I'm responding to two letters printed Friday (from Monica Owens and Justin Davis) that criticized Vincent Adams' Tuesday column.
First, Justin, Ward Churchill's writings are clearly not pro-violence, in that he criticizes the violence perpetrated by the American government upon other peoples (Native Americans, Middle Easterners, etc.), merely pointing out that we shouldn't be surprised when those who feel we've pushed them push back. His writing is inflammatory, yes, but anti-American hate speech?? Here's an imperfect, but perhaps useful parallel: would you have called those in the Civil Rights Movement "anti-American" for decrying the racist injustices perpetrated by the U.S. government upon blacks?
Whether we agree with Churchill or not, this is what the academic community should do: point out when issues are gray, not black and white, and force us to question our assumptions, especially when it makes us uncomfortable. We shouldn't treat academia like a product, where we only pay for views we like.
Next, I don't know what led you to claim, "liberals are more tolerant of Saddam Hussein than they are of President Bush and Gov. Bill Owens," but this is ridiculous. Liberals disagree with the administration, and you say they're supporting Saddam Hussein? As vice president of CSU College Republicans, you should be ashamed of such simplistic rhetorical attacks.
Finally, I'm sure Gov. Owens is a good person. Regardless, it's legitimate for Adams and others to criticize what they see as Owens' wish to mold the academic community more to his liking. How is this "suppressing" his opinion, Monica?
I suggest we all try to minimize the outrageous accusations, so that we don't just dismiss those who disagree with us.
Biochemistry and Molecular Biology