Free Speech

Adam Goldstein's (FIRE) and My S.D. Union-Tribune Op-Ed on the Thomas Smith / USD Law Controversy

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The op-ed is here; an excerpt from the opening:

University of San Diego Law School professor Thomas Smith is facing calls for his firing. His offense: a blog post that characterized defenders of China's coronavirus response as "swallowing so much Chinese —- swaddle."

His critics are characterizing this as a racial slur, and the law school's dean appears to be agreeing. They are wrong, but worse, this reaction chills the ability to criticize governments around the world….

(As you might gather, the expurgation was the newspaper's, not ours.) There's another op-ed taking a similar view from USD Prof. Kevin Cole, and one on the other side from three San Diego lawyers.

NEXT: "Courts Should Not Permit Parties to Yada, Yada, Yada Their Way" to Sealing a Document

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  1. It is rather sad that any university uses such shallow charges to fire a tenured professor.
    As for the Dean is is a coward.

    1. Just to be clear, Prof. Smith hasn’t been fired, and I doubt he will be (though anything is possible).

      1. Prof. Volokh: Rather, it’s to persuade people who are in the middle, or who hadn’t heard much about the incident — and, by doing so, put institutional pressure on administrators, who are sensitive to public opinion, to do the right thing.

        Heck, no. Take a short cut. Persuade or mandamus the Non-Profit Office of the IRS to pull the tax exemption. Then go to the Department of Education and get it to pull all grants, subsidies, and accreditation.

        Let the school spend $million in legal fees to try to stop this attack. Do the same for the slightest utterance made by an official attacking our American Way of Life. I can tell you that even if the effort totally fails, the Dean will be working elsewhere in less than a year for generating that cost.

        That is what the lawyer race and feminism whores are doing to everyone else. It is time to reply in kind.

        1. The government privileges and subsidies are to support education. In education, all aspects of a subject are presented. If a side is not presented, that is called, indoctrination. Indoctrination is allowed, just not with taxpayer payments.

          1. What part of the Constitution or statute says that, for this context?

            “Your medical school has to teach New German Medicine, because that’s An Aspect Of Medical Theory, or you don’t get any funding” is not gonna fly, and shouldn’t.

            Schools are not required to not indoctrinate. (Hell, the everyday public schools exist to indoctrinate as much as to provide free daycare; education is job three.)

            Schools should promote freedom of thought and inquiry, absolutely. But there is no legal mandate that they do so, that I’ve ever been made aware of.

            (IRC 501(c)(3) simply says “educational” organizations are eligible.
            IRC 170(b)(1) [which is additionally used to define eligibility for above] says “an educational organization which normally maintains a regular faculty and curriculum and normally has a regularly enrolled body of pupils or students in attendance at the place where its educational activities are regularly carried on,” qualifies for charitable donations.

            Nothing in the code requires that “education” means what you desire it to mean, and realistically it has almost never meant that in English usage.

            Please state your preferences as preferences, rather than as if they are binding law or precedent (or provide citations).

            1. “Schools should promote freedom of thought and inquiry, absolutely. But there is no legal mandate that they do so, that I’ve ever been made aware of.”

              Madalyn Murray O’Hair felt otherwise — and the US Supreme Court agreed in a series of cases, notably _Abington School District v. Schempp_, 374 U.S. 203 (1963).

              Now the argument I make is that both Social Justice and Climate Change are religions and hence the teaching of them in the public schools constitutes a violation of the Establishment Clause.

              1: All religions are based on faith (and divine revelation) instead of fact — the Scopes Monkey Trial established that, with both SJ & CC depending on faith. (After all, we’ve gone from Global Cooling to Global Warming to (now) Climate Change in only ~40 years…)

              2: There is no requirement that a religion believe in a supreme being or beings — and not all religions do.

              3: Religions seek to control human behavior.

              1. There is also West VA v. Barnette — How is mandating a flag salute any different than mandating a belief in Critical Race Theory?

            2. Can we agree that in your IRC citations, the code has the exemptions and privileges promoting “education” and not “indoctrination?”

              Can we agree education is not biased, and indoctrination is biased, meaning provides one side of a subject?

              Over 100 times, the Supreme Court has ruled the meaning of a word is its dictionary definition. This is the modern use of the word, indoctrination, from a dictionary: teaching or inculcating a doctrine, principle, or ideology, especially one with a specific point of view.

              Teaching is involved, but not of all points of view. Is that satisfactory for your for IRS purposes?

              No idea what New German Medicine is. However, docs should learn about the problems with the alternative medicines solutions their patients will present them with. For example, Penn study in the New Yorker mag found 40% of supplements contained grass clippings and sand. Each should have a USP lab analysis stamp on the label. That will often come up in clinical discussions, and docs should be prepared for them. So yes, med schools should cover alternative clinical care. Their students will be better doctors.

        2. And then whine some more about how nasty “cancel culture” is.

      2. “Just to be clear, Prof. Smith hasn’t been fired…”

        Fired, no — but tell me that this hasn’t damaged his CV and his academic standing in the institution….

        Law school may be different, but elsewhere he wouldn’t be asked to be on the most prestigious governance committees, nor be asked to join the Doctoral committees of the best graduate students, nor still be next in line for the coveted faculty office soon to be vacated by the retiring Professor Jones.

        He well could wind up being assigned to teach the dreaded freshman seminar as opposed to the upper level courses in his area of specialty, and then if the institution goes with merit raises instead of a strict union step scale based on seniority, well???

        1. “Prof. Smith hasn’t been fired” YET.

          There is absolutely nothing preventing the university from waiting six months and then firing him for something else.

          This is what FIRE simply fails to understand — IHEs have so much discretionary authority that they really don’t mind losing in the short term because they know they can crucify the student (or professor) for something else six months from now.

          The more I think about it, Prof. Smith has been fired, he just isn’t off payroll yet. Prof. Mike Adams is dead — UNCW *won* that battle….

          1. You’re arguing with yourself, Ed. Did you think nobody would notice?

        2. The dreaded freshman seminar is the most important to society, and the real purpose of the exemption. The prestigious stuff is for self propelled people who do not really need any help.

      3. Hopefully not, Eugene, but the incident is hardly worthy of an academic disciplinary hearing or investigation.
        The Dean’s response is an unfortunate one that gives weight to intemperate student views

      4. Professor Volokh…enjoyed the Op-Ed.

  2. We need to categorically reject such political correctness. If we can’t debate public policy, then we no longer have a democracy. Many of the people who are pushing this would likely say that Trump was a threat to democracy. But it seems to me that they are an even bigger threat. Democracy requires open deliberation, not fear that stating an opinion on a particular hypothesis relating to public policy and foreign affairs will result in cancellation.

    It doesn’t even matter whether the hypothesis is correct. We must be able to freely debate, openly discuss, and genuinely explore every hypothesis. Only through free inquiry, will we be able to determine which among competing hypotheses likely has more merit.

    It should be noted that the WHO task force was specifically tasked with exploring the lab hypothesis. Should the people who worked on the WHO task force also be canceled? Or are they not subject to cancellation because they came to the “correct” conclusion? There is a word for when only “correct” conclusions are allowed in a society. That word is tyranny.

    What about the genocide of the Uyghurs? Are people who say that the Chinese Communist government is engaged in genocide against the Uyghurs ALSO subject to cancellation? If not, why not? What if it is pointed out that this government engages in torture and harvests the organs of political prisoners? If not, why not?

    The idea that the Chinese Communist GOVERNMENT should not be subject to criticism is political correctness on steroids. And what of the Russian government? Should Putin’s government also be free from criticism, on the theory that such criticism might result in anti-Russian bias???

    Censorship of ideas ought to be considered shameful. Maybe it is the wanna-be censors and not their targets who should be more worried about cancellation.

    1. Unless, of course, we’re using it ourselves, labeling any criticism of Israel’s government as anti-semitism.

      1. I have never labeled criticism of the Israeli government anti-semitism.

        Are you agreeing with me or disagreeing with me?

      2. Part of what makes this issue thorny is that involves a nation where the ethnic group and the nation are both referred to by the same name. If a professor had criticized what he perceived to be persons too deferential to the policies of Israel as ‘swallowing the Jewish state’s swaddle’ he’d probably be investigated under Trump’s executive order and many of the usual suspects here would be cheering.

        1. @Queen Amalthea

          I don’t think the issue is thorny. That the same word is used to refer to different things is very common in the English language. This is not some unusual case. We determine meaning based on context and intent.

          As for the “usual suspects” line, well, I don’t find that very interesting. For example, it seems that both Democratic elites and GOP elites constantly point to the hypocrisy of elites of the other sort to justify their own hypocrisy. If you haven’t noticed, the real losers from this line of reasoning/justification are not elites of any sort, but rather everyone else.

          To put it another way. Another person’s hypocrisy should not be considered a defense for behavior that would otherwise be unprincipled impacting a third party. Example: when the GOP engages in a gerrymandering, it always justifies this bad behavior with reference to similar Dem behavior. And vice-versa. But who is the ultimately loser in this, really? Hint: It is neither the GOP elites nor the Dem elites.

          When your analysis begins and ends by pointing out the hypocrisy of the “other side” this is a sign to think harder. If the bad behavior of others always justifies our own bad behavior, then everything is justified. There is always SOMEONE who has behaved even worse than we have, after all.

          1. One shouldn’t just lob hypocrisy, but hypocrisy can be used to point out that an issue is indeed tougher than one side thinks, that they don’t see it because it’s not their ox being gored. Here, referring to ‘Chinese’ is the exact same word for the ethnic group as it is to the government (in fact, the more common usage would be to qualify it with ‘government’ when speaking of that), so it invites bigotry based on confusion. If such a circumstance existed with an ox those suspects cared about they’d suddenly see how thorny this issue is (well, they should, you can lead a horse to water…).

            1. It is pretty common for there to be no qualification. People refer to the Americans, or the Russians, or the Chinese all the time when referring to the governments of those respective countries.

              By the way, if it matters, I lean more to the left than to the right. So, you are going to have to do much better than assuming I ignore certain issues impacting, for example, the Israeli government or whatever.

              Most people are intelligent. A few are not. The ones who are not are likely not going to be very responsive to qualifiers you suggest on making. (And I am not against making such qualifications, but I just wouldn’t insist on them.)

              A small number of people attack police officers when we discuss the issue of police brutality, for example. That isn’t a basis for cancelling people who wish to discuss the issue nor is it a license for PC language policing.

              1. Americans is not considered an ethnic group or a stand in for a racial group in the way that Chinese is. That’s why they had a Chinese Exclusion Act but an American Exclusion Act would make less sense/be quite a different thing.

                “The ones who are not are likely not going to be very responsive to qualifiers you suggest on making.”

                That’s apsychological. People operate on a continuum, it’s not some binary ‘will be inflammed by anything, won’t be inflammed by anything,’ it’s a line with margins, and so some things will inflame more people than other things.

                1. What kind of bigot thinks ‘Chinese is’ a racial group? According to the Chinese government, who claims —with a good deal of evidence— there are ’56 flowers’ or different ethnic groups in the PRC.

                  1. American bigots.

              2. “It is pretty common for there to be no qualification. People refer to the Americans, or the Russians, or the Chinese all the time when referring to the governments of those respective countries.”

                Indeed. When someone says ‘The Russians have always wanted a warm water port’ my first thought isn’t that Pyotyr in Krasnoyarsk just got out of bed thinking ‘Dang, I’d sure like a warm water port’.

                1. When I was told that “the Russians have such a history of being invaded that they want to have buffer states around them”, the Iron Curtain actually made sense.

                  Not saying I supported it, mind you, but that it did make sense. And that was a case where the name of the government (Soviet) and the country (Soviet Union) were distinctly different from the name of the people (Russians) — although Stalin was a Georgian and I believe that Khrushchev was a Ukrainian.

                  Jackson Brown’s “Lawyers in Love” spoke of “Russians” not “Soviets” – listen: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GaZp4fJVHmQ

                  Furthermore, the Russian/Soviet desire for a warm water port is not something that those of us who have grown up in the era of cargo aircraft such as the 747 and C5 truly don’t understand — the world changed with the Berlin Blockade when it became apparent that even *coal* could be flown in.

                  Remember that the Wright Brother’s flight could be done inside the cargo bay of a C5 — talking about warm water ports today is like talking about the advantages that Boston had over New York City in the days of sail.

        2. “Part of what makes this issue thorny is that involves a nation where the ethnic group and the nation are both referred to by the same name.”

          But the context has nothing to do with the Chinese as an ethnicity. It’s the Chinese government, not the ethnicity, that’s claiming that the virus didn’t come from the lab. There are probably plenty of ethnic Chinese who believe that it did.

          If somebody said, “Anybody who drinks a Coke from the refrigerator is swallowing a whole lot of Chinese urine.”, that would be an ethnic slur. But that’s not what’s going on here.

          1. How is that clear from the context? It could mean that Chinese persons brought the virus over to us. Why not make it less potentially inflammatory by saying the Chinese government flu (or, here’s a wacky idea, it’s accepted scientific name)?

            1. How is that clear from the context?

              Well, it helps if you’re not an idiot.

              1. This from the guy who doesn’t get what a canon is in the law.

                1. Your illiteracy does not constitute a misunderstanding on my part.

                  1. X: “Hey, let’s take A’s oft mentioned shortcut!’
                    Y: “Uh, is that really a shortcut? I bet if you looked at people taking vs. the different route you’d probably find the latter get there quicker.”
                    Z: “Hey, why are you slighting A’s on the shortcut”

                    Wuzzie: “Z is wrong, Y is totes not criticizing Y!!! He’s just arguing for a contextual use of the idea of short cut!”

                    Lol. Keep digging dude.

                    1. Y is totes not criticizing A

            2. QA,
              You do know that the virus was spread internationally by the CCP allowing international flights out of Wuhan, before they made announcements of a serious new disease, and at the same time travelers were not allowed to go to other parts of china from Hubei.

              1. Nationalist myopia like that bespeaks negligence, not intentionality. Plenty of reason to be put blame on them, but no need to make this some plan of theirs like those below seem to think.

                1. Sarcastr0….There is such a thing as willful negligence. The CCP are guilty of it.

                2. no need to make this some plan of theirs

                  Whew. It’s been a few days since I’d seen you try to peddle an obvious straw man and I was starting to think you were trying to develop some integrity.

                  1. What’s the obvious strawman Wuzzie?

                    I mean, I’m starting to think you’re using classic trolling techniques, but surely you can actually point out what the strawman is that Sarcasto is guilty of. Feel free to use ‘polysyllabic’ words, I’ll look them up.

            3. Sorry, QA, Chinese persons *DID* bring the virus over to us — or at least out of China — and the Chinese Government is responsible for that, even if it didn’t come out of their bioweapon lab.

              We have Bubonic Plague here in the United States — in the so-called “four corners” area of the Southwest and if that (a) somehow got to Phoenix and we (b) prevented anyone in Phoenix from traveling to anywhere else in the US while (c) permitting them to travel internationally *and* (d) lied about all of this to the world when they could have denied access to our infected citizens — wouldn’t we have a lot to answer for when the whole rest of the world suddenly was infected with the Bubonic Plague?

              My guess is that Asia, and particularly China, would be particularly hard hit because Europeans still have some lingering resistance to the Bubonic Plague.

              And under International Law, Americans would be pariahs. No one — absolutely no one — would be complaining about violence against us. Neither the Chinese people nor the Government of China would show us the tolerance that we are showing toward the Chinese people. People tend to forget that nondiscrimination and multiculturalism are not two-way streets.

            4. “It could mean that Chinese persons brought the virus over to us.”

              It could? Please explain how that would work.

              1. Because the word Chinese can naturally be understood to refer to…Chinese people rather than their government?

                1. Because the word Chinese can naturally be understood to refer to…Chinese people rather than their government?

                  In this context (where referring to claims made by the “Chinese” clearly means claims made by the government of China) it could naturally be understood to refer to Chinese people only to the extent that the Chinese government is run by persons who are of Chinese nationality….but not instead of that government.

                  Again, this requires having more than 2 brain cells to rub together, so I don’t expect you’ll ever get it.

                  1. “where referring to claims made by the “Chinese” clearly means claims made by the government of China”

                    If you beg the question like I reflexively do you’d agree with my question begging!

                    So, like canon you don’t know what question begging is, right.

                    Not a high level of formal education, am I guessing right?

                2. “Because the word Chinese can naturally be understood to refer to…Chinese people rather than their government?”

                  Of course it can. So what?

        3. Queen Amalthea, for a fun time, try to explain to an International student how we can wind our clocks while the wind blows — and anyone whose first language is English will have to read this at least three times to see what the issue is.

      3. James,
        Is your skin that thin that you must resort to whataboutism?
        The behavior of the CCP is criminal.

        1. Have you ever seen any substantive commentary from him…ever?

          1. No, but I have seen snark after snark.

          2. Hello Mr. Black Pot, what’s that you say about Mr. Kettle?

            1. The substantive commentary I’ve engaged in here (and there has been a lot) often includes many polysyllabic words and domain-specific terminology, so I don’t really expect you to have understood any of it.

              1. I especially like the inclusion of ‘polysyllabic’ to help your obvious handwaving.

        2. “The behavior of the CCP is criminal.”

          What the CCP is doing to the Uyghurs, alone, is criminal.
          Bill Clinton bombed Belgrade for far less…

      4. “Unless, of course, we’re using it ourselves, labeling any criticism of Israel’s government as anti-semitism.”

        A lot of that *is* antisemitism.

        1: You don’t hold Israel to a different standard than you hold China, or South Africa, or North Korea or Nicaragua — or even France — and if you do, that’s antisemitism (unless you can somehow explain a different variable…).

        2: Likewise, governmental actions need to be considered within the context of (a) why they are happening and (b) why the government is doing them. Antisemites are trying to kill Jews and Israel is trying to stop them — if you oppose the latter, how are you not antisemetic?

        3: Sometimes ugly things are necessary — look at the number of *Japanese* lives we saved by nuking Hiroshima and Nagasaki…

        Granted, the ends to not always justify the means — but I don’t see the Israeli government (which has nukes) turning Jordan (or Iran) into vast wastelands of radioactive glass.

        The threats confronting the State of Israel are so severe that truly antisemetic governments are quietly allying themselves with Israel because they realize that they face the same threats.

    2. Your argument is this harms democracy. I would argue this harms liberty, specifically academic freedom, and is the result of democracy. What we have with an interventionist democratic state is a Hobbesian state of affairs: a formalized proxy civil war of all against all. Democracy has the same impact on the human psyche as military war, only more low-grade and chronic.

      Since lives and livelihoods are on the line, political battles also induce desperation. The desperate times offer an excuse for desperate measures: for excluding political enemies from the moral community.

      Refractory individualists who fall out of line are shamed and coerced into conformity. Failing that, dissidents are ultimately shunned as heretics, rogues, outsiders. “If you’re not with us, you’re against us.”

      In order to overwhelm political enemies, voters resort to the same kind of rank tribalism as do jingoists. Instead of nations, the relevant collective “herds” are political parties, interest groups, “movements,” etc. Partisans shout down any disloyal dissent emerging from within their ranks.

      Political violence is mob violence. The larger the crowd, the more anonymous its violence. And the impunity of anonymity, like the impunity of authority, unleashes man’s capacity for evil. Under the shielding anonymity of the lynch mob and the voting booth, any atrocity is on the table.

      Partisans, like jingoists, clamor for leadership in order to be herded toward the sole objective of defeating the political enemy. They rally behind and take marching orders from their political leadership.

      All’s fair in politics and war.

      1. “All’s fair in politics and war.”

        You may justify Bull Connor and his activities — but I will not.

      2. @Michael D

        You cannot have liberty without self-government. And you can’t have self-government at scale without democracy.

        If you reject democracy, then who makes the rules? In actual human history, the answer is always some dictator or some oligarchy. Some may dream of anarchism, but anarchy is impractical because people will ultimately seek the help of a larger tribe to assist in getting revenge for harms to them and those who seek power for its own sake will band together and dominate individuals. Tribes are necessary for self-protection, since an individual cannot stand against a tribe. Given this, the best we can do is make sure that tribe is a democracy that respects individual rights, rather than a dictatorship or an oligarchy that does not.

        That something is the best we can do is, in fact, a perfectly valid defense. In our imagination, we may be rulers of the universe and fly around on the backs of dragons and live forever. In the real world, the laws of physics and biology must be contended with instead.

        In any case, the best tribe is a democracy based on the theory of self-government rather than rule over many by one or a few. But for that to work, for the ordinary people to rule over themselves in their collective capacity, they must be able to freely speak and freely deliberate. Cancel culture is anathema to this, because it turns those who decide who is canceled into the actual rulers.

    3. ” If we can’t debate public policy, then we no longer have a democracy. ”

      “The idea that the Chinese Communist GOVERNMENT should not be subject to criticism is political correctness on steroids. ”

      If you can’t debate the choices of the Chinese Communist GOVERNMENT without specifying that you’re complaining about the Chinese Communist GOVERNMENT, the problem isn’t a failing of democracy. It lies elsewhere.

  3. So wait, the Op-Ed defending the investigation is seriously taking the comment to refer to chinese people (!!!), and then more confusingly, highlights the danger of inflammatory comments about chinese people by pointing to incidents in which non-chinese asian americans have been attacked (???). What?

    I’m going to classify that under ‘not even wrong’. I’m shocked and appalled at the poor reasoning coming from people who are academically employed.

  4. ” highlights the danger of inflammatory comments about chinese people by pointing to incidents in which non-chinese asian americans have been attacked (???)”

    Noting that stupid people who are moved to stupid violence won’t be bothered to make sure they’re targeting the right people reflects reality. After 9-11, Targeting Sikhs was popular, if not particularly bright.

    1. But would the solution to prevent ignorant people from attacking Sikhs ever be to cancel anyone who dared to mention 9-11? Or forbid discussion of the possible religious motivations of the attackers?

      And let us say that these ignorant people did not attack Sikhs, but instead attacked Muslims. That would hardly have made the attacks more justifiable, would it?

      Likewise, should criticism of police officers or politicians likewise be curtailed, to eliminate the risk that some person might engage in violence?

      When the “solution” to your problem is censoring speech, you are creating a bigger problem than the one you are solving. Especially since open discussion is critical to democracy. If people cannot freely deliberate, then they can’t engage in self-government. And when your “solution” to a problem is to prevent criticism of a government that is currently committing genocide, then not only is the solution a bigger problem than the problem, but you are morally obtuse as well.

      1. Interesting…

        Here, you’re against censoring but above, you’re very first sentence is pro-censoring.

        “We need to categorically reject such political correctness.”

        So. . . only speech that David Welker deems OK is allowed.

        That’s not how it works.

        1. You are going around in a circle. If cancel culture is something you embrace, why shouldn’t cancel culture be based on the standards that I prefer? Why shouldn’t the people who are censored be the ones I want censored? You say that isn’t how things work. But I must ask. Why not? What determines whom gets to cancel whom?

          Of course, I am against cancel culture. Including of people who disagree with me. With one very narrow exception. NAMELY for people who advocate for cancel culture.

          Why? Because producing the same consequences that these people advocate and often achieve when attacking others is fair play.

          1. So cancel culture for thee but not for me.

            Again, that’s not how it works.

            1. It’s Popper’s paradox of tolerance. The cancel culture crowd has shown that they are deeply intolerant, and modern culture has been unable or unwilling to limit their pernicious reach through civil discourse alone.

              1. @Michael P:

                Indeed. Another way to put it might be, live by the sword, then die by the sword. If cancellation is how you choose to try to resolve differences in perspective, what basis do you have to complain when it is your turn to be cancelled?

                It seems to me that if we live in a world dominated by cancel culture, then the answer to the question of who gets cancelled and who does not will ultimately be determined by one factor alone. Who has the most power. That hardly seems like a good basis for resolving public policy debates. And it doesn’t seem compatible with democracy, which requires free and open deliberation and discussion of controversial ideas.

                1. Cancel culture is just people not associating/doing business with people that they think say terrible things. It’s normal and nothing new, as the Dixie Chicks, Smothers Brothers, Woody Guthrie, and on and on could tell you.

                  What’s changed is only that now some people on the left can get people canceled. And thus the hysteria from the Right.

                  1. Wrong. Cancel culture is trying to destroy people for expressing views we don’t like. It is also about using people as an example to others to prevent them from expressing similar views. Basically, it is about trying to win debates through bullying rather than debate or reason.

                    In a recent poll, 54% of respondents said that if they were concerned that if they expressed their opinions online that they would be banned or fired.

                    If this is just a matter of “free association” as you blithely insist, you can’t have an objection to making a huge database of people who have advocated for cancel culture and seeking to have them fired from their jobs or not hired in the first place, can you?

                    It is just “free association” and “free expression has consequences” right? And it isn’t a problem for democracy at all if a majority of people are afraid to express themselves, right?

                    1. You’re setting up an ahistorical strawman. There’s no difference between what happened to, say, the Dixie Chicks and what happens in the usual ‘cancel culture’ story today. Consumers boycotted them, record stores stopped selling them, radio stations stopped playing them, etc. And this kind of thing doesn’t just have a long history, it’s normal historically (and probably sociologically). If you say something that outrages some people, they are not going to want to support/associate/do business with you.

                      People have *always* been afraid to express themselves, especially at work! In the 1950’s if you were vocal about socialism you’d be branded a red and fired, if you were anti-Vietnam in the 60’s you could lose your job, being vocal about being gay and gay rights could get you canned in the 70’s, advocating drug legalization in the 80’s, etc., etc., etc. We didn’t start this fire, it was always burning since the world’s been turning. The only thing that’s happened is heretofore privileged people now feel a pressure to watch what they say.

                    2. @Queen Amalthea

                      What makes you think I approve of what happened to the Dixie Chicks???

                      You acting like it is not a problem is a problem. If people can’t discuss certain topics, do you think we will make good public policy?

                      You seem gleeful in thinking that now, finally “your side” will be able to cancel a bunch of people. But guess what. Right back at you. I will cancel you right back.

                      The war on drugs is a great example of what NOT to do. Many people did not feel free to speak their mind on that topic for quite some time. May I ask you, did that result in good policy? But you are now pushing this a DEFENSE of cancel culture???

                    3. “What makes you think I approve of what happened to the Dixie Chicks???”

                      You’re missing the point. I’m pointing out that there is nothing new about the focus of the current moral panic called ‘cancel culture.’ Nothing new at all. And, it’s probably just a basically human thing, and that’s why it’s always been this way. People are going to be upset by some people’s speech and when they get upset they are, probably naturally, not want to support/associate with that person. They are going to be watching or at a football game and see a person kneel during the National Anthem and they are going to do things like turn off the tv, leave the stadium, cancel their season tickets, write the NFL and threaten to boycott and go on Twitter and urge others to boycott.

                      It’s what goes on everywhere with everyone. We can’t expect people to be Vulcans.

                      “You seem gleeful in thinking that now, finally “your side” will be able to cancel a bunch of people. But guess what.”

                      You’ve no idea what side I am on, I’m just a person saying you’re buying into a moral panic on this issue.

                    4. @Queen Amalthea

                      There is also “nothing new” about murder. I don’t think this counts as the successful defense for murder that you think it does.

                      Your example of outcomes from people not feeling free to express themselves is the war on drugs. Which, IMO, is part of the reason that the United States has the highest per capita rate of imprisonment of any major country on earth.

                      We can’t expect people to be Vulcans, you say? Well, then maybe we should change the calculus of their self-interest. Maybe we should make people AFRAID to express the view that someone else should be canceled. That doesn’t sound like a very good outcome. Except, it sounds a lot better than 54% of people being afraid to express their opinions on subjects like the war on drugs.

                      The lesser evil is cancelling the cancellers. And please, don’t get into a “moral panic” when this plan is implemented.

                    5. “The lesser evil is cancelling the cancellers. ”

                      Again, look at how quite normal it is to go there, you’re there right now.

                      The great bulk of anti-Red cancellations in our history were based often on the idea that the Reds didn’t believe in our liberties so we had to violate theirs to save them. In the name of fighting ‘cancel culture’ you’re right where those anti-Reds were!

                      And, btw, you’re right where what you think are the current proponents of ‘cancel culture’ are. People like Antifa are motivated, to the extent they are coherent at all, by the ideas of Marxists like Marcuse whose argument was…the exact same as yours is now! ‘Reactionary forces aren’t playing by the rules of an open society so in the name of an open society we have to cancel them yada yada yada.’

                      Whoever fights monsters should see to it that in the process he does not become a monster, David.

                    6. @Queen

                      I am in danger of becoming a monster, you say?

                      Nah. That is just you experiencing a “moral panic.”

                  2. Absolutely wrong. Cancel culture is mostly activists pressuring organizations to behave in the way one wants or risk a smear campaign by tightly coordinated, politically aligned in-group members who are eager to signal their virtue. This case is a shining example. It’s not that students are threatening to skip the professor’s class — it’s that students and others are threatening to bad-mouth the university because it associates with the professor, rather than over anything the university itself said.

                    1. That’s always been the case. The people who wanted the Smothers Brothers off the air didn’t write angry letters to the Smothers Brothers, they wrote them to CBS (their employer).

                      You’ve been duped into a fake moral panic.

                    2. @Michael P:

                      The story is more complicated than that. There are people from both sides urging cancellation. But the people in charge of these organizations pick and choose who to be “pressured” by. The pressure is actually usually fake. These companies pretend to be pressured as an excuse to do exactly what many of the executives controlling them want to do anyway.

                    3. As a general matter I suspect you are wrong about this as well. Corporate America doesn’t inherently care about these issues one way or the other, they care about sales, and outraging a bunch of customers is bad for the brand and company. It’s always been that way and I can’t think of a way it will ever be different.

                      There’s a reason why the NFL bent to pressure to ‘cancel’ Kaepernick but Nike then did business with him: the demographics and values of the two customer bases were different. The NFL made the calculation doing business with him would net lose them money, Nike did the same and concluded it would net make money. This is quite natural corporate behavior.

                    4. @Queen Amalthea

                      Here you go, generalizing about corporate America. But if you understood principle-agent problems, you would realize that corporate executives are not completely aligned with maximizing profits for two reasons. 1) Because the profit does not primarily go to them, it instead goes to shareholders. 2) Because people’s ideological commitments are important to them.

                      There are different factions within every corporation. The prevailing faction may be based on profit-maximization. but it also might be based on something else. In general though, people will try to make some profit-maximizing argument as COVER for their actions.

                    5. Queen Amalthea, there is absolutely nothing fake about the threat that cancel culture poses to American society. It’s pretty telling that you have to go back 50+ years to find good examples of supposedly the same principle acting in reverse.

                      It is also ironic that you deadnamed the group currently calling themselves The Chicks. Don’t you realize that they are trying to move past their internalized racism and deep-seated bigotry by expunging the regionally-associated adjective from their name? You are harming their progress in re-personing themselves!

                    6. As you can see Michael P is only worried that people like him might be canceled, he thinks what happened to the Dixie Chicks (not 50+ years ago one might note) to be absolutely hilarious. This is what it means to be a fake movement.

                    7. “Here you go, generalizing about corporate America.”

                      Lol, didn’t you just write: “These companies pretend to be pressured as an excuse to do exactly what many of the executives controlling them want to do anyway.”

                      That’s not a generalization?

                      See how moral panics corrupt the thinking process?

                    8. @Queen

                      You are confused. I started with “The story is more complicated than that” which merely indicated that there is often more to the story.

                      You are the one that is advocating a simplified story of human behavior in the corporate context. And I am the one saying that motives are often mixed.

                      So, who is engaged in more generalization? I think my mixed motive story inherently includes more diversity of motives (and hence less generalization about motive) than your much simpler only profit matters story.

                    9. David Welker, you are wasting your time trying to reason with someone who thinks “people writing to a network 50 years ago to ask them to stop producing a show” is just like “people currently writing to a yet another university to threaten the university with bogus racism charges unless the university fires a tenured professor”.

                      That person also thinks that a band was canceled because, uh, some years they won Grammy awards rather than Academy of Country Music awards. Or maybe because they, uh, continued to release albums and conduct tours during their supposed cancellation. Or maybe because they explicitly prefer “a smaller following of really cool people who get it, who will grow with us as we grow and are fans for life, than people that have us in their five-disc changer with Reba McEntire and Toby Keith”. The rich and powerful may shun them, except for all the Grammy awards, but at least Harvey Weinstein stood up for them and the DNC had them perform at a quadrennial convention!

                      Honestly, the less-than-half-century-old example looks a lot less like cancellation and a lot more like intentional efforts for their appeal to become more selective.

                    10. You see, Michael is just not worried about the cancellation of people he wants canceled. He tries to minimize what was a very broad effort to harm the Dixie Chicks livelihood (by the same toke I can point out that lots of conservative so-called victims of cancel culture ended up just fine). This is a fake movement.

                    11. Queen Amalthea is continuing her dishonesty by pretending that the band she keeps dead-naming ever faced serious risks to their livelihoods. Yes, the Red Cross decided not to offer them a promotional partnership that they ignored twice before. Scary stuff, but somehow that is less foreboding than forcing a magazine editor to resign over decade-old tweets. It is less intimidating than the 162 (and counting) professors who have been cancelled recently over rather anodyne speech. It is nowhere near as menacing as un-admitting college freshmen based on single years-old tweets.

                    12. “That’s always been the case. The people who wanted the Smothers Brothers off the air didn’t write angry letters to the Smothers Brothers, they wrote them to CBS (their employer).”

                      Do you not see the difference between sending angry letters to CBS and toppling transmission towers with explosives — which construction workers (many of whom were WWII vets trained in demolitions) could easily have done. But that didn’t happen, nor was it even threatened — and they’d have turned in their own if someone did.

                      Now compare that to what we’ve seen from BLM and similar entities over the past few years. Who is it that is Burning, Looting, and Murdering — not the folks opposed to the Smother’s Brothers…

                      Or are you truly too obtuse to notice this?

                    13. Notice his consistent elision on the massive effort by hundreds of radio stations, record stores, and millions of fans to economically harm the Dixie Chicks. He’s just all for cancellation when he doesn’t like the target. Fake movement.

                  3. Cancel culture is just people not associating/doing business with people that they think say terrible things.

                    Not even close.

                    1. This is the mighty substantive comment!

                    2. This is the mighty substantive comment!

                      I’m informing you that, on the substance, you’re not even close to the truth….as usual.

                    3. Another clever substantive argument! Let me retort on the same level: I’m rubber and you’re glue…

                  4. “Cancel culture is just people not associating/doing business with people”
                    QA, I think that you are purposefully downplaying the malicious intent of cancel advocates. Demanding firings, public denunciations, banning from professional associations, revocations of long ago awards, etc. are actions far different than your of my not wanting to give people with contrarian views my business.

                  5. QA — the Dixie Chicks versus Ann Coulter, Woody Guthrie versus Milo Yiannopoulos — which two have had violent thugs prevent them from performing, and which two have merely been boycotted?

                    You really aren’t that stupid, are you?

                    Here’s a reminder — a Hampshire College student at a UMass event: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3Af0ltDmqiU

              2. ” The cancel culture crowd has shown that they are deeply intolerant, and modern culture has been unable or unwilling to limit their pernicious reach through civil discourse alone.”

                Maybe the people who invented it and practiced it for decades should have thought about the possibility that they (or people like them) might be on the wrong end of it someday.

            2. You keep on saying that this isn’t how it works.

              Why not? How does this work?

              In what position are people who advocate for cancel culture to object to this weapon being used against them?

              The typical proponent of cancel culture insists that free expression should have consequences. Well then, why can’t their free expression advocating in favor of cancel culture also have consequences?

              Is there something unfair about that?

          2. ” If cancel culture is something you embrace, why shouldn’t cancel culture be based on the standards that I prefer?”

            I’m going to risk offending you by pointing out that the number of times I’ve advocated cancel culture remains 0. It’s a tool invented by the right that now bothers them because it sometimes gets used against them nowadays.

        2. Ape,
          Rejecting a position is not censoring. Removing a person’s ability to present a view is censoring.
          I suggest that you pay attention to the actual meaning or words before typing a snark.

          1. “Rejecting a position is not censoring.”

            Depends on how you do the rejecting.

      2. Is it analogous? Sikhs weren’t involved in 9/11, talking about 9/11 doesn’t really suggest they were, but talking about the ‘Chinese virus’ or Chinese flu much more directly can be connected to the Chinese ethnic group/people. One is inviting confusion much more than the other.

        1. I don’t think stupid people are ever a good reason for censorship. If they were, you would with equal justification be prevented from every discussing police brutality, on the grounds that some stupid person might hurt a perfectly innocent police officer due to having such a discussion.

          What about talking about the genocide of Uyghers? Might this not also result in anti-Chinese action by some person?

          Talking about the so-called “China virus” is fine. After all, this is the country from which the virus originated. And this is the country the covered up the virus and concealed information about it early on. And this is the country that continues to withhold data on the origins of the virus.

          1. As is always in life it’s a question of context and competing values and variables. What’s silly is to think that speech will never cause harm, that’s ahistorical, asociological and apsychological. Speech is probably the defining attribute of humans, very little action is not triggered by thought and much thought is triggered by speech. The Nazis and Communists didn’t start by doing terrible acts, they started with making speeches and handing out pamphlets to convince people to do terrible acts.

            Now, there are of course much countervailing values that suggest that attempts to suppress speech are harmful to valued things in many ways. But it’s an empirical question that exists on a continuum.

            On that continuum speech that more readily and easily inflames is more dangerous and at the least social norms may more logically and ethically condemn that speech. Talking about the Chinese virus, using the term that means both the ethnic group and the government is naturally more inflammatory towards bigoted actions regarding the Chinese ethnic group than talking about 9/11 will inflame bigotry towards Sikhs. This is just an empirical question we could test: take a random sample of people, tell them ‘the Chinese made the virus’ and then get their response to questions measuring anti-Chinese (ethnic group) sentiment, then do the same by referencing 9/11 and then measure anti-Sikh sentiment. I’m fairly confident the results would be different.

            1. Speech isn’t the main cause of the harm. In fact, both the Soviet Union and Nazi Germany sought to curtail speech because doing so was necessary to enable the harm they wanted to inflict.

              I am not advocating for anyone more or less than cancelling people who advocate for cancel culture. People like you. You know, because I find their speech to be especially harmful.

              I am guessing you won’t like it when you have a harder time finding a job or getting a loan or, I don’t know, existing in society as anything more than a homeless person when and if my cancellation crusade is successful.

              Cancel culture sounds is very appealing. To the RULING CLASS.

              1. There would be no or far less harm without the speech. Human beings are motivated by ideas and ideas are expressed through speech. It’s interesting to see people who think of themselves defending and valuing speech to actually devalue by thinking it does nothing in society (or more naively thinking it can only do good things, never bad).

                “if my cancellation crusade is successful.”

                See how easy and natural it is to slip into it? You’ve been soaking in it the whole time…

                1. I just want to cancel you.

                  But only because you defend cancel culture. You are my only exception.

                  The reason is nothing personal. It is because you are a THREAT to self-government and to democracy.

                  There would be less harm without speech???

                  This makes no sense. What you don’t seem to understand is that it is always the RULING CLASS who gets to engage in censorship. That is the principle by which it is decided whose ideas are silenced in practice.

                  Here is an interesting thought. Before the Civil War, pro-slavery speech was allowed in the North. But was often anti-slavery speech was often outlawed in the South.

                  According to you, I suppose the banning of anti-slavery speech should not be a matter for concern.

                  Censors like you imagine that only the “good guys” will have the power to engage in censorship. And of course, since no one will be able to debate you if your fantasies come true, you will be the good guys by definition.

                2. Do you really not get that nearly every cancel culture attempt is based on the person thinking that the person’s speech to be cancelled is a threat to dear values? You’re making my argument for me, you’re exactly where antifa and the anti-Reds are and were.

                  Abolitionists speech was banned by law and threat of force in the South, not simply by a willingness to not associate with such speakers.

                  You keep talking about censorship and accusing me of being for it. Get off your high horse. I’m completely opposed to government censorship. But people criticizing other people’s speech and not associating with someone because of their speech is people exercising freedom. It’s you that want to force people to continue to associate with someone even if they find that person’s speech detestable. You’re the authoritarian here.

              2. “if my cancellation crusade is successful.”

                Wow, you’re even using the very terms applicable (moral panics often produce moral…crusades).

                I’m curious as to the extent of and trigger for your authoritarian crusade here David. Say I am at an NFL game and a player kneels during the national anthem. If I try to leave the game are you going to prevent me from leaving? If I cancel my season tickets are going to say I have to keep them? If I stop buying anything NFL are you going to say I have to keep buying? If I tweet critical of the NFL are you going to make me take it down? If I write the NFL and say I think the player should be disciplined are you going to make me take my letter back? If I talk to friends and urge them to write are you going to silence me? How many liberties are you willing to trample to fight your moral crusade against this fake panic?

              3. “I am not advocating for anyone more or less than cancelling people who advocate for cancel culture.”

                “when and if my cancellation crusade is successful.”

                Irony alert.

        2. I believe much of this outrage originates with the Chinese Government and their agents or proxies in the US like the government funded Confucius Institutes. It is an attempt to shield the Chinese Government from scrutiny for their reprehensible actions in Hong Kong, Tibet, Xinjiang and elsewhere.

          The Chinese Government’s press to disassociate themselves and their country from the current pandemic which originated in China is pretty obvious.

          I find it interesting that outside the original strain of the virus the newer variants are routinely referred by the place they first arose or were identified including the UK, South Africa, Brazil and California.

          1. I’m no fan of the Chinese government, both in general and how they handled this situation (from my limited knowledge). They deserve criticism. But we have a history and sociological moment where Asian-Americans are going to take the brunt of reckless talk about the evils of ‘China.’ Similarly, we have a history and a sociological moment that if lots of people went around speaking of evils inflicted on us because of the ‘Jewish nation.’ In those circumstances people who care about those groups should try to be careful in their speech, referring to say ‘The Chinese government’ or ‘The Israeli government.’

          2. You are completely correct.

            Liberals are now carrying the water of a government that is engaged in the genocide of a Muslim minority. And I remember when liberals used to be against discriminating against Muslims.

            This is the low that their twisted political correctness has brought them to.

            1. This laughable. Liberals have long been, and still are, quite critical of China. It’s not conservatives driving around with Free Tibet bumper stickers and license plates for the past few decades!

              The problem is that China is such a big market that no one really knows how to properly punish them without hurting our nation as much. Trump talked anti-China, but so does Biden, but neither is willing to do much. Ever since we normalized trade relations with them (which I remember opposing giving money to Ross Perot’s United We Stand back in the day), a move that, btw was initiated by a Republican President, backed by a majority of Republican Congresscritters and then, yes, signed by a Democrat President we have not meaningfully stood up to the horrible things China regularly does.

            2. “Liberals are now carrying the water of a government that is engaged in the genocide of a Muslim minority.”

              Trump was the one who said their leader was such a swell guy. He’s a liberal now?

          3. “I believe much of this outrage originates with the Chinese Government and their agents or proxies in the US like the government funded Confucius Institutes. It is an attempt to shield the Chinese Government from scrutiny for their reprehensible actions in Hong Kong, Tibet, Xinjiang and elsewhere.”

            Remember the good ol’ days, when Americans of Japanese descent were held to be responsible for the actions of Imperial Japan?

        3. QA,
          Why does China get a pass with respect to the historical labeling a epidemics with their place of origin?
          Perhaps the sensitivity is the criminal behavior of the CCP with respect to SARS-CoV-2.

          1. For the same reason that if a virus came out of Israel we shouldn’t call it the ‘Jewish nation flu.’ There’s historically a lot of animus against the Chinese in America, we should be careful of rhetoric which taps into that.

            1. “Why does China get a pass with respect to the historical labeling a epidemics with their place of origin?”

              Who said they do?

        4. “talking about the ‘Chinese virus’ or Chinese flu much more directly can be connected to the Chinese ethnic group/people.”

          What does any of that have to do with what Thomas Smith said?

    2. “After 9-11, Targeting Sikhs was popular, if not particularly bright.”

      After Virginia Tech, Targeting Dyslexics was popular, if not particularly bright — and that was done by people with doctorates, not drunken delinquents.

      1. What a massive equivocation on the word ‘targeting.’

        1. It is almost exactly the same equivocation as originally used.

          After 9/11, people did not think “I’m going to go find some Sikhs to harass”, which is the usual sense of “targeting” — they intended to harass Muslims (often in illegal ways), but mistook Sikhs for the intended targets.

          1. You’re missing the equivocation, after Va Tech shooting people with doctorates were not ‘targeting’ dyslexics with hate crimes such as murder, assault, vandalism, etc..

            I think the extremists are so used to talking in hyperbole (‘high tech lynching!’) that the concept of equivocation is mighty hard to keep in mind.

            1. That is not equivocation, it is just somebody using a word accurately in a way that you personally don’t like.

              I suggest you write Merriam-Webster and let them know that their usage example, “targeted her for promotion”, is equivocation. If you convince enough people to change the meaning, then you could reasonably make the equivocation argument for future uses of the word.

              1. The equivocation doesn’t come from the meaning of the word, it comes from equating one meaning or application with another.

                So, in the first sense, Sikhs after 9/11 they were targeted with assaults and murder.

                In the second sense, dyslexics after Va. Tech were alleged by Ed to be targeted with…what from people with doctorates? It sure wasn’t assault and murder.

                1. Your complaint is hilarious. You have committed far more frequent and blatant equivocation in that sense, in this very comment thread. You have lied about what I have written, and about history, in apparent efforts to gaslight readers. You have negative credibility.

                  1. So Michael just doesn’t get equivocation, OK.

                2. “targeted with…what from people with doctorates? It sure wasn’t assault and murder”

                  Oh, really?

                  See McCabe v. Lifeline Ambulance:
                  http://scholar.google.com/scholar_case?case=12211801551243763376&hl=en&as_sdt=2&as_vis=1&oi=scholarr

                  1. Do you realize how surreal it is to have to hide someone so that she doesn’t “disappear into the night”?

                    Unfortunately, Lifeline was reversed. See:
                    http://caselaw.lp.findlaw.com/scripts/getcase.pl?navby=search&case=/data2/circs/1st/951731.html

                    I can only post one url at a time — but cert was denied.

              2. No Michael, I meant “targeted” in the way she thinks I did — Dyslexics being confused the Mentally Ill the way that Sikhs were confused for Muslims — in the larger context of a hysterical attack on students with Mental Illnesses of any sort.

                The body of litigation over IHE abuses of such students is significant and rapidly growing — yet no one has yet really seemed to figure out what the BITs really are and how they are involved in all of this.

                The public will be horrified if they ever learn…

                1. You’re assuming that you know something the public doesn’t, but based on your (extensive) history of not knowing WTF you were talking about, I don’t think so.

                    1. Example of what, of people who know more than you do? Lots of them to choose from…

                    2. Hint: She wasn’t suffering from dyslexia, Ed.

            2. “You’re missing the equivocation, after Va Tech shooting people with doctorates were not ‘targeting’ dyslexics with hate crimes such as murder, assault, vandalism, etc..”

              Only because it is not a “hate crime” when done under color of law.

              If the public ever learns what these Behavioral Intervention Teams have done (and are doing), the reaction will be similar to the reaction to the Church Commissions revelation of what the CIA had been doing…

              1. In other words, if other people were as misinformed as you are, they’d be batty, too?

  5. This isn’t a serious accusation, it’s a pretense. You won’t win this by arguing the merits, they don’t care about the merits. You win by refusing it on it’s face as an illegitimate claim.

    1. DaveM: I think the way to win these arguments isn’t generally to persuade people who are solidly on the other side; even if they are arguing in perfect good faith, they have generally considered the issue and come to their decision, whatever it might be.

      Rather, it’s to persuade people who are in the middle, or who hadn’t heard much about the incident — and, by doing so, put institutional pressure on administrators, who are sensitive to public opinion, to do the right thing.

      1. One of the reasons why I put a lot of time and effort into an apologetically conservative newspaper at UMass was to make it safe for those in the middle to say things and to realize that others agreed with them.

        One could safely talk about an article in the notoriously bad-boy Minuteman without tipping one’s hand. Now that says a lot about how little free speech there was at UMass at the time (a problem which now extended to much of academia) but it served to facalitate the silent middle’s ability to safely express itself.

        1. You had to publish yourself to find a place to publish. Shocking.

  6. Stalin needed a certain number of traitors to fire up the masses and instill the right climate of fear and obedience in his subordinates. If he couldn’t find any, he simply designated them. If everyone believes there are traitors everywhere waiting to destroy the revolution, they’ll naturally believe claims that a specific individual is a traitor.

    The US folks at least have the advantage of being able to ground their accusations in something the accused said. Why should it matter what the accused really meant? What does “reality” mean anyway? The reality is that a certain number of enwmies are needed to sustain the movement and create the right climate of terror and obsequiousness, and this is every bit as essential to progress today as it was in Stalin’s time.

    It’s very clear Professor Smith didn’t think very carefully about what he was saying. He wasn’t fearful enough, he wasn’t onsequious enough. He wasn’t really fully on board with the movement. He retained enough potential for a dangerous independence of thought that could make him a hotbed for treason and reaction. Why shouldn’t that be intent enough? Why shouldn’t he be made an example of the consequences of treason? The reality is the movement needs examples. That’s the reality.

    This would have been more than enough evidence to be shot in Stalin’s day.

    Surely firing him is a small price to be paid for the florious racism-free utopia that awaits us if only we all cleanse our minds of all evil thoughts and fully embrace the Movement’s leadership.

    After all, if you want an omelette, ya gotta be willing to break some eggs.

    1. “Stalin needed a certain number of traitors to fire up the masses and instill the right climate of fear and obedience in his subordinates. If he couldn’t find any, he simply designated them. ”

      Coincidentally, so did McCarthy.

  7. I have always expressed, and will continue to do so, my opposition to the Dutch for their contribution of the disease ravaging our shady lanes. Even if that means, as suggested by the Dutch American Discrimination Society, that discriminatory actions towards the Dutch have increased in recent years.

  8. When you state it “one USD law professor is creating a hostile learning environment,” as the lawyers do in their title, you’re assuming the results of the investigation. I would hope that the individuals whose frail sensibilities found a blog post made outside of the academic environment to be “hostile” to their academic environment are publicly named so that potential employers in our various adversarial systems know to steer clear.

  9. I find the whiners and complainers create a hostile environment to academic freedom. Time to fire them all.

    1. “I find the whiners and complainers create a hostile environment to academic freedom.”

      … he whined and complained.

      1. These are not very self aware folk.

  10. San Diego State has a 9% foreign student enrollment. The out-of-state enrollment tuition is several times that of in-state students. What if they take their money and go elsewhere?
    Remember Fang Fang (Rep. Swalwell’s squeeze)? She was head of the Asian Student Union at Hayward State while an agent of the CCP.
    Taken all together, it seems pretty clear.

    1. Johannes,
      The University of San Diego is a Catholic university. It is NOT San Diego State. nor is it UC San Diego

      1. But what is its percentage of foreign students, and of that, Chinese foreign students.

        Not the law school, but the entire university as a whole.
        Some private universities have become *so* reliant on students from China (and other forms of CCP money, such as the Confucius Institutes) that they’d go under tomorrow without this money.

        1. Why, exactly, would a Chinese national want to earn a degree in US law, Ed?

          1. Exactly what part of Not the law school, but the entire university as a whole. do you not understand?

            Northeastern University also has a law school.
            Northeastern University is also something like 51% International students.

            Now while I doubt that NEU-Law is 51% International, the relevant issue is that the university as a WHOLE is dependent on this revenue stream.

            1. Hey! Look over there!

  11. That’s a lot of words for you to say “I have no fucking idea. Here, let me try to change the subject…”

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