A great man once said, "Politics is inherently stupid." That great man was me.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

Ah, University.

The bastion of diversity, tolerance and freedom of speech. Well, unless of course your particular brand of speech is flavoured by views that don't tow the rigidly leftist ideological line.

"A proposed resolution by a major Ontario union to ban Israeli academics at the province's universities has sparked a bitter debate between leaders of both sides over an Israeli attack on a Gaza university.

The Ontario arm of the Canadian Union of Public Employees announced yesterday it would propose, in a meeting next month, “a ban on Israeli academics doing speaking, teaching or research work at Ontario universities,” if they do not explicitly condemn Israeli action in Gaza."...“Attacking an institution of learning is just beyond the pale,” CUPE Ontario president Sid Ryan said last night. “They deliberately targeted an institution of learning. That's what the Nazis did.”

Do you find this surprising? Are you, perhaps, shocked that such a censorious ban would ever even be considered? Sadly, you shouldn't be; this is a country where you can be hauled before a government tribunal and asked to explain yourself for publishing cartoons, questioning the changing population demographics in Europe, or professing your religious beliefs in a letter to your local newspaper. This is, sadly, the sort of rot that festers and is considered quite acceptable in the top leadership of many a union, student government, or academic faculty. One seriously wonders if Mr. Ryan has ever considered the blatant irony of his words; the suppression of free speech and the removal of the right to voice dissenting opinions in German universities was precisely the tactic employed by Germany's National Socialists, particularly against Jewish professors, researchers and intellectuals who were banned from teaching and working at such institutions. Mr. Ryan's sheer hypocrisy is outstanding, and the union members he 'represents' should be both furious and embarrassed. This is the same union, keep in mind, that passed a resolution in 2006 supporting the boycott of Israeli goods.

Not surprisingly, Ryan makes little mention of allegations that the university may have been used for the development and storage of explosives used by Hamas to kill Israelis, or that it was allegedly used as a meeting place for senior Hamas officials. But hey, whatever, right?

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