Uninvited Bill Ayers decries 'mob rule'
Bill Ayers still doesn't get it. But after all, why should he? The man who proudly crowed "Guilty as hell, free as a bird," the man proudly photographed stomping on the US flag was rewarded with a professorship in education at a respected government funded school, the University of Illinois in Chicago and received millions in private and government grants to do research in education.
His equally guilty wife now teaches law at the equally respected Northwestern University Law School. So when one of his former students, who now teaches at a suburban high school, invited him to speak to his classes but then was forced to cancel because of angry parental and taxpayer protests, Ayers lashed out, at his critics:
This cancellation provides terrible lessons for these young people about the limits of freedom and the importance of obedience, and it must be painful for many of them to watch people they admire collapse under pressure," Ayers wrote Tuesday in an e-mail. "It has all the hallmarks of suppression of speech: incitement of fear, intimidation of well-meaning folks, mob rule."
The master of mob rule who incited fear (and perhaps death) and intimidated well-meaning folks (his ex groupie fan girlfriend died building a bomb targeting soldiers) with his mob, continued his rant directly to the paper's reporter.
"There's not a shred of truth in what was said by Fox News or right-wing bloggers," he said. "They've got this caricature they're beating up, but it's not me."
Ayers said while it's true his Weather Underground group intentionally broke the law, he never hurt or killed anyone and has "met his judicial obligations." He said he condemns acts of terror and has never advocated violence.
Although he says he has regrets about some of his actions, opposing the Vietnam War isn't one of them.
"People could say they disagree or I'm nuts or despicable, but they would have to know the U.S. government ... was killing 6,000 people a week," he said. "That was also despicable."
Asked what he would have discussed with Naperville students, Ayers said he couldn't summarize his presentation in a sentence or two and pointed to his blog entries at billayers.org about democracy in education.
He said the issue isn't about what he would have said; it's about being allowed to say it.
"To me (banning the talk) runs against the spirit of what they think they're defending," he said. "If they think they're defending democracy, what better way to defend it than to allow a conversation and defeat the noxious ideas in a public square, not suppress them."
Bill Ayers is not suppressed; he's been going about his business on taxpayer money for years, allowed to say and do quite a bit. He doesn't seem to understand that parents and taxpayers are legitimately expressing their disagreement, wanting some control over what their children learn, how their money is spent. Apparently a one sided presentation in a tax payer supported school, supervised by a teacher who is a disciple of the ex-terrorist, doesn't meet their standards. As is their right, they protested. Ayers doesn't get it.
A locally owned bookstore also canceled Ayers' appearance. That is the right of the owner and/or manager but people voluntarily coming to listen to a speaker, instead of a captive school audience, is obviously a different issue; if he was invited, the invitation should have been honored.
Meanwhile Ayers' life continues pleasantly; he teaches, he writes and now he turns himself into a victim.