Kansas GOP Insider (wannabe): University of Kansas hates your children, conservatives

Monday, September 23, 2013

University of Kansas hates your children, conservatives

So the University of Kansas hates your children, especially if they're home schooled, have ever been taught to shoot a gun, and/or Christian. Other interesting and shocking facts: Water is wet. The sky is blue. Kathleen Sebelius is evil.

So it was without any surprise whatsoever that we learned there is a journalism professor at the William Allen White School of Journalism wishing death upon the children of NRA members. 

Specifically, David Guth, who teaches journalism ethics among other things tweeted: "#NavyYardShooting The blood is on the hands of the #NRA. Next time, let it be YOUR sons and daughters. Shame on you. May God damn you."

I'm mildly offended by the tweet, but probably not for the reasons most people are. 

First, this guy is a college professor. Surely serving in academia at a well-respected institution like KU requires the ability to use logic and reason. How does Guth know that none of the men and women killed in the Navy Yard shooting weren't the sons and/or daughters of NRA members? Many in the U.S. Armed Forces are gun rights supporters. I haven't done any research to back this up -- other than knowing dozens, no, hundreds of former and current service members. I can think of only one of the many who isn't an avid supporter of the Second Amendment. Many belong to the NRA. I'm not going to presume to say that there were sons/daughters of NRA members killed in the Navy Yard shooting, but I think it's foolish to rule out the possibility.

And if, by chance, some of the victims were the children of NRA members or gasp, members themselves, did they deserve to be gunned down? I would answer no.

So Guth lacked the ability to use sound judgment -- not just in the sending of the tweet itself, but he lacked the ability to use logic based on its content as well. 

Secondly, I'm offended that he's a journalism professor. Journalists rank right up there with lawyers and Congress people (in the rare instances in which there's a difference between the two) but they do have a code of ethics that says something about being impartial. If Guth is teaching that in his ethics class, he certainly isn't practicing it. 

I was also pretty disgusted with Guth's response when his tweet first came to light. He refused to admit he'd said anything wrong. 

Look, we all say stupid things when our emotions are running high. It's called being human. Nothing wrong with that. But when you do something bone headed -- especially when you're in a position like he is -- you apologize. I don't think the reaction would have been nearly as severe had he said something like, "Look. I think we need to rethink our gun laws. I shouldn't have said what I said, however." Those words from him in the earliest moments kill the controversy.

Finally, I'm a little icked out by the response from Second Amendment supporters, although I have very mixed feelings. As much as I adore the Second Amendment, I am a huge advocate of the First Amendment, too. Before you jump all over me to explain that the First Amendment prohibits government from limiting speech, I get it. The response of which I speak is that of Kansas legislators publicly threatening to remove funding from KU for Guth's words.

The idea of it makes me uneasy. For example, Sen. Greg Smith said in a statement: "As long as Professor Guth remains employed by the University of Kansas, I will no longer recommend the university as an institution worthy of attendance by any of my students;" That is a very appropriate and reasonable response, and any parent considering sending their child to KU should carefully consider how impressionable their child is before sending him or her to Lawrence. If they aren't able to listen to continual, non-stop liberal craziness without being brainwashed, I'd send them elsewhere.

However, Smith lost me when he continued: "Nor, as a state senator, will I support any budget proposals or recommendations for the University of Kansas."

This is the sort of thing that just makes me bonkers about politics in general. Politicians should not use the power of the purse strings to dictate speech. It's chilling, because should liberals ever again gain power in Kansas, we don't want this instance of the threat of pulling funding to become common place.

That said, everyone with half a brain recognizes that without the strong stance of powerful people like Smith, KU would have probably done absolutely nothing about Professor Guth's damaging tweet. (In fact, without the legislative uproar, they'd probably develop some sort of honor or award for him. The David Guth Truth and Courage Award,  or some such nonsense, because have you been on a college campus lately? The liberals there are off-the-reservation cray-cray.) Everyone understands that had a KU professor said something even remotely supportive of say, traditional marriage, that professor would have been thrown off campus, publicly shamed, and probably never work in academia again. The double standard in academia is troubling.

Should David Guth lose his job? I can't say. Maybe, other than this one instance, he's been a model professor creating the brightest and best future journalists ever to grace the halls of the Dole Human Development Center. To me, this is a personnel issue.

Should Guth have been reprimanded by the KU administration? Absolutely, but the fact that it was done after the fact makes the admonishment seem hollow.

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