June 04, 2004

Lawyers with no concept of academic freedom or free speech. How very heartening.

Of course, this example is from Boalt law school, which has a tradition of, well, problems with recognizing the reality of free speech, and a tendency toward witch hunts--but still. Neglecting the stupidity of the activism in question, which is, as the article points out, " if someone writes an opinion you don't like, they're breaking the law," I'd like to focus on the bald assertion made by these law students that:

"...their attempt to drive Yoo from academia did not 'constitute an attack on academic freedom.' "
'The choice is up to (Yoo). He is free to do what he wants,' explained petition circulator Michael Anderson, 35."

Professor Yoo is free to do what he wants, except that he shouldn't be allowed to do what he wants (teach law) because he offended one Michael Anderson, and now Michael is attempting to drive Yoo out because Yoo apparently committed ThoughtCrime. Besides, we all know the best way to counter ideas you disagree with is not to debate them, but to immediately campaign for the removal of the person espousing the ideas. Nope, no assault on academic freedom there. Nothing to see here, kids. Move along.

In the World According to Michael, writing an opinion is an illegal act, and he is the arbiter of all that is right and just in academia. How precious. And these kids are going to be interpreting real law in real life? Oh, I'm sorry. The "kid" in question is thirty-five. Hey Michael? Here's a ladder. Get over yourself.

Posted by Big Arm Woman at June 4, 2004 12:24 PM