We are a commune of inquiring, skeptical, politically centrist, capitalist, anglophile, traditionalist New England Yankee humans, humanoids, and animals with many interests beyond and above politics. Each of us has had a high-school education (or GED), but all had ADD so didn't pay attention very well, especially the dogs. Each one of us does "try my best to be just like I am," and none of us enjoys working for others, including for Maggie, from whom we receive neither a nickel nor a dime. Freedom from nags, cranks, government, do-gooders, control-freaks and idiots is all that we ask for.
For those who have faith in the power of civil discourse to expose and isolate radical nonsense, there was a small victory this week at San Diegoís prestigious University of California campus.
The faculty and grad students of its Ethnic Studies Department issued a Statement one-sidedly accusing Israel as racist for its actions in Gaza, the Statement failing to consider Gazansí fault or, indeed, that Israel itself is a multi-racial society where Sephardic (mostly Middle Eastern) Jews as well as Arabs have more rights and economic opportunities than in any Islamic country.The Ethnic Studies Department scheduled a forum on campus for Wednesday, Feb. 25, to further their charge.
From on and off campus, there was vigorous written refutation of the charge, and criticism of the Ethnic Studies Departmentís lack of academic standards.The refutations were informed and civil.I wrote a column in the San Diego Jewish World on the matter (including a link to the Statement and comment thread on it), pointing out that the Islamist and pro-Palestinian groups alliance with far leftists on campuses has graduated anti-Semitism from singling out individual Jews to eradicating the Jewish state.
The UCSD Ethnic Studies Department cancelled yesterday's forum, claiming that the ďcharacterĒ of counter-writings is threatening.This is another of such groupsí canards and excuses, actually further revealing their fear and inability to stand up to determined factual and sane rebuttal.
Each campus is different but, regardless of outcome, this incident demonstrates the power of civil discourse.If not exercised by those who believe in it, the field is surrendered to those who donít.