Review: BLM: The Making of a New Marxist Revolution

This essay originally appeared in the May 2022 issue of Chronicles (here).

In 2020, following the death of George Floyd—a drug-addled career criminal-cum-martyr—in Minneapolis, many cities were besieged by destructive riots, under the banner of “Black Lives Matter.” Just as disconcerting was the attendant political movement that swept the nation, complete with sophisticated messaging, “spontaneous” protests, and, despite its anti-capitalist rhetoric, a tsunami of corporate support for BLM. Seemingly overnight, an anti-police slogan morphed into a radical agenda with (apparently) widespread support. What is BLM?

Veteran journalist Mike Gonzalez, now a senior fellow at the Heritage Foundation, explains the nefarious origins and objectives of BLM, which to date has been sugarcoated by the mainstream media and sacralized by Democratic politicians. The Introduction states that “This book exists to fill the void in public awareness,” and Gonzalez ably delivers, boldly exposing the Marxist goals and “existential danger” of BLM in meticulous detail, complete with endnotes and index.

Identifying BLM’s top leaders—“three African American lesbians [with] long-standing ties to domestic Marxist revolutionaries”—is just the beginning. Gonzalez also traces the history of Communist attempts to rally American blacks to the cause of world revolution during the 20th century. Fortunately, those efforts were unavailing. Beginning with the 1960s, however, home-grown Marxists would accomplish more than covert Soviet machinations ever could. Gonzalez synopsizes the development of domestic terrorist groups in America—the Black Power movement and its many extremist variants, as well as the wellspring of white guilt that enabled them. Angela Davis and Bill Ayers are among the better-known insurgents who are featured in Gonzalez’s detailed overview.

BLM itself, started as a hashtag in 2013 following the acquittal of George Zimmerman in connection with the shooting death of Trayvon Martin, did not have an immaculate conception. When it was formed as an organization a year later in the wake of the police shooting of violent teenage thug Michael Brown in Ferguson, Missouri, BLM tapped into decades of Marxist organizing, now boosted by the power of the Internet, social media, Antifa hoodlums, and a generation indoctrinated by the Sixties-era radicals whose ideology currently dominates academia.

Subsequent chapters explore the roles of corporate America, deep-pocketed philanthropic foundations, the FBI, the mendacious media, “woke” K-12 education, and progressive Democrats in perpetuating the myth that BLM is a benign, spontaneous reaction to “systemic racism.” The most depressing aspect of BLM is the extent to which the American public—in the throes of what Gonzalez properly calls a “mass hysteria”–so readily embraced an extremist ideology that in the past had only a fringe following. A subversive education system that cultivates white guilt is largely to blame, as Gonzalez explained in his previous book, a critique of identity politics entitled The Plot to Change America (2020).  

With BLM, Gonzalez has written an impressive and timely book on a subject that bears much closer scrutiny.

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