American Thought Police!

Dear Commons Community,

Paul Krugman, has a piece in today’s NY Times on the “American thought police”  and describes the harassment of  William Cronon, a historian who teaches at the University of Wisconsin, for weighing in on his blog about  his state’s political turmoil.  Cronon also published an opinion piece in The NY Times, suggesting that Wisconsin’s Republican governor has turned his back on the state’s long tradition of “neighborliness, decency and mutual respect.”      The “American thought police’ retaliated by  demanding copies of all e-mails sent to or from Mr. Cronon’s university e-mail account containing any of a wide range of terms, including the word “Republican” and the names of a number of Republican politicians.   The column goes on to explain that this type of harassment is becoming more frequent and directed especially at academics.  Krugman’s conclusion is:

“What’s at stake here, in other words, is whether we’re going to have an open national discourse in which scholars feel free to go wherever the evidence takes them, and to contribute to public understanding. Republicans, in Wisconsin and elsewhere, are trying to shut that kind of discourse down. It’s up to the rest of us to see that they don’t succeed.”



One comment

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