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Freedom Of Speech: Under Attack Or On Fire?

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Mistletoe Angel
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0 posted 02-05-2005 03:40 PM       View Profile for Mistletoe Angel   Email Mistletoe Angel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Mistletoe Angel's Home Page   View IP for Mistletoe Angel

This week has certainly been a controversial week as far as freedom of speech vs. crossing the line is concerned.

This past week we have seen a lot of news and debate in our media that argues what is American or un-American.

Two such examples I speak of are the following:

*

***********Exhibit A***********
http://www.darknightpress.org/index.php?i=news&c=recent&view=9&long=1

Ward Churchill, the professor of Ethnic Studies at the University of Colorado, my former college I attended, after responses to his controversial essay following the attacks on September 11th. In the essay, Churchill cites victims of the terrorist attacks "little Eichmanns," in a direct comparison To Hitler henchman and Holocaust engineer Adolf Eichmann. He also cites Pentagon victims as quote, "military targets, pure and simple." and characterized some of the World Trade Center victims not as innocent but as quote, "braying, self-importantly into their cell phones arranging power lunches and stock transactions."

This essay has been generating mixed interpretations, including those of Bill O'Reilly, among many free speech activists as well.

Though the essay was written over two years ago, Hamilton College, a small liberal arts college in upstate New York, had contracted with Ward Churchill to speak. Several students, among them Matthew Coppo, who lost his father in the 9/11 attacks on the WTC, mounted an on-campus protest, citing the essay linked above as reason to cancel Prof. Churchill's lecture. The President of the College, Joan Hinde Stewart, refused. In light of the controversy, Churchill waived his usual $3500 speakers' fee. On Friday O'Reilly told his viewers to send letters of protest to the College.

This morning, Hamilton College announced it was canceling the lecture, citing DEATH THREATS against Ms. Stewart. She has been accompanied by bodyguard for several days.

Fox News's Bill O'Reilly has since picked up on this story, insisting he believes Churchill should be fired from the University of Colorado, who has also said the following in a Friday segment:

"Yes. You know what this is all about? This is about political correctness once again. That's what this is about. This guy is a native American. He feels that genocide was perpetuated on his race. And therefore, he can hate his country and say anything he wants."

Ward Churchill responded to the controversy with this response:
http://www.kersplebedeb.com/mystuff/s11/ward_churchill_responds.html

Free speech activists are coming to the defense of Churchill upon the University of Colorado campus and elsewhere, claiming even if most do not agree with his opinion, the Bill of Rights values the protection of unpopular or minority viewpoints.

*


**********Exhibit B**********
http://edition.cnn.com/2005/US/02/03/general.shoot/

Lt. General James Mattis, who commanded Marine expeditions in Afghanistan and Iraq, is under controversy of his own for saying in a panel discussion in San Diego about strategies for the war on terror the following,

"Actually, it's a lot of fun to fight. You know, it's a hell of a hoot... It's fun to shoot some people. I'll be right upfront with you, I like brawling. You go into Afghanistan, you got guys who slap women around for five years because they didn't wear a veil," Mattis continued. "You know, guys like that ain't got no manhood left anyway. So it's a hell of a lot of fun to shoot them."

General Mike Hagee, commandant of the Marine Corps, said in response, "Lt. Gen. Mattis often speaks with a great deal of candor. I have counseled him concerning his remarks and he agrees he should have chosen his words more carefully."

He also added there will not be any discipline taken toward the comment.

However some news program hosts like Joe Scarborough have criticized his words and believe words like that would send a negative message to the rest of the world in depicting the U.S military at large as blood-thirsty and didn't rule out suggestion that Mattis, himself, should be fired.

*


Thoughts and opinions on these two controversial stories?

Sincerely,
Noah Eaton


"You'll find something that's enough to keep you
But if the bright lights don't receive you
You should turn yourself around and come back home" MB20
Mistletoe Angel
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1 posted 02-05-2005 04:04 PM       View Profile for Mistletoe Angel   Email Mistletoe Angel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Mistletoe Angel's Home Page   View IP for Mistletoe Angel

My feel on these hot topics is this.

First of all, I don't agree with either one of these individual's bold, extreme comments. In fact both their opinions disturb me. But, I absolutely believe in Voltaire's notion that "I may disagree with what you have to say, but I shall defend, to the death, your right to say it."

First, as far as Churchill is concerned, let me say that I went to the University of Colorado for two years before moving to Portland. And, in my experience, I can tell you this.

There's no doubt that the University of Colorado is a very liberal university. The whole city of Boulder is considered "the liberal eye of Colorado". Denver also leans to the left, but otherwise, the rest of Colorado leans right, especially Colorado Springs, where Fort Carson is.

I recall many times having lunch on the University Memorial Center grounds, where often some form of activist project was happening, most of the time environmentally-related. I co-headed the project "180 Degree Shift At The Eleventh Hour" in a move to ask the university to stop accepting grants and donations from corporations with troubling or abysmal records on human rights, the environment and economic justice. Coors, Lockheed Martin and Peabody Coal were the big three.

Since learning about the Ward Churchill incident, I phoned some of my ex-180 colleagues this week and wanted to get the scoop. And here's what one of them said to me,

"Professor Churchill is not a rabble-rouser seeking a larger audience. In fact no one here seemed to know who he is and his name was "not on the radar" until this whole thing was showcased by the Fox News Channel."

I asked other colleagues if they had known Ward and had the same sort of response.

So I feel if opponents of Ward feel that the whole university is cursed by this sort of thinking, that certainly isn't true, and I believe my experience there speaks that well. No doubt the college is influenced by strong liberal ideals politically and culturally, but Churchill's opinions are no metonymy for the university at large.

*

As far as Mattis is concerned, like Churchill, I'm troubled by what he said, but I don't believe he should be fired either. I believe he should self-discipline himself and be very careful in understanding how such words like those can automatically jump the gun and saturize the mainstream media and send misinterpretations and negative vibes across as with Churchill, but he has the right to say what he wants to say.

This is just some form of extremism on both sides we must accept. We must also take to heart a vast majority of those on the left would disagree with how Churchill depicted 9/11 and a vast majority on the right would disagree that shooting people is fun.

And in the end, it's these examples of views that make up the fullest promise of democracy and our right to address our views.

Sincerely,
Noah Eaton

"You'll find something that's enough to keep you
But if the bright lights don't receive you
You should turn yourself around and come back home" MB20

Denise
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2 posted 02-05-2005 04:30 PM       View Profile for Denise   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Denise

Churchill and others can say whatever they damn well please to say. But not on the taxpayers dime. Let him go voice his opinions at a private university.
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3 posted 02-05-2005 05:02 PM       View Profile for Mistletoe Angel   Email Mistletoe Angel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Mistletoe Angel's Home Page   View IP for Mistletoe Angel



Hey, thanks for adding your voice, Denise. You have also brought about a very important angle to this argument as well that has been discussed on some cable news programs, regarding taxpayer dollars/education.

When I look at it from that perspective, I sympathize and respect what is being meant. I felt this exact same way when the war in Iraq began. Much of our own tax-paying money is being directed to the war, and I cried out, "No, I will have no part in this, I don't want to fund any penny into the sad realization some innocent person may be killed" because I just don't believe in it in my heart and gut.

Like O'Reilly and Hannity and those on the right may be feeling now toward this controversy, I wanted to find a way around the war, in paying my taxes as every true American should without also contributing to the war. I found some good advice and solace here:
  
(link removed - Alicat)

I welcome those who want to find such a way like Peace Tax Fund has done in paying your taxes without feeling you're chipping away nickels into the salary of a professor whose views are the antipole of yours. I would respect and support such an endeavor in reforming the tax funding rules.

But I don't believe Churchill should be fired from the University of Colorado. The source of all this tension came from an opinion not expressed in public, but in an essay originally published on-line. It's been around for over three years now, and Churchill also has a strong resume behind him which seems to indicate despite a few controversial essays on that and that non-violent protests do absolutely nothing, Churchill is a distinguished and serious educator.

Sincerely,
Noah Eaton


"You'll find something that's enough to keep you
But if the bright lights don't receive you
You should turn yourself around and come back home" MB20

[This message has been edited by Alicat (02-09-2005 09:59 PM).]

Ron
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4 posted 02-05-2005 06:54 PM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

Churchill and Mattis have every right to say what they will, and I would be adamantly opposed to any legislative censorship.

However, I have every right to react as I will, and to encourage others to react similarly. Would I take a class from Churchill or server under Mattis? No, and I would argue passionately in hopes of convincing others they shouldn't either. There's a huge difference between trying to silence others and holding them responsible for what they say.
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5 posted 02-05-2005 07:17 PM       View Profile for Alicat   Email Alicat   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Alicat

Actually, Noah, O'Reilley didn't believe Churchhill should have been fired unless there was conclusive evidence that he was teaching his students the same material as what was in his essay.  So far, there has been no evidence of that.  Newt Gingrinch was all for having him dismissed, using the 'tax-payer dime' argument.  Personally, though I'm conservative, traditional and Republican, I think he should retain his position, even if he used hate speech as part of his curriculum.  There are laws protecting freedom of speech, so long as that speech does not endanger the lives of others (like Fire and Bomb in airports and theaters), and professors shouldn't just educate, but should also challenge students, make them think, cause them to scrutinize why they feel a certain way about a given topic.  The university is of course feeling pressure from those who were shocked and appalled by Churchhill's essay.  I thought it was straight out of Al-Jezzera myself.  But that is not a good enough reason to fire the man for speaking his mind.
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6 posted 02-05-2005 07:18 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

Noah, did you ever take a class with the guy or talk to him personally?

What's he really like?
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7 posted 02-05-2005 07:32 PM       View Profile for Mistletoe Angel   Email Mistletoe Angel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Mistletoe Angel's Home Page   View IP for Mistletoe Angel

Couldn't agree with you more, Ron.

If Churchill decided to become a professor at Portland State University and I could take a class in which he taught and lectured, I wouldn't, because his views would be too extreme for me.

I imagine most, knowing what they know now, probably wouldn't want a class with Churchill, except for those who are from the far left with borderline radical views, or for those who are just curious of Churchill. Still, there is that small population, and besides that, Churchill has a long resume behind him, and probably has quite an influential role on ethnic studies.

And I believe the same case applies to Mattis. I imagine a vast majority disagreed with what he said, and believe he should remain in service. But a majority would probably be offended or shy away from him if he asked to have a cup of coffee with someone in saying what he said in a conversation.

We hear these things happen time and time again. Jerry Falwell was so incredibly controversial when he blamed 9/11 on gays and abortion doctors, or the 700 Club when they've blamed different groups for natural disasters like hurricanes and tsunamis.  

In either case, I hope we can all learn from this experience, in that we all have the freedom of speech, but you should always think before you speak and understand the scenarios when it comes to something as seriously as political topics like this. Not just by your own terms, but how others may misinterpret and misunderstand you and the trouble and confusion it could cause. In the end, it could just abuse both others and yourself.

Sincerely,
Noah Eaton

"You'll find something that's enough to keep you
But if the bright lights don't receive you
You should turn yourself around and come back home" MB20

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8 posted 02-05-2005 07:49 PM       View Profile for Mistletoe Angel   Email Mistletoe Angel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Mistletoe Angel's Home Page   View IP for Mistletoe Angel

Nope, I never took a class with Churchill, nor ever knew him in my brief time in Boulder.

I did take a couple Native American religious study classes, though. Not one lesson strayed away from the teachings and studies of the Lakota, Cheyenne, Hopi, etc.

I've done a little research on Churchill these last few days and have learned he has taught ethnic studies at CU for some time, and just resigned actually as the chair of the department of ethnic studies.

There has been some controversy for some time regarding if Ward is a real Creek/Cherokee tribe member or not. I am one-quarter Cherokee.

Sincerely,
Noah Eaton

"You'll find something that's enough to keep you
But if the bright lights don't receive you
You should turn yourself around and come back home" MB20

Huan Yi
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9 posted 02-05-2005 08:26 PM       View Profile for Huan Yi   Email Huan Yi   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Huan Yi

“Churchill cites victims of the terrorist attacks "little Eichmanns," in a direct comparison To Hitler henchman and Holocaust engineer Adolf Eichmann.”

This is what will get Churchill fired.  I thought his ignoring Saddam’s role in the death
of children during sanctions interesting.

Lt. General James Mattis needs to understand how unpopular the United States is already
for its attitudes regarding women; to suggest that men who slap women around are
without manhood and fun to shoot can only cause further animosity; he should hang
his head.
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10 posted 02-05-2005 09:29 PM       View Profile for Alicat   Email Alicat   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Alicat

I really doubt he'll change his ways, as he's an old Marine, tough as nails, as sharp as the tip and blunt as the head.  Highly decorated for during combat and peace and highly respected among the military and military retirees.  Yeah, his words weren't Politically Correct and that's fine with me.  I may not agree with him totally, but he has just as much right to speak his mind as does Churchill, though they come from radically different worlds: one the embodiment of conservative military, the other of liberal intelligensia.
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11 posted 02-05-2005 09:56 PM       View Profile for Mistletoe Angel   Email Mistletoe Angel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Mistletoe Angel's Home Page   View IP for Mistletoe Angel

Yes, Alicat, and I am glad you noticed the distinction here I set, in providing an example from each extreme frame.

I've heard others discussing both these issues this week and I've noticed sometimes how one person says one should be fired but not the other, and in some ways I find that hypocritical.

Both these men's views from each side have extreme views which I disagree with both, but I believe both men shouldn't be fired for expressing their views. And I don't think Churchill will be fired for the example John provided, by the way.

Martiff is indeed very respected and honored among the military and I think few would want him to go even if many more found his comment tasteless.

Finally, I found sense in putting these two men together in one thread because they both insist no matter what happens, neither one wants to change themselves and their attitude. Churchill said that in an interview with Paula Zahn, and I'm sure, like Alicat said, Matiff won't.

Sincerely,
Noah Eaton

"You'll find something that's enough to keep you
But if the bright lights don't receive you
You should turn yourself around and come back home" MB20

Brad
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12 posted 02-06-2005 01:28 AM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

And what does Rush do?

Feminazis?
Tim
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13 posted 02-06-2005 03:31 PM       View Profile for Tim   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Tim

Rush does not hold himself out as a bastion of freedom of thought and diversity of ideas.

The problem with institutions of higher learning is that the moats are a bit deep around their ivory towers.  

Professor is not synonymous with intellectual.

Much more telling than the prof from Colorado is the furor over the remarks of the President of Harvard.

Freedom of speech is welcomed and fervently defended in academia if the speech is politically correct.  

Heaven forbid if the the thought does not comport to the accepted views of the left.

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14 posted 02-08-2005 12:37 AM       View Profile for Huan Yi   Email Huan Yi   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Huan Yi


http://www.nationalreview.com/owens/owens200502070737.asp

Balladeer
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15 posted 02-08-2005 10:17 AM       View Profile for Balladeer   Email Balladeer   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Balladeer's Home Page   View IP for Balladeer

AMERICAN INDIAN MOVEMENT GRAND GOVERNING COUNCIL

MINISTRY FOR INFORMATION
P.O. Box 13521
Minneapolis MN 55414
612/ 721-3914 . fax 612/ 721-7826
Email: aimggc@worldnet.att.net
Web Address: www.aimovement.org

Ward Churchill was scheduled to speak at Hamilton College in Clinton, New York on February 3, 2005. His appearance was canceled by the college after he caused a public furor over his loathsome remarks about the 9-11 tragedy in New York. AIM's Grand Governing Council has been dealing with Churchill's hateful attitude and rip-off of Indian people for years.

The American Indian Movement Grand Governing Council representing the National and International leadership of the American Indian Movement once again is vehemently and emphatically repudiating and condemning the outrageous statements made by academic literary and Indian fraud, Ward Churchill in relationship to the 9-11 tragedy in New York City that claimed thousands of innocent people’s lives.

Churchill’s statement that these people deserved what happened to them, and calling them little Eichmanns, comparing them to Nazi war criminal Adolf Eichmann, who implemented Adolf Hitler’s plan to exterminate European Jews and others, should be condemned by all.

The sorry part of this is Ward Churchill has fraudulently represented himself as an Indian, and a member of the American Indian Movement, a situation that has lifted him into the position of a lecturer on Indian activism. He has used the American Indian Movement’s chapter in Denver to attack the leadership of the official American Indian Movement with his misinformation and propaganda campaigns.

Ward Churchill has been masquerading as an Indian for years behind his dark glasses and beaded headband. He waves around an honorary membership card that at one time was issued to anyone by the Keetoowah Tribe of Oklahoma. Former President Bill Clinton and many others received these cards, but these cards do not qualify the holder a member of any tribe. He has deceitfully and treacherously fooled innocent and naïve Indian community members in Denver, Colorado, as well as many other people worldwide. Churchill does not represent, nor does he speak on behalf of the American Indian Movement.

New York’s Hamilton College Kirklands Project should be aware that in their search for truth and justice, the idea that they have hired a fraud to speak on Indian activism is in itself a betrayal of their goals.

Dennis J. Banks, Ojibwa Nation
Chairman of the Board
American Indian Movement
Phone: 218-654-5885
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16 posted 02-08-2005 10:55 AM       View Profile for Huan Yi   Email Huan Yi   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Huan Yi



Mike,

How . . .?

Between academic freedom and artistic license
he’s covered.

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Yes, i suppose he is, John, unless a Professor of American Indian Studies is required to be at least part Indian, which I don't know. At any rate he lied about his credentials and uses that lie in his books and lectures....that's something people may want to know.
Brad
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18 posted 02-08-2005 11:54 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

quote:
Rush does not hold himself out as a bastion of freedom of thought and diversity of ideas.


No kidding. But it's clear that it's okay to use Nazi metaphors if you're on the Right.  

quote:
The problem with institutions of higher learning is that the moats are a bit deep around their ivory towers.


quote:
Professor is not synonymous with intellectual.


No, it's not. But let's be honest here. Churchill is, presumably, not an expert in international terrorism or even recent American history. Why should his remark cause such a stir?

quote:
Much more telling than the prof from Colorado is the furor over the remarks of the President of Harvard.


I don't know, I haven't followed this thing very closely, but it strikes me that this is another example of a Right wing ruse. Summers ruffles feathers because he's not skilled socially and wants to shake things up at Harvard.

That may be a good thing, I don't know. But put the two together and it's a recipe for disaster regardless of how politically incorrect he is.

quote:
Freedom of speech is welcomed and fervently defended in academia if the speech is politically correct.


To be honest, the last time I was at an American university, Freedom of speech wasn't the issue. Avoiding controversy was.

quote:
Heaven forbid if the the thought does not comport to the accepted views of the left.


Are you kidding? Do you need more hay for that Strawman you're building?



Brad
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19 posted 02-08-2005 11:57 PM       View Profile for Brad   Email Brad   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Brad

quote:
Yes, i suppose he is, John, unless a Professor of American Indian Studies is required to be at least part Indian, which I don't know. At any rate he lied about his credentials and uses that lie in his books and lectures....that's something people may want to know.


No, it's not or shouldn't be a requirment.

There's a great story about this concerning a poetry book a few years back. I'll try to dig it up if later.
Tim
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20 posted 02-09-2005 08:20 AM       View Profile for Tim   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Tim

"No kidding. But it's clear that it's okay to use Nazi metaphors if you're on the Right."

You have a tendency to criticize when anyone else attempts to shift the argument in such a fashion, but yet you are adept at the tactic.  I won't defend the right, you try and defend the left.

"No, it's not. But let's be honest here. Churchill is, presumably, not an expert in international terrorism or even recent American history. Why should his remark cause such a stir?"

The flip answer would be to ask to a surviving relative of a 911 victim.  I would agree about his areas of expertise.  The problem is he holds himself out as an expert and makes presentations as such.  Not atypical of professors to hold themselves out as experts in fields other than than their areas of expertise.
  
"don't know, I haven't followed this thing very closely, but it strikes me that this is another example of a Right wing ruse. Summers ruffles feathers because he's not skilled socially and wants to shake things up at Harvard."

his social faux pas was to make a politically incorrect hypothesis and nearly caused a politically correct female professor to faint and one to walk out on the discussion. He has fallen over himself to apologize for what most non-academic types would consider intellectual discourse.  You appear to have "right wing" on the mind.

"That may be a good thing, I don't know. But put the two together and it's a recipe for disaster regardless of how politically incorrect he is."

If he wanted to have open discussions is shaking things up, I concur, but lack of open discussions on college campuses would appear to be the problem.


"To be honest, the last time I was at an American university, Freedom of speech wasn't the issue. Avoiding controversy was."

That would appear to be the point;  perhaps freedom of speech ought to be the issue. You avoid controversy on an American University by not making a politically incorrect statement.

"Are you kidding? Do you need more hay for that Strawman you're building?"

No, I can assure you I am quite serious. The reason academia is held in such low regard is the total failure of Universities to recognize and deal with the problem.  


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21 posted 02-09-2005 02:29 PM       View Profile for Capricious   Email Capricious   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Capricious

Without reading the original essay, I can't comment too much on Churchill ... but from what I gather from the article, what he said was essentially in bad taste BUT his right to say it is protected under the Constitution.  Noah's Voltaire quote certainly applies; we are guaranteed free speech, not free speech when everyone (or anyone) agrees with what we're saying.

Mattis' quote is at once more serious and less incriminating.  He's talking about killing people, but he's a soldier - that's what he does.  Although on the surface it might appear horrific to admit to enjoying killing another human being, there are probably many Americans who would secretly nod their heads and think "right on, brother!" when they consider the "liberation" of a woman who has suffered cultural, emotional and physical oppression.

It matters very little whether the woman herself felt oppressed; it's all about the eye of the beholder.  Those same people would likely agree with similar if not equally severe punishments for American men and women who batter their spouse and/or children, so at least they're generally consistent.

I am in agreement with Ron on this one.  Let the censure, if any, come from the public, not the government.  Freedom of speech can be a double-edged sword; it can wound the wielder just as easily if used carelessly.
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22 posted 02-09-2005 10:09 PM       View Profile for Alicat   Email Alicat   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems  View IP for Alicat

I'm sure Churchill has an impressive resume.  Most works of fiction are rather impressive.  He claims to be a Native American, yet that is a lie.  Honorary isn't the same as Genetic.  So what if he falsified his resume and creditials, or even sold books claiming to be a Native American?  He should be treated the same way that other professors who lied on their resumes have been treated: fired and banned.

Hell, I have a chunk of Comanche in me, on my mother's side, but I don't go around claiming to be Comanche just to get Affirmative Action or other special dispensation, and I fiercely love my country.  Yet here he is, claiming to be a Native American, using that as his selling point for books, lectures, and engagements.  Then he goes off and lectures against America, against Capitalism, against everything but the far Left, Socialists, Communists...even Hitler, teaching that the Nazis did not have a program to exterminate the Jews but America did commit genocide of Native Americans by smallpox infested blankets.  What kind of history professor is that?  Answered my own question: revisionistic, aka any lie so long as it sells.
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23 posted 02-09-2005 11:15 PM       View Profile for Mistletoe Angel   Email Mistletoe Angel   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Mistletoe Angel's Home Page   View IP for Mistletoe Angel



Alicat, you bring about some valuable points here.

I would like to make one clarification, if I may. Ward Churchill is not a history professor, he's an ethnic studies professor.

His resume, in fact, is 38 pages long. Quite an impressive resume indeed.

I think the main issue that is at stake here is not so much that he lied about his heritage or being Native American, but...where next?

After all, it's been known for over a decade, and certainly not vaguely known either, that the ethnic identity of Ward Churchill has been proven fradulent to some degree, as cited in this official 1994 letter from Susan Shawn Harjo of the Morning Star Institute and a 1993 National American Indian Movement letter expelling him:
http://americandigest.org/mt-archives/DeMain_Harjoletter.php
http://www.aimovement.org/csi/Churchill/churchill_belle_11_24_93_02.jpg

But Churchill has remained an educator despite all of this. And it seems he is indeed a distinguished, respected and serious educator even when he's a non-Indian.

One of the two Native American Religious Studies teachers I had at the University of Colorado was a young non-Indian. He may not have been an Indian, but it didn't mean he was well-educated and understanding of various native cultures. I drew my own Cherokee heritage knowledge to the class and found reverence to the class.

Alicat, I agree that I am troubled by the views expressed in his essay. I lean to the left, and his opinions don't represent mine, and his books would rank among the least likely to find their way onto my wishlist, which otherwise means I won't ever buy them. But it doesn't seem that he's ever let his rhetoric as professed in "Some People Push Back" leak into his own classes he instructs, or his own teaching methods. Thus I don't see that as a justification to fire him.

Besides, his lecture yesterday at the University of Colorado drew an enthusiastic crowd of over a thousand people, so he still is of interest to a considerable number of individuals. Even David Horowitz has said firing Churchill would violate his First Amendment rights and set a bad precedent.

Sincerely,
Noah Eaton

"If we have no peace, it is because we have forgotten that we belong to each other"

Mother Teresa

Ron
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Member Rara Avis
since 05-19-99
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Michigan, US


24 posted 02-10-2005 12:19 AM       View Profile for Ron   Email Ron   Edit/Delete Message      Find Poems   Click to visit Ron's Home Page   View IP for Ron

quote:
But Churchill has remained an educator despite all of this. And it seems he is indeed a distinguished, respected and serious educator even when he's a non-Indian.

I don't think one has to be Indian to be distinguished and respected. I would hope, however, one has to be honest and honorable, which clearly would leave Churchill out of the running.

I don't think he should be fired. I think he should be ignored.
 
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