RIP Professor Walter E. Williams | Nathan Wilson


It has sadly been revealed recently that George Mason University’s Walter Williams has passed away at 84. Williams was considered to be one of America’s leading defenders of free-markets and free people. Not only has Williams helped and inspired countless generations of young people with his numerous political writings and economic teaching but also helped produce one of America’s more popular syndicated columns.

Williams was born in Philadelphia, Pennsylvania. Williams held a B.A. in economics from California State University, Los Angeles. In addition to this he also held a M.A. and Ph.D. degrees in economics from UCLA. Alongside this, Professor Williams held a Doctor of Humane Letters from Virginia Union University and Grove City College.

His career spanned over five decades, which he authored some 150 publications, ten of which included books and helped PBS (Public Broadcasting Service) with creating two documentaries from economic problems in inner cities within American, to South Africa and its economic policies. Throughout his work, he tirelessly worked to inform citizens of the dangers of big government and its effects to the poor. Williams had made countless radio and television appearances. These have included “Nightline,” “Firing Line,” “Face the Nation,” Milton Friedman’s “Free To Choose,” “Crossfire,” “MacNeil/Lehrer,” “Wall Street Week” and had been a major contributor for the “Nightly Business Report.” While in addition to this he also was infrequent replacement host for the “Rush Limbaugh” show. His last ever documentary was “Suffer No Fools,” as shown on PBS stations during the Fall/Spring 2014/2015 (one I couldn’t recommend more). Besides the academic, Mr Williams had also been a soldier and spent time overseas in Korea. He was also a loving father, husband and a kind mentor for his students.

I once had the great pleasure of emailing Professor Williams during Autumn last year. In our emails we discussed economics and social policy, ranging from minimum wages to even fatherlessness in the African American communities. One thing that always stuck a chord with me was the kindness of his words and the fraternity he had for his fellow man. He responded to every email as if an old friend had message out of the blue and with nothing but care and understanding. His kindness and his belief in the human spirit should serve as an example for all, regarding of colour or creed. I do hope men like Professor Williams will not become a dying breed, which can continue to inspire and believe in the good and decency of young men.

I think it only appropriate that his final words in our last email be the perfect sentiment for his life and his messages as he passes on.

 “Best wishes and keep the faith!”

His last column can be found here.


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