Churchill, third

My third and last post (#1 and #2) on Ward Churchill’s trial, who has correctly won his suit against the University of Colorado, but I want to draw attention to Fish’s nuanced account of the affair on his blog.

How did a garden-variety academic quarrel about sources,evidence and documentation complete with a lot of huffing and puffing by everyone get elevated first into a review of the entire life of a tenured academic and then into a court case when that academic was terminated. How and why did it get that far? (…)

It was the jury’s task to determine whether Churchill’s dismissal would have occurred independently of the adverse political response to his constitutionally protected statements. In the ordinary academic course of things would his writings have been subject to the extended and minute scrutiny that led to the committee’s recommendations? (…) The answer seems obvious to me and it has now been given authoritative form in the jury’s verdict.

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