Ward Churchill Controversy and the silencing of dissent - Mothering Forums

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Old 02-04-2005, 08:48 PM - Thread Starter
 
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There's a big old controversy going on over Ward Churchill, a professor at UC Denver. I've read his writing, and I've attended his speeches, and I'd say he's incredibly smart, and not afraid to say controersial things.

His post 9-11 statements are being taken all out of context, and he's in danger of losing his job as a result of making political statements that offend the powers that be.

http://www.pressaction.com/news/webl...owski02022005/

http://www.denverpost.com/Stories/0,...691000,00.html

I like Ward, although I am skeptical of some of his statements.

However, regardless of how I feel about him, what's happening here is very scary. The manis potentially going to be fired and blacklisted because of his politics, and because of things he SAID.

Does anyone remember the blacklist? Or McCarthyism?

I don't remmber it, wasn't alive then, but I know what it was and it was to say the least, not a good thing.

This is a scary development.
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Old 02-05-2005, 05:26 AM
 
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I thought he wasn't going to get fired? From what I've read, the University was supporting his right to say what he wishes (while disagreeing, strenuously, with the content of what he said in that particular essay). I do know that he stepped down (voluntarily?) as dept. chair, and that his talk at Hamliton College was cancelled after threats of violence . Has there been something new that happened that made it seem like he would lose his tenured position?

(I always find his work provocative, but I found the comments that caused this uproar--even read within the context of the entire essay of which the comments are a part--sweeping, callous, and offensive. He decries dehumanziation, then perpetrates it. :sigh)
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Old 02-05-2005, 05:59 AM - Thread Starter
 
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The UC Regents are doing a 30 day review of his work, after which they may decide to begin proceding to remove him.

I find his commetns provoking as well. I think what he's saying really needs to be said. As the people to the far left get silenced, what is considered the middle moves more and more to the right.
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Old 02-05-2005, 07:45 PM
 
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Interesting take on the media avalanche behind this story:

"It's fascinating how a trivial story like this managed to spread so far, isn't it? The right wing machine pushed, the New York Times responded, and then the rest of the press followed. Within days, the previously insignificant Ward Churchill was a household name and a virtual poster boy for lefty nihilism based on something that no one on either the left or right had cared a whit about in the three years since he wrote it. Truly an object lesson for us all."

More here:
http://www.washingtonmonthly.com/arc..._02/005595.php
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Old 02-06-2005, 12:12 AM
 
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He is the man who said Columbus Day should be abolished because of the reign of terror Christopher Columbus's discovery initiated and unleashed against Native Americans on this continent.

He also claims to be Native American himself; however, a quick investigation of his heritage proved that he was not...

One should not lie about his/her background. His motives became suspicious.

"The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie, deliberate, contrived and dishonest, but the myth, persistent, persuasive and unrealistic."
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Old 02-06-2005, 04:42 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by applejuice
He is the man who said Columbus Day should be abolished because of the reign of terror Christopher Columbus's discovery initiated and unleashed against Native Americans on this continent.
Actually, a lot of people say that, and I agree with them. But we wouldn't say "discovery", as this land has already been "discovered."

Quote:
One should not lie about his/her background.
I agree. however, what is at issue here is not wether churchill's native american heritage is genuine or not. What is at issue is the way he is being targeted due to his political expression. And the stuff RD points out is also pretty interesting, how all of this go to this point. Indeed, where was the outrage three years ago?
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Old 02-06-2005, 05:43 AM
 
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My only point is that he lied about something significant, and most people tend not to trust people who lie about things publicly like that. As a professor, i.e., an educated man, he knows better. I am sure he expects his students to back up, cite and footnote any and all information they would write in their term papers to support their theses.

Yes, I know that this land was "discovered" by Native Americans, Africans, Vikings, and possibly Egyptians and others long before Columbus set sail for a new route to the East Indies. Columbus's stumbling on the West Indies is simply cited as the more significant "discovery" in the textbooks we all read and were indoctrinated with in our public school system.

Actually, if Columbus had bothered to read anything by the ancient Greeks referencing the size of the Earth, he would have know that "something" had to be in the way between Spain and the East Indies.

So Sorry, to go off topic.

Back to your regularly scheduled thread.

"The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie, deliberate, contrived and dishonest, but the myth, persistent, persuasive and unrealistic."
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Old 02-06-2005, 06:00 AM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by applejuice
My only point is that he lied about something significant, and most people tend not to trust people who lie about things publicly like that. As a professor, i.e., an educated man, he knows better. I am sure he expects his students to back up, cite and footnote any and all information they would write in their term papers to support their theses.
I apologize, as this is totally irrelevant to the OP, but I cannot resist:

"But for those who say we haven't found the banned manufacturing devices or banned weapons, they're wrong, we found them. "
George W. Bush, President
Interview with TVP Poland
5/30/2003

"Simply stated, there is no doubt that Saddam Hussein now has weapons of mass destruction. "
Dick Cheney, Vice President
Speech to VFW National Convention
8/26/2002

"There is already a mountain of evidence that Saddam Hussein is gathering weapons for the purpose of using them. And adding additional information is like adding a foot to Mount Everest. "
Ari Fleischer, Press Secretary
Response to Question From Press
9/6/2002

"The president of the United States and the secretary of defense would not assert as plainly and bluntly as they have that Iraq has weapons of mass destruction if it was not true, and if they did not have a solid basis for saying it."
Ari Fleischer, Press Secretary
Response to Question From Press
12/4/2002


"We know for a fact that there are weapons there."
Ari Fleischer, Press Secretary
Press Briefing
1/9/2003



AHEM.
Perhaps Ward should run for office.
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Old 02-06-2005, 06:26 AM
 
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What is your point?

I am not a Republican nor am I a Bush supporter. Where did I even mention them?

Why can't anyone state an opinion that you may not totally agree with without being attacked?

What intolerance!

"The great enemy of the truth is very often not the lie, deliberate, contrived and dishonest, but the myth, persistent, persuasive and unrealistic."
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Old 02-06-2005, 06:40 AM
 
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Puhlease. Relax.

I'm not attacking you, or making assumptions about your political bent, or heck, even being intolerant (there are far more worthy things of my intolerance).

I'm just saying if that we're going to use lying publicly as a litmus test for persecution, we (and I do mean WE, as in all of us) better start applying it REAL QUICK across the board.

These are scary times, would you not agree? Regardles of whether you agree with Churchill, or think he's three sheets to the wind, I would think the public persecution he's facing (in light of history) would bother most anyone.

What-- or who-- will be next?
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Old 02-06-2005, 03:47 PM
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Wow - lots of speculation, lots of anger - and a bit of sarcasm thrown in for good measure. Please be a bit more respectful of each other when posting.

The funny thing is - is that this hasn't even really made the radar in Denver/Boulder. As someone who was part of the University system until very recently - I find THAT surprising. One article in the Denver Post and that is about it...nothing on the news at all.

As for the CU system railroading someone they don't like into leaving - no news there my friends - none at all. Happens more frequently that you would think. Ward just happens to be way more of a public figure.

I have seen Ward speak several times while in school at CU Boulder. He is an inspring, emotional speaker. He also gets pretty caught up in what he is saying. And sometimes what he says, is not pretty. Sometimes, is isn't even well thought out. He speaks rapidly, from emotion, very stream of consciousness. So it doesn't surprise me that he said something that pissed a whole lot of people off. I have heard him say similar things about other situations.

Regardless of this episode - he is an interesting person to listen to and read.

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Old 02-06-2005, 04:02 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by applejuice
He also claims to be Native American himself; however, a quick investigation of his heritage proved that he was not...
speaking of citations...????
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Old 02-06-2005, 04:06 PM
 
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Old 02-06-2005, 04:33 PM
 
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There's been drama about Ward and his card for years now; nothing new here.

It's a free speech issue, plain and simple. If he is fired from UC-B over this I hope he sues the pants off of 'em.
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