Governor Bill Owens' Calls on Churchill to Resign
February 2, 2005
The below letter was writtem yesterday - February 1st - by colorado's
right-wing governor Bill Owens. This guy has a history of attacking queer
rights, affirmative action, reproductive freedom, and the left in general.
In fact, for some time now - well before he ever heard of Ward Churchill's
essay Some People Push Back - Owens
had plans to engineer academia by pressuring universities to hire more "patriotically
correct" professors - you can read the full story here:
What with the lynch-mob hysteria gripping sections of the
Right as they target Ward Churchill for his statements about September 11th,
Governor Owens is jumping at the chance to get rid of a left-wing academic
while further tightening the "Limits of Dissent"... wait a second, wasn't
"Limits of Dissent" the name of the panel discussion Churchill was supposed
to speak on, which started this whole brouhaha... oh the irony!
We have come to a teaching moment at the University of Colorado. I applaud
every person on the University of Colorado campus who has come to speak out
against the indecent, insensitive and inappropriate comments and writings
of Ward Churchill.
All decent people, whether Republican or Democrat, liberal or conservative,
should denounce the views of Ward Churchill. Not only are his writings outrageous
and insupportable, they are at odds with the facts of history. The thousands
of innocent people - and innocent they were - who were murdered on September
11 were murdered by evil cowards. Indeed, if anyone could possibly be compared
to the evildoers of Nazi Germany, it is the terrorists of the 21st century
who have an equally repugnant disregard for innocent human life.
No one wants to infringe on Mr. Churchill's right to express himself. But
we are not compelled to accept his pro-terrorist views at state taxpayer
subsidy nor under the banner of the University of Colorado. Ward Churchill
besmirches the University and the excellent teaching, writing and research
of its faculty.
Ideas have consequences, and words have meaning. If there is one lesson that
we hope that all Coloradans take from this sad case - and especially our
students - it is that civility and appropriate conduct are important. Mr.
Churchill's views are not simply anti-American. They are at odds with simple
decency, and antagonistic to the beliefs and conduct of civilized people
around the world. His views are far outside the mainstream of civil discourse
and useful academic work.
His resignation as chairman of the Ethnic Studies Department was a good first
step. We hope that he will follow this step by resigning his position on
the faculty of the University of Colorado.