The Atlantic

The Apotheosis of Dinesh D’Souza

The polemicist declares that the white nationalist Richard Spencer’s agenda is really that of “a progressive Democrat.”
Source: Lucas Jackson / Reuters

In “Dinesh D’Souza and the Decline of American Conservatism,” my colleague David Frum notes a mainstay of his subject’s work: portraying racism in the United States as if it is overwhelmingly a sin of the Democratic Party, even as D’Souza, a partisan Republican, stokes the racial prejudices of his readers by playing on pernicious group stereotypes.

D’Souza’s basic formula for distortion is easy to grasp.

Abraham Lincoln and the members of Congress who fought to reconstruct the South in a manner that would guarantee the rights of freed slaves were Republicans. And the Democratic Party’s history is rife with horrific racism. D’Souza’s schtick is to selectively cite those historical truths while eliding other truths, like huge changes in the political parties across the decades, Democrats who’ve fought for civil rights, and a Republican Party history that is also rife with horrific racism, helping to explain why so few African Americans cast ballots for the GOP today.

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