Editor, Daily Nexus,
In her January 17 column, Maria Reifel Saltzberg (“Radical Activist Stirs Rights Debate,” Daily Nexus) defends the racist, violent and extremely hateful views of Ward Churchill – even invoking the name of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. She would have us believe that Ward Churchill is “a little radical, but speaks the truth.” Dr. King, who preached reconciliation and non-violence, must be rolling over in his grave.
In reality, Ward Churchill lied about being an American Indian – he isn’t one – to get a tenured position at the University of Colorado (CU). Despite having never earned a Ph.D. or a single degree in sociology, CU bent over backwards to do the politically correct thing and made him Ethnic Studies Department head.
According to Mr. Churchill and Ms. Saltzberg, the Americans who died in the World Trade Center attacks got what they deserved, apparently for the crime of working for private industry. In their simplistic and ignorant world, every evil is due to the “global capitalistic system” – apparently it wasn’t the Taliban that kept Afghanistan in the dark ages, but Wal-Mart and Wall Street. Through their hate-tinted lenses, everyone from your neighborhood banker to an employee of a large corporation deserves to die — while Osama bin Laden and the 9/11 terrorists are heroes.
Of course, this view is both hypocritical and cowardly. Hypocritical because both Saltzberg and Churchill choose to participate in and benefit from “the global capitalistic system” – even the universities they attend or work at are funded substantially through private donations. Both freely choose to live in the United States, instead of in the “uncorrupted countries” we supposedly oppress. And cowardly because neither of them has the guts to go to the families who lost loved ones on Sept. 11, 2001, look them in the eye, and tell their children that “Your Daddy deserved to die because he was an evil man.” Ms. Salzberg likes to point out that, “Churchill’s magnetism and power is undeniable.” Well, so were Hitler’s. Churchill seems to possess a similar skill for whipping crowds into a hateful frenzy. Some views simply deserve no respect. The views of the Ku Klux Klan deserve no respect. The views of the Nazis deserve no respect. And the views of Mr. Churchill and Ms. Saltzberg, which differ in target but are identical in their level of hate to those of the Nazis and the KKK, deserve no respect, either.