Creighton Professor Triggers Outcry After Labeling Supporters Of Police “White Supremacists”

downloadNow for some good news.  We have been following efforts to have professors stripped of academic positions or outright fired for voicing opposing views of police shootings, Black Lives Matter movement or aspects of recent protests from the University of Chicago to Harvard to Cornell to other schools.  Now we have a professor at Creighton University who has triggered an outcry by calling support for police officers an expression of white supremacy. The University later issued an apology on behalf of Associate Professor of Theology Zachary Smith but no one has called for his termination.  Today, that is progress.  We can only hope that if Smith’s comments were directed at groups or issues associated with the current protests, the university and his colleagues would have the same measured or muted response.

On July 7th, Smith tweeted a response to an article in the Omaha World-Herald. The article, headlined “‘Back the Blue’ rally in Omaha to show support for law enforcement.”

He responded with discussed details for an upcoming rally in Omaha to show support for law enforcement. “Lemme fix this headline for you, @OWHnews: “White supremacist rally in Omaha to showcase Midwestern racism.”

First, worse headline ever.  Smith is likely much stronger on writing on Byzantine Christians than he is as a copy editor.

Second, the tweet obviously treats support for police as an expression of racism.  It is the type of labeling that we have seen around the country where it is no longer possible to disagree with others.  Instead, any view deemed unsupportive of the protests is denounced as racism. It is the type of slanderous claim that will garner popularity for an academic in many circles while creating a chilling effect on others who might hold opposing views.Smith’s response shows how such unfair and hurtful views are becoming a type of badge for academics; a public declaration that they are on the right side of racism.

This time however it triggered a backlash in Nebraska where police still have considerable support and Smith removed his tweet. While it would have been good for Smith to issue a statement directly, this is a good story for free speech because no one is campaigning for his termination on Change.org or other sites. Instead, his outrageous views were denounced in the same public forum in which they were given.  While I find his view of police (and their supporters) to be highly offensive, I would oppose any effort to punish him.

This measured response however has been largely missing on our campuses when faculty express views critical of the protests or underlying demands.  Unlike Chicago’s Harald Uhlig, the senior editor of the prestigious the Journal of Political Economy, there was no call to strip Smith of his editorial position on the Journal of Religion & Society. Unlike Harvard’s Professor Steven Pinker, a respected member of the Linguistic Society of America, there was no effort to see Smith removed from the American Academy of Religion or the Society of Biblical Literature. Unlike Cornell’s William A. Jacobson, there was no effort to have him removed from the faculty.  Indeed, the faculty was absolutely silent in silence to his attack of police and those who support them as racists.

I would like to believe that this is due to a faculty reaffirming academic freedom and free speech – not implicit support for his views or a fear of retaliation if they speak out against such offensive comments.

Let’s assume that free speech values prevails.  Smith can continue to label those with opposing views of the police as white supremacists and the rest of us can counter that view with our own exercise of free speech.  No petitions. No public campaign of retaliation.  No threats against his physical safety. Just free speech countering free speech.

 

247 thoughts on “Creighton Professor Triggers Outcry After Labeling Supporters Of Police “White Supremacists””

  1. I love in St. Paul. On two occasions in the past two weeks shots were fired in my son’s neighborhood. His car was hit and damaged. The others brought the police to his door.

  2. COINTELPRO* “is exacting a terrible price” — also “in the form of reduced public safety.”

    Most people don’t get it.

    *Only the name has changed…

  3. I’m a senior citizen and in my teenage years and on I have lived in Texas, Florida, Virginia and Washington DC (twice). I honestly can’t remember ever meeting a white supremacist. I realize that the mentally challenged Senator Mazie Hirono of Hawaii considers all Trump supporters to be white supremacists but I’m talking about real ones, not the ones she conjures up in her political rants. I’ve seen some on television but I don’t recall meeting any in person. Come to think of it though, lately I have seen some people who act like supremacists but they are mostly black or black wannabes. Could it be that the white ones got turned black like in Finian’s Rainbow?

  4. You don’t agree with me, you must be a racist. And a massogonist. And a sexist. And a homophobe. And a nativist. Let me see, did I leave anything out?

  5. Black Lies Matter

    It is axiomatic. The lies and parasitism of incapable and dependent blacks have been tolerated and suffered for no rational and coherent reason other than that of incomprehensible, phantom liberal guilt which has somehow gained ascendancy.

    One can only imagine that Americans are too busy conducting free enterprise to pay any attention to the disintegration of their self-governing republic of freedom constituted of severely limited and restricted government.

    The lies of blacks were not material when blacks were slaves and they are similarly not material today. The Constitution applies equally and without variation to all legal and legitimate citizens and includes no various, superior or inferior rights for any individuals or groups of individuals.

  6. Another Free Speech Issue:

    White House Issues Dossier To Discredit Dr Fauci

    Fauci’s 67% Approval Has Trump Fuming

    President Trump’s advisers undercut the nation’s top infectious disease expert, Dr. Anthony S. Fauci, over the weekend, anonymously providing details to various news outlets about statements he had made early in the coronavirus outbreak that they said were inaccurate.

    The move to treat Dr. Fauci, who has led the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases for decades, as if he were a warring political rival came as he has grown increasingly vocal in his concerns about the national surge in coronavirus cases, as well as his lack of access to Mr. Trump over the past several weeks. It has been accompanied by more measured public criticism from administration officials, including the president.

    And it came just days after the White House called school reopening guidelines released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention overly restrictive, part of a pattern of the administration trying to sideline recommendations that could slow the reopening of the economy, which Mr. Trump views as vital to his flailing re-election effort.

    Aides to Mr. Trump first released to The Washington Post what the paper called a “lengthy list” of remarks that Dr. Fauci had made about the virus when it was in its early stages. That list featured several comments from Dr. Fauci that White House aides had privately complained about for months, including one in February in which he minimized the chance of asymptomatic spread and said people did not need to make big changes to their lives.

    An official told The Post that several other officials were concerned about how often Dr. Fauci had been wrong.

    For example, White House officials pointed to a statement by Dr. Fauci in a Feb. 29 interview that “at this moment, there is no need to change anything that you’re doing on a day-by-day basis.” But they omitted a warning he delivered right after.

    “Right now the risk is still low, but this could change,” he said in the interview, conducted by NBC News. “When you start to see community spread, this could change and force you to become much more attentive to doing things that would protect you from spread.”

    In the same interview, Dr. Fauci also warned that the coronavirus could become “a major outbreak.”

    The list of statements, laid out in the style of a campaign’s opposition research document, was later released to several news outlets. It was an extraordinary move for the White House to provide news organizations with such a document about a health official who works for the administration and retains a high level of public trust.

    Dr. Fauci declined to comment. A White House official who spoke on the condition of anonymity insisted that the administration was not trying to discredit Dr. Fauci, who it acknowledged is an expert, but rather remind the public of his record and that it should be listening to a range of doctors.

    Edited From: “Trump Aides Undercut Fauci As He Speaks Up On Virus Concerns”

    The New York Times, 7/12/20

    1. Rhodes writes: “Seth, you keep cut and pasting narratives…”

      He posts narratives from different papers but if you go to the news article you will see that Paint Chips injects his own statements, changes headlines and edits the article. Sometimes the editing intentionally is done so that context is lost.

      Paint Chips is not credible so he has to copy from articles that aren’t credible either while he adds and edits to make his story. In this article that wasn’t as badly edited as some, Paint Chips claims Trump was fuming, but that doesn’t appear in the NYTImes article. Paint Chips lies.

        1. The Brainless wonder tries to act intelligent. Last time you tried to harrass me you asked for names. I provided them for you “I think one is Susan Rosenberg and their mascot is a cop killer Shakkur (?sp) who fled to Cuba.” You didn’t know these things and didn’t even say thank you. You don’t know very much. That is why you are also called Anonymous the Stupid.

          1. Allan continues flapping his guns… He enjoys making up names for people who comment. It’s all he’s got…which is zero, nada, nothing. He’s talking to himself when he hurls insults; he’s looking in the mirror and describing himself.

            1. Your display of intellectual efficiency made it easy to brand you with the names, The Brainless Wonder and Anonymous the Stupid. I decided on the second name because I had to separate you from another Anonymous who wondered into one of our non-discussions.

              1. And true to form, Allan attempts to insult someone’s intelligence while making completely basic spelling errors.

                1. “And true to form, Allan attempts to insult someone’s intelligence while making completely basic spelling errors.”

                  My typing skills aren’t the best. I admit that. Your service of using spell check to check my spelling at times is valuable. That demonstrates that you have a very basic intellectual ability that can help get you a paycheck. I am thankful that you leave logic to more accomplished people.

                  1. Allan says: ” I am thankful that you leave logic to more accomplished people.”

                    lol

                    Allan is certainly not among the ‘more accomplished.’

                    1. Yes, Allan likes to say that about himself as if saying it will magically make it happen. Truthfully, I’d be surprised if he can find his way around his house.

                    2. Bug, do you have a problem accepting a compliment? You are great at spellcheck but there is no logic module built into your spellchecker. When there is I am sure you will buy it.

                    3. More accomplished exists over a wide span of accomplishments. I am comfortable with what I have accomplished and what I will accomplish in the future.

                      Being Anonymous the Stupid you are at the bottom of those with accomplishments no matter how ineffectual they might be.

                      Sucks to be you.

                    4. “Sucks to be you.”

                      lol

                      No, it really doesn’t.

                      But carry on with your idiocy.

                    5. Allan says:July 15, 2020 at 7:33 PM
                      “Brainless, ignorance is bliss.”

                      Allan would know, wouldn’t he.

                      He’s a putz.

                    6. Anonymous the Stupid, don’t you have any imagination? All your insults are so pedestrian and repetitious.

                    7. Anonymous the Stupid, on the blog when speaking to those that aren’t Stupid like you it is evident that I can think. All one has to do is look at some of my serious replies. Unfortunately no such thing can be said on your behalf.

      1. Alan, I post the names and dates of stories so anyone can read the whole article if they so desire. I only edit stories to conserve space and to highlight the essence of said article.
        But every post I share brings howls of outrage from sour apples like you.

        1. No, Paint Chips. You create headlines that do not exist Then you add statements that do not exist and in some postings you do more than shorten by editing making sure things are out of contex, You don’t even tie your postings into a reply to another or the blog thread. You just post cr-p from cr-p newspapers known to lie when politics are involved. Most people post with context. You just post what many times you probably haven’t even read.

          Your articles are a waste of time unless tied into the blog. Between your additions and the articles you choose one has to be cautious about accepting anything as true.

          1. Alan, you’re a malicious liar who poses as a ‘good patriot’. But you’re as phony as they come.

            1. Paint Chips, I have pointed out numerous times when you have lied. Tell me what lies I have posted about you. Are the headlines from the newspaper or your own? Why don’t you use the real newspaper? How come you don’t distinguish your words from the article being quoted?

              The answer is clear you want people to think those thing you wrote (not even included in the article) were part of the article.

              1. Hint for Allan: when tossing out an insulting name like ‘Paint Chips’ don’t sound remarkably like you’ve been consuming them for years.

              2. Allan:
                Your right Allan, Seth is a sloppy propagandist. I’ve noticed the same juvenile tricks and it’s why I don’t read his fabricated posts. You point out the lies and he objects and insults. Wash and repeat. Typical Cali liberal: why deal with the truth when a light might fool the “unwashed”? Wonder if he knows we’re laughing at him and his lapdog, Buglife?

                1. Surely, as a mental giant, you know you misspelled the very first word of your post after mentioning your lovers name?

                  1. My bad. I should’ve put an apostrophe between the ‘r’ and the ‘s’ in lover’s. I stand corrected.

                    1. In Allan’s little world, anyone who posts anonymously is “Anonymous the Stupid.”

                    2. I reserve Anonymous the Stupid only for you. Your Stupidity sets you apart from other comments by other anonymous figures. I doubt on a statistical basis that there can be another anonymous who is so Stupid that they can be confused with you. Of course in the past you have tried having Stupid discussions with yourself. That was fun.

                    1. Mespo speaks to himself in public again. Somewhere there’s a pair of paper slippers and some heavy sedatives just waiting for you, buddy.

                    2. Bugable:

                      But alas no. Being smarter, saner and better off than you is a mean feat indeed. Gimme to something to really accomplish before I go out to pasture. Like outwitting a fifth grader.

                    3. It’s hard for mesblo to think through all that blubber. Send him to a fat camp.

                2. Mespo, I was reading some interesting material on the illegal FISA release and the non indictment of Wolfe. Backdating and going to another source to send out another copy of the FISA release to hide the illegal release. I think that is what happened but it all has a paper trail and appears pretty juvenile in that once caught prosecutions could follow and the paper trail would be used for evidence.

                  Paint Chips seems to be following suit and his perfidy is easily detected. The perfidy seen against Trump is equally easily detected if someone wishes to look but in Trump’s case the truth being revealed was prevented by the DOJ, FBI, CIA, MSM, Deep State, Prosecutors, judges and Congressmen mostly from the left but also some from the right.

                  Look at a what most of the left on this blog is saying. Garbage, lies and non sequitors. People like CTHD make things up on a continuous basis. There is no embarrassment in these fellows. No honor. If widespread enough this demonstrates the decline of America due to the stupidity of American citizens.

        1. July 14, 2020 at 7:48 PM
          Looks like you are projecting, Alan -YNOT

          It’s the one thing that Allan does best. He’s a loser, in the main.

          1. Brainless, a loser is someone like you who seldom says anything of value. As a loser you have to tie your comments with someone stronger than you or copy what others have said as your reply. You know why you do things that way? Because you are Stupid.

      1. Tommer, never heard of you. You’re one of those mystery commenters who pops out of the blue to comment on my posts. Funny how that goes.

  7. Thank goodness that a far-left bigot was treated lightly by the powers that be, and not canceled as he would have been had he expressed an opinion that runs afoul of the New Orthodoxy religious cult.

  8. My Father was a well respected attorney.The old line was no one likes lawyers….until you need one. So today, many are down on police officers…until they need one. Calling even black officers racist seems to be the height of something. Fill in the blank

    1. I think most rank-and-file lawyers are OK, provided they’re providing honest services to their clients. Appellate judges are a problem, trial judges are sometimes a problem, law professors are a problem, many prosecutors are dishonest, and BigLaw should not exist.

  9. Here’s A Free Speech Issue:

    Trump Aide Share Anti-Fauci Cartoon From Controversial Artist

    President Donald Trump’s social media adviser posted a cartoon critical of Dr. Anthony Fauci on Facebook over the weekend, sharing the work of an artist who was barred from the White House last year for anti-Semitic imagery.

    Dan Scavino, the Trump administration’s deputy chief of staff for communications, posted a Ben Garrison cartoon to his Facebook page on July 12. The cartoon depicted the country’s top infectious disease expert as a faucet drowning Uncle Sam and the economy with demands to close schools, impose lockdowns and cancel the NFL season.

    “Sorry, Dr. Faucet! At least you know if I’m going to disagree with a colleague, such as yourself, it’s done publicly — and not cowardly, behind journalists with leaks. See you tomorrow!” Scavino wrote in the post’s caption. Scavino’s post garnered more than 12,000 reactions and 6,000 shares on Facebook.

    Garrison is a popular right-wing cartoonist who was invited by Trump to a July 2019 White House social media summit. Days later, the White House said Garrison was no longer attending after Garrison’s past work elicited outrage and was labeled as anti-Semitic.

    One Garrison cartoon from 2017 featured an ominous hand, labeled “Rothschilds,” controlling prominent Jewish, progressive financier George Soros with puppet strings. In the cartoon, Soros himself had David Petraeus and H.R. McMaster attached to puppet strings.

    Edited From: “Trump Aide Shares Anti-Fauci Cartoon Drawn By Artist Barred From The White House Over Anti-Semitic Tropes”

    Today’s Politico

    1. Let free speech die for all I care. Democrats want a civil war., Stoking chaos and civil insurrection for 7 weeks now.
      Ok, hey, let’s resolve the issues like we did that last one. I would take that bet now.

      This one won’t have nice geographic boundaries and will get very messy. Well, that’s a pity
      but it would be an even bigger pity if we call get llquidated by them without getting in our licks!

      1. Kurtz, you should complain to the Bernie Bros.

        But then you were really high on Bernie (when you hoped he could split Democrats).

        1. Oh, Democrats are doing themselves in all on their own…
          See, the leadership is totally and cynical and fake.

          They just voted to stop Trump from pulling troops out of Afghanistan!

          You can’t make this crazy stuff up. Let’s here from Bernie Bro Jimmy Dore a very excellent comedian and commentator

  10. Here’s A ‘Free Speech’ Issue:

    Fox News Fires Tucker Carlson Writer For Racist Views On Obscure Website

    Carlson Admits Views Are Unacceptable.. Then Attacks ‘Ghouls’ Who Outed Writer!

    Oh, And Carlson Is ‘Going On Vacation’ Effective Immediately

    Tucker Carlson’s comments cap off a turbulent weekend that began with a scoop from CNN’s Oliver Darcy, who reported that the top writer for the program had posted racist, sexist and homophobic remarks on AutoAdmit, a website that traffics in hateful commentary. The writer, Blake Neff, had worked at “Tucker Carlson Tonight” for more than three years. In an interview with the Dartmouth Alumni Magazine, Neff boasted, “Anything he’s reading off the teleprompter, the first draft was written by me,” and added that “I’ve gotten used to what he likes and what he thinks about.” The magazine noted that Neff and Carlson “see eye to eye on most issues.”

    The mind-meld between these two men turned into an issue on account of the revelations in Darcy’s story. In his postings on AutoAdmit, Neff tossed about abhorrent racial stereotypes like indefinite articles. He did so under the cover of a pseudonym, “CharlesXII.” Here’s a passage from Darcy’s story (which we also quoted on Saturday):

    Just this week, the writer, Blake Neff, responded to a thread started by another user in 2018 with the subject line, “Would u let a JET BLACK congo n****er do lasik eye surgery on u for 50% off?” Neff wrote, “I wouldn’t get LASIK from an Asian for free, so no.” (The subject line was not censored on the forum.) On June 5, Neff wrote, “Black doods staying inside playing Call of Duty is probably one of the biggest factors keeping crime down.” On June 24, Neff commented, “Honestly given how tired black people always claim to be, maybe the real crisis is their lack of sleep.” On June 26, Neff wrote that the only people who care about changing the name of the NFL’s Washington Redskins are “white libs and their university-‘educated’ pets.”

    There’s no way to spin such hatred, so Fox News didn’t try. It accepted Neff’s resignation, then waited nearly a day before calling his postings “horrendous and deeply offensive racist, sexist and homophobic.” That condemnation came in a note to colleagues from CEO Suzanne Scott and President/Executive Editor Jay Wallace: “FOX News Media strongly condemns this horrific racist, misogynistic and homophobic behavior. Neff’s abhorrent conduct on this forum was never divulged to the show or the network until Friday, at which point we swiftly accepted his resignation. Make no mistake, actions such as his cannot and will not be tolerated at any time in any part of our work force.”

    The short monologue furnished plenty of evidence that Carlson can’t level with his audience. Instead of detailing what Neff had posted on AutoAdmit, Carlson euphemized those postings with all the sophistication of a seasoned Washington operative. To recap: “What Blake wrote anonymously was wrong. We don’t endorse those words. They have no connection to the show. It is wrong to attack people for qualities they cannot control.”

    That’s oblique enough that viewers of “Tucker Carlson Tonight” might have come away with the impression that Neff hadn’t written vile racist and sexist commentary in a forum where he was free to express his innermost feelings.

    The prevailing emotion from Carlson isn’t regret or remorse. It’s anger — anger that he has lost his top writer to a mob of “ghouls.” And what an anger it is: If there’s been one through-line on “Tucker Carlson Tonight,” it has been the smearing of CNN. Whenever CNN has a controversy, Carlson highlights whatever breakdowns may have occurred, along with his usual conspiratorial commentary. To lose his top writer over a CNN scoop that had every fact, every allegation buttoned down just so — that had to have disappointed the highly rated host.

    Edited From: “Tucker Carlson Whitewashes The Racism Of His Show and His Former Writer”

    Today’s Washington Post

    1. REGARDING ABOVE:

      This was Carlson’s statement to viewers (before he announced his vacation)

      “Over the weekend you may have seen stories about a writer on this show called Blake Neff. For years, since he was in college, Blake posted anonymously on an Internet message board for law school students. On Friday, many of those posts became public. Blake was horrified by the story, and he was ashamed. Friday afternoon, he resigned from his job. We want to say a couple of things about this.

      First, what Blake wrote anonymously was wrong. We don’t endorse those words. They have no connection to this show. It is wrong to attack people for qualities they cannot control. In this country, we judge people for what they do, not for how they were born. We often say that, because we mean it. We will continue to defend that principle, often alone among national news programs, because it is essential. Nothing is more important.

      Blake fell short of that standard and he has paid a very heavy price for it. But we should also point out, to the ghouls now beating their chests in triumph at the destruction of a young man, that self-righteousness also has its costs. We are all human. When we pretend we are holy, we are lying. When we pose as blameless in order to hurt other people, we are committing the gravest sin of all. And we will be punished for it. There’s no question”.

      1. Seth, you keep cut and pasting narratives that you didn’t write, without providing links.

        That needs to stop.

    2. Control your hyperbole! As ‘racism’ goes it’s pretty mild stuff especially when compared with what you aren’t noticing: the hysterical blood thirsty epithets freely thrown about by Leftists (not to mention the real and implicit violence of the BLM mandate). Yet you choose to showcase something closer to sniggering–more like reactive chiding. Mend your prejudice!

        1. I see that TIA finally figured out that s/he can go from XXii to XXi and then back to XXii… Slow learner…

    3. Who cares. I love Tucker’s show. That speech writer makes good copy.

      Any white guy not intimidated by the Democrat slander machine is a “racist.”

      “Racist” is now becoming a red badge of courage.

      That was a book about the civil war, btw. by Stephen Crane. Not that Democrats care about such things anymore. Crane was prolly racist too, right?

      Has there ever been a more pathetic self loathing crop of white folks than the current Democrat cheerleaders, who are ever eager to spit on the graves of their ancestors?

  11. The reason decency is losing is this idiotic idea that these people should not be dealt with exactly as they have been dealing with other people for years. He should be fired and stripped of his pension. When they are made to face consequences they will stop abusing people through their university positions and only then.

    1. His retirement benefits would be received through TIAA-CREF, not his institution. Since his benefit stream is a consequence of contributions already made, no, you shouldn’t strip him of his benefits. He’s a sh!tstain, but he hasn’t defrauded TIAA-CREF.

    2. We have it from good sources that the machine they invented will eventually chew them up as well.

  12. So a “professor” whose specialty is the history of Christianity spews such hateful statements? And teaches in the so-called “honors” program at Creighton? He is neither Christian nor honorable.

  13. I Stand With Police But..

    Is ‘Free Speech’ The Nation’s Only Issue Now?

    For weeks Professor Turley has focused almost exclusively on these so-called ‘free speech’ or ‘tyranny from the left’ columns. These issues concern me as well. But based on Turley’s columns, one would think nothing else is happening in the country right now.

    One strongly suspects that Turley knows the Trump presidency is coming to a bad end. This must alarm Turley who has invested a great deal of credibility publicly defending Donald Trump. Therefore one can reason that Turley’s current obsession with ‘free speech is a deliberate avoidance of anything Trump-related.

    1. Turley’s blog has long focused on issues relating to free speech. If you are of the understanding that it is simply a “current obsession” with Turley, then either you’re new to this blog or your reading skills are poor. Those of us who are interested in such matters have been reading this blog for a long time. If the topic makes you uncomfortable, then I would suggest you are in the wrong place.

      1. Jay, ‘poor reading skills’..??

        It seems that Trumpers use this cliche about 50,000 times per day. No wonder Trump has no plan for the next 4 years (if reelected). If his supporters are totally bankrupt of phrases to describe perceived opponents, then surely Trump has no need to outline any vision.

        1. I was referring to the fact that you seem unfamiliar with the primary orientations of this blog. If the reference to your reading skills seems like a cliche to you, it may well be because you too frequently need to have things pointed out to you that might be obvious if you were better at reading.

    2. “the Trump presidency is coming to a bad end”

      Have you been reading polls, Seth?

      Do you not remember what happened in 2016?

      1. Rhodes, you’re trying to distinguish yourself as ‘Stupidest Commenter On The Blog’. The competition is thick but you’re rising fast.

          1. Is that welfare money you are betting because you don’t sound like one who could ever earn a living. Karen is pretty smart.

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