The late father of presidential hopeful Pete Buttigieg was a proponent of the work of Antonio Gramsci, considered the godfather of cultural marxism.
Dr. Joseph Buttigieg served as professor of English at the University of Notre Dame, where he was a faculty member for nearly 40 years before his passing at age 71 on Jan. 27.
A founding member and president of the International Gramsci Society, Prof. Buttigieg edited and translated Antonio Gramsci’s Prison Notebooks, a manifesto on communist revolution. He was also appointed by the Italian minister of culture to a commission of experts supervising Gramsci’s complete works. His articles on Gramsci have been translated into multiple languages.
Professor Buttigieg sat on the advisory board of the journal “Rethinking Marxism,” and was an editor of “Boundary 2,” a journal that also promoted socialist thought. He also participated in the 150th anniversary of Karl Marx & Richard Engels’ Communist Manifesto, whose prose he lauded for its “poignancy.”
Father John Jenkins, controversial president of Notre Dame, praised Prof. Buttigieg after his passing.
“Joe was a superb scholar, an inspirational teacher and a pioneering leader as the inaugural director of the fledgling Hesburgh-Yusko Scholars Program,” said Jenkins.
The obituary on Notre Dame’s website acknowledges Pete Buttigieg’s “gay marriage” to partner Chasten Glezman: “Buttigieg is survived by his wife, Anne Montgomery, who was a member of the Notre Dame faculty for 29 years, and his son, Pete (Chasten Glezman), the mayor of South Bend.”
Antonio Gramsci, Godfather of Cultural Marxism
Gramsci, born in 1891, was founder and leader of the Communist Party of Italy. He’s best known for his writings from prison, when he was jailed under Benito Mussolini’s fascist regime.
Gramsci rejected violent overthrow of capitalist governments in favor of gradual revolution through communist infiltration of the culture and societal structures, implementing socialism through what his disciple Rudi Dutschke called “the long march through the institutions.” Gramsci believed changing ideology in the ruling elite — whether in media, education, courts, politics or other structures — was more powerful and enduring than bloody revolution.
Public enemy number one for Gramsci was the Catholic Church because of the “ideological” hold it had over the masses.
“Gramsci’s principle was that [Communists] must begin by influencing the culture, winning the intellectuals, the teachers, implanting itself in the press, the media, the publishing houses,” said French philosopher Jean-François Revel.
Like Father, Like Son
If Pete Buttigieg’s public witness tells us anything, it’s that he’s a faithful disciple and product of his marxist father. There’s little evidence that the 37-year-old mayor of South Bend has explicitly promoted Gramsci, but Buttigieg’s life and politics bespeak a wholesale rejection of the Catholic faith in which he was baptized in favor of an amoral philosophy that leaves God out of the equation.
In his autobiography, Buttigieg called his dad a “man of the left, no easy thing on a campus like Notre Dame’s in the 1980s.”
“[T]he more I heard these aging professors talk,” Buttigieg said of his parents’ dinner guests, “the more I wanted to learn how to decrypt their sentences, and to grasp the political backstory of the grave concerns that commanded their attention and aroused such fist-pounding dinner debate.”
According to the Washington Examiner, “Pete wrote that his dad was supportive when he came out as gay. He and his husband bought a house in South Bend around the corner from his parents, which gave the couple ‘a good support network despite our work and travel schedules’ when they decided to get a dog.”
The first openly gay presidential candidate, Buttigieg has proudly flaunted his “marriage” to Chasten Glezman, a gay activist who joked during his keynote speech at the 2019 Houston Human Rights Campaign dinner that he “could be the first man in history to pick out the White House china” — referring to duties traditionally reserved to the First Lady.
On abortion, Buttigieg has repeatedly rationalized his stance by claiming that male politicians should not intrude into decisions between a woman and her doctor. He has also offered implicit support for infanticide measures being proposed and enacted in various states.
“Radical leftists in the United States, Europe and Latin America have adopted Gramsci’s methods and have made a point of infiltrating churches, universities and media outlets,” wrote George Marlin. “University curricula teach that all cultures must be equally respected — even the ones that directly contradict Christian values. In the name of human rights, secular humanist organizations have promoted policies that have eliminated Judeo-Christian moral restraints.”
“Pope Benedict XVI has wisely warned that the replacement of the West’s Christian roots with moral relativism has ushered in a ‘confused ideology of liberty [that] leads to a dogmatism that is proving ever more hostile to real liberty,'” Marlin continued, adding that “the Holy Father fears that the West may be entering a new Dark Age in which man exists solely for the benefit of a divinized state and will be stripped of his God-given human dignity.”
Buttigieg, who lived under the shadow of his father and was deeply shaped and molded by his marxist thought, is the perfect embodiment of Gramsci’s philosophy. The presidential hopeful’s popularity among Americans is further evidence that the nation, and with it the West, is indeed entering a new Dark Age.
Watch the panel discuss the Left’s leading presidential candidates in The Download—A Democrat in the White House?
Christine was born in Saigon, Vietnam one year before it fell to the Communists, and has lived in France and the United States. She has degrees from Notre Dame Law School and Oxford University. She is editor-in-chief of News at Church Militant.
EDITORS NOTE: This Church Militant column is republished with permission.