UW Cancels Ayers Appearance

William Ayers appearance at UW has been cancelled.
William Ayers appearance at UW has been cancelled.

The University of Wyoming announced Tuesday that they have canceled the scheduled appearance of William Ayers that was to take place Monday April 5th. Ayers, a professor of education at the University of Illinois at Chicago, was to give a speech sponsored by the UW Social Justice Research Center, based on his article "Trudge Toward Freedom: Educational Research in the Public Interest."

President of the University of Wyoming Conservatives and current Student Brian Profaizer says that social networking by more than 600 students online helped stop the event.

Profaizer stated that school officials did a good job of listening and reacting to people's concerns over Ayers upcoming appearance.

Ayers is infamously known best as the founder of the radical group Weather Underground that was active from 1969-1977. The Weather Underground participated in a campaign of bombings of government offices and banks during that time.

In a statement released by the university, UW President Tom Buchanan thanked the center for reconsidering its invitation to Ayers. Buchanan said academic freedom is a core principle of higher education, but that the visit by Ayers would have adversely affected the public's confidence in the university.

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I feel, since the school is

I feel, since the school is publicly funded, almost anyone should be able to put their ideas forward there. I think the right in this country should be very careful when flirting with censorship, lest it be used against Cheney, Limbaugh, Hannity or anyone else who the left does not happen to like. Many on the left are now accusing the tea party of terrorism....censorship is a road best left untraveled.

If he is terrorist and a

If he is terrorist and a radical, his own speech will expose him as such and discredit him. When you forbid someone from speaking you make him, and his ideas bigger than life.

And the next speaker is....

So you think having an old terrorist is a good idea? Who is next; Castro, Osama bin Laden, maybe a representative from a drug cartel,...

I believe in the first

I believe in the first amendment, he should have been allowed to speak. I find censorship to be in American be it from the right or the left.

Censorship

The test of democracy is freedom of criticism. ~David Ben-Gurion

The guy should have been allowed to speak. You may not agree with someone's point of view, but you have the option of not listening. That's what freedom is. Liberty is not the freedom to shut someone else up.

If you are so afraid of someone else's point of view that you can't even listen to someone who differs from you, you probably ought to be re-examining the way you think. Life is wonderful because you can keep learning and growing all the time. If you stop hearing opinions and thoughts that differ from your own, you are stagnant. Certainly you don't have to agree with them all, but grow as a person and step outside yourself for a bit.

Examine. Think. Grow.

Open Society

I think that as an open society we need to be able to hear all points of view. There are those on the left who would not want Dick Cheney to ever utter another word, yet in historical context what he has to say will be important someday. I don't care for political correctness be it from the right or the left.

did his time?

I really don't particularly care for his views, but to me he has obviously served any time in prison he was sentenced to so should have been allowed to speak. Generally I find it a good idea to let radicals speak as much as they want because they usually do damage to their cause.

did no time

Ayers was not arrested until 1980?(i'm unsure of the date). Charges were later dropped from misconduct on the part of the prosecutor. He has made the statement that they(the radical group did not do enough.

Clarification

The statement that "we didn't do enough" was taken out of context, which he emphasis in his 2001 statement to the New York Times Editor. He and others believed that we as Americans did not do enough in stopping Vietnam, not that he or militant groups should have bombed more. Vietnam is and still remains in many peoples minds a very dark and ugly time. You can read his statement here if you like. (http://billayers.wordpress.com/2...) I especially like and agree with the last paragraph.

Respectfully,
Tom

Thank for the clarification

Thank you. I admit that I was relying on memory, but I agree that UW did the proper thing by listening to its' own students concerns.

I'm all for free speech.

I'm all for free speech. Maybe the topic he was going to discuss would have been reasonable. But UW should have standards for speakers. This guy shouldn't meet that standard.

Mixed Feelings

I would have liked to have seen more statistics surrounding this story. How many students were scheduled to attend this event? How many students are currently enrolled at UW? The topic that Mr. Ayers was scheduled for does not sound nefarious and a quick review of his academic achievements indicates that he is well equipped to elaborate on the scheduled topic. I am not a fan of Mr. Ayers, nor do I condone his actions of the past. I would like to have had more statistics/facts so that I could have formed an opinion that could have been discussed in these forums.

Respectfully,
Tom