The Fall of My Friend Dinesh
Poor Dinesh D’Souza. He was hoisted on his own “petar,” Shakespeare’s little joke in Hamlet, substituting the old word for flatulence in place of petard, the spear. There he was on Rick Scarborough’s windy conference call pillorying President Obama for “attacking the traditional values agenda.” It was the typical stuff: Gay Marriage and Abortion are bad, Obama like them, so ergo “Obama doesn’t like traditional Christianity because he identifies it with colonialism.” This is all material that appears in his soporiferous movie, 2016: Obama’s America. It is not new. It is a cliché.
Then, from World Magazine, the Christian publication that tries to be “salt not sugar,” came a story on October 16 that D’Souza arrived at a conference in Spartanburg, South Carolina in late September, and checked into a Comfort Suites motel with his partner, Denise Odie Joseph II, a right-wing blogger. Joseph, it turns out, is not D’Souza’s wife, and nor could she be his fiancé. Not only is D’Souza married to someone else (although he says they are separated), but that Joseph herself has only recently been married. In any other planet, this would be a non-story: two consenting adults should be allowed to do what they like. But the world of conservative Christianity is not that planet.
A conference organizer, Alex McFarland, confronted D’Souza, who told him that Joseph was his fiancé, and that “nothing happened.” The World’s Warren Cole Smith called D’Souza, who told him that he had filed for divorce and was now engaged to Joseph. Smith’s sleuthing found out that D’Souza only filed those divorce papers after the Spartanburg tryst.
As Jeffrey St. Clair put it, D’Souza “was apparently just preparing himself for the coming Mormon Republic of the US” with the impending electoral sweep of what is now called Romneysia.
The World’s article set the ball rolling, and within a few days, D’Souza lost his seven-figure salary from the presidency of King’s College in New York City.