The Real Issue Surrounding the Daily Caller Dinner with Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn: Your Tax Dollars Helped the Illinois Council on the Humanities Sponsor It!
The real issue surrounding the recent Sunday event in Chicago, in which former Weather Underground leaders Bill Ayers and Bernardine Dohrn hosted a dinner for Daily Caller editor-in-chief Tucker Carlson, Caller editor Jamie Weinstein, media mogul Andrew Breitbart, Weekly Standard writer Matt Labash, and a Caller reader, is the legitimization of Ayers and Dohrn. That was not the fault of those who attended the dinner, but of the Illinois Humanities Council, the state’s facilitator and affiliate of the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH), which is subsidized by your taxpayer dollars.
The reason that Carlson and company were attending the dinner is because they won it at an auction held by the Council. Carlson cast the highest winning bid, which was $2,500. One might wonder why the Council would even think of auctioning off a dinner with two unrepentant advocates of “armed struggle,” who are dedicated in principle to the creation of a revolutionary communist future for the United States. A quick run through the Council’s search engine provides the answer: Bill Ayers in particular is a regular participant in the Council’s programs!
Moreover, they describe Ayers in the following words:
Bill Ayers is a school reform activist and Distinguished Professor of Education at the University of Illinois at Chicago. He is founder of the Center for Youth and Society and founder and co-director of the Small Schools Workshop. He has written extensively about social justice, democracy, and education. His book, Fugitive Days, is a memoir that chronicles the anti-war movement of the 60s.
Notice what is missing. The most prominent omission is that for which Ayers is most well known: as a founder and leader of the revolutionary terrorist group active in the 1960s and 70s, the so-called Weather Underground Organization, originally known as The Weathermen, but which had a name change after its revolutionary women — including Dohrn — criticized the leadership for its “sexism.”
Instead of letting Council readers know what the members believed, they simply praise Ayers for his concern for “social justice, democracy and education.” And anyone who has actually read Ayers’ memoir knows that it is hardly a chronicle of the anti-war movement.
Rather, as I pointed out in the review I wrote of Fugitive Days, he wants to “puke” when he hears anyone say that America is a “fair and decent place.” As I pointed out,
Ayers still looks back with fondness on the violence of what was called in those days the “New Left.” Indeed, in Fugitive Days, he attempts to bring his readers to share his reasoning. He and his comrades were moved, he insists, by the most decent of motives to undertake, not terrorism, but a restrained and purposeful form of “resistance.” Terrorists seek to harm average people—men, women, and children—without regard to the target. For the Weather Underground, “the symbolic nature of the target” was paramount. They were only trying to prove “that a homegrown guerrilla movement was afoot in America,” and thus they bombed police stations, statues to those they considered oppressors, ROTC buildings, draft offices, and corporate headquarters.
What an advocate of social justice, indeed. On the day their group bombed the Pentagon, Ayers writes that “everything was absolutely ideal on the day I bombed the Pentagon.The sky was blue. The birds were singing. And the bastards were finally going to get what was coming to them.” And he describes his wife, Bernardine Dohrn, as “admonishing her troops to violence wearing a ‘short skirt and high stylish black boots….Her blazing eyes….allied with her elegance,…a stunning and seductive symbol of the Revolutionary Woman.’”