Friday, April 22, 2011

Spitballs Go Both Ways

As our Readings in Legal Thought class prepares to discuss Schools for Misrule, Walter Olson's best effort at making David Horowitz look like a responsible contributor to academic discourse, I came across this post at LGM on going-ons at the University of Iowa.

The proximate dispute (a gay rights professor responded to "Conservative Coming Out Day" with a hearty "fuck you, Republicans") is less of my interest. I agree that this response was clearly inappropriate. But as the debate escalated from there, I was bemused to read the college Republicans indicting the professor for ... writing books "in her spare time" (a/k/a, as part of her professional duties) on gay rights topics. In other words, for being a scholar in her area of specialty.

Olson's book, of course, can basically be boiled down to juvenile rage that liberals have ideas about topics Olson would rather be kept, well, in the closet. Obviously, of course, one can critique any idea as being poorly written, thought-out, or argued. But Olson, as appears to be a trend, does little more than pluck out funny-sounding titles and throw spitballs at them. And then come the inevitable complaints about how the walls of the intellectual citadel are closed to conservatives.


M.S. said...

I'm at said university and believe me when i say that after talking to the republican head of that group, well, suddenly the professor's response seems all too appropriate. I have the misfortune of knowing said republicans, but don't worry, their president told me she has gay friends.

PG said...

This sounds like part of the CCOA discussion at WWPD.