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UC Berkeley- academic freedom forum- w/ Ward Churchill
by cp
Monday Mar 28th, 2005 6:30 PM
on March 28th, a forum on the topic of academic freedom was held at UC Berkeley. There was a disproportionate focus on the case of Ward Churchill at University of Colorado at Boulder, and he and Natsu Saito were on this panel along with Prof. Carlos Munoz, dean of arts and humanities Ralph Hexter, and the head of the ethnic studies department Ling-chi Wang. This was the day right after Spring break, and the student newspaper did not advertise the event, so there were relatively few students, even though there is a sizable Young Republicans club on campus which advertised against him.
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In the first sound file, Churchill starts talking at 7 minutes, and Dean Hexter starts at about 28 minutes.

The audience had quite a few older people, as well as a number from the elaborate Berkeley mental illness community - such as the tipi guy who stands by BART. Seeing someone flipping through a David Horowitz book in the front row, we had speculated that there might be a disturbance, in contrast to the character of the audience at the Bookfair appearance on Saturday. However, there turned out to be minimal disagreement and no disturbance. Churchill described the distinction between first amendment freedom and academic freedom. He also repeated his explanation of the Eichman comment, talked about a bar in the financial district that displays the teeth that Custer knocked out of his indian sex slave's mouth, and touched on his opinion of Thomas Brown, John Lavelle, concern over his ethnicity, and his income. The Dean commented on the difficulty of prescribing 'balance' in the classroom because how would one define the center of balance. Should classes be determined by a committee so each possible viewpoint be presented equally - so the LaRouche, communist, libertarian perspective etc. should be given equal time in a political class, or should time be allocated proportional to their estimate of that perspective in society.
Saito covered a few legal topics relating to academic freedom, and discussed personal political expression by professors, and what speech isn't covered by first amendment.

During the question and answer session, a number of people had long comments. There were really only one or two disagreeable questions.

In my opinion, Churchill should think about why people continue to misunderstand his Eichman statement. He wrote a well-known book on comparative genocides that discusses a long list of instances of genocidal activity, and also arguing that the World War II german genocide should not be considered exceptional. Yet, the reason he selected 'Eichman' as his example of a powerful manager of deaths and misery of others, but who got to keep his hands clean, is because of this german exceptionalism - everyone is familiar with World War II, but can be fuzzy about these other areas of history and other world regions. As a professor, wouldn't he be helping us out a lot more if he called immoral corporate managers 'little Lewis Cass' (of the 1830s department of War who denied smallpox vaccine to specific tribes as punishment, and arranged the trail of tears from Washington DC) and then proceed through the list of different massacres through history. People would learn something and start to get his point perhaps, although he would be less famous.
§Saito and Munoz
by cp Monday Mar 28th, 2005 6:45 PM
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Both are good clear speakers
§questions afterwards
by cp Monday Mar 28th, 2005 7:06 PM
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Some of these are probably muffled, and some are clearer. There were a number of people who just made statements about Israel. Given that there are only <10 million people in that region, and there are many other areas around the world who are kept impoverished or under control of brutal armies with some support of U.S policy via the World bank and trade agreements, and military intervention or advisement, I really wish we could talk about these other areas.

§Photos From This Forum
by Z Monday Mar 28th, 2005 8:29 PM
http://www.indybay.org/news/2005/03/1730104.php
§compressed version
by encoder Tuesday Mar 29th, 2005 9:48 AM
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§compressed version
by encoder Tuesday Mar 29th, 2005 9:52 AM
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§compressed version
by encoder Tuesday Mar 29th, 2005 9:55 AM
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§Cleaned up audio of just Ward's portion
by compressed and cleaned Tuesday Mar 29th, 2005 12:21 PM
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Still a little hard to understand for first 8 minutes but after that its pretty clear
§Cleaned up audio of Carlos Munoz
by cleaned and compressed Tuesday Mar 29th, 2005 1:10 PM
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Some portions are not that understandable but others are pretty clear. Hopefully you can at elast get a feel for what he said.
LATEST COMMENTS ABOUT THIS ARTICLE
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TITLE AUTHOR DATE
Marxist Blasts ChurchillShould Be Linked Directly to ArticleMonday Apr 18th, 2005 1:24 PM
Photos of the barnative solidarity activistsThursday Mar 31st, 2005 4:33 PM
RE: THE BAR, THINK STRATEGICALLYnative solidarity activistThursday Mar 31st, 2005 10:46 AM
they have free bar food!addressWednesday Mar 30th, 2005 2:02 PM
reviewaddressWednesday Mar 30th, 2005 1:53 PM
hmmhmmWednesday Mar 30th, 2005 12:22 PM
yeah, sure steveFellow TravelerWednesday Mar 30th, 2005 10:02 AM
fotosmoreWednesday Mar 30th, 2005 9:59 AM
should do somethingcpWednesday Mar 30th, 2005 9:50 AM
Eddie Rickenbacker's - where darthmouth grads cut their teeth.Wednesday Mar 30th, 2005 9:22 AM
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