The targeting of University of Lethbridge Professor Anthony Hall is now a national news story in Canada. On October 3 the Canadian Broadcast Corporation’s David Gray conducted an in-studio interview with Hall, a senior tenured faculty member at Lethbridge, concerning the recent controversy surrounding him resulting from the defamatory campaign waged by Canada’s B’nai B’rith political pressure group.
The edited interview as broadcast by CBC may be listened to here. The uncensored version, taped by a colleague of Hall refused access to the studio, is captured in the video below.
In recent days I discovered that the Canadian branch of the Israeli-US-based Anti-Defamation League of B’nai B’rith is reporting that I am “well known for using academic credentials to deny the Holocaust.” On August 29, Daniel Leons-Marder mirrored the Canadian B’nai Brith report under the title, “Facebook Allows ‘Kill All Jews’ Post on Wall of Canadian Professor.” In an item Leons-Marder claims has been shared 11,000 times, he asserted “B’nai Brith Canada reported the image, which was ruled acceptable [by Facebook] within two hours, when it was alerted to it having been posted on the Facebook page of Canadian Academic Professor Anthony Hall, who is a holocaust denier.”
DeCal stands for Democratic Education at Cal, an old-fashioned tradition where undergraduate students teach 1 or 2 unit courses, pass/fail, to their peers. The instructors, called facilitators, plan their own courses, which must be approved by a faculty committee and the chair of a department.
In a statement, Paul Hadweh, the student facilitator, declared:
I complied with all policies and procedures required for creating the course. The course was vetted and fully supported by the faculty advisor, the department chair, and the Academic Senate’s Committee on Courses of Instruction (COCI).
The university suspended the course without consulting me, the faculty sponsor, the chair of the department, or the Academic Senate’s COCI, which is responsible for approving all UC Berkeley Courses. The university did not contact us to discuss concerns prior to suspending our course.
Powerful anti-free speech forces struck a major blow against Canadian academe and civil society this week with the firing of a veteran York University laboratory technician from his position in the Department of Physics and Astronomy.
Canada’s branch of B’nai Brith pointed to controversial social media posts the group deemed anti-Semetic to request York administrators take “real action” against the employee.
In a letter from the Office of the Dean, Faculty of Science at York University which was obtained by CIJnews, Nikolaos Balaskas was terminated for cause effective September 14, 2016 because of “continued conduct, actions and behaviours” which are “unacceptable and inconsistent with your obligations and responsibilities as an employee of York University”.
“This is a very positive step, coming from a university where there have been ongoing, and very public, issues of antisemitism. It is incredibly heartening to see that the administration, in this case, not only took the allegations seriously but took real action to correct the problem,” said Amanda Hohmann, National Director, of The League For Human Rights of B’nai Brith Canada.
[The following is an excellent commentary on the characteristic high-handedness of US higher education oversight. University management today has much in common with the corporate sector, complete with the obligatory mealy-mouth (but underlying contempt) toward free speech. Further, college administrators tend to propagate by finding new positions and pay raises for each other with wild abandon. In this instance an adjunct faculty member teaching media arts at a small state college criticized administrators’ policies on his personal blog. This must have been recognized as a threat to management’s ‘safe space’ because the poo-bahs began a malicious rumor campaign against the prof and issued him a ‘no trespass order ,… to protect our students, faculty and staff.’ The ACLU filed the lawsuit late last winter.-JFT]
The culture of fear in higher education did not arise spontaneously. Quirks in our legal system give administration on campus considerable leeway when it comes to crimes, allowing them to “criminalize” perfectly legal behavior and mete out extreme punishments, via the campus kangaroo court system.
Section 802 of PATRIOT Act and “Domestic Terrorism”
Radicalization via “conspiracy theories” have inevitably led to violence and signal potential acts of domestic terrorism. This is how Google, Interpol and the Las Vegas police have interpreted the social media activities of 24-year-old Bryce Cuellar.