« Masks? We Ain’t Got No Masks… | Main | Consensus Watch - 9/15/2020 »

September 13, 2020

Review of Don't Burn This Book: Thinking for Yourself in an Age of Unreason by Dave Rubin

Our review of Don’t Burn This Book: Thinking for Yourself in an Age of Unreason by Dave Rubin started off in an unexpected manner when within the first four minutes of listening to the audio book (I purchased the Audible version) Rubin mentions in a totally offhanded manner that he was gay.

That shouldn’t matter, and apparently doesn’t given I had no idea.  But in our current environment with half the country embracing identity politics and intersectionality, it is, at least in a societal sense, still important and worthy of mention.

In fact, it is part of the argument Rubin makes in that as a conservative gay man, he runs counter to the entire narrative of identity politics that holds that your identity determines your politics. Given that this is the second book, however unintentionally, that I am reviewing about a gay man coming out as a conservative in as many months (Always a Soldier by Rob Smith was the first), this apparently is a thing.

The troubling ascent of the LGBT right wing

Okay, it’s definitely a thing.

And “troublesome” even.

This is, in part, what Rubin is talking about.

In the book he details the ways in which his preconceived notions about the left gave way to reality such as when he witnessed how allegedly open-minded progressives would savagely attack conservative African-Americans as “Uncle Toms,” or the time he interviewed Larry Elder and in the course of spouting standard liberal talking points that he took for granted as being true, ended up being very publicly schooled with actual facts from the always-informed Elder.

The character assassination he was witnessing up close and personal on the part of his leftist colleagues and friends, the false narratives, the growing cancel culture, and the hostility towards free speech if that speech does not fit the woke agenda, became increasingly clear. Rubin was going through this realization and ultimate transformation pretty much on screen as he hosted “The Rubin Report,” which I guiltily admit increased the entertainment value of his story immensely. (To his lasting credit, Rubin readily concedes this, a sign of a man truly comfortable in his own skin and genuinely interested in personal growth no matter how painful.)

Throughout the book he discusses this transformation, the slow realization that he was more conservative and libertarian than he was progressive, his difficult decision to “come out” as a conservative particularly given that people whom he had considered personal friends turned on him, wishing to never speak to him again.

He also goes through a number of issues, from drug legalization to gun control to women’s rights and so on detailing why he believes what he believes and suggesting that if you agree or find his arguments compelling, if only in part, you might not be the progressive you thought you were. While there is no question this book will be picked up primarily by preexisting fans with conservative and libertarian-leaning views, it clearly is also targeting people who are on the fence or who have started to question preconceived notions, and provides a detailed road map and motivation to explore such feelings further.

The entire tale is at once cautionary and inspirational, outlining the professional and personal hazards of embracing a more conservative view while providing motivation and counseling on how to do so.

Rubin self-narrates the audio book (always my preference for those competent to do so), and comes across as truly genuine, affable, open minded, and always open to being proven wrong.

Definitely worth a read. Or a listen!

J.

If you are thinking about purchasing Don’t Burn This Book, please consider using one of our many links! it costs you nothing but helps support our work here. "Work" might not be the right word. "Frustrated cries into an uncaring void," might capture it better but didn't test well with focus groups. (More about affiliate marketing links at the bottom of the right side bar.)

Bookmark and Share

September 13, 2020 at 03:00 PM in Books | Permalink

Comments

Great to hear, thanks! As for the books, I don't have much of a commute, but I do engage in a fair number of mindless tasks like walk the dog, mow the lawn, write pieces for Planet Moron, that really don't require all that much attention!

Posted by: Planet Moron | Sep 17, 2020 12:34:53 PM

I just started reading Douglas Murray's book on your recommendation. Will add Rubin's to my list. How do you manage to listen to so many books, anyway? Do you have a really long commute or something?

Posted by: bluebird of bitterness | Sep 17, 2020 12:03:15 PM

Post a comment