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October 26, 2007
Freedom of Speech for Me but not for Thee
Under the holy mantra of academic freedom of speech Iran's president Ahmadinejad was invited to speak at Columbia (we would have invited Hitler) University despite promising to eliminate the population of Israel. Academic freedom proponents were pleased at their victory.
But when Nobel Prize winner James Watson questioned the intelligence of Africans his book tour was cancelled, lectures called off, job suspended. The fallout continues.
Rockefeller University has cancelled a lecture Dr. Watson was to have given Wednesday at a ceremony honoring him and “The Double Helix,” the book he wrote about the elucidation of DNA. In addition, the 79 year old Watson retired as chancellor of the Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory on Long Island as well as from its board. It was his life's work:
“There were some members of the university community who had expressed reservations about Dr. Watson coming here to speak after the controversy over his remarks in the U.K.,” Joseph Bonner, Rockefeller’s director of communications, said today
Dr. Watson transformed it from a small facility into a world-class institution prominent in research on cancer, plant biology, neuroscience and computational biology, the board said in announcing his retirement. Bruce Stillman, who succeeded him as president, said today that he had created an “unparalleled” research environment at the laboratoryMeanwhile, over at Emory University in Atlanta academic freedom of speech was totally silenced as David Horowitz futilely attempted to talk during Islamo Fascism Awareness Week:
From the beginning of Horowitz's speech, rowdy protesters continually interrupted him and less than half an hour into the event, the crowd became so disruptive that police were called in and Horowitz had to be escorted off stage. Academic freedom of speech is imprisoned in the cell of political correctness.
The loud chants, sign-waving, and disruptive gestures continued to escalate from audience members until the atmosphere was so chaotic that even the police present were unable to subdue the crowd. Horowitz was led off stage and left the campus under tight security, and the event came to an abrupt end.