When freedom of thought, inquiry, and speech thrive at universities so does American democracy.

Turning Point USA is a right-wing organization that is much like McCarthy’s red-baiting back in the 1950’s. Their creation of a Professors Watchlist is a form of intimidation. The final paragraph in this blog clearly expresses why faculty, students, and the larger community must resist such attempts at censorship :

“The Professor Watchlist obscures and attacks the core of the university. It uses false transparency to intimidate and shame us into acquiescence. We can broker no compromise with such people. They are fundamentally anti-American. When freedom of thought, inquiry, and speech thrive at universities so does democracy and American life.”

Peter is in the Forest

Tomorrow, my friend, colleague, and Bernie Sanders supporter Sophia McClennen and I will be on FREQ’s The Morning Mixtape hosted by Jason Crane to talk about the Professor Watchlist. Here are my thoughts (with reference to McClennen’s) on the matter.

In the last few weeks, the Professor Watchlist and its founding group, Turning Point USA have surfaced to set us “free.” While this group of ideological purists allege that they are concerned with American well-being, we can be sure they are anything but. Professors, they promise, are promoting radical ideas and the public needs to be alerted. These far right would-be censors, though, have simply reopened a long-standing battlefront by the culturally regressive armies of the night. A thriving democracy cannot and must not tolerate it.

The list’s founder, Charlie Kirk, is quoted in The New York Times as saying there are many professors who are “advance[ing] a radical agenda in lecture…

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