September 20, 2007

MORE CRITICISM OF THE U.C. REGENTS in the Larry Summers affair, at The New Republic. U.C. Davis history professor Eric Rauchway writes:

By succumbing to a demand that they reject a controversial, though–as a former treasury secretary, university administrator, and respected economist–obviously relevant speaker, the Regents have suddenly made life much more difficult for those of us in the business of presenting controversial, if relevant, ideas and guest speakers on UC campuses. Casting someone as utterly outside the university’s conversation is the severest penalty we as scholars can impose–appropriate perhaps to Holocaust deniers and such ilk as exhibit a chronic impenetrability to reason. Lawrence Summers, though he said some things well worth objecting to, falls well short of that standard. By applying this ban to him, the Regents suggest an impossibly low tolerance for controversy at the University of California.

Indeed. Though rather than “suggest,” I’d say the appropriate word is “demonstrate.”

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