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October 19, 2007
No freedom of speech for the politically incorrect
A few weeks ago Iran's president Ahmadinejad was invited to speak at Columbia University despite his numerous and public pronouncements vowing to pursue a contemporary genocide by eliminating Israel and denying that a deliberate genocide against Jews occurred during World War ll. Academic freedom to provide a forum for controversial ideas, freedom of speech sputtered the apologists, justifying his appearance. With this seal of approval Ahamdinejad spoke to a mostly cheering audience--they did boo him when he suggested that Iran didn't have homosexuals as in the US--and soiled precious academic freedoms.
But now another star, a Nobel Prize winner at that, didn't fare quite so well when speaking out.
and he was even suspended as Chancellor Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory in NY with which he had been associated since 1948. There have been few protests, no outcry of academic freedom of speech.
And why the flurry of activity? Haven't these academics learned from Columbia and academia?
Apparently an invidious lobby, let's call it the Decent People Lobby, has used their insidious powerful pressure tactics and
This lobby's tactics worked. Properly contrite Watson stated
Well, that might help him regain his stature, maybe even his chancellorship. And certainly the Nobel committee won't ask him to return his award even though there were/are allegations that he and his co winner partner Francis Crick used the findings of Rosalind Franklin, a British Jewish woman working in their British lab, without acknowledgment.
Ahmadinejad continues to speak hatred, and along with Hitler's ghost, will probably be invited to speak next year at Columbia University or another academic venue and at the opening of the UN's General Assembly. In this case freedom of speech proponents will easily trump that powerfully entrenched Decent People Lobby, because some ideas, according to the former, apparently are worthy of discussion.
Meanwhile, the Democrats have a lot of trouble with freedom of speech, censuring those who dare utter opinions that are at odds with holy liberal dogma. With the record breaking auction sale of a Democratic Congressional letter criticizing non existent comments, Rush Limbaugh cleverly exposed the progressive authoritarian tactics and will emerge stronger than ever; hopefully the next victim will do as well.
So Obama wants to fire someone for stating what is, alas, the truth.
This is not the fault of Mr. Tanner; he was merely reporting the truth. Should a Justice Department official be fired for that?
And what kind of person is Mr. Tanner?
Perhaps Rush Limbaugh can help John Tanner get hold of a copy of that letter and put it up for auction on eBay. I'm sure Hillary will be glad to help a former colleague so unfairly charged. Certainly a letter from a failed presidential candidate proving that charisma and good looks are no substitute for skills and experience should go for a very high price.
And Tanner could donate a percentage of profits to health care organizations if he chooses.