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Kevin Barrett is Not Alone

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After the local news in Madison, Wisconsin was saturated with various opinions of Kevin Barrett, who, you will recall, dared to include a few hours in a semester-long course discussing 9/11 from the Arab viewpoint, we now have New Hampshire in a fearful tizzy. In a report by the Union Leader, state leaders are concerned over the mutterings of a tenured professor of psychology at the University of NH. This professor, William Woodward, belongs to the Scholars for 9/11 Truth.

It just amazes me how fearful these "leaders" are. Isn't a university a place where people are encouraged to think outside the box – the box too many of us live in?

U.S. Sen. Judd Gregg (R-NH) says, "I believe it is inappropriate for someone at a public university, which is supported with taxpayer dollars, to take positions that are generally an affront to the sensibility of most all Americans". "Most all" does not include people with an open mind, and does not include a large number of New Yorkers who are dissatisfied with the government commission's conclusions. They want 9/11 reopened. They are not affronted by a questioning mind that is prepared to back up his charges with evidence. On the contrary, those of us that are willing to consider other ideas than our own are affronted by the Senator Gregg's position against free speech. He says that criticizing and suspecting the government of ill is "not far from making racist statements and using hate statements". That's ridiculous.

There are many reasonable doubts that the commission was complete and honest. There are many reasonable doubts that the government's "19 hijackers" story is true.  Woodward and Barrett often refer to the books by a colleague in the Scholars for Truth group, Professor David Ray Griffin such as Christian Faith and the Truth Behind 9/11: A Call to Reflection and Action and The 9/11 Commission Report: Omissions And Distortions.

Woodward is convinced "there was a genuine conspiracy on the part of insiders at the highest level of our government." If he can present reasons to doubt the official story, it is our duty to the victims to find the truth of the story, and not just take the government's story for gospel. 

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  • Luke

    I agree that most of the attacks on the academy by the likes of David Horowitz are unwarranted and somewhat scary, and I say this as a fairly conservative college student attending a higher institution that is dominated by liberal professors. The New Hampshire case looks to be another of these cases. However, I think that those attacking Kevin Barrett in Wisconsin have a reasnoable point. He is a non-tenured instructor and, more importantly, he is teaching his views on 9-11 in a class on Islam. This would be perfectly fine if there was any hard evidence to back any of these “alternate theories”, but there is none. I think the better question is how someone like Barrett was hired to teach a course in the first place.

  • RedTard

    I think the test should be if you would let a professor of European history spend a few hours describing the holocaust from the Nazi point of view then you should allow this. Unfortunately, most people only want free speech when that speech agrees with their positions.

  • http://RobustLiberty.blogspot.com Michael Gill

    The fairest means I see of judging Kevin Barrett is to watch a local TV video of an interview. You can view it at: Google video…

    I am always mystified when someone writes that they haven’t seen any evidence for them to question the official myth. Have you made an honest look into the contrary opinions? You don’t have to read books like the ones mentioned above, though I have and it’s useful. So many extended length videos have been produced that may not necessarily convince you, but should raise serious doubts.
    You can find links to some of these on my blog page (RobustLiberty).

    My opinion is that there is little “hard” evidence that supports the government assertions. How can they know who the hijackers were, much less, who was on each plane and who was piloting. It’s all conjecture. I’ve been reading the Commission’s (4th grade level) report and it just reads like a story. No hard facts.

    The FBI won’t release the more convincing tapes of the Pentagon crash – don’t they want to embarrass and silence the 9/11 critics?
    There’s no acknowledgement of the pools of molten steel in the basements of the towers, weeks after the fall. This has been cited by firefighters and cleanup crews.

    Not only did the buildings fall in a far-fetched way, not only did 3,000 people die that day, not only is people’s health suffering from the debris, not only have 2,500 soldiers and tens of thousands of Iraqi civilians died because 9/11 was used as an excuse to invade Iraq, BUT what else will this government do in the name of 9/11?

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com/ Michael J. West

    I wasn’t aware that a public university risked losing funding if it taught subject-X in class. That’s really vile and a damned dangerous precedent.

    And I say that as someone who thinks that the Scholars for 9/11 Truth are silly and have zero credibility.

  • http://musical-guru.blogspot.com/ Michael J. West

    Unfortunately, most people only want free speech when that speech agrees with their positions.

    Including, apparently, Senator Judd Gregg (R-NH).

  • Arch Conservative

    UMMM how about a little reality check here folks.

    Anyone who isn’t to the left of Castro themselevs and has even an ounce of honesty, objectivity, and familiarty with today’s college campuses knows and will admit that our colleges are in fact dominated by intolerant liberals who more often than not try to force thier leftist beliefs upon the student body while simultaneously ridculing and attermpting to silence and thought or speech that is right of center.

    There’s no getting around it….that’s the way it is folks!

    This guy in NH may not be one of those intolerant lefties as we have incomplete information about what he does exactly in the classroom but as far as I know he still has his job.

    I wonder how you that are feeling sorry for this man would feel if the story involved him discussing creationism or Jesus Christ in his classroom.

  • zingzing

    if this is a political science course, specifically one dealing in american politics, then a dicussion of creationism in our schools would be quite apt and wouldn’t cause a stir.

  • Arch Conservative

    The professor in question teaches psychology not politics or any type of world affairs class.

    So what the hell is he doing discussing his pet theories on 911 when he should be teaching about psychology?

  • http://RobustLiberty.blogspot.com Michael Gill

    It just amazes me to read people’s responses and reactions to any mention of doubts of the government’s story of 9/11. In fact, it’s often so knee-jerk and reactive that the issue is no longer political. It is indeed a psychological issue!
    So, I probably would have agreed with you in the past, but when name calling is the only answer to someone’s challenge, I think there is a social psychology dilemma.

    I think blind trust in a political group is a mental disease.

    Regarding Creationism and such, if I were a student, I would WANT to learn about the creationism theory, as I want to know what the other side of the argument is. “Know your enemy”

    The same goes for Intelligent Design, Jesus, Mohammad and Hitler. God gave us a brain. Let’s use it!

  • Someone

    If it were not true, they would not be SO SCARED :)

  • http://www.1bigdragon.blogspot.com Peter J

    Free Speech. FREE SPEECH. free speech.

    No matter how it looks it means the same.
    It doesn’t mean you have to believe it, agree with it, or even listen to it. You have complete control as far as what you want to hear or how to feel and you have the right to change the channel, turn the page or remove yourself.
    You even have the right to voice your opinion on how you feel about it but you have absolutely no right to try to silence, impede, or distort anothers opinion. To do so is nothing less than a display of intolerance and ignorance.

    In the same vein You also have the right to publicly dispute anything said, also your freedom.

    This is the base of our democracy. The day when people become afraid of retribution, threats, harassment, or hindrence for speaking their opinion will be a step into the darkness for America.

  • Baronius

    Why should a college professor have the right to free speech on the job? Seriously, a professor’s job is to teach the course material. His job is to teach Political Psychology. I have no idea what that means, but if he was doing his job, fine. If he wasn’t, he should be fired/reprimanded/whatever.

    I’d guess that, rather than teaching “the” Arab viewpoint, he was using the opportunity to express his own views.

  • http://RobustLiberty.blogspot.com Michael Gill

    You should really make the effort to click on the link above and read the article. Here’s a comment by a student there:

    One of the students in Woodward’s political psychology class where the topic came up was Zack Bazzi, a UNH psychology major and National Guardsman who served in Iraq.

    Bazzi said it was common for Woodward to share “different versions of different events in history” in the upper-level course. “He certainly doesn’t try to indoctrinate the kids,” he said. “He just puts it out there.” Try again?

  • PRINCESS

    AMERICANS SHOULD BE VERY GRATEFUL FOR THE PROFESSOR’S INTELLECT & GUTS TO TEACH “TRUTH”. WITHOUT TRUTH NO JUSTICE, WITHOUT JUSTICE NO SOCIAL ORDERS. WITHOUT ORDERS NO SECURITY. “TRUTH” IS THE BASIS FOR EVERYTHING IN LIFE.

  • http://www.elitistpig.com Dave Nalle

    As is often the case we probably need more information on what was going on in that class. When I was teaching college I would often go on tangents and ‘shoot the shit’ with students, discussing hypothetical aspects of the subject – in my case history – including conspiracy theories. That wasn’t exactly the same as endorsing those theories, but a student with a grudge could have taken my off-topic comments and made an issue of them.

    In fact, something very much like this happened at one point when I gave a student with too high an opinion of herself a B. Yet, despite the fact that the student was a friend of my Dean’s daughter, common sense prevailed and I didn’t get in any trouble for exploring some pseudohistory – primarily because I made it clear that I was talking about conjecture rather than established fact.

    What we need to know is whether Woodward was actually presenting 9/11 conspiracy theory as fact in a class where it was part of the curriculum. Since he’s a psychology prof and not a historian or political scientist he really ought to be in the clear. Hell, he’s just giving a good example of delusional paranoia.

    Dave

  • http://gaelicstarover.blogspot.com Daithi

    We really need to monitor the activities of the “America Council of Trustees and Alumni” very closely as they attempt to railrod professors…