A Forum for Vigorous Debate, Cornerstone of Democracy

[For the journal--guidelines, focus, etc.--go to www.theamericandissident.org. If you have questions, please contact me at todslone@hotmail.com. Comments are NOT moderated (i.e., CENSORED)!]
Encouraged censorship and self-censorship seem to have become popular in America today. Those who censor others, not just self, tend to favor the term "moderate," as opposed to "censor" and "moderation" to "censorship." But that doesn't change what they do. They still act as Little Caesars or Big Brother protectors of the thin-skinned. Democracy, however, demands a tough populace, not so easily offended. On this blog, and to buck the trend of censorship, banning, and ostracizing, comments are NEVER "moderated." Rarely (almost NEVER) do the targets of these blog entries respond in an effort to defend themselves with cogent counter-argumentation. This blog is testimony to how little academics, poets, critics, newspaper editors, cartoonists, political hacks, cultural council apparatchiks, librarians et al appreciate VIGOROUS DEBATE, cornerstone of democracy. Clearly, far too many of them could likely prosper just fine in places like communist China and Cuba or Saudi Arabia, Qatar, and Russia, not to mention Sweden, England, and Austria.

More P. Maudit cartoons (and essays) at Global Free Press: http://www.globalfreepress.org

Tuesday, October 31, 2023

Fostering Students' Free Expression

Below is the front cover and editorial of the latest issue of The American Dissident, Issue #46, inspired by The Chronicle of Higher Education.  Both were sent to the editors, depicted on the cover.  Unsurprisingly, not one of them deigned to respond...  



Censorship Now!

Freedom of Expression… in Higher Ed

Unfortunately, tenure has led to the ossification of American education.  The hiring, promotion, and tenure system has institutionalized sycophancy toward those in power.  

—Camille Paglia, Tenured Professor, University of the Arts


The rise of hate speech threatens… or so they say. But what is hate speech?… or so they don’t say.  Well, criticism is/can be hate speech.  So, I say, let hate speech rise!  Banning it is an act of censorship and a violation of the First Amendment. Banning serves to kill inconvenient truths, hurtful to hacks with thin skin, haters themselves who hate freedom of expression.  “Censorship now!” would be a slogan too truthful, too transparent.  And so the haters supplant it with calls to remove disinformation, misinformation, and malinformation… 

        Searching for some grist, I came across an ad (see store.chronicle.com/products/fostering-students-free-expression?variant=42345778348229?cid=cs-che-cdp-2022-section-front-footer-11) in the Chronicle of Higher Education for a book written and published by the Chronicle of Higher Education. The front cover of this issue, “The Chronicle of Higher Indoctrination,” thus resulted.  Since the author of the book description was not indicated, I depicted the top honchos of the publication, Editor-in-Chief Michael G. Riley, as well as a few of the other editors and managers (see www.chronicle.com/page/contact-us).  

    How not to question the very title, Fostering Students’ Free Expression.  A thinking individual might actually wonder how college professors and administrators might serve to foster that when they themselves have an overwhelming tendency to self-censor.  In fact, how might the very editors of the Chronicle do that when no doubt their rise to the top demanded turning a blind eye and team playing, certainly not individual rude-truth telling. Career success (climbing the ladder), in general, depends on such behavior. Evidently, speaking truth and career success do not make good partners.  

        The book in question is digital and contains 74 pages and was published in September 2023 and also does not list an author.  It costs a mind-boggling $179.  Might that really be for only one digital copy? The Chronicle states:  “Learn more about digital licensing options and request a quote. For group purchases of fewer than 100 users, please refer to our bulk pricing."  

n any case, according to the anonymous ad writer, “The pandemic made students feel more isolated and vulnerable. Unending political turmoil has left them frustrated.” Well, how about the profs and administrators? “Many professors say that students are reluctant to tackle tough questions in classroom discussions, and a 2022 survey by Heterodox Academy found that the majority of students who are timid when it comes to sharing opinions in class said they worried about the reactions they might get from peers.”  Couldn’t one say the same for the profs and administrators, and if not, why not?  After all, conformity is a synonym for team playing, which tends to be  obligatory in higher ed.  

          The description praises professors as “cultivating an environment that encourages discussion of difficult topics—and how administrators can support faculty members who do this work.”  Difficult topics, eh?  Might they include the higher ed ambiance that encourages team playing at the expense of truth telling and the reality of general professorial apathy to freedom of expression when ideology (e.g., DEI and CRT) demands it? Well, I sent this editorial and the front cover image to the editor/managers in question and asked them to consider publishing both as an example of their purported support for freedom of expression.  No response was ever received. 

    The back cover of this issue, “The Business of Writing,” depicts two GrubStreet leaders, Artistic Director Dariel Suarez and Founder/Executive Director Eve Bridburg. Waiting for my car inspection, I went through the magazines, leafed through Bostonia, the Alumni Magazine of Boston University.  “Big Moves at GrubStreet,” written by Grub publicist Joel Brown, grabbed my attention. It focused on Grub's “gleaming new home on the Seaport.” Of course, everything in alumni magazines tends to be glowing wonderment.  “GrubStreet always had a sense of inclusion from the very beginning [in 1997],” noted Bridburg, “and we’re trying to create something that is more welcoming, less paternalistic, and more inclusive.” How original!  Inclusion!  But, of course, NOT inclusion regarding criticism of GrubStreet!  “It isn’t just about bringing people in, ‘this is gonna step up our numbers.’  It’s about following through, even in the growth of our staff,” stated Suarez.  But perhaps writing should be about truth and free expression, not about increasing numbers. GrubStreet’s website echoes the overwhelming business/money and identity politics aspects of the writing industry today (see grubstreet.org/). 

        final comment: The hate-speech attack on free speech has become an establishment weapon of the ruling oligarchy to further We, the In-Lockstep People. Biden failed to embed his Orwellian Disinformation Governance Board into the bureaucracy. But CISA (Cybersecurity & Infrastructure Security Agency) has existed since 2018. 

CISA defines mis-, dis-, and malinformation (MDM) as “information activities.” This type of content is referred to as either domestic or foreign influence depending on where it originates.

• Misinformation is false, but not created or shared with the intention of causing harm.

• Disinformation is deliberately created to mislead, harm, or manipulate a person, social group, organization, or country.

• Malinformation is based on fact, but used out of context to mislead, harm, or manipulate.

     And so, facts must be destroyed if they harm.  P. Maudit cartoons are clear examples of malinformation because they openly seek to harm, via facts and logic, buffered cogs of the establishment. How many more terms will be created by Big Gov/Academe in an effort to kill truth and free expression and further control We, the People?  Sadly, America is following the European Union in that oligarchic endeavor.  Democracy—freedom of speech—is dying, which is why I continue to speak/write rudely and openly.  Inevitably, one day in the near future, in America, a journal like The American Dissident will not simply be ostracized—excluded from library shelves and listings of journals (NewPages and P&W)—, but will be strictly prohibited and forced into the realm of samizdat…