You read something like this and you realize someone doesn’t have an ear for how Horowitz works. For those who don’t know, it’s Horowitz who has been working to get various profs fired for so-called deviant views, despite Horowitz’s utter lack of any scholarly bona fides. Which of course makes his protests about ever getting blocked from a university to give his pencil-in-eye inducing lectures a touch of …irony? contradiction? Anyway, it seems clear that when Horowitz was invited by the college republicans, the administration only wanted to modify the event, which is in its rights to do. And it did so only that there was more, not less discussion. In other words, it only wanted to ensure that Horowitz’s hate speech (look, whatever you think, the guy hates Muslims) was balanced by somebody not so evidently crazy. And then you get this from the AAUP:
Cary Nelson, national president of the American Association of University Professors, issued a statement on the association’s Web site, denouncing the university in harsh terms.
“Now that Saint Louis University has cancelled a scheduled October speech by conservative activist David Horowitz, it joins the small group of campuses that are universities in name only,” Nelson wrote.
God bless the AAUP, which is always on call for helping to expand the rights of professors and their academic freedom. But here, this is a bit over the top—and is rhetoric best saved when there are real attacks on academic freedom. For example, when Horowitz and his minions attempt at various universities to have alumni pull funding if profs of certain political views get tenure….
Wow, how horrible: the university suggested to the college republicans that they get input from scholars as they put together the event. The horror. The horror:
Among the suggestions was that the students engage scholars with expertise on historical and theological aspects of Islam to help prepare their program.
Also notable, I guess, is that the university couched this in terms of its Catholic mission, which is probably what drove the AAUP to speak up. But isn’t Horowitz one of those who claims that religion is under attack at American universities? (Yes, I did spend a rather humorous afternoon at a Border’s looking at his 100 Most Dangerous Professors in America, or whatever the title is…)