More On Plagiarism

The McInnis thing is not going to get better for him as other media organizations first play catch-up, then pile-on.

But let’s not allow stupid comments to flourish in the meantime.  At Colorado Pols, we find this:

And folks, do you remember a man named Ward Churchill? It’s our understanding that, uh, Colorado Republicans really frown on academic fraud. The funny thing about Churchill was how few responsible people on the left were willing to defend him, even though there are free speech and political implications all over that story. The reason was simple: he was a plagiarist.

(Emphasis added.)  Quite a bit of revisionism going on here.  How about the 600+ “responsible people” who lent their support to an “Open Letter from Concerned Academics” in defense of Ward Churchill which prejudged the University’s investigation, called for it to be abandoned immediately, and compared the inquiry to, you guessed it, McCarthyism:

One must go back to the “scoundrel time” of the McCarthy years to find anything even close to this.

* * *

It would be hard to overstate the serious nature of what has already happened, let alone what it would mean should the Regents fire Churchill. If this assault on academe succeeds, the consequences for American society as a whole will be nothing short of disastrous.

* * *

The University of Colorado Board of Regents must drop any effort to fire Churchill, withdraw their support for the spurious investigation into his body of work and repudiate its actions up to now.

I will go out on a limb and suggest that perhaps, just perhaps, the vast majority of signatories to this open letter find themselves most at home with people on the left.

The right certainly did frown on the academic fraud that was (and is) Ward Churchill, and the right should take any accusations of plagiarism by McInnis very seriously.  But to pretend that the left stood up for academic honesty in the Ward Churchill matter — or even to contend that it stood on the sidelines quietly hoping the whole thing would just go away — is complete nonsense.  They guy stole writings from others, literally made stuff up, and couldn’t even do art without stealing from the actual artist.  And yet the left defended and even lionized Churchill as a hero of free speech.

Published in: on July 13, 2010 at 12:51 pm  Leave a Comment  

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