The End of Dinesh D’Souza

Dinesh D’Souza (left); Denise Odie Joseph II (right)

I can’t say I’m sorry that anti-Obama propagandist and torture apologist Dinesh D’Souza has been taken out of commission. The direct cause: he’s sleeping with a younger woman — right-wing blogger Denise Odie Joseph II — to whom he claimed to be engaged, while separated but not yet divorced from his wife Dixie. D’Souza says “I had no idea that it is considered wrong in Christian circles to be engaged prior to being divorced.” I think he’s missing that it has something to do with his sleeping with the younger woman in the hotel for an evangelical conference at which he was speaking.

D’Souza has made a quick exit from his job as president of The King’s College, a small operation in New York with a few hundred students, owned by Campus Crusade for Christ (Cru). As the story unfolds, it appears he has suspended his engagement with Joseph and properly filed for divorce from Dixie. News of the affair and the mess at the conference broke in the evangelical magazine WORLD, which is run by Marvin Olasky, who was provost of The King’s College and resigned after D’Souza became president. Whether there was personal animosity involved in breaking the story, however, it appears to be true.

I saw D’Souza a few years back as part of an event for Eric Metaxas’ usually excellent conservative lecture series Socrates in the City. It was to be a debate between D’Souza and Princeton humanist philosopher Peter Singer. Singer is a thoughtful man. One of his thoughts is not valuing human lives any more than animal lives; another is an argument for infanticide. He’s a utilitarian purist. As such, I often find his ethics repugnant, but I was expecting an enlightening discussion. Instead, rather than deal with Singer’s reasoned arguments, D’Souza pursued a strategy of character assassination. It’s the debate strategy of cowards — don’t argue your case, undermine your opponent’s. The event was painful and I was embarrassed for him.

It’s the same thing he’s done with the recent slanderous propaganda film and books against Obama, starting with the absurdly titled (and themed) 2010 book, The Roots of Obama’s Rage. It’s pure character assassination from beginning to end — which asserts that the supposed African anti-colonialist Marxist rage of Obama’s absent father still burns within him. It makes no sense, and is frankly either extremely stupid or cynically propagandist. There is no other explanation. No one who isn’t partisan to the point of turning off critical thinking can take the argument seriously, but nevertheless it made D’Souza even more of a darling on the far Right — whether they believed him or not, they loved that he was being so bold in his attack.

D’Souza’s earlier work, Illiberal Education and The End of Racism, had value in the conversation. He jumped the shark with Obama’s Rage and hasn’t looked back. He is now simply a propagandist. So while I find it frustrating that some conservative evangelical leaders were OK with his deceitful propaganda but are drawing the line at his having sex outside of wedlock, I say good riddance to Dinesh D’Souza.

About Phil Fox Rose

Phil Fox Rose is a writer and editor based in Brooklyn, New York. He is the editor of Paraclete Press; coordinator of Contemplative Outreach of New York, helping promote centering prayer, which has been his contemplative practice for nearly 20 years. Raised atheist by ex-Mormons, Phil has journeyed through Quakerism, deep ecology, Buddhism and Catholicism. Now he's a congregant, presider, cook and leadership team chair at St. Lydia's, an awesome dinner church in Brooklyn, NY, and spends as much time in nature as possible. Phil has been a political party leader, videographer, tech journalist, punk roadie, software designer, sheepherder, stockbroker and downtempo radio DJ. A common thread is the process of learning about stuff, figuring it out and then sharing that understanding with others. Follow Phil by RSS feed, email, Facebook, Twitter and Pinterest.