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I am really alarmed about this.  That is why I am spreading the word here.  I think everyone here who lives in Ohio, has family or friends in Ohio, or has a child or relative studying at an Ohio university needs to know about this proposed law that has been introduced in the Ohio senate and that is about to be debated by the Ohio State University senate.

The bill is SB 24:

It is a law that seems innocuous enough in its title: The "Academic Bill of Rights for Higher Education."  And yet when you begin reading the provisions of the bill, you see that one of its express intentions is to muzzle freedom of inquiry on the part of "liberal" professors in the higher education institutions of Ohio.  McCarthyism redux.  (more...)

Proof of this is found in a quote from one of the bill's senate sponsors, Senator Larry Mumper, a Republican.  He is quoted in the Columbus Dispatch on 1/27/05 as saying that SB 24 is intended to shield the youth of Ohio from "liberal" professors, as "80% of them [i.e., professors or academics at Ohio universities] are Democrats, liberals or socialists or card-carrying communists" and so this bill is needed to protect "young minds that haven't had a chance to form their own opinions."

Protect young minds from what, exactly?  Here are some excerpts from this bill, so that you might get a sense of what these rethuglican proponents are trying to stifle, in the name of protecting Ohio's youth:

"C) Faculty and instructors shall not infringe the academic freedom and quality of education of their students by persistently introducing controversial matter into the classroom or coursework that has no relation to their subject of study and that serves no legitimate pedagogical purpose."
----not introducing controversial matter?  Has no relation to the subject of study?  Serves no legitimate pedagogical purpose?  Who is to define these things?  Who says what is or is not legitimate?  The Ohio senate, in all its infinite wisdom?  Or the professors and teachers and researchers who are responsible for wrestling with controversial matter, so as to make discoveries and clarify problems?
     [As a side note, and off the record for a moment, I just want to underscore my own personal alarm here at the "serves no legitimate pedagogical purpose" language of this section.  I teach a gender studies course in my department (a language department) at the graduate level; it is a course that is always well-enrolled and I get great reviews and students tell me they learn a lot and love the new ideas they get from the course.  And yet, a couple of years ago, a former Chair of my department, who was very conservative and didn't like this course, put a statement in my file at my annual review stating that he thought this course "did not support the academic mission of the department".  Students then wrote letters to the chair, explaining how the course had helped them in their research and their work in thinking about their areas of study.  He refused to put their letters in my file.  So when I see language like this about to be written into law, I get very, very upset.  This sort of language is material for someone to ruin someone else's career solely on the basis of their personal political caprices.]
    And here's another spot of language that is extremely worrisome, in this section:  "the academic freedom of their students."  WTF?  The academic freedom of their students to....what, exactly?  Not hear an idea they disagree with?  Not have a professor say something they don't like?  Not have to read a book whose ideas they don't support?  What the hell does this language seem to be legitimating?

"(F) Faculty and instructors shall be free to pursue and discuss their own findings and perspectives in presenting their views, but they shall make their students aware of serious scholarly viewpoints other than their own through classroom discussion or dissemination of written materials, and they shall encourage intellectual honesty, civil debate, and the critical analysis of ideas in the pursuit of knowledge and truth."
-----Okay people, this is very dangerous when you begin to think about it.  "They shall make their students aware of serious scholarly viewpoints other than their own."  Does this mean that a professor teaching a course on Darwin is to be required to make students aware of creationism and bring it in for "serious" discussion at the college level?  Don't laugh, this is entirely a possible implication of this language in this section.

There are some good provisions in this bill, but some VERY, VERY BAD provisions that are clearly intended to make it possible for conservatives legally to harrass and discriminate against viewpoints they don't agree with in the academy.  

We need to speak out against the bad provisions and explain politely and clearly why they are bad, so that those debating and considering this bill might understand.

As the bill is about to be debated by the university senate at the state's flagship institution of higher learning, it might be a good place to start to contact key members of the university senate, the secretary of the Board of Trustees of the university, and the university President, to help them understand exactly why this is a very bad bill with some bad provisions in it.

I want to stress that all letters should be polite and non-confrontational and should present oppositional points of view in the best possible light in terms of not being offensive or insulting to the people one is writing to.  The point is to give the people one is writing to, ammunition to bolster whatever opposition they might make to this senate bill.  And to educate them, with compassion, about what is wrong with the bill.

Here are key contact names on the Faculty Senate:

Susan L. Huntington, Dean of the Graduate School

Jacqueline J. Royster, Dean of Humanities Administration

John W. Roberts, Dean of the College of Humanities

Barbara Snyder, Executive Vice President and Provost

Nancy H. Rogers, Dean of the School of Law

Karen A. Bell, Dean of the College of the Arts

David W. Andrews, Dean of the College of Human Ecology

Joseph A. Alutto, Dean of the College of Business

President of the University, Karen A. Holbrook.  (Please note that Holbrook about half a year ago approved granting same-sex [and opposite-sex] domestic partners health benefits at OSU. She truly wants to favor progressive policies that will help the university and make it a better place.)

To write to the OSU senate by snail mail, send a letter to:
Office of the University Senate
Ohio State University
119 Independence Hall
1923 Neil Avenue
Columbus, OH  43210

To send snail mail to the board of trustees, write to:
David O. Frantz, Secretary
Board of Trustees
Ohio State University
210 Bricker Hall
190 N. Oval Mall
Columbus, OH 43210

Please spread the word about this to your friends and family members who live in Ohio, and urge them to write to the state senate sponsors who have entered this bill into consideration in the senate.

Here is the contact information for the four conservative republican sponsoring senators of this senate bill 24:

Gary Cates


snailmail: Senator Gary Cates, Rm #042, Ground Floor, Senate Building, Columbus, OH 43215

phone: 614-466-8072

Jim Jordan


snailmail: Senator Jim Jordan, Rm #128, First Floor, Senate Building, Columbus, OH 43215

phone: 614-466-7584

Larry Mumper


snailmail: Senator Larry Mumper, Rm #222, Second Floor, Senate Building, Columbus, OH 43215

Lynn Wachtmann [note: it's a he]


snailmail: Senator Lynn Wachtmann, Rm #040, Ground Floor, Senate Building, Columbus, OH 43215

phone: 614-466-8150

Originally posted to concernedamerican on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 05:54 AM PST.

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Comment Preferences

  •  Please write an email or letter (4.00)
    and let people know why this bill needs to be stopped.
    •  this is personal but (4.00)
      I want to stress to anyone and everyone who reads this that Karen Holbroke and the rest of the administrators at OSU should be treated with the utmost respect in any correspondence, as they are DEFINITELY our allies in this and do not need any lecturing whatsoever.

      I would also like to say personally that David O. Frantz is the single best professor I ever had, and can handle this situation perfectly well on his own. I'm sure he has more than enough to do without a flood of friendly Kossacks in his inbox, and although you are free to do what you want with your own diary I would respectfully ask that you do him a favor and remove him from the list above, if only to spare him the hassle of his address being spam-harvested from yet another public page.

      Thanks, Lud

      take deep breaths...

      by Lud on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 07:56:39 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

      •  sorry, clarification (none)
        by all means, write letters. I was referring to his email. We all know that email is not just for registering an opinion with someone but is used heavily in daily life and work, especially in academia. I am careful to send emails only when I am either totally unconcerned with flooding the person's inbox (i.e. when they are my political enemy) or when it is urgent and needs to be read immediately in order to influence the course of events. Neither holds in this case I think.


        take deep breaths...

        by Lud on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 07:58:48 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  This is (3.80)
    really scary.  The right is now attacking acedemia.

    Has it occurred to the wingnuts that the reason so many professors are Democrat is the relationship between intelligence, research and liberal thinking?

    Stop looking out, start looking in. Be your own best friend and say this is mine -- Van Halen

    by bonddad on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 06:01:51 AM PST

    •  Now? (4.00)
      The right has been attacking academia for quite some time.  They're just becoming more bold in some of their attempts to control the content of what is being taught.  They are, quite simply, enemies of freedom--academic, social, religious, all of it.

      Yes, I'm a proud Massachusetts Liberal, and fuck you for saying that's a bad thing.

      by MAJeff on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 07:15:03 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Right has been attacking academia (4.00)
      But I think the construction of this bill could be made to backfire--or at least could embarrass the sponsors.

      80% of professors are liberal only if you're looking at just the humanities and soft social sciences. If you add in econ and engineering, it's about even. And that's just counting mainstream secular universities. Add in the wingnut U's, and it's no contest.

      So what if some of the discussion on this were to be, "great! I'm really tired of the orthodoxy on free trade that exists in acadmic economics departments, even while the World Bank is publicly backing off of claims for what free trade can do for developing economies. So with this bill, we can force econ professors to present the serious academic theories about how free trade actually doesn't do what it's promised to do, right?"

      Or even, "great, I had to listen to uncritical reading of the bible in my religion class last semester. There was no discussion of the rape and violence that appeared in the bible. And no discussion of the ways in which the bible is just a hodgepodge of documents very typical for the time, not a divinely-inspired document. With this bill, we'll be able to include those viewpoints, right??"

      •  One note (none)
        I'm not trying to be critical of you, but the "soft social science" label is something I've been hearing a lot on wingnut radio lately.

        "If cows and horses had hands, they would depict their gods as cows and horses." Xenophanes

        by upstate NY on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 08:03:30 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Even a stopped clock is right twice a day. (none)
          If a "science" has no physical evidence, cannot be subjected to double-blind studies, and has zero possibility of reproducible results, it's pretty soft.

          One of my classmates used to call Poli Sci and Econ "the tautological sciences" -- once you boil down the theories, it's all about circular reasoning. Every dollar that leaves my pocket goes into someone else's. Every voter who doesn't pick me picks my opponent. Uh huh. These "sciences" may provide useful ways to analyze and describe the past, but their predictions don't even come close to what a chemist would call "science."

          It's not science, it's art.

          •  Wrong (4.00)
            There's a lot of societal knowledge to be found. And it can be found even though you're not making experiments in a laboratory. For example: the relation between socio-economic background and educational achievments.  

            And the idea of a unifying method for all natural sciences which yield absolute knowledge is dead. Have you read anything in philosophy of science? I recommend "What is this thing called science" by prof Chalmers.

            Generally social science supports liberal view points. Conservatism needs myths like meritocracy, racism, authoritarian-education-is-good-for-society and "big government". That's why they hate social science. They hate biology too. And probably astro-physics.

            John Hopkins University is science in a conservatism-style.

            don't go after Bush, go after the Republicans.

            by Joe B on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 09:29:18 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Johns Hopkins is where insulin was discovered. (none)
              And good old Hopkins was an abolitionist.  Made himself poor by freeing his slaves, in fact.

              Here, however, is an undergraduate perspective on its politics, time-weathered.

              John Hopkins University is science in a conservatism-style.

              Johns Hopkins University is in a class by itself, politically.  Its School of Advanced International Studies is located in D.C. and as governmentally on the inside as academia can get.  Its official newspaper gets large regular ads from the NSA, just down the road to Annapolis, and the Social Security Administration, past the city's western border.  Milton S. Eisenhower was the president of JHU when his brother was president of the country, and he is remembered very, very well.

              At the same time, most students are nonpolitical.  The college is career-oriented.  Perhaps that means conservative to many of us.  Someone remembered well at Johns Hopkins University is its only graduate to become President, and a graduate graduate, Woodrow Wilson.  Who was he?  The man who became governor of NJ from being president of Princeton.  The Southerner who broke the Yankee lock on the White House saying that while racism was terrible, forbidding it would cause another civil war.  The President who won a second term on the slogan "He Kept Us Out of War", then went to war, losing a million Americans.  The President who encouraged the separate peace of Germany with the new Soviet regime, and then invaded Russia.  (Did you know America invaded Russia in 1918?  Joe, you probably did.  But if you really went to Johns Hopkins, you wouldn't say it except in your paper, if you valued - not your grade but your reputation as a person who makes any sense intellectually, even though everyone in the room probably knows it, too.)

              Woodrow Wilson also supported the principle of self-determination that made Eastern Europe independent and advocated the League of Nations until he nearly died of it.

              Johns Hopkins students are bright and know it.  They're internationalist.  They're realist in the extreme.  Most quirky of all, though, to paraphrase Wilson (and to generalize), they feel they ought to remake the world in the spitting image of the world they know. That doesn't mean they are conservative in general, it just means that their faith in science includes faith in the scientific consensus, arrived at by the best and the brightest and immovable so long as their lungs draw breath.  (I think that paraphrases McGeorge Bundy.  Any questions?)

              "I looked and saw and wondered why/my city was gone."  Chrissie Hynde

              •  Paul Wolfowitz (none)
                was, arguably, the best known Dean of the Paul Nitze SAIS (School of Advanced International Studies) at Johns Hopkins until he became undersecretary of the DoD under Rumsfeld in the Bush administration.  During his tenure at Johns Hopkins, he and other neocons hatched their plans for the world, which can be seen at Project for a New American Century, better known as PNAC
          •  Seems like pretty simplistic thinking (none)
            to me. Lots of social sciences use empirical evidence and conduct research. It's no different than the so-called hard sciences who all base their fundamental precepts on exclusions which would gum up the work. "Circular reasoning?" I mean, read Heisenberg.

            "If cows and horses had hands, they would depict their gods as cows and horses." Xenophanes

            by upstate NY on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 10:29:40 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Soft science vs. tautologies (none)
            If a "science" has no physical evidence, cannot be subjected to double-blind studies, and has zero possibility of reproducible results, it's pretty soft.

            Yeah, but if you can still subject it to statistical analysis and obtain general patterns that tend to reproduce themselves in other situations -- that is, if there's an objective basis for it -- then it's not all just circular reasoning. Somewhere along the way, the rubber hits the road, and your theory gets tested.

            The difference between statistical physics in chemestry and statistical psychology in sociology is a matter of scale -- hundreds of billions of trillions as opposed to thousands or millions. More variation in activity in the latter case, but that's to be expected because the numbers are far smaller.

            •  Unless you're an economist . . . (none)
              . . . and you can claim that everything you do is "just a model," and therefore can't be expected to conform to reality.

              Having come from one of the soft disciplines myself, Anthropology, I kinda agree that most of what PoliSci and Econ put out is pretty vapid.  ESPECIALLY when they use rational choice models, which Econ seems always to do (thus the "it's only a model" claim) and which is increasingly common in PoliSci.

              The hard sciences really are different.  They have math.  You can talk about things in math, and the meaning of the equations always stay the same.  The equation might be wrong, or it might be right, but it means the same thing to everybody.  Furthermore, some things can be proven unequivocally wrong.  That really helps.  

              The soft sciences can't communicate much about gender or kinship or discrimination in math, andh thus have to use words to describe it.  The meanings of words and sentences shift from person to person, reader to reader.  Therefore no two people ever read the same article or book, and therefore any discipline which has to communicate through words has to wade through mud to do much of anything because it's so gosh darn hard to agree on terms and meanings.  Furthermore, you can't really prove anything definitively wrong, because the basis for which you judge something to be wrong or right is just as subjective as the words you used to describe the thing under discussion to begin with.

              And to the poster who mentioned Heisenberg . . . really.  Until you can do the math necessary to understand what exactly Heisenberg meant with the uncertainty principle (and given that it deals with quantum phenomenon, you simply CANNOT understand any way other than mathematically - it is too inhuman), don't go extrapolating him to the whole world.  It just looks bad.

              `Under my command, every mission is a suicide mission.`

              by Zwackus on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 04:45:28 PM PST

              [ Parent ]

          •  Art (none)
            "Art: That which is done according to known principles (e.g., the art of medicine, the art of politics)."  

            "I don't bear a grudge. I have no surviving enemies."

            by usagi on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 11:08:57 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

          •  Your classmate (none)
            obviously knew nothing about political science or economics.

            George W. Bush makes Reagan look smart, Nixon look honest, and his dad look coherent.

            by Dave the pro on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 11:44:50 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

    •  Protecting Young MInds (4.00)
      If the originator of this bill wants to protect young minds that haven't had a chance to form opinions of their own, I presume he certainly would be in favor of forbidding the teaching of any religion to children or even young adults who have not yet reached age 21.  

      And if alternative opinions are to be required in every classroom, then accounting, finance, marketing, and other business courses would have to teach Marxism as well.

      •  He wants to indoctrinate (none)
        young minds, pure and simple.  And modern conservative theory is too incoherent to appeal to students on its own merits.  Your idea is a good one though: use the discussion that this legislation has engendered to truly widen the scope of information taught to students.
    •  bleah (none)
      Sometimes it seems like there should be some sort of censure law for a legislator even attempting to bring up a law that grossly threatens the Constitution, similar to how plaintiffs or lawyers can have action taken against them for bring up ultra-stupid lawsuits.  But then that would probably be against free speech also.  It just goes to show how sick democracy is that we would even have to worry about crap like this.  We should be at the point where someone introduces a bill like this, everyone just laughs in their face, and it gets smacked down with no comment.
  •  Why bother to (none)
    teach at all if these are the rules. Without the ability to depend on the shape each of my classes takes, and then appropriately respond, they might as well have a tape recorder in the front of the room. We know this is nothing but a power struggle. They know the university is perhaps the last bastion of liberal thought (hell, it is called Liberal Arts) left in our critically deranged society. As far as I'm concerned they can kiss my liberal ass.

    "To plunder, to slaughter, to steal, these things they misname empire, and where they make a wasteland, they call it peace." Tacitus, c. 55-120 A.D.

    by agincour on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 06:05:09 AM PST

  •  Get the word out in Ohio... (none)
    are you active with any groups there?
    •  A new faculty group is forming (4.00)
      in response to stuff like this.  Faculty from not only Ohio State but other universities will be meeting throughout the coming month to discuss ways to work with existing progressive, democratic and reality-based organizations currently on the ground in Ohio.
    •  But I should say that I didn't hear about (none)
      this until yesterday, when a concerned colleague in another department forwarded information about it to a bunch of colleagues...and he had only found out about it by reading the Mumper interview in the newspaper that day.

      The point is, no-one in academe knew about this until it was well introduced in the senate, and until it was passed to the university for debate and consideration.

      We are being blindsided by the recently-upped level of aggressiveness of the conservatives in this state.

      •  So, they are trying to destroy nationally (none)
        recognized institutions such as OSU, Miami of Ohio, Ohio U. Yeah, that will surely benefit the state of ohio. Universities with their reputations flushed into the toilet. That's got to be great for business and the state's tax base, but hey, the state has been leaking jobs anyway under theh GOP gov. so who cares if no one in Ohio has a job!

        "If cows and horses had hands, they would depict their gods as cows and horses." Xenophanes

        by upstate NY on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 07:55:24 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  _TRYING_ to destroy _Ohio State??_ (none)
          They were trying in 1980. Time to update our calendars folks!

          We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy....--ML King, "Beyond Vietnam"

          by Gooserock on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 08:03:26 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

          •  Not everyone lives in Ohio or knows OSU (none)

            "If cows and horses had hands, they would depict their gods as cows and horses." Xenophanes

            by upstate NY on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 08:05:12 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

            •  Sorry. (none)
              I mostly knew the institution from the support staff side. I do know that there have been steady complaints from faculty about pay relative to peer institutions, but I don't know much about other issues of faculty such as academic or research conditions.

              C. 20 years ago the state support staff jobs at the university were detached from the rest of the state pay scale. So the same job at university could give 10-20% lower pay than the same job at other state agencies.

              The University began corporatizing quite a long time ago. In fact for a few years till recently the official title of the web home page was "Corporate Web Page."

              For support staff, longevity pay raises were tapered off to near zero as the number of pay grades were greatly reduced so that it became increasingly difficult either to promote oneself into higher earnings. Raises when granted by admin would be in the range of 1% when admin were getting 20-30% and more at the time I left.

              Research began to decouple from the university to allow outsourcing, which reduces the fraction of grant money available to underwrite university infrastructure, and also increasingly privatizes research and its results.

              Although it's a land-grant university and required to accept all OH high school grads, OSU has for some time been looking for a higher class of clientele. By the late 90's I think there was only one quarter of the admissions year that was truly wide open enrollment.

              A useful glimpse of the university's view of its role in society is the incident when local Republican billionaire Les Wexner brought former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher to campus for a private meeting with a couple dozen business school grad students. This was in the 90's, sometime around the Gingrich takeover. They didn't want to "bother" the nation's largest public institution of higher learning with the "hassle" of a visit from a world leader. A contestant on a Jeopardy game mentioned being one of those students a few years ago.

              We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy....--ML King, "Beyond Vietnam"

              by Gooserock on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 09:30:02 AM PST

              [ Parent ]

              •  HIghly qualified students (none)
                should avoid OSU and other Ohio state universities (an exception is Miami) and opt for one of Ohio's better liberal arts colleges if they want a first rate education.  Oberlin, Kenyon, Wooster, John Carroll, Ohio Wesleyan, and Wittenberg are examples of schools in Ohio that place their emphasis on nurturing independent minds.  One can never completely trust govenment established schools to do that job.
        •  Yeah, (none)
          As a professor I would be much more reluctant to accept a position at an Ohio school if such a bill were passed.

          George W. Bush makes Reagan look smart, Nixon look honest, and his dad look coherent.

          by Dave the pro on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 11:54:27 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

      •  I'm a freshman (none)
        at Ohio State right now, and the only thing that is influencing me to be liberal are the neocons currently in power.
    •  aeou (none)
      It's private, but try Oberlin.  I'm an alum and will spread the word with my (now limited) connections there.  I will also contact some friends in Cleveland, both lawyers, one teaches at Case Western.
  •  It's obvious (4.00)
    That F is codeword for creationism. Now, if there's any debate on that crap, an interesting strategy may be to tell ask them if it really means creationism is OK, and if so, ask them if revisionist history of the Civil War would also be ok, and if negationism of the Holocaust is also ok.

    I've thought for a very long time that if academics and scientists are subject to constant wingnut attacks, of a widespread loathing by the ignorant masses as well as by anti-intellectual Bush and his lackeys, if their budget are cut due to stupid and imaginary budgetary constraints, then they should seriously consider to get together, pick some small nation, and offer to all go there to establish an enlightened society, taking with them as much books and lab tools as they can. Since BushCo and apparently 51% of morons have declared war on the mind and intelligence, it may be time to let them rot in their stinky ignorance.

    Americans placed the stamp of approval on the least justifiable military action since Hitler invaded Poland. Paul C. Roberts

    by Clueless Joe on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 06:35:23 AM PST

    •  Not Just Creationism (4.00)

      It's an attempt to stifle academic criticism of Conservative policies in general. After all, if you have to give equal time to "serious scholarly work" that you disagree with, I'm willing to bet they can nail you under this law for criticizing said work in any way. This is a blatant attempt to force university professors to indoctrinate their students in "conservative thinking" and prevent them from criticizing whackjob conservative think tanks (Focus on the Family), philosophers (eg, Objectivists), policies (the war against Iraq), and general wingnut theories (Creationism, the "Christian Nation" crap).

      Its like the media listened to Weird Al's "Dare to be Stupid" and said "Yes! This is how the world should be!"

      by RHunter on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 08:32:51 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  Problem is... the opposite (none)
      They want us to leave or rather...

      They are determined to relocate us to another country and then "their" country will become the perfect union.  Anyone left who disagrees will be annihilated.

      Politics is not about ...predictions. Politics is what we create by what we do, what we hope for, and what we dare to imagine. Paul Wellstone

      by bronte17 on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 09:47:09 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

  •  I wrote an email slamming (none)
    This Week With George last Sunday about their academic bashing orgy Sunday. I just got a call that they want to put the email on the air.

    I'm going to let them do it, but I'm almost certainmy email was snide.

    "If cows and horses had hands, they would depict their gods as cows and horses." Xenophanes

    by upstate NY on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 06:53:15 AM PST

  •  Typical friggin GOP (none)
    The party's political philosophies are incoherent and senseless.  Hence, "conservative" theory is a hard sell amongst those whose current occupation is studying and analyzing.  So because the GOP is unable to gain traction on campuses based on the intellectual value of its theories, our modern "small government" GOP resorts to the legislature to strong arm folks into its cult.  Classic GOP.  And this state legislation is actually a derivative of an attempt to introduce it on a federal level a while back.  Then, it was disguised as legislation to "moderate" what was perceived as strong anti-Israel sentiments on university faculties and campuses.  

    What's hilarious is that the GOP fails to realize that college campuses are the absolute wrong place to bash progressivism.  Students are incredibly politically active; it would be interesting to see the GOP attempt to implement this sick plan and actually end up radicalizing students further.

    •  Indicative of just how big the disconnect (4.00)
      between the state senate-- who represent the good ole boys in rural Ohio-- and the views of Ohio's youth, at least at the OSU Columbus campus, is the fact that the student government a couple of years ago voted nearly unanimously on a motion to counter the (then pending) issue 1, and to affirm support for gay rights.

      I think the first effect it may have is to radicalize the faculty.  Ironic, no?

      •  Highly ironic (none)
        And with a radicalized faculty, any attempts by college adminstrators at muzzling progressivism is going to be greeted by student activism.  The GOP is just a lost party.  It is incoherent, unprincipled, and has to resort to cultish tactics to try to retain power.
      •  I am reminded... (4.00)
        ...that Berkeley, CA, in the 50s, was described as "a quiet Republican town".

        They should all be judged soaking wet.

        by Kitsap River on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 07:22:45 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Students For Academic Freedom ... slime (4.00)
    This hit Indiana a few months ago.  The group is led by whack-job David Horowitz of Front Page Magazine fame.  

    I wrote a nice little letter to the local paper - said something smarmy like "they wont be happy until Jerry Falwell teaches history of Islam and Rush Limbaugh heads a class on ethics in journalism".

    GET THE WORD OUT that it's NOT about freedom or objectivity.  

    I know WE know this, but we can not let them have the upper hand in the framing of yet another vital issue.  

    Id say this little stink-up also had to do with another of Mr. Horovitzs handywork, Little Nazis Against Liberalism

    •  Horowitz defeated in Colorado (none)
      Sorry to see Horowitz has taken his crusade to Ohio.  He was operating here in Colorado the past couple of years, with some really ugly stories of GOP students threatening their professors (especially at Metro State College in downtown Denver).

      The good news is that not only did his people fail to get this law passed, their efforts alienated people so much that they really ended up helping the Democrats sweep into control of both houses of the state Legislature.

    •  Ja, die Horowitz Jugend (none)
      Look at what the little fascists put up all over campus:

      Just for the record Indiana law, IC 35-41-1-26.5 define terrorism as:

      IC 35-41-1-26.5
      "Terrorism" defined
           Sec. 26.5. "Terrorism" means the unlawful use of force or violence or the unlawful threat of force or violence to intimidate or coerce a government or all or part of the civilian population.
      As added by P.L.156-2001, SEC.9.

      Think a wanted poster like the above qualifies as an "unlawful threat of force or violence to intimidate or coerce a government or all or part of the civilian population."


  •  Academic Freedom in Ohio (none)
    The problem with this law is that it sounds so reasonable on the surface, but when you get under the surface, the danger is quite real.

    No reason though to focus responses to the Faculty Senate at Ohio State.

    Letters will I think be more effective if sent to the state legislature.

    As a professor at an Ohio Institution I plan to call this to my colleague's attention and urge them to write to the State House and Senate.

    •  You should write to both the legislative (none)
      sponsors (info. at the bottom of the diary-- names and contact info) and to your own institution's senate, president, provost-- and of course your colleagues.  This bill would apply to all institutions of higher learning in Ohio, both public and private.

      Thanks for spreading the word.

  •  Addenda (none)
    Oopps. Sorry. Now I see why you want letters sent to the Faculty Senate. The Faculty Senate is debating this bill. I might see about getting my own Faculty Senate to take it up.

    Do you really think your Faculty Senate would endorse this? I can see good reasons why even conservative faculty would oppose this if they thought it through.

  •  Is this law supposed to apply to state (none)
    institutions only or to all institutions in Ohio?
    •  It seems to apply to all institutions of higher ed (none)

      Sec. 3345.80.  The board of trustees of each state institution of higher education, as defined in section 3345.011 of the Revised Code, and the board of trustees or other governing authority of each private institution of higher education that holds a certificate of authorization issued under section 1713.02 of the Revised Code shall adopt a policy recognizing that the students, faculty, and instructors of the institution have the following rights:

      Case Western Reserve University, for example, is is chartered as an educational institution under the laws of the State of Ohio and holds a Certificate of Authorization from the Ohio Board of Regents.

      •  I went to B-W (none)
        and took a Religion course, does this mean that teh anti-semitic stuff should ahve also been taught by the Rabi as if it were scholarly:

        "(B) Students shall be graded solely on the basis of their reasoned answers and appropriate knowledge of the subjects and disciplines they study and shall not be discriminated against on the basis of their political, ideological, or religious beliefs. Faculty and instructors shall not use their courses or their positions for the purpose of political, ideological, religious, or antireligious indoctrination."

        And does that mean as Wiccan, I could attend Christian schools like Malone and not have to worry about my grades since then the faculty wouldn't be allowed to grade me down for proving that the Good Mother is far more accepting than fundementalist Christians?  I almost went to Malone and it requires students to attend services.

  •  The precedent this could set (4.00)
    is frightening. Thank you for giving everyone a heads up.

    You point out:

    There are some good provisions in this bill, but some VERY, VERY BAD provisions that are clearly intended to make it possible for conservatives legally to harrass and discriminate against viewpoints they don't agree with in the academy.  

    We need to speak out against the bad provisions and explain politely and clearly why they are bad, so that those debating and considering this bill might understand.

    It seems to me that you have to fight the introduction of the whole bill, not just the VERY BAD provisions.

    That the author of this bill blankets the bad stuff in a bunch of innocuous good stuff is a ruse. This REALLY smells of just the beginning of the attack on public academia from our Facists Friends in power.

    "The public have an insatiable curiosity to know everything, except what is worth knowing"....Oscar Wilde

    by 313to212 on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 07:23:44 AM PST

    •  I agree, the whole bill should be fought. (none)
      But in fairness there are at least two provisions that are written in such a way as to "protect" all sorts of speech, without any nefarious code words for liberal or progressive speech.

      However, yes, of course.  You are right-- this thing must be stopped!

  •  Is this law supposed to apply to state (none)
    institutions only or to all institutions in Ohio?
    •  All institutions of higher education, (none)
      both state and private.

      It's very alarming.

      •  I can't say why (none)
        but it smells unconsitutional
        •  No doubt; but not inevitably. (none)
          There is no "separation of church and state" issue here that I can see in the bill's language.  It's really conservative hatred of liberal viewpoints, masked as protection of "freedom."  It would be tricky, at least as far as I can tell, to argue that it specifically prohibits one group's point of view, for example.  In any event I certainly hope that should it ever pass (and God I hope it doesn't), that it is quickly determined to be unconstitutional.
          •  State mandated speech (none)
            would seem to be the tack to take.  The state may regulate the time, manner and place of speech (to the best of my recollection) but may not regulate content--except in terms of obscenity (again, to the best of my recollection).

            Yes, I'm a proud Massachusetts Liberal, and fuck you for saying that's a bad thing.

            by MAJeff on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 08:18:08 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  Can't regulate private institutions (none)

        That provision will get struck down for sure.  State govts have very little ability to regulate the content of instruction at private universities.  Certainly, it would be both crazy and unconstitutional to apply those sorts of rules to religious institutions, and even regular private universities have wide lattitude to set their own curriculums or even to restrict students' 1st amendment rights in ways that state institutions can not.
        •  Right, it's surprising that they include (none)
          private, but I suspect that what's going on here is the subtle threat, eventually, of losing the small amount of state funding for certain programs that even private institutions accept.
        •  Academic Freedom at Private Universities (none)
          That private universities can get away with violating academic freedom of students and faculty, is not in my view, a good thing. A legislature can define by statute the right to free speech in the private sector, in or out of academia.
          •  Not Exactly (none)
            Your right to free speech goes out the window on company time. Doesn't matter whether your employer is small business, big public corporation, academia, or a government agency.

            vote early - vote often

            by wystler on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 09:50:31 AM PST

            [ Parent ]

      •  Debating this bill (4.00)
        I think the wording and intent of the bill should be debated. We should not in principle oppose this bill. Parts of this bill are very good and could actually strengthen academic freedom.

        Firstly, consider carefully whether or not as an academic you already have "academic freedom" as a matter of law. Chances are, you have a lot less than you think you have. The AAUP (Association of American University Professors) defines a very broad range of expression by faculty as academic freedom. You can read the AAUP statement on academic freedom here .

        Chances are your University has a similar statement in its faculty handbook or Union Contract. However, that statement in your faculty handbook may or may not mean anything. It is more meaningful and legally enforceable in your Union Contract. If you are a private University employee and are untenured, you may have no legally enforceable guaranteed of academic freedom at all.

        If you are a non-tenured faculty member at a non-Union state institution, you have much narrower rights as a State Employee under the First Amendment. You may or may not (and most likely do not) have due process rights. And the legal precedents make it very easy for a determined administrator to find some other reason to fire you and hide the speech related reason. And in addition, they can fire you for a "mixed motive" (they can fire you because they don't like your speech *and* because you got poor teaching evaluations as determined by the University). Furthermore, you probably don't have any First Amendment rights to participate in curricular decisions or to present material outside the determined curriculum.

        If you want precedents, I can dig this up but I can't do it immediately.

        Academic Freedom is really not very well protected at all when it really comes down to it. This law, because it will define academic freedom, and the right to grieve on matters related to academic freedom by statute, could actually strengthen academic freedom.

        Note, I say *could* because parts of this bill could do a lot of damage. That is why, however, we need to steer clear of knee-jerk responses to this bill and seek to improve the language and endorse the good parts of this bill.

        To sum up, this bill might be endorsed by a right wing yahoo (and lord knows we have plenty of them in the Ohio legislature), but if we are smart, we could actually use this bill for a purpose the right wingers didn't intend.

        •  Oh yes we should oppose it (4.00)
          At least in its current form. Right now, it has nothing at all to do with actual academic freedom and everything to do with silencing and policing liberals and forcing universities to hire conservatives, regardless of whether or not they are qualified for the job (notice this is different from race-based affirmative action, where applicants still need to be qualified to be hired).

          Do not fall for this. At all.

          I'm not part of a redneck agenda - Green Day

          by eugene on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 08:50:26 AM PST

          [ Parent ]

  •  It's unconstitutional (none)
    It would be overturned even by a conservative Supreme Court.

    Political censorship is the root of all evil! It is the antithesis to a functional democracy!!

    by truthbetold on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 07:39:13 AM PST

    •  Just for the benefit of folks reading (none)
      here, can you give a couple of legal specifics that ground your certainty?  Appreciated.
      •  Nothing is ever easy, is it? (none)
        As you likely know, there is no guarantee when it comes to courts in the future, but I must keep my wishful thinking attitude rather see America fall to ruin under the yoke of repressive censorship, especially in education.  I am not a constitutional expert, but I feel at the public UNIVERSITY level, this academic freedom of speech must be given wide leeway, and unless the professor is "way out there" a blanket muzzling of all certain types of political rhetoric will not/cannot be allowed.

        I did some quick Googling on related subjects, and got the below links.  The first one is long, but very in-depth with a Reference list that pretty much covers the subject.  Again no promises here, but a strong hope that logic, freedom of speech, and the college age above 18 will make this Ohio law, if passed, unconstitutional.  Now what might be a more interesting and difficult question would be a law directing censorship at secondary and primary school students!

        To date, no clear court decision has clarified guides for resolving conflicts between institutional and individual academic freedoms, except for the consistently clear message that "institutional academic freedom supplements, but does not supplant, the First Amendment freedom right of professors" (AAUP, 2002, p. 8).


        While normally I would recommend reading opinions of U.S. Supreme Court, those opinions are not particularly helpful in the area of academic freedom. The justices have failed to provide a precise definition of academic freedom. The justices have failed to provide a justification for academic freedom. And, to properly interpret the effusive prose that the justices have written about academic freedom, one must first have a detailed understanding of First Amendment law, which itself is a complex and evolving area of law.


        This one is troubling, but it did not make it to the Supreme Ct.

        Including the content of scholarship and teaching in the speech of public employees that a state can regulate, however, represents a new low in understanding and appreciation. Professors and administrators must speak up about the contributions of intellectual and educational work to the wider society....

        Political censorship is the root of all evil! It is the antithesis to a functional democracy!!

        by truthbetold on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 08:39:55 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

      •  Regulation of speech (none)
        based on its content is subject to the highest degree of scrutiny under the Constitution.  The proposed regulation must serve a compelling state interest (not just any interest qualifies as compelling) and the proposed regulation must be narrowly tailored to serve that compelling state interest.

        As I recall from my constitutional law class of 16 years ago, no "content-based" regulation has ever survived this form of scrutiny.  This law will NEVER pass constitutional muster.  Never.

        "Every normal man must be tempted at times to spit upon his hands, hoist the black flag, and begin slitting throats." Mencken "This is one of those times." Me

        by jsmdlawyer on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 08:53:30 AM PST

        [ Parent ]

        •  Jonathan, not only do I quote my (none)
          grandmother and say "from your mouth to God's ears," but I also say, I think you're right, but it's alarming that they so boldly have introduced this bill, and that they are forcing universities to wrestle with it, and it does not bode well in general for the future.
  •  This is awful, but I am confused . . . (none)
    Clearly something worth fighting over here -- this is awful.  But I am confused, can you clear something up for me:  in the post you switch back and forth between talking about the OH Senate, and the Ohio University Senate, which is it?  If it is a bill that affects all of OH, why is the Ohio University Senate debating it, and what effect does this have on the bill?  Can you explain the process.
    •  OSU Senate is debating it, (none)
      as I imagine other university senates will, around the state.  

      The Ohio Senate is the upper house of the legislative body of Ohio.

      So the Ohio Senate is considering a bill that is currently being debated by the Ohio State University senate-- which may reject, or not, its provisions.  That then would be information relayed to the Ohio Senate in their deliberations on the bill.

      Sorry for the confusion.

  •  Smells like somebody simply hates freedom (none)
  •  This has been around (4.00)
    The attacks on academia have been around for a while, and are only increasing.  There was a federal bill kicking around for a while that would basically provide affirmative action for conservatives. I don't know where it stands, but I'm sure it's not entirely off the table.

    I have had students from time to time complain to me about how I am not providing a well-rounded view of the field because I won't include research from such entities as Focus on the Family.  I have always replied that I aim to introduce good, contemporary research and theoretical work in my courses but because I am pressed for time, I have to limit my own investigations to prominent peer-reviewed journals in my field.  I always invite these wacko students to produce good research from their proposed alternative sources, but they never do.

  •  Initiative Like This Have Increasingly (4.00)
    been stealth national projects since the days when Ronald Reagan decided he'd personally liberated Nazi death camps.

    I was working for Ag at Ohio State when it became illegal in Ohio to criticize farm produce (unless you had valid scientific reasons). The right introduced such measures on a state-by-state basis across the nation as a way to eliminate public discussion of genetic engineering of crops and livestock. I think this was the basis of the Texas cattlemen's lawsuit against Oprah Winfrey for example.

    The last job interview I had for the Ag dept there involved some grilling on my philosophy about scientific research in agriculture. Lots of code words.

    So this Ohio academic bias law smells like a similar national effort, the kind of project 2nd Lady Lynn Cheney's American Council of Trustees and Alumni and/or some the think-tank army is pushing. There's been news of this general thrust for some years now, taking back our universities for those who pay for them.

    Is anything similar cropping up in other states?

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy....--ML King, "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 07:57:10 AM PST

    •  Began in Colorado last year (none)
      Colorado legislators were looking to actually pass it, but the state universities howled in protest and sent their chancellors and presidents to Denver to lobby against it. It eventually did not pass, but only because the college presidents promised the wingnuts they'd "look into the matter".

      I'm not part of a redneck agenda - Green Day

      by eugene on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 08:39:16 AM PST

      [ Parent ]

    •  they're probing around the edges at my institution (none)
      This message was forwarded to the faculty by our department head recently. Names changed to protect the innocent.
      Hi Professor DepartmentHead,

      My name is Name, and I am writing an article for the Local College Rag about where both students and faculty consider the line should be drawn regarding personal political and religious commentary in the classroom.

      I am exploring this issue because I have heard many students complaining that they feel their professors are overstepping the line and issuing offensive attacks on certain religions/political ideals to the point that students feel their grade might be endangered if they were to have an opposing idea.

      I am really interested in finding out if professors have guidelines about personal commentary that they are supposed to follow. If not, I am simply interested in knowing your opinion about the matter where do you personally think the line should be drawn? Any information or suggestions that you could give me would be so greatly appreciated. I am looking for quotes from department heads/professors on the matter to get both sides of the story. Thank you so much! Have a great day!



      With the Virginia Legislature's awful track record of legislation lately, I wouldn't be surprised to see a parallel initiative crop up in Virginia, when they're finished bashing gays and depriving women of reproductive freedom.
      •  And we must fight it tooth and nail (none)
        The jewel in the crown of Virginia is our great system of Universities -- we wreck them and we wreck a large part of what makes us successful economically speaking.  

        What makes this so scary IMO is that there really weren't any leftist "wackos" at Virginia Tech when I was an undergrad there. More the point it was chockablock full of right wing wachos and still is a very conservative school.  Ditto for George Mason.  I don't even think UVA is Berkley on the Maury River either.

        •  we've infiltrated since you left (none)
          I teach a class that has its conceptual foundations in evolutionary biology. Fortunately my constituency is mainly international graduate students, who don't mind learning about "controversial" concepts like selection pressure on DNA and protein sequence.
    •  For them it's a no lose situation (none)
      because no one is going to call them on it.  Even if the bills don't pass, what is the effect on students on teachers?  Professors begin to be careful about what they say.  Students begin to hear left-wing propaganda built into the facts.  The right did the same thing with the 'liberal media bias.'  Now reporterrs bend over backward to give Bush a 'fair' hearing.

      You don't win this fight by defeating bills.  You win this fight by passing bills strengthening academic freedoms.  You win this fight by every professor teaching McCarthy on the first day of class.  You win this fight by telling these legislators that every professor will teach 1984 in every class until they quit.

  •  This might help (none)
    jiffykeen posted a diary yesterday linked text about this yesterday, and there was a link and a comment by Blue the Wild Dog that might be helpful to you all.

    "Horowitz's crap (none / 0)

    already passed through the Colorado backyard and left its unpleasant stench. It was defeated except for a token nod. I found this excellent timeline linked text. Maybe you can learn from our battle."

    I hope all these links work, and frankly, I think every faculty across the country needs to be looking at this.

    I keep thinking about Argentina.

  •  It's a beginning (none)

    "If cows and horses had hands, they would depict their gods as cows and horses." Xenophanes

    by upstate NY on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 08:01:51 AM PST

  •  more leg that I have issues with (4.00)
    Okay, is there a site for egregious legislation?

    I'd like to keep track of legislative bodies all over the country.  Organized by legislative initiative and sorted by state.

    This one bothers me as well:

    This bill would stop people who've been harmed by a crisis intervention team from suing team members.  Often these members are volunteers and poorly trained.  Why not train them better and offer these volunteers protection under FEMA or another government entity?  I have done this work before and I have friends who still do it, but if a volunteer causes more harm than good, then there shouldn't be a restriction to suing them just because they were a part of a crisis intervention team.  

    I think this one, like so many others is a solution for the wrong end of peroblem.  Fix the training and coverage problem instead of stopping victims and those who are suffering from obtaing redress through the courts!!

    •  you might have to start one for your state (4.00)
      A great example of a successful progressive legislature-watch service is Maura's "Virginia Legislative Sentry".
    •  The pathway you take-- an X factor? (none)
      Fix the training and coverage problem instead of stopping victims and those who are suffering from obtaing redress through the courts!!

      It's all about cost control. And it's also all about misplaced priorities.

      That's it; I want these elected officials off the island. They are too lazy and shortsighted to truly help their constituents. That's what it's all about... mental and spiritual laziness.

      But did the pathway they took to become what they did, make them that way?

      That's what, I've come to believe, is what is really so discouraging about politics. You could call it "the system", but it's not even as simple as that.
      Something about the process one goes through to get power and influence, (and probably not just in our country) compels-- you could even say, requires-- people to lose their ability, or will, to help the people who elected them.

      This isn't even about the act of politics itself, necessarily! It seems to me now, this thing is something apart from schmoozing, using inside information, leveraging relationships, all that quid pro quo stuff you must go through to be a good politician... that stuff seems to me now, like something you CAN engage in, and still be honorable. And still actively work for the public good, rather than against it.

      This requirement-- yes, because I believe unspokenly, it is a requirement-- to become a person who actively works to disassemble people's rights, who actively reduces human beings to less worth than widgets-- it seems to me now like something completely apart from the social navigation and wheeling-dealing that is politics. A completely distinct X-factor.
      And it is ruining people's lives.

      That's the solution: divorce politics from this requirement. We'll have a more humane society, and happier citizens too.

  •  Great! (none)
    I'm glad to see that this bill requires professors to teach "scholarly viewpoints other than their own" because when I was in college, without exception, the left-leaning professors always announced their political viewpoints in the very first lecture and made regular reference to others who disagreed with them.

    The conservatives, on the other hand, taught their courses as if their viewpoints were entirely neutral and objective.

    So according to this legislation, the progressives would be fine and the neanderthals would be forced to admit that they teach not the truth but a viewpoint.


    "A working class person who votes Republican is like a chicken who votes for Colonel Sanders."
    --T. M., working class Democrat

    by bramish on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 08:35:27 AM PST

  •  Ahh this reminds me of a time... (4.00)
    Ahh, yes, back in the good old days.

    1933 in Germany...

    "If any question why we died, Tell them, because our fathers lied." - Rudyard Kipling, 1918

    by Steve4Clark on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 08:38:59 AM PST

  •  Some responses (none)
    The AAUP (American Association of University Professors) has a long response to the issue, posted here.

    And they have a response to "Students for Academic Freedom" - David Horowitz' little organization, posted here. An excerpt:

    The AAUP has long maintained that instructors should avoid the persistent intrusion of matter, controversial or not, that has no bearing on the subject of instruction. Any such practice would be expected to be taken up as part of the regular evaluations of teaching routinely conducted in higher education, evaluations that commonly include surveys of student experience.

    A week or two ago, I saw a proposed "Academic Bill of Rights" by a Colorado legislator that deals with the "issue" from a moderate perspective that protects everyone's freedom in the classroom without giving anything to Horowitz or government regulation of the classroom. I can't find it. But it was really good.

    I'm not part of a redneck agenda - Green Day

    by eugene on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 08:47:20 AM PST

  •  Now, my thoughts (4.00)
    First, David Horowitz is a hateful little man (apologies to all the short-statured men in the room). He is not someone who can be reasoned with. His crusade is extremely personal, stemming from some unknown stuff that happened between him and other members of the Bay Area left in the 1970s and 1980s, when he went from a writer for Ramparts to a critic of "Tenured Radicals" and now, to someone who embraces McCarthyism as a positive policy and seeks to introduce government regulation into the classroom, wants government to control what is taught, what is said.

    Other conservatives sign onto this for obvious reasons - the conservative movement is and has been bent on silencing liberal voices. They simply do not want us to be part of the public sphere, of the political conversation. Some of us talk about fascism and others are skeptical, but nothing gives their fascist nature away more clearly than their total intolerance for a liberal voice.

    The goal here is to force academia to silence its liberal voices, and to teach courses in a way that is either totally neutral (and thus uninformative and irrelevant to students' lives) and, ideally, to get them to endorse a pro-Bush, pro-Republican, pro-government agenda. It would eviscerate not only academic freedom, but the university's mission as well. It would turn universities into centers of indoctrination, not centers of free inquiry.

    Some may wonder if conservative students really are as oppressed as is claimed. I think it's all in their own heads. I have taught some excellent students who have W'04 and Shithead (the GOP nominee in WA) for Governor stickers on their folders. They take learning seriously and do not try and fit material into a pre-conceived box.

    But then there are those who simply want their conservative beliefs to be reinforced, and who will ignore anything that might challenge that. And that is not an approach that one should take at a place of higher education. Yet it is precisely those folks who are behind Horowitz' crusade. They want to destroy the university as we know it. And they must be stopped.

    I'm not part of a redneck agenda - Green Day

    by eugene on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 09:02:09 AM PST

    •  Agreed. (4.00)
      And I'll take it one step further.  These avowed "free marketers" are smarting at the failure of conservative theory to attract collegiate followers on the theory's own merits (or lack thereof) and are now attempting to use legislation to strong-arm campuses into disseminating the GOP's incoherent and senseless theories.  This is a pattern: the GOP's ideas are so nonsensical that they fail to measure up in a competitive marketplace of ideas; the GOP then resorts to distortion/outright bribery/bullying in an attempt to "win" folks over.  This is merely another example of the GOP's hypocrisy with respect to true competition.
  •  Be concerned, but smart (none)
    I am the first one to raise a red flag when extremists on the Right attack liberalism, academia, or intellectualism.  But to properly beat this stuff back requires clear thinking.

    I don't see anything in the language of the bill that is inherently offensive.  Can it be misused?  Of course.  But that only means that we need to attack the root of the problem...the cult-like mentality on the Right.  Attacking this bill won't accomplish that one bit.  And it might make the problem worse.

    Forget for a minute what the bill's sponsors want to accomplish.  Let's just look at the language:

    "C) Faculty and instructors shall not infringe the academic freedom and quality of education of their students by persistently introducing controversial matter into the classroom or coursework that has no relation to their subject of study and that serves no legitimate pedagogical purpose."

    Teachers are hired to teach within their area of expertise.  Expecting them to not discuss controversial issues that have no relation to their subject of study is perfectly appropriate.  Imagine a Spanish language professor assigning students the task of translating Pro-life pamphelets from Spanish into English.  If you were a Pro-choice student, you might be thrilled that this law could protect you from inappropriate evangelicizing from the professor.

    concernedamerican asks, "Who is to define these things?  Who says what is or is not legitimate?"

    Come on!  Life is full of hard choices and line drawing.  Who decides when a professor is acting inappropriately?  Who decides when a professor is incompetent?  Tenure should protect professors who teach controversial ideas within the context of their jobs.  A professor who wants to "teach" about the Israeli/Palestinian conflict in an accounting class shouldn't be protected.

    "(F) Faculty and instructors shall be free to pursue and discuss their own findings and perspectives in presenting their views, but they shall make their students aware of serious scholarly viewpoints other than their own through classroom discussion or dissemination of written materials, and they shall encourage intellectual honesty, civil debate, and the critical analysis of ideas in the pursuit of knowledge and truth."

    This is a dangerous provision?  I don't think so.  Professors should make their students aware of other serious scholarly viewpoints.

    Is this an attempt to backdoor crackpot teachings llike Intelligent Design into the classroom?  Sure.  But the proper response is to fully discredit Intelligent Design as a "serious scholarly" viewpoint.  The proper response is not to attack an innocuous bill as being dangerous.

    Who cares if this bill fails?  If liberals lose their heads over it, it just becomes ammunation for the Right.  They say, "see, liberals don't want intellectual honesty, civil debate, and the critical analysis of ideas in the pursuit of knowledge and truth."  

    Over the long run, that image of liberals surruptitiously indoctrinating the youth of America ends up being more damaging than anything that could result if this bill becomes a law.

    •  Concerned but Smart (none)
      I half agree with you. As I said in an earlier post, parts of this bill could actually strengthen academic freedom. But parts of this bill are so vaguely worded that they could be used either to muzzle expression or as a makework project for lawyers.

      I think someone earlier in a post mentioned she was a Wiccan and wanted to know if she went to a Christian college could she sue under this bill if she felt she was being graded down for her viewpoint. Yes she could. And that wouldn't necessarily be a bad thing.

      But this bill is so sweeping that a student could turn in a paper based on fringe scholarship and claim protection under this bill. In the Social Sciences you can almost always find some refereed journal article somewhere that advances some point of view-no matter how patently absurd. Some views just won't get discussed in my classroom at all (at least not by me) and some views will be dismissed. That is not because of ideology, but because in my judgement as a professor, not all views, even in the "soft" social sciences are worthy of discussion (at least not in a quarter where I have specific concepts I *have* to get through).

      This bill needs to be rewritten. But I agree in principle that we should not oppose the concept of protecting academic freedom by legislation. In fact, I think it is actually a great idea and if done right, really would not make a lot of people on the right happy. Some conservatives though, I think, would be open to protecting everybody's academic freedom.

    •  Space, I still think that this language (none)
      is dangerous because it is in a bill that leaves up to legislators and courts to decide what is "serious scholarship" and what is "not related to the subject of study."  

      I don't know if you read my comment, following section "C" in the diary, about the experience I had with a conservative chair who based a job evaluation of me on his opinion that what I was teaching-- "gender"-- had no relation to the subject of study-- literature and language.  Despite student testimonials to the contrary of his belief.  Despite stellar teaching evaluations for the course.  And because this was his personal belief-- his conservative ideologically-informed belief-- and because he felt I was wrong, he just imposed it on me in a job review.  Just like that.  And were this bill to go into effect (of course I understand the improbability of that anytime soon, but still) I would have little to no recourse for redress against his imposition of a personal belief that bears no relation to the current state of the field.  For according to section "C," it is to be left up to others OUTSIDE ACADEME to define what is or is not "related to the subject of study."  And in a state where the courts are stocked with conservative judges and the legislature is rabidly right-wing, that's not a good mechanism to have for protecting the integrity of research.

      So anyway, that's where I'm coming from on this, personally.

  •  Little awareness of Ohio legislature (none)
    As if the election didn't already put the spotlight on Ohio ignorance, I must report there is also little awareness among the state's citizens of the kind of outrageous activity that can be carried out by those good ol' boys in the legislature.

    A striking for-instance: it was discovered in recent years that there was doubt about Ohio's vote in the 1860s to approve the 14th Amendment to the U.S. Constitution -- you know, that little one that has to do with guaranteeing equal protection of the law to all citizens. Should have been a breeze to get everyone to sign on to that, right?

    Well, the wingnut rank-and-file found some of its more enlightened members weren't so sure, which led to a little dust-up, a racial remark or two, sizable delay, and ultimately, state certification of the amendment -- ALTHOUGH NOT BY A UNANIMOUS VOTE.

    Make no mistake about it, there are people out there with a dangerously warped world view passing themselves off as leaders these days.

  •  Science supports liberalism (none)
    The evolution did happen, poor people are poor because of social structures outside of their control, global warming is real, death penalty does not lead to fewer crimes.

    That's why the Nazi conservatives want to destroy science.


    don't go after Bush, go after the Republicans.

    by Joe B on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 09:17:21 AM PST

  •  'good stuff' probably already is in charters/laws (none)
    Bottom line: This document insults the minds of Ohio students and collegiate administrators.

    The sponsors of this bill would prefer that professors perform academic work for students. It's as though the senate assumes students can't find a library or use a goddamn search engine. (A) states: "[C]urricula and reading lists... shall... provide students with dissenting sources and viewpoints." (F) states: "Faculty and instructors... shall make their students aware...." What? Are faculty and staff members literally blocking library doors and Internet sites? Then students have all the access they need to "serious scholarly viewpoints other than [the faculty's] own." All I would do is point to a library or an Internet terminal and say, "There may be serious scholarly viewpoints other than my own. Now you're aware of where you can look for them."

    If a collegiate academic review board isn't already reviewing professors over stuff like the first portion of (B), (C), and the latter portion of (F), then it's not worth its salt.

    More ranting:

    The bill's final paragraph is wholly unnecessary. My bet is that every accredited Ohio academic institution already has encoded such procedures to address grievances.

    (I) is wholly unnecessary and probably contradictory. I have trouble discerning what organizational neutrality means. Isn't faculty considered part of the "institution"? And what is neutral?

    For example, Intelligent Design, by definition, is not science, and that is not an ideological view, at least not from the viewpoint of someone who knows what science means. It is a neutral view (I believe so, anyway!), or should be considered one. I don't think ID's merits should be discussed scientifically. An ethics or philosophy professor might grade a paper on ID on a different standard. But if I were a science professor reviewing a student's experiment, and the student concludes the result could only have occurred by "design," I would give the experiment a reduced grade (assuming, of course, that I stated course expectations from the outset).

    And (D) is the most vague and dangerous (to all sides) clause ever written in a slew of them. As written, without caveats and exceptions, the bill would permit an Ohio student or group to do nearly anything under the sun.

    (My dKos Public Email is altered. Swap "ve-riz-on" and "ace-pumpk-in", then remove dashes to email me.)

    by Ace Pumpkin on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 09:24:06 AM PST

  •  Hitler hated intellectuals (none)
    and non-Nazi professors. Many social scientists, like the Frankfurt sociologists, had to move to USA. Now we're returning the favor - in Germany and Europe there's a great tolerance for science and critical thinking.

    don't go after Bush, go after the Republicans.

    by Joe B on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 09:33:26 AM PST

  •  It's not McCarthyism (none)
    It's a prelude to a witch hunt.

    Use language that evokes the image of religiouis zealots rounding up anyone who doesn't believe.

    This is leading to a "witch hunt."  
    Republicans will "burn" profs at the stake.
    The Ohio Inquisition.

    (Thanks for the post!)

  •  The Importance of Non Parity (none)
    One thing the Republican Revolution has accomplished is the erasure of the public idea that different endeavors will justly lead practitioners to have different political outlooks.

    For example if the practice of business or religion leads a person to think conservatively, the right has sold us the conclusion that this is a normal and healthy state of affairs. But they don't allow us to conclude that the practice of some other activity, such as medicine, law or education, might justly lead a person to think liberally.

    Liberalism constitutes bias which needs to be balanced with "the" "other" side. That's part of the broader feeling that causes both voters and politicians to flee from the "accusation" that they are "liberal."

    If conservatives were honest, they'd insist on including a certain amount of business and military education, perhaps history of religion, as part of the required core academic preparation.

    But they're not honest, so regardless of whether requirements like this exist, conservatives will also insist that instruction and probably publication in all other specialties be "balanced" by "the" "other" viewpoint.

    It's a natural companion of the view that facts are biased.

    We are called to speak for the weak, for the voiceless, for victims of our nation and for those it calls enemy....--ML King, "Beyond Vietnam"

    by Gooserock on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 09:45:14 AM PST

  •  Free marketplace of ideas (none)

    Students who disapprove of a given professor can vote with their feet.

    Professors who are dearies to the right can be shut down even more swiftly, or through dismissed suits, the law can be rendered toothless.

    Or, if selective bias in prosecution emerges, suit brought under the Equal Protection clause.

    Or, absent that relief, as good a cause for protest and civil disobedience as one can find.

    And if that results in conflict and one is worried about that sort of thing, please consult the bonfire picture in the post above.

    Liberals are always looking for something new to love; conservatives for something new to hate. :)

    by cskendrick on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 10:08:59 AM PST

  •  Unconstitutional!!!! (none)
    I don't care if the law gets passed--it CANNOT be enforced under our Constitution--unless "King George is above the law Gonzales" has his way.  In which case, we must ALL stand united in refusing to knuckle under to such wanton disregard to our core American beliefs.

    Separation of Church and State AND Corporation

    by Einsteinia on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 10:14:10 AM PST

  •  This is the same crap (none)
    that's being pulled in Colorado.  It didn't pass only becuase the Board of regents "voluntarily" adopted it rather than wait for legislation.

    Look  here for an AP article about its effects.

  •  isn't this laughable? (none)
    I agree it's scary what these wingnuts try to do.

    But wouldn't that law be laughed out of the first court it reaches on 1st Amendment grounds?

  •  The view from academia (4.00)
    I blogged on this, as it hits me directly. I live in Ohio and teach college (though I teach in KY, just across the river).

    This is nothing more than an attempt to silence anything that's not party-line orthodoxy. It's not surprising that this is coming from Horowitz, as he believed in orthodox Marxism in his leftist days, and still believes in enforced orthodoxy for his new rightist views.

    Also, you might check out Sen. Wachtmann's ties to the American Legislative Exchange Council, a Scaife-funded outlet that pushes ready-to-go conservative legislature in state legislatures (which are notoriously understaffed and overworked) throught the nation. If this gets a foothold anywhere, ALEC and Horowitz may join forces to put it everywhere.


    Walk In Brain - the finest blogging in my apartment building.

    by Wes F on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 10:34:35 AM PST

  •  Socialists and Communists?? At the same time? (none)
    We should be able to just remove any from power any publically elected official that says something as inane as " ...socialists and card carrying communists..."

    I long for the days when someone just had to say you were a "card carrying member of the ACLU" and everyone just knew you were a communist and/or socialist, no need to actually say it...

    I used to be paranoid until I lost my self-esteem. Who is going to waste their time following me?

    by Mote Dai on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 10:40:29 AM PST

  •  Why do these assholes hate our children? (none)
    Do they think these kids don't have minds of their own?

    Good freaking grief, if these ignoranuses think they're going to get my money when I send daughter off to college next year, they are beyond reality.

    I'll send her off to a PA college.

    Which is a sad thing, because my daughter is in the Top 5 list to win Division II State Champ in Track and Field this Spring. She has had 13 colleges from Ohio scouting her for two years now.

    One call to Senator Wilson will be made today.

  •  Not Constitutional. (none)
    Only a matter of time before it gets stricken down if passed.

    On a side note, this might be a good time to get your act together, Ohio Democratic Party. Hello? Anyone? ::crickets chirping:: Hell, DFA, you know what to do.

    The world's address
    a place that's worn
    a sad pun that reflects a sadder mess
    In case you haven't already guessed:
    The world's a dress.

    by Jaiwithani on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 11:39:07 AM PST

  •  snide comment - - (none)
    As a UMich grad, I must say that I find it amusing that Ohio State is going to go dig its head in the sand.  Highly fitting, I must say.  Leave the intellectual thinking to a real University.

    Happy little moron, lucky little man. I wish I was a moron, my God, perhaps I am! -- Spike Milligan

    by polecat on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 11:58:03 AM PST

  •  this was diaried yesterday (4.00)
    and there I posted the followin', which I think pertains:

    You wanna beat this guy?

    your tools are public ridicule, sarcasm, and negative publicity. make him a laughingstock in his own town.

    discreetly announce to a teevee station or two that something interesting's gonna happen at mumper's office at a given day and time, and then have 50 academics show up to award him the "Mumper Muzzle" prize.

    have students threaten to sue him for refund of their tuition for the information they WON'T get if his law passes. seems that students in debating societies would be entitled to 100% reimbursement.

    mention that you want to teach that george bush is GOOD and that Mumper is GOOD and that his law is GOOD, but you can't bring it up because it's too controversial.

    humiliate the bee-yatch in the public eye. that's how you'll win. Make people feel stupid to associate themselves with him.

    THis is a variant on how the repigs have managed to demonize liberals, but this isn't really a lib/repig dichotomy; this is knowledge vs. stupidity, intellectual freedom vs. thought control. Should be presented as such - and derisively so.

  •  SB 24's Authors Are Too Dumb To Realize... (none)
    ...that they just neutered their legislation with the following passage:

    "(F) Faculty and instructors shall be free to pursue and discuss their own findings and perspectives in presenting their views, but they shall make their students aware of serious scholarly viewpoints other than their own through classroom discussion or dissemination of written materials, and they shall encourage intellectual honesty, civil debate, and the critical analysis of ideas in the pursuit of knowledge and truth."

    I dare you to define "serious scholarly viewpoints." Because you certainly won't have any joy in trying to convince me that creationism or supply-side economics are "serious."

    As an academic, when the phrase "serious scholarly" anything is used, I automatically think peer review and replication (in my own field) and an adherence to scientific principles (in my own field and in other fields). While I'm willing to give the public choice economists and the supply-siders their due as "scholarly," I will not consider anything "serious" or "scholarly" that does not meet the three criteria above.

    Evolution is a scientific theory. Creationism isn't. End of story.

  •  controversial matter (4.00) :
    "C) Faculty and instructors shall not infringe the academic freedom and quality of education of their students by persistently introducing controversial matter into the classroom or coursework that has no relation to their subject of study and that serves no legitimate pedagogical purpose."

    Man, that was my favorite part of college! We had an entire class devoted to reading and discussing controversial matter our freshman year just to kick start the thinking process after spending 12+ years learning mostly by rote. It was wonderful. It would suck for those poor kids to miss out on that.

    College isn't about amassing a fortune of information, it's about learning how to think and how to learn from your interactions with others who may not think the way you do because they're background is different. Geeze. If you're worried your poor little baby can't think for himself and might be brainwashed by being taught how to look at the broader world... just don't send him to college.

    "You're born naked and the rest is drag." -Ru Paul

    by cshardie on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 02:20:40 PM PST

    •  exactly (none)
      "NO! mustnt make us THINK!
      anything but that!

      Thinking's dangerous.
      Gosh I got all the way thru hi-school without it...
      why do I need it now?"

      •  Wait A Minute! (none)
        It's also about getting a bead on serious hard knowledge.  You can't imagine my dismay upon learning that a senior state university (Ohio) education major who was teaching American History in my classroom had never heard of "Manifest Destiny."  I explained that teaching American History without at least a basic knowledge of it was not teaching American History at all. After proceeding with the most primitive research about the topic, she referred to it ever after as Manifesto Destiny.  She had thinking skills but no prior knowledge or vocabulary (so called lower order learning) with which to construct innovative applications or sensible judgements. (so called higher order thinking skill)

        University education departments have built their curriculums, since the 1970's, with the assumption that hard knowledge (so called lower level learning) is at the bottom of a hiararchy (Bloom's Taxonomy), with thinking skills at the top. It is an extremely limited design because it doesn't convey the the impact of language or history on thinking. Students must absorb wide prior knowledge and a specific vocabulary in order for them to make useful judgements and applications in a discipline.  It would be interesting to construct a bead game about the relationship between the history of ideas, vocabulary and hard knowledge.  Anyone game?

  •  When I was in college... (none)
    ...the library was having a remainder sale. Now this is a moderate to conservative Christian school (it's no BJU, but it's pretty conservative) but I was still surprised at what I found.

    The book was a two-volume set called "1000 Educators." The first volume was dedicated to "The Children of the World" or something like that; other than that there was no explanation, only a list. On the list was name after name of college professors, and following each name was a list of affiliations.

    The book was published in the 50s, so you get the idea. What I found most amazing was that there were some educators in there whose only "subversive" affiliation was that they had attended a conference to study the safety of nuclear power, or that they were members of the wrong demonination of Christianity.

    We're headed that way again.

  •  Not just OH and CO (none)
    Odd, just yesterday a colleague was asking me, "Have you heard about this 'Academic Bill of Rights'?"  We googled our way to the website of the backing organization, Students for Academic Freedom.  It's well worth a perusal.  Somewhere around there (I couldn't find it again) they had a list of the states where they expect to introduce legislation.  It included a fair number, and not just "red" states (California and Massachusetts were among them, I believe).  They've also had a bill introduced into the U.S. House "expressing the sense" that American colleges and universities should adopt this "Bill of Rights."  And they've passed one in Georgia, though it's restricted to public universities.

    They have a lot of material there, including stuff on "How to Research Faculty Bias" (which encourages you to go into local registration rolls, where possible, to identify professors' political party affiliations).  This looks to be a growing, well-organized, and ambitious group, steered (as someone mentioned above) by David Horowitz.  I advise all of you who are concerned about these issues to keep your eye on them whatever state you're in.

    Oh, the website is here.

  •  This is impossible to enforce (none)
    The wording is so vague that it may turn out to be just another Blue Law. If they try any serious enforcement of it, it will be in the courts in a heartbeat.

    "The sun is not yellow, it's chicken." -Dylan

    by gjohnsit on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 06:02:18 PM PST

  •  Sent this to my buddy who runs (none)

    His response:

    Let me give you a slightly different perspective on this.  Because far from seeing this provision as a "problem," I see it as a great opportunity.

    You see, I devote my time to studying and debunking the "serious scholarly viewpoint" -- such as it is -- that is at the heart of cheap labor con propaganda.  In fact, a major complaint that I have about progressives is that they DON'T do nearly enough of this.  In fact, what we presently have -- and this dumb-ass Republican sponsor doesn't realize -- is a marginalized academic community.  Undergraduates are notoriously apathetic.  More to the point, large numbers pay a lot more attention to what they see on TV-- read that corporate controlled media -- than they ever pay to their professors.  

    In other words the FRAMES AND CONCEPTS  of the corporate right, are presently being presented to them UNMEDIATED BY ANY CRITICAL EVALUATION.

    This bill GIVES A LICENSE to professors -- hell, it makes it a requirement -- for them to present for critical evaluation -- something students don't get watching Fox News -- of the SCHOLARLY MERITS of conservative hogwash.  The goal is the allow students to "make up their own minds."

    Let me tell you something, you tell me that I have to go out and find some "serious scholarly viewpoint" of Republican ideology?  Don't you worry.  I'll go dig it up -- hell, I already do that.  I'll present "creationism" -- and it when I get through with it, there won't be any doubt about its "merits" as a viable scientific theory.  "God created 'day' and 'night' --- and four days later created the sun.  Do you find that scientific theory to be credible?"  I dare some right-wing fuck to take issue with that question?

    Professors are being given a new mission.  Present right-wing propaganda -- and tear it to pieces.  I gotta tell you, the prospect of our academic community getting into this business doesn't hurt my feelings any.  [And remember, right-wing professors -- and there are a few here and there -- have the same obligation.  And I would not hesitate to sue their ass and make them comply with it.]    

    Oh, and the "liberal" President of Ohio State -- and the lawyers that work for her?  I'm sure they can be enlisted to provide cover for any "liberal" professor, tearing conservative "scholarly viewpoints" to pieces.  I'm sure she can also be enlisted to beat right-wing professors with a stick, and make them present "serious LIBERAL scholarly viewpoints."

    Can you say "unintended consequences?"  You could make this one bite them in the ass -- big time.

    "Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter." ~Martin Luther King, Jr

    by SarahLee on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 07:37:48 PM PST

    •  This is a great way to look at (none)
      a pile of dogshit-- think of it as an alternative fuel!

      p.s. I don't think that OSU's president is "liberal"-- at least I didn't say she was.  But listen-- she passed, finally, a domestic partner benefits plan.  She had indicated that she would, and she did.  It took a long time, and she took a lot of flack for it.  I appreciate her having kept her word.

    •  I think your buddy... (none)
      has a healthy attitude but underestimates the problems.

      When the professor "tears the conservative hogwash to pieces" it only reinforces the conviction among some students (how many depends on many things) that everything they're getting in the classroom is liberal bias.

      Even if the idea is not to "tear the conservative hogwash to pieces," but to present the case for (for example) natural selection, and the case for creationism, and let the students see how much better the former case is than the latter, that won't work.  Students of the "Students for Academic Freedom" variety will say, "Well, obviously the fact that natural selection came out looking so much better than creationism must be a product of the biased way in which the professor presented the cases."  "I can't defend my belief but I'm sure I'm right" is a respectable stance these days, among (many) college students as among (many) others.  

      •  You are probably (none)
        correct, but if you get stuck with something so insane - and we are, more and more everyday - we have to find ways to turn it around on them.

        "Our lives begin to end the day we become silent about things that matter." ~Martin Luther King, Jr

        by SarahLee on Fri Jan 28, 2005 at 11:59:09 PM PST

        [ Parent ]

  •  Wrote to Alutto... (none)
    dean of The Fisher College of Business at The Ohio State University, about this piece of trash legislation. I'm an alum. It was my hope that he would support his peers over in Arts, Social Science, and Humanities against the chilling effect this bill would have on true academic freedom.

    He concurred. I was shocked at the quick turn around , an email that was received only a couple of hours after I sent it.

    I will need to remember this the next time I am solicited for a donation to the school.

    "But then I viddied that thinking is for the gloopy ones and the oomny ones use, like, inspiration and what Bog sends." -- Alex de Large

    by rgilly on Sat Jan 29, 2005 at 05:40:51 AM PST

    •  GREAT job-- thanks. (none)
      The next thing to do:  post info. about this to the business alum organization, if you belong to it.  Get the word out to them.  Provide a link, either to Alutto's email, or just to the emails of the state senate sponsors.  Encourage people to protest and write!
  •  For the next "This Week in Fascism" (none)
         Jiffy Keen found that the Ohio SB 24 to squelch academic freedom. They're at it again. Ohio Republican Legislators have introduced David Horrowitz's "Academic Bill of Right in the current legislative session. I saw the Bill and the first line contained the term "broad range of opinion" and "dissenting sources" this is code for "they must find some republicans" and I also noticed this only applies to State Schools so the fundie can still brainwash and apply bigotry at their "religious schools." I ask you educators to pay particular attention to this since it's coming to a legislature near you. Concerned American added the highly recommended McCARTHYISM IN OHIO: SB 24, Ohio law to muzzle "liberals". This diary has already received 131 comments and includes contact information and some wingnut's "wanted poster" for a college professor

         I hope to post the next edition Monday morning after I check the feed back from those I am sending this preview too.
         Just Reply to this if you have a change to suggest

    "It's about the accountability, stupid." Thomas Davis 2005

    by Tomtech on Sun Jan 30, 2005 at 11:27:46 PM PST

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