January 26, 2011 4:10 pm at 4:10 pm #594500
I just read about a pro-palestinian, extremely biased man being appointed adjunct professor to teach a Politics of the Middle East graduate course this spring at Brooklyn College.
This is very disturbing to me on many levels, but also because my daughter is starting B’klyn College & I certainly don’t need the worry of (more) hate-fueled students running around campus.
Can we have a discussion here on topic? .. not on the pros/cons of going to college, please.January 26, 2011 4:40 pm at 4:40 pm #733984SacrilegeMember
It comes w the territory.
Throughout her schooling career she will come across many ‘Out There’ people who will say colorful things. Log it as life experience and shelf the rest.January 26, 2011 4:52 pm at 4:52 pm #733986apushatayidParticipant
Academic freedom seems to extend up, but not including, criticising academia. Otherwise everone and everything is fair game. Of course academia has its favorite causes to love and hate, and this professor happens to love the right movement and hate the right people. He fits right in.
As has been pointed out. College is a portal to the uncensored, unfiltered, unsheltered world. There are many more where this professor comes from.January 26, 2011 4:54 pm at 4:54 pm #733987
‘colorful things’ is not how I refer to blatant Anti-Semitism!
she has not led a sheltered life at all.
I really wanted to hear comments on his appointment.
oops! I had only seen Sac’s comment when I wrote this.January 26, 2011 5:00 pm at 5:00 pm #733988
You can easily avoid this prof. You do not need to take many polisci courses to graduate and it’s a relatively large department. I’m in Brooklyn College now.January 26, 2011 5:46 pm at 5:46 pm #733989
I’m wondering, OP, would you have the same concerns if R’ Meir Kahane z”l or PM Begin were teaching the same course? Are you honestly concerned with the fact that the school has appointed a biased professor, or that you disagree with the professor’s bias and would prefer your daughter not be subject to it?
Personally, the appointment doesn’t concern me at all. What concerns me is students that are not mature or intelligent enough to recognize the professor’s bias (assuming he will teach from his bias), and will therefore not do there own research to supplement any readings assigned by the teacher. Such students would concern me even if the course was being taught by a kippa sruga wearing Jew that had been recently expelled from some hiltop in the West Bank. Of course, then, I would be concerned about students named Avraham and Miriyam instead of those named Ibrahim and Maryan.January 26, 2011 5:57 pm at 5:57 pm #733990YW Moderator-80Member
Are you honestly concerned with the fact that the school has appointed a biased professor, or that you disagree with the professor’s bias and would prefer your daughter not be subject to it?
the op was very clear that it was the latterJanuary 26, 2011 6:01 pm at 6:01 pm #733991charliehallParticipant
Academic freedom has bounds. A history professor is not permitted to say that the holocaust did not happen. A microbiology professor is not permitted to say that HIV does not cause AIDS. An astrophysicist is not permitted to say that the universe is 6000 years old. An atmospheric scientist is not permitted to say that there has been no global warming in the past 130 years. To hold such positions puts you beyond the pale of your discipline.
You would not want a Reform rabbi coming into your yeshiva to teach that the Oral Torah is a scam, would you?January 26, 2011 6:03 pm at 6:03 pm #733992LAerMember
I think that the OP is not worried about her daughter having this professor, but about other students being influenced by him, thereby increasing anti-Semitism on campus. And unfortunately, there’s probably not much to do except teach your daughter how to deal with displays of bias and/or hate, and to be sure that she can disprove anti-Semitic stereotypes by making a kiddush Hashem in everything that she does, and to encourage her Jewish friends and classmates to be extra-aware as well.January 26, 2011 6:07 pm at 6:07 pm #733993cleverjewishpunMember
And my comments were deleted why?
For the usual reason your posts are deleted, for their reflection of your anti-religious disdain.
Example, a quote from that deleted post: Well the day schools do a pretty good job of scaring the students into thinking that every gentile is a nazi supporter and wants to convert them to christianity…January 26, 2011 6:15 pm at 6:15 pm #733994apushatayidParticipant
If you are concerned that your daughter will be exposed to the bias, may I suggests she stop going to college and instead go to a full time seminary. If you choose to expose her to the world, she will be exposed to the world, for better or for worse. Its not simple to pick and choose what she will be exposed to.January 26, 2011 6:38 pm at 6:38 pm #733996
actually, (I don’t wanna be contrary, Mod!) — I am very concerned about his appointment, but– I’m prejudiced: I (dareIsay?) hate overt proponents of terrorism, & palestinian sympathizers in general. he writes “I worked for some time as a human rights activist in Gaza and the West Bank and I still maintain close contact with the Palestinian activist community.”
I am concerned about his hate-filled tirades, no matter how academically presented, riling up (gullible)students, spurring on zealots, & thus, possibly causing outright antiSemitic acts on a campus that has many obvious Jewish students.
RSRH- I happen to be a quasi-supporter of R’Meir Kahane, hy’d. I never get involved in politics.. only when it comes to Israel.
(& btw– IMO, not being politcally inclined, my daughter would take a ‘Jewish History’ course.)
LAer– well said. (it took me so long to respond cuz I was babysitting my 3 yr old granddaughter.)January 26, 2011 6:47 pm at 6:47 pm #733997
apushatayid– as I previously said: my daughter has not led a sheltered life by any means. she had NO interest in going to seminary after BY high school, & immediately went to work & college.January 26, 2011 6:55 pm at 6:55 pm #733998
hmmm.. maybe I should’ve put this thread under the category of ‘Rant”?! apparently, I have my own agenda 😉January 26, 2011 11:04 pm at 11:04 pm #733999Pashuteh YidMember
Charlie, you raise difficult questions, but I am not sure that they are all absolutes. As far as the Holocaust, because it happened so recently, and their are so many documents and photos and witnesses including Dwight Eisenhower who said that he is there to bear witness lest anybody falsify what he saw with his own eyes. Anybody who denies, obviously has an agenda of neo-Nazism or something similar.
But on things which are not as clear or as political, I think you can say what you like, but must bring good evidence, and explain the evidence to the contrary, as well. You may be looked upon as a wacko, in certain cases, but your use of the term “not allowed” I think is not the correct formulation.January 26, 2011 11:53 pm at 11:53 pm #734000
The professor has apparently been removed. Perhaps it was an ill-advised appointment in the first place, but to remove him like this is just shameful!
Agree or disagree, the pro-Palestinian position is a viable academic perspective; the conflict is to fresh and present to expect any accounts to be unbiased, and historical and political truth is usually best arrived at through vigorous – even extreme – academic debate. I would be equally chagrined had the college dismissed a pro-Israel professor at the urgings of a Palestinian politician. This does little to commend the academic credentials of Brooklyn College, and does much to degrade it as an institution of higher learning.
“speech can rebut speech, propaganda will answer propaganda, free debate of ideas will result in the wisest . . . policies”
– Chief Justice Vinson, Dennis v. U.S.
“If there be a time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the process of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence. Only emergency can justify suppression.”
– Justice Brandeis, Whitney v. CaliforniaJanuary 27, 2011 12:18 am at 12:18 am #734001
news flash! his invitation to the position has been rescinded! yay!January 27, 2011 6:55 pm at 6:55 pm #734002
RSRH: Do you really expect that spirit to be preserved once politicians get involved?January 27, 2011 11:29 pm at 11:29 pm #734003HaLeiViParticipant
They can have him as a guest, that the students can debate or learn from, but to be the one teaching it is not a higher learning by any stretch.January 27, 2011 11:58 pm at 11:58 pm #734004
ItcheSrulik: I certainly don’t. I don’t really know how much I can blame Brooklyn College – they were wrong, in my opinion, but what’s the president of a CUNY school to do when confronted by an overzealous city councilman known for being loud, abrasive, and more concerned with inventing issues to further his own political career than neutral principles.
Halevi: If his view is a valid point for debate, why not allow him to teach it so that it can be considered, debated, and perhaps rebutted with substance and research instead of 1 minute sound bites at a guest lecture?
Also, please keep in mind that he was hired to teach a graduate level class. Undergrad students should be able to think independently and evaluate and do their won research. Graduate students should certainly be expected to do as much. Really, I can think of much to be gained by having one with such views as a professor; I can think of very little that is gained by preventing students from considering his positions – ideas they would be unlikely to hear or consider otherwise. But, I suppose comfort and insulation from our own views being challenged has prevailed over intellectual debate, the entertainment of ALL views provided they are confined to academic discussions, and being pushed beyond our comfort level. Well done Mr. Hikind!January 28, 2011 12:18 am at 12:18 am #734005
“Well done Mr. Hikind!
I can think of much to be gained by having one with such views as a professor
his view is [not] a valid point for debate
I can think of very little that is gained by .. students from considering his positions”
RSRH~ sorry, but my conclusion from your comments is that you’d just as soon have a nazi– same difference!- teach a graduate level, or any, class just for the sake of academic discussion… IMO this disgusts me!!January 28, 2011 1:35 am at 1:35 am #734006HaLeiViParticipant
Having someone with more than a bias as a teacher does more than provoke debate. Bias means to have leanings a certain way, an activist has a drive, not a bias.January 28, 2011 2:45 am at 2:45 am #734007
Most of my friends at Brooklyn find the activist teachers more amusing than influential. Then again, that might just be the crowd I hang out with.February 1, 2011 3:31 am at 3:31 am #734008
OH NO!!! HE’S BEEN RE-HIRED!!! ://
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