Skip to comments.Bill Ayers, Sirhan Sirhan, and 'Prairie Fire'
Posted on 11/09/2008 8:45:42 PM PST by Lorianne
They want the world to know, so they've endorsed the following statement:
We write to support our colleague Professor William Ayers, Distinguished Professor of Education and Senior University Scholar at the University of Illinois at Chicago, who is currently under determined and sustained political attack. Ayers is a nationally known scholar, member of the Faculty Senate at UIC, Vice President-elect of the American Educational Research Association, and sought after as a speaker and visiting scholar by other universities because of his exemplary scholarship, teaching, and service. Throughout the 20 years that he has been a valued faculty member at UIC, he has taught, advised, mentored, and supported hundreds of undergraduate, Masters and Ph.D. students. He has pushed them to take seriously their responsibilities as educators in a democracy to promote critical inquiry, dialogue, and debate; to encourage questioning and independent thinking; to value the full humanity of every person and to work for access and equity. Helping educators develop the capacity and ethical commitment to these responsibilities is at the core of what we do, and as a teacher he has always embraced debate and multiple perspectives.
All citizens, but particularly teachers and scholars, are called upon to challenge orthodoxy, dogma, and mindless complacency, to be skeptical of authoritative claims, to interrogate and trouble the given and the taken-for-granted. Without critical dialogue and dissent we would likely be burning witches and enslaving our fellow human beings to this day. The growth of knowledge, insight, and understanding--- the possibility of change--- depends on that kind of effort, and the inevitable clash of ideas that follows should be celebrated and nourished rather than crushed. Teachers have a heavy responsibility, a moral obligation, to organize classrooms as sites of open discussion, free of coercion or intimidation. By all accounts Professor Ayers meets this standard. His classes are fully enrolled, and students welcome the exchange of views that he encourages.
The current characterizations of Professor Ayers---unrepentant terrorist, lunatic leftist---are unrecognizable to those who know or work with him. Its true that Professor Ayers participated passionately in the civil rights and antiwar movements of the 1960s, as did hundreds of thousands of Americans. His participation in political activity 40 years ago is history; what is most relevant now is his continued engagement in progressive causes, and his exemplary contribution---including publishing 16 books--- to the field of education. The current attacks appear as part of a pattern of exposés and assaults designed to intimidate free thinking and stifle critical dialogue. Like crusades against high school and elementary teachers, and faculty at UCLA, Columbia, DePaul, and the University of Colorado, the attacks on and the character assassination of Ayers threaten the university as a space of open inquiry and debate, and threaten schools as places of compassion, imagination, curiosity, and free thought. They serve as warnings that anyone who voices perspectives and advances questions that challenge orthodoxy and political power may become a target, and this, then, casts a chill over free speech and inquiry and the spirit of democracy.
We, the undersigned, stand on the side of education as an enterprise devoted to human inquiry, enlightenment, and liberation. We oppose the demonization of Professor William Ayers.
Yes, that illustrious list of Wisconsin educators and others oppose the demonization of the distinguished Professor William Ayers.
They aren't at all troubled by Ayers' "activism."
"Its true that Professor Ayers participated passionately in the civil rights and antiwar movements of the 1960s, as did hundreds of thousands of Americans. His participation in political activity 40 years ago is history; what is most relevant now is his continued engagement in progressive causes, and his exemplary contribution---including publishing 16 books--- to the field of education.
There's a problem with that.
Ayers is not like the hundreds of thousands of Americans who participated in the civil rights and anti-war movements of the 1960s, not even close. It's a lie to suggest that his participation in protests was remotely similar to that of hundreds of thousands of Americans. It's a flat-out lie.
It's also a lie to suggest that Ayers' political activism is history.
The statement doesn't tell the truth about Ayers, yet these educators have signed their names to it.
They believe that Ayers is a victim. He's under attack. They are shouting out that they stand in solidarity with Ayers.
I wonder if these people, currently 4090 endorsements, really do support this man.
I don't want to believe that they do. I want to believe that these educators have some moral grounding and standards of decency. I really want to believe that they don't know the real Bill Ayers; and if they did, they would not consider him to be the victim of a sustained political attack and the target of false accusations.
I wonder what the people listed above think about Prairie Fire.
It has a red cover. Nice touch. It reminds me of Mao's Little Red Book. The title, Prairie Fire, is all Mao, too. Mao wrote, "A Single Spark Can Start a Prairie Fire," on January 5, 1930.
>excerpt< more at Mary's blog.
Only in the USA can a convicted terrorist become a tenured professor
I just happen to have Mao’s Little Red Book. I bought it in China in 1972. The book I have is in English and was printed in the People’s Republic of China.I was just thumbing throgh it and found a statement which I think should be taken to heart by the conservatives...here is what the book says:
“ Complancency is the enemy of study. We cannot really learn anything until we rid ourselves of complacency. Our attitude towards ourselves should be ‘ to be insatiale in learning’ and ‘towards others in teaching’ “
Taken from the Role of the Chinese Communist Party in the National War ( Oct 1938) Selecte works Vol II p 210
Seems to me the true and real conservatives should start to teach and the rest should study..and in essence know thy enemy.
It’s all in the video, we need to educate people before it’s too late or we’ll die the death of a million sheep bites.
Some 'sobered up' the morning after the sick sixties & flew right; some were too wasted, brain-damaged & went the welfare /handout route; but too many simply put on a suit or a dress and took their MBAs & went after the money with the usual covert hunger of many Commies. And a lot of them became--professors, teachers, raising their kids with the same ideology: Now the chickens have come home to roost. Ayers isn't a rarity, he's all too common.
I'm not at all adverse to teaching and discussing other ideas no matter how radical so long as there is balance in the discussion, and radical ideas aren't promoted as the right and proper thing to do especially if they involve destroying people or property. What I'm seeing now on the internet and in our educational institutions that anybody who clings to old ideas is either maligned in many different ugly ways, made to feel backward, and intimidated into silence. That is not the American way, although I know it has been abused in the past; i.e., the Salem business. It was horrible, but they put the clamps on it themselves when it got too far out of hand which I think is pretty progressive for those times. Would that some of the others take the lead in policing themselves.
By his supporters' logic, I can go out there and start blowing things up, just not get caught. I can foment revolution because that is free expression. That's the message I'm getting. Sorry, it's sedition and treasonous, and I want no part of any of it.
I have a copy of the book now. It's all there. Talked to two friends today and they don't see what's such a big deal about it. It makes me feel so sad.
I'm not saying he should be taken out and shot or stoned or anything like that, but I don't understand any school that would hire somebody with a background like that. Many teachers have challenged my thinking that didn't try to blow up things in our country.
I think many of those others in the book went into education, community outreach, human rights, not necessarily bad things in and of themselves, one founded Kwanzaa, another I wrote about on another thread, they seem to be involved in one manner or another in shaping minds, bringing about change in consciousness and diviseness. What do I care about Kwanzaa? I know little about it; it's some kind of new religion, maybe it gives certain people a sense of identity, and they have a right to do it so long as they don't hurt their fellow citizens in so doing.
One person challenged me it's good we can have people from different backgrounds in a room and all agree we wouldn't do a certain thing. What about redemption?
But he's not sorry, thinks they didn't do enough, where is it for me to forgive anybody or do I not get it? Perhaps someone who has hurt me personally. Plus I like to feel that they are truly remorseful.
I have hurt people in my life and when I became aware of it, I felt guilt and sorrow and made an effort to apologize. I can't remember but one person in my life, except one daughter, who has expressed remorse for the pain she caused me. There are so many out there who have wronged me. Not one ever could say the simple words, "I'm sorry."
I tried to explain this to a friend the other day and you said this so well..
That is the scariest thing I’ve ever watched.
All Sgt McDonald's life was worth is an apology?
Larry Grathwohl also testified to the U.S. Senate that Ayers
was planning to divide the country for occupation
by Cuba, China, Vietnam and the Soviets. The
general population put into camps in the southwest
and twenty five million Americans who would not
go along with communism systematically murdered.
And you think an apology is sufficient?
Once the whole country sees it we’ll be better off.
And you think an apology is sufficient?
Um no, as applies to the next world. According to my faith, the worst sinner can be forgiven if they repent of each individual thing they did wrong.
Exposing it is one thing but spending the rest of my life in hatred is not a good thing. Doesn't mean I have to associate with him, wouldn't pay for my children to sit in his classes, etc.
What would you do to him if you had the power now? He got off on a technicality. That is not true justice. They finally got OJ. He says he's guilty but free as a bird.
These were children of privilege, the best that life could offer at the time anywhere in the world except for possible royalty. What have they ever given up by way of creature comforts? They live in a nice house, today live an affluent lifestyle, better than at least half Americans, I just can't come to terms with the irony of it is all.
I didn't mean to imply that an apology would be sufficient. I don't know what it would take at this point. It's one of the mysteries of life how some of the worst criminals died in their own beds from natural causes.
"Um no, as applies to the next world. According to my faith, the worst sinner can be forgiven if they repent of each individual thing they did wrong."
"Exposing it is one thing but spending the rest of my life in hatred is not a good thing. Doesn't mean I have to associate with him, wouldn't pay for my children to sit in his classes, etc."
And what about the academics who treat us as fools and
keep stating that Ayers never hurt anyone?
They share the same hatred for the rest of us as Ayers.
They are communists as well.
They dream of being our dictators and choosing which of
us live or die, and think of themselves as our masters.
Dark intellectual derelicts.
"What would you do to him if you had the power now? He got off on a technicality. That is not true justice. They finally got OJ. He says he's guilty but free as a bird.<">
It is not my place to deal with Ayers. It is in GOD’s hands.
Ayers and Doren were never tried for McDonald's death.
I have seen people convicted of murder by just circumstance.
Due to Ayers family wealth and influence he gets a pass at
treason and murder.
These people are the very ones whom they claim to hate.
Otherwise they would move to a communist slum in Cuba
and live the life they wish on the rest of us.
"These were children of privilege, the best that life could offer at the time anywhere in the world except for possible royalty. What have they ever given up by way of creature comforts? They live in a nice house, today live an affluent lifestyle, better than at least half Americans, I just can't come to terms with the irony of it is all."
After getting away with murder and Treason they can't
just shut up. They need to rub our noses in it.
Just to try and prove they are superior to the rest of us.
Truth is their not. This is why they hate the rest of us.
All that education and intellectual superiority and can
do nothing but destroy.
What useful things do they produce?
'I didn't mean to imply that an apology would be sufficient. I don't know what it would take at this point. It's one of the mysteries of life how some of the worst criminals died in their own beds from natural causes."
How about they all STFU.
Stop rubbing salt in the wounds.
When you live in a society where people can commit
murder and treason (not simple crimes) and brag about it
people loose faith in that society.
Stop insulting our intelligence with the Ayers hurt no one.
We are not that stupid.
Thank you. I remember those days of confusion & revulsion; people could not understand where this violence and hatred had come from so suddenly, I was a few years older than the average age of the ‘hippie protestors’ and wondered where it all had originated. There is a book out called “Death of the Grown-up” by Diana West . She has a blog and syndicated column (Wash. Times, Townhall and others. I wondered for years how the Greatest Generation could produce the Worst; she explained it. I want to read it again, but my daughter saw it and confiscated it, has read it twice now & refers to it often. I send her emails & prints of DW’s columns.
Is the book still in print? If it is, what a perfect Christmas gift for those whom we know voted for The Dear Leader, The One, Obama The Red..
Quoth Robert F. Kennedy Jr. on September 15, 2008 on the Huffington Post in criticism of Governor Sarah Palin:
Fascist writer Westbrook Pegler, an avowed racist who Sarah Palin approvingly quoted in her acceptance speech for the moral superiority of small town values, expressed his fervent hope about my father, Robert F. Kennedy, as he contemplated his own run for the presidency in 1965, that some white patriot of the Southern tier will spatter his spoonful of brains in public premises before the snow flies.
Yet the same Robert F Kennedy, to my knowledge, hasn’t said boo about Bill Ayers’ dedication of his book “Prairie Fire” to Sirhan Sirhan (and has publically called Sirhan a hero) .... the man who actually shot and killed his father!
Just published last winter I believe which is when I bought it. You can order it from her website—www.Dianawest.com And read her blog when it appears; archives. Also her columnappears on Townhall.
A PDF of the book is available here.
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