Professor Ward Churchill: A boon for conservatives
The behavior of ultra-liberal University of Colorado Professor Ward Churchill is serving two useful purposes: (1) He illustrates that some Americans really do hate America and (2) Churchill is high-lighting a serious problem at the People’s Republik of Boulder C.U. campus where the Liberal Arts/Humanities faculty is composed almost entirely of far-left liberals and where Academic Freedom is only for liberals and not for conservative professors or students.
Most academics, to include this former university professor, feel Churchill has a 1st Amendment right to say almost anything he pleases. I say “almost” because the Courts have ruled the 1st Amendment does not include the right to shout “fire!” inside a crowded theater when no fire exists.
Another revered concept is that of Academic Freedom, a concept designed to promote free speech by professors and students alike. But Academic Freedom has limits as well. For example, a physics professor who posts the plans for a suitcase nuclear bomb on the Internet would probably be fired. Several of Churchill’s former students have filed complaints that any student who disagrees with Churchill’s world view gets a failing grade. Those charges are under investigation.
Churchill claims the right of free speech and expression for himself; however, when Italian-Americans tried to parade in downtown Denver to celebrate Columbus Day, Churchill and his followers blocked their parade
While the Politically Correct crowd has pushed for laws banning hate speech, Churchill spews out hate speech against the American people and its government. Hate speech directed against those who lost loved ones on 9/11 might even be an actionable offense. For sure, he has defamed those killed by calling them Nazis, and some of the 9/11 survivors might haul Churchill into court.
Churchill claims he is a member of the Keetoowah-Cherokee Tribe; however, the Tribe says he is not on its rolls. He has been denounced by the American Indian Movement (AIM) as a fraud.
No doubt some people inflate their resumes to obtain employment; however, if being an American Indian was a condition of his hiring at the University of Colorado, he may be in legal trouble having nothing to do with his 1st Amendment rights or Academic Freedom.
As a scholar, Ward Churchill is, at best, incompetent. Churchill claimed the U.S. Army in 1837 was intentionally passing smallpox contaminated blankets to the Mandans on the upper Missouri River. But it wasn’t until 1845 that the U.S. Army was dispatched far enough north and west to reach the Mandan dwellings.
But Churchill is not alone in his ignorance of the origins of Columbus, who either was born in Genoa (Italy had yet to exist) and taken as a child to Barcelona, Spain; or, he was born in Barcelona as the illegitimate son of a Spanish nobleman and a Jewish woman who was a servant in the nobleman’s house. In Spain, he was called Christopher Colon, a Christian name often taken by Jews in order to escape notice by the Spanish Inquisition.
Colon never wrote or spoke a word of Italian, and all the marginal notes on his navigation charts are in Hebrew. Evidence suggests his first voyage was financed more by wealthy Jewish merchants in Barcelona than by King Ferdinand and Queen Isabella. Moreover, Columbus/Colon spent more of his life in Portugal than in Spain, and it is doubtful he ever set foot in what is now Italy.
So, Ward Churchill is: a bogus American Indian who may have committed fraud to obtain his job at C.U. He denies Academic Freedom to his students. He refuses to see it was the Spaniards: Hernando Cortez and Francisco Pizarro, rather than Columbus, who oppressed the peoples of Central and South America. He denies freedom of speech to Italian-Americans who still like to think Columbus was Italian.
Churchill should be fired for academic incompetence and fraud. But he has a Constitutional right to make a fool of himself in public. Let him do so.
William Hamilton, a syndicated columnist, a featured commentator for USA Today and self-described “recovering lawyer and philosopher,” is the co-author of The Grand Conspiracy and The Panama Conspiracy – two thrillers about terrorism directed against the United States.
©2005. William Hamilton.