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August 30, 2006

A New Ward Petition

Just when you thought he had disappeared, the Ivory Toweristas have come up with a petition in support of poor Ward Churchill.

I'm sorry, that's "Courageous Professor Ward Churchill."

My bad.

The actions of the University of Colorado in this case constitute a serious threat to academic freedom.

Is that the freedom to lie? The freedom to be hired solely because you claimed (falsely, it seems) to have the desired ethnic blood?

They indicate that public controversy is dangerous and potentially lethal to the careers of those who engage it.

No, they hopefully show that lying to get your job, and being promoted way over your head or qualifications (only a Masters degree from a school whose name he even misspells on his website), will someday come around and bite you and the racist fools who hired you very publically in the ass; and that can only be a good thing.

They suggest that professors—tenured and untenured alike—serve at the pleasure of politicians and pundits.

No, they suggest that these people should be -gasp- actually qualified.

They call into question standards of scholarship and peer review at Colorado 's flagship institution.

This I actually agree with. Who the hell was on the tenure committee for Churchill? Lucy, you got some 'splaining to do!

They endanger not only those scholars working in that area where historical inquiry, critical social commentary, and political activism intersect—an area that defines the true locus of academic freedom in an open and democratic society—but also those historically disenfranchised "others" who are struggling to have their perspectives and programs represented in, and legitimized by, the academic mainstream.

Here's the whole crux, isn't it? There's no mention of that nasty little word 'truth' in that statement, is there? Just a fear-mongering cry of 'how dare you question what I'm doing!' Well, I will because I'm, you know, paying for it, and because, well you're inventing facts, etc. Just because you have a 'theory' and you want to 'study' it doesn't make it right. Academics should be seeking the truth, not "struggling" to have every "perspective legitimized".

Thus, for a variety of reasons that go well beyond the scholarship and politics of a particular individual, we urge the University of Colorado to reverse its decision to fire Professor Ward Churchill.

PS - And for [insert your deity of choice here]'s sake please do not allow them to look into my research!

UPDATE: A Swill Salute to Pirate Ballerina for their most excellent petition.

Posted by Mr. Bingley at August 30, 2006 07:56 AM


Better get over to Goldstein's place. I bet he already has a new "Ward Churchill discusses with Billy Jack" post.

Posted by: Ken S, Fifth String on the Banjo of Life at August 30, 2006 08:35 AM

Nah. Goldstein's sick and drugged. Maybe tomorrow.

Posted by: Ken S, Fifth String on the Banjo of Life at August 30, 2006 09:52 AM

While there are a number of petitions supporting everyone's favorite professor, there's only one that calls for his firing: the PirateBallerina "Fire Ward Churchill" Statement of Support.

Posted by: Jim Paine at August 30, 2006 11:48 AM

Idiots. Makes me want to return my college degree, and ask for a refund. And I have an engineering degree!!!!!

Posted by: The_Real_JeffS at August 30, 2006 11:49 AM

Jeff S - what about me? I have a Ph.D. in Chemistry, and that joker would have outranked me if I had become a junior prof there.

Posted by: John at August 30, 2006 12:08 PM

Jim, your petition is great except for one thing:

Ward Churchill is sadly not a "documented historical fraud" as he does, in fact, exist.

I love all the "independent scholars" that sign on to the other petitions; I wish I'd thought of that tag.

Posted by: Mr. Bingley at August 30, 2006 12:24 PM

That sucks teh big one, John. Maybe you could have put serum of ipecac in his tea or something?

Posted by: The_Real_JeffS at August 30, 2006 12:31 PM

Wouldn't the Volokh Conspirators all be up for signing that? Wouldn't Glenn...with an Instalanche for good (recruiting) measure?

Posted by: Dave J at August 30, 2006 07:51 PM