March 11, 2004


LGF found a touching article called Defending America that caught my eye because it opens with a quote from Dinesh D'Souza. I've never seen any bloggers talk about D'Souza, but he was personally instrumental in helping me discover my beliefs.

During my senior year in college I had to attend a mandatory lecture for a class on Malcolm X (which I took because I hated X and wanted to learn more about him. Learned more; still hate him.) This lecture was given by a speaker I'd never heard of before named Dinesh D'Souza. His speech was against affirmative action. We were a room full of students listening to his hour-long lecture, and I thought his argument was concise, informed, logical, and accurate. He opened up the floor for questions, and immediately everyone in the room pounced on him. No one agreed with him. People yelled, picked on him, argued, acted disgusted...and I sat there slowly realizing that the speech I had just whole-heartedly agreed with and understood was not received the same way by anyone else in the group. I started to really question my values and wonder why they were so different from my classmates' and the other listeners. That was the moment I realized that I had attended the lecture alone, quietly listened to a speech, formed my own opinion independent from anyone else's input, and found that no one else had heard what I had heard. That moment has stuck with me, and I consider it the turning point when I realized that I looked at the world differently from my peers. I have D'Souza to thank for that revelation, and I've never forgotten him. I've since read his books and have enjoyed them very much.

Posted by Sarah at March 11, 2004 07:43 AM

Glad you like D'Souza - and that Truman let him come to campus! The former is real surprise, but still ...

I discovered D'Souza in my senior year at Berkeley. By then I had been anti-AffAct for years, so he was just preaching to a one-man choir. (I knew no one else on campus who shared my views.) Nonetheless, I can still imagine how he could impact you, though I myself never had a single landmark moment like yours.

My own awakening took place over a few months, as I reread Ayn Rand's novels as a freshman at Berkeley and found that they made more sense once I was in a wall-to-wall Leftist environment.

Posted by: Amritas at March 11, 2004 08:20 AM

"The former is real surprise" should read "The former is no real surprise."

Here's another surprise. Why don't more bloggers refer to D'Souza? I just checked my blog's archives and found eight references to him. He's young and (dare I say it) hip. Maybe it's because D'Souza hasn't said much about the war? (I could be wrong about that, as I don't claim to follow D'Souza's career.) Perhaps he'll rise to prominence when and if social issues like AffAct take precedence over the war in bloggers' minds.

Posted by: Amritas at March 11, 2004 08:27 AM

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