Preposterous Universe

Tuesday, July 05, 2005
Celebrating freedom

I mostly slept through Independence Day, and so missed the celebratory fireworks from smashing into another celestial body (Matt McIrvin points to pictures here, here, here, here, and PZ Myers links to movies). For the next two weeks I'm in Paris, which (according to some myths) liberty was invented a couple of centuries ago, and (according to others) it now comes to die. Whatever, the croissants are excellent.

In honor of our freedom, here's a reminder of the dangers we face, from Brian Leiter.

Herewith Newt Gingrich (as reported by The National Review), former Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives, and still prominent spokesman of the American right (which now runs the country, in case you forgot):

We ought to say to [state university] campuses, it’s over…We should say to state legislatures, why are you making us pay for this? Boards of regents are artificial constructs of state law. Tenure is an artificial social construct. Tenure did not exist before the twentieth century, and we had free speech before then. You could introduce a bill that says, proof that you’re anti-American is grounds for dismissal.

Why stop there? Why not "proof that you didn't vote for George W. Bush is grounds for dismissal"? Or how about "proof that you don't believe in God," since that's tantamount to being anti-American anyway? Such a law is obviously unconstitutional, but this apparently didn't bother Herr Gingrich.

"Proof that you're anti-American is grounds for dismissal" is such a perfectly anti-American sentiment that I'm surprised Gingrich's head didn't explode. Of course, I suspect that his head is made of animatronic plastic and that he's controlled by radio signals sent from an undisclosed location, but that's just me.

Ideas on culture, science, politics.
Sean Carroll

Preposterous Home
Atom Site Feed (xml)
RSS Feed
Technorati Profile
Bloglines Citations
Blogroll Me

About Last Night
Alas, a Blog
The American Sector
Asymmetrical Information
Big Brass Blog
Bitch, Ph.D.
Body and Soul
Brad DeLong
Chris C Mooney
Collision Detection
Creek Running North
Crescat Sententia
Crooked Timber
Daily Kos
Daniel Drezner
Deepen the Mystery
Dispatches from the Culture Wars
Dynamics of Cats
Electron Blue
Ezra Klein
The Fulcrum
Girls Are Pretty
Jacques Distler
James Wolcott
John and Belle
Julie Saltman
Lawyers, Guns and Money
Leiter Reports
The Loom
Matt McIrvin
Matthew Yglesias
Michael Bérubé
Michael Nielsen
Mixing Memory
Mr. Sun
Not Even Wrong
Obsidian Wings
Orange Quark
Paige's Page
Panda's Thumb
Playing School, Irreverently
Political Animal
The Poor Man
Quantum Diaries
Quark Soup
Real Climate
Roger Ailes
Rox Populi
Shakespeare's Sister
Simple Stories
Sisyphus Shrugged
Smijer & Buck
TPM Cafe
Uncertain Principles
Volokh Conspiracy

Powered by Blogger
Comments by Haloscan
RSS Feed by 2RSS.com

February 2004
March 2004
April 2004
May 2004
June 2004
July 2004
August 2004
September 2004
October 2004
November 2004
December 2004
January 2005
February 2005
March 2005
April 2005
May 2005
June 2005
July 2005