More Thought Police
Following up on Matt’s on point analysis. What does it say about the strength of their position that the PC Thought Police cannot abide the expression of ideas that counter their prevailing world view? Below is a summary of a story that outside of the Chronicle of Higher Education and conservative circles did not get much play. Like the sad story of Larry Summers, it is just as instructive of the intellectual rot that passes for education at our institutions of higher learning.
Around the same time that Harvard was planning Larry Summers’ trip to the gualg, a similar battle took place at tiny Hamilton College in upstate New York. Some faculty, administrators, and alumni thought it would be a good idea to establish The Alexander Hamilton Institute for the Study of Western Civilization on the campus that bears his name. The center envisioned “extracurricular programs on the history and meaning of freedom, democracy, and capitalism.” From the AHI mission statement:
A heritage, at its most basic level, speaks to the journey of persons from there to here. It identifies the signposts, monuments, and ruins left behind by human beings as they sought individually and collectively to define who they are and what they aspired to be. The Alexander Hamilton Institute for the Study of Western Civilization (AHI) proceeds under the premise that the reasoned study of Western civilization, its distinctive achievements as well as its distinctive failures, will further the search for truth and provide the ethical basis necessary for civilized life. The AHI aspires to create an educational environment of the highest standards in which evidence and argument prevail over ideology and cant.
A worthy academic endeavor.
However, this attempt at promoting scholarship and academic inquiry ran afoul of the radical campus faculty of the Kirkland Project for the Study of Gender, Society, and Culture, housed at Hamilton. A quick history is lesson is needed here to explain the circumstances surrounding the Hamilton Institute.
Kirkland invited convicted Weather Underground terrorist Susan Rosenberg as its “artist/activist in residence” to teach a writing course “Resistance Memoirs.” The Kirkland Project describes its mission as ” an organization committed to social justice, focusing on issues of race, class, gender, sexuality, disability, as well as other facets of human diversity.” Then Kirkland director Nancy Rabinowitz invited Rosenberg. Rabinowitz has deep familial ties to the violent anti-American left. Her father-in-law Victor Rabinowitz’s law firm defended another Weather Underground terrorist Kathy Boudin among others. The Rabinowitz law firm also has ties that stretch back to the old CPUSA involving John Abt who ran the infamous Soviet espionage ring the “Ware Group”, which included none other than Alger Hiss. See all the sordid details here.
During his final days in office Bill Clinton pardoned Rosenberg, who was had served only 16 years of a 58 year sentence for weapons possession and conspiracy. She was also the getaway driver in a 1981 Brinks armored car heist in Nyack, NY that left two police officers and a security guard dead. Friends and relatives of the murdered policemen protested outside a swank Hamilton fund raiser in New York and built enough public pressure to force Kirkland to rescind the invitation to Rosenberg. However, that did not stop Rabinowitz. She would go on to invite fake Native American Ward Churchill to speak at Hamilton, who was also turned back, but the attendant controversy exposed all of us to the term “Little Eichmanns.”
Now, back to the Alexander Hamilton Institute. The fact that such an organization like AHI dedicated to scholarly pursuits in furtherance of the traditions of western civilization, with a charter that freed itself from faculty control, and wanted to call Hamilton its home, was beyond the pale for Rabinowitz and the other leftist faculty whose main function was not scholarship but rather the subversion of western civilization.
Unfortunately for Hamilton College, its board of trustees sided with radicals and put the kibosh on the AHI being housed at Hamilton. Fortunately for those interested in free academic inquiry wealthy Hamilton alumni diverted their donations from their alma mater to the AHI, which now operates free and independently from the campus radicals and callow administration of Hamilton College.