Academic freedom for me, but not for thee

Two interesting examples of "academic freedom" - at least how it's defined by leftist universities.

The chair of the Universtity of Michigan communications department wrote an article for the far left magazine In These Times, that gave several reasons why "I Hate Republicans. And at Marquette University, a conservative prof was suspended for writing on his blog that a philosophy professor was stifling free speech by preventing students from expressing unpopular opinions about gay marriage.

The U of M prof amusingly describes liberals when she tries to criticize conservatives:

“I hate Republicans,” Ms. Douglas wrote for the nonprofit magazine In These Times. “I can’t stand the thought of having to spend the next two years watching Mitch McConnell, John Boehner, Ted Cruz, Darrell Issa or any of the legions of other blowhards denying climate change, thwarting immigration reform or championing fetal ‘personhood.’ “

She then accused conservatives of having “certain psychological characteristics,” such as “[d]ogmatism, rigidity and intolerance
 of ambiguity; a need to avoid uncertainty; support for authoritarianism; a heightened sense of threat from others; and a personal need for structure.”

“According to researchers, the two core dimensions of conservative thought are resistance to change and support for inequality,” Ms. Douglas continued. “These, in turn, are core elements of social intolerance. The need for certainty, the need to manage fear of social change, lead to black-and-white thinking and an embrace of stereotypes.”

By noontime Thursday, the article appeared to have been removed from the In These Times website without explanation. After further inspection, the article appeared to have been relocated under a new URL and with a different headline: “We Can’t All Just Get Along.”

The column sparked outrage among conservative and free-speech groups on campus.

Predictably, the University trotted out the "academic freedom" defense for doing nothing:

In a statement Wednesday night, UM spokesman Rick Fitzgerald said: “The views expressed are those of the individual faculty member and not those of the University of Michigan. Faculty freedom of expression, including in the public sphere, is one of the core values of our institution.

“At the same time, the university must and will work vigilantly to ensure students can express diverse ideas and perspectives in a respectful environment and without fear of reprisal. The university values viewpoint diversity and encourages a wide range of opinions.”

We await with great anticipation the "vigilance" of authorities in making sure conservative's free speech is not trampled on.

Meanwhile, at Marquette, that school apparently has an entirely different idea of what academic freedom is:

Marquette University professor John McAdams has been suspended from teaching and banned from campus after blogging about another instructor who supposedly shut down opposing views to gay marriage in her ethics class.

In November, Mr. McAdams, who runs the Marquette Warrior blog, wrote a post critical of a philosophy instructor, Cheryl Abbate. Ms. Abbate reportedly told a student in her class that his views against pro-gay policies weren’t welcome in the classroom setting because he could offend students who are gay.

Mr. McAdams accused Ms. Abbate of stifling the student’s free speech rights that academics have a duty to protect.

On Tuesday he received a letter from Dean Richard Holz saying the Marquette Warrior is under investigation and he is suspended from all faculty activities indefinitely.

“You are to remain off campus during this time, and should you need to come to campus, you are to contact me in writing beforehand to explain the purpose of your visit, to obtain my consent and to make appropriate arrangements for that visit,” Mr. Holz says in the letter. “I am enclosing with this letter Marquette’s harassment policy, its guiding values statement, the University mission statement, and sections from the Faculty Handbook, which outline faculty rights and responsibilities; these documents will inform our review of your conduct.”

It's a clear case of "academic freedom for me, but not for thee."

Actually, the U of M is absolutely correct in idenfitying Professor Douglas' incoherent screed as falling under the rubric of academic freedom. Unfortunately for them, only 5 year olds and liberals think the policy would be applied equally to right and left. Everyone with two brain cells working knows that if a conservative prof had written a "I Hate Liberals" article, they would be canned.

Double standards are nothing new on college campuses. It's just rare to find such a clear cut example of it.

 

 

 

Two interesting examples of "academic freedom" - at least how it's defined by leftist universities.

The chair of the Universtity of Michigan communications department wrote an article for the far left magazine In These Times, that gave several reasons why "I Hate Republicans. And at Marquette University, a conservative prof was suspended for writing on his blog that a philosophy professor was stifling free speech by preventing students from expressing unpopular opinions about gay marriage.

The U of M prof amusingly describes liberals when she tries to criticize conservatives:

“I hate Republicans,” Ms. Douglas wrote for the nonprofit magazine In These Times. “I can’t stand the thought of having to spend the next two years watching Mitch McConnell, John Boehner, Ted Cruz, Darrell Issa or any of the legions of other blowhards denying climate change, thwarting immigration reform or championing fetal ‘personhood.’ “

She then accused conservatives of having “certain psychological characteristics,” such as “[d]ogmatism, rigidity and intolerance
 of ambiguity; a need to avoid uncertainty; support for authoritarianism; a heightened sense of threat from others; and a personal need for structure.”

“According to researchers, the two core dimensions of conservative thought are resistance to change and support for inequality,” Ms. Douglas continued. “These, in turn, are core elements of social intolerance. The need for certainty, the need to manage fear of social change, lead to black-and-white thinking and an embrace of stereotypes.”

By noontime Thursday, the article appeared to have been removed from the In These Times website without explanation. After further inspection, the article appeared to have been relocated under a new URL and with a different headline: “We Can’t All Just Get Along.”

The column sparked outrage among conservative and free-speech groups on campus.

Predictably, the University trotted out the "academic freedom" defense for doing nothing:

In a statement Wednesday night, UM spokesman Rick Fitzgerald said: “The views expressed are those of the individual faculty member and not those of the University of Michigan. Faculty freedom of expression, including in the public sphere, is one of the core values of our institution.

“At the same time, the university must and will work vigilantly to ensure students can express diverse ideas and perspectives in a respectful environment and without fear of reprisal. The university values viewpoint diversity and encourages a wide range of opinions.”

We await with great anticipation the "vigilance" of authorities in making sure conservative's free speech is not trampled on.

Meanwhile, at Marquette, that school apparently has an entirely different idea of what academic freedom is:

Marquette University professor John McAdams has been suspended from teaching and banned from campus after blogging about another instructor who supposedly shut down opposing views to gay marriage in her ethics class.

In November, Mr. McAdams, who runs the Marquette Warrior blog, wrote a post critical of a philosophy instructor, Cheryl Abbate. Ms. Abbate reportedly told a student in her class that his views against pro-gay policies weren’t welcome in the classroom setting because he could offend students who are gay.

Mr. McAdams accused Ms. Abbate of stifling the student’s free speech rights that academics have a duty to protect.

On Tuesday he received a letter from Dean Richard Holz saying the Marquette Warrior is under investigation and he is suspended from all faculty activities indefinitely.

“You are to remain off campus during this time, and should you need to come to campus, you are to contact me in writing beforehand to explain the purpose of your visit, to obtain my consent and to make appropriate arrangements for that visit,” Mr. Holz says in the letter. “I am enclosing with this letter Marquette’s harassment policy, its guiding values statement, the University mission statement, and sections from the Faculty Handbook, which outline faculty rights and responsibilities; these documents will inform our review of your conduct.”

It's a clear case of "academic freedom for me, but not for thee."

Actually, the U of M is absolutely correct in idenfitying Professor Douglas' incoherent screed as falling under the rubric of academic freedom. Unfortunately for them, only 5 year olds and liberals think the policy would be applied equally to right and left. Everyone with two brain cells working knows that if a conservative prof had written a "I Hate Liberals" article, they would be canned.

Double standards are nothing new on college campuses. It's just rare to find such a clear cut example of it.