Battle Lines Being Drawn

Battle Lines Being Drawn



(John Hinderaker)

It is getting harder and harder to stay neutral in the culture war that is tearing American society apart. That is how it seems, anyway; I don’t understand why so many companies feel compelled to choose a side–pretty much always the far-Left side, unfortunately.

The latest case in point is the Breakers, a venerable luxury resort in Palm Beach, Florida. The Breakers dates at least to 1926, and has long been associated with New York society. It is a wonderful spot. We have stayed there a number of times, sometimes for events and sometimes on our own nickel. It has been one of our favorite vacation haunts.

The Breakers has also been home to the David Horowitz Freedom Center’s Restoration Weekend for 19 of the the last 27 years. Restoration Weekend is a big deal. I reported on this year’s edition here and the 2019 version (2020 was wiped out by covid) here. Restoration Weekend is one of America’s premier conservative gatherings. It gets more top speakers than any other event that I know of, and is attended by an impressive roster of donors and activists. This year’s weekend was sold out; I am bad at estimating crowds, but I would guess there were 750 present at the plenary lunches and dinners. Over 19 years, the Horowitz Freedom Center has sent many millions of dollars to the Breakers.

But no longer. Shortly before this year’s event, the hotel told the Freedom Center that it will not be welcome after 2021. The reason, apparently, is that dishonest left-wing activists have told the family that owns the resort that David Horowitz is a “white supremacist.” I assume this originates with the despicable Southern Poverty Law Center, a far-left hate group that deserves to be sued out of existence for defamation. In any event, it is an idiotic claim.

Danusha Goska, who participated in this year’s Restoration Weekend, wrote a letter to the managers of the Breakers, urging them to reverse their banning of the Horowitz Freedom Center. She focused on the ridiculous claim that David is a “white supremacist.” Here are some excerpts:

I spoke at the Breakers in 2016 at the personal invitation of David Horowitz. I spoke about my “black and brown” students. I spoke about their hardships and their hopes. I spoke about the daily realities of life for poor minorities in cities like Paterson, NJ. I did all this in your hotel. How often have you invited people like me to talk in the Breakers about the plight of poor black people? I would guess rarely, if ever. Would a white supremacist invite such a talk at his conference? We both know the answer.

Indeed, David Horowitz has devoted his entire life to lifting people up, not putting people down, including black people. When he was younger, he worked with and for the Black Panthers. This was because he wanted to help black people, and he thought that leftist solutions were the way to do so. He discovered that the Panthers had tortured and murdered his friend and fellow Black Panther supporter, Betty Van Patter, and rather than slinking away from danger and controversy, as many would do, David worked for justice for Betty. This is not the behavior of a white supremacist.

David is the proud and loving father-in-law of an African American daughter-in-law and grandfather to grandchildren with African ancestry. And, of course, David is a proud Jew. Again, white supremacists don’t support people like David Horowitz. White supremacists kill people like David Horowitz.

There is much more at the link. It is a powerful letter.

Yet I wonder whether we conservatives do not give liberals too much credit for good faith. Are the people who run the Breakers so stupid that they could investigate David Horowitz’s work and decide that he is a “white supremacist”? Impossible. Or so lazy that they can be told that the Southern Poverty Law Hate Center so branded David, and take it as Gospel?

I doubt it. I think they are probably just liberals. Liberals smear those who disagree with them (i.e., conservatives) as “white supremacists” not because they believe it, but because it is an all-purpose epithet that comes readily to hand. I suspect this is what is going on here: not that the Breakers’ management believes what they say, but rather that they have made a political/business decision to throw their lot in with the far Left.

It is hard for me to understand how that can be a good business decision, but it is their business, not mine. All I know is that the Breakers won’t be seeing another penny of my money.

If your view of liberals is less skeptical than mine, you can write to Breakers management and respectfully request reinstatement of the Restoration Weekend at guestrelations@thebreakers.com.



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