Wednesday, April 16, 2003

Profiles in Right-Wing Courage Shameless congressional demagogue J.D. Hayworth (R-AZ), together with more than one hundred of his colleagues, has urged Columbia University president Lee Bollinger to fire Nicholas De Genova, an assistant professor of anthropology at the college. De Genova raised hackles when, during an impassioned anti-war statement at a recent teach-in, he openly wished for "a hundred Mogadishus". This was part of a larger argument against U.S. imperialism and our intervention in Iraq.

Of course, Hayworth doesn't really care too much about the hiring practices of Columbia University. He simply knows a good chest-pounding moment when he sees one. Harrumphing about the poorly reasoned musings of one obscure academic is a good way to impress his constituents, while simultaneously distracting the increasingly juvenile media from more important issues.

One thing the right does very well, aided by the media, is to elevate any ridiculous statement made by any leftist, no matter how obscure, to the level of a national scandal. They will holler about it until the media, cowed by incessant charges of liberal bias, feel compelled to cover it as actual news. Similarly vile statements on the right don't rate a mention.

A pro-Hayworth statement can be found at the Christian news source Agape Press, available here. Columbia's Department of Anthropology has issued a statement defending De Genova here.


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