Ron’s #20: Letters to a Young Conservative by Dinesh D’Souza

The title is misleading on this book. Letters to a Young Conservative is a book for all those who would like a primer on American conservatism, regardless of age or political party. In the milieu of political labels and name-calling, I wonder if the average American knows what it means to be a conservative. Dinesh D’Souza’s book will help you understand what it means and what its implications are.

Since it is a collection of personal letters to a college student named Chris, the main focus is what it means to be a conservative in the university setting today. One can see the difficulties in how such students are harassed and belittled and silenced in the academic realm. D’Souza offers insight in why this occurs, along with reasons to fight against the liberal machine as “conservative radicals.”

Letters to a Young Conservative is more than a book of advice; it is a treatise on how conservatism is a better answer to political issues and problems facing America, whether racism, immigration, or “family values.” He offers two powerful chapters on polarizing issues of abortion and gay marriage that clearly define an alternative viewpoint than The New York Times offers.

Being a minority and immigrant himself, Dinesh D’Souza’s discussions of race and affirmative action were especially interesting and helpful. Those chapters alone make this book a worthy read.

You may disagree with his conclusions, but at least this book explains American conservatism more accurately than Keith Olbermann does. Unfortunately, liberals allow Olbermann’s and other clownish TV commentator’s antics to define what the other side believes. This book clarifies conservatism beyond mere mockery.

This is an excellent resource for high school seniors to read as they prepare for not only college but also for their first voting opportunity. As a teacher, I envision using chapters to help define the political philosophy to foster healthy, productive discussions of American politics.

I hope that I did not make this sound like a stuff textbook. Dinesh D’Souza often has a humorous style of writing that will engage and equip the reader.

About Ron 173 Articles
I teach English and government in Okinawa, Japan. I love reading theology and fiction, and helps keep me accountable. Reading with three kids under 5 is a bit of a challenge, but I keep trying to find ways to read more. My favorites writers are C. S. Lewis, Flannery O’ Connor, and Raymond Carver.

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