t my leftist comrades believe the Panthers had murdered my friend Betty? Dozens, maybe hundreds, of local activists were aware of what had happened, but no one raised any questions about it – none of these people who were usually so quick to protest injustice. No one seemed to care about Betty’s murder. The Panthers’ victim status and usefulness to the left outweighed the horrible crime they had committed.
I [David Horowitz] remember the feeling. Like all radicals, I was intoxicated by my own virtue. It was my noble intentions that counted, not flesh and blood people. Mr. Horowitz described what the Bible says:
“This know also, that in the last days perilous times shall come. For men shall be lovers of their own selves, covetous, boasters, proud, blasphemers, … Without natural affection, … heady. high minded, lovers of pleasure more than lovers of God” (2 Timothy 3:1-4).