Uncommon Descent Serving The Intelligent Design Community

Canceled exoplanets prof Dorian Abbot at the Wall Street Journal


“I believe academic hiring should be based on merit and that hurt feelings are no reason to ban opinions::

I am a professor at the University of Chicago. I was recently invited to give an honorary lecture at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. The lecture was canceled because I have openly advocated moral and philosophical views that are unpopular on university campuses.

Here are those views:

I believe that every human being should be treated as an individual worthy of dignity and respect. In an academic context, that means evaluating people for positions based on their individual qualities, not on membership in favored or disfavored groups. It also means allowing them to present their ideas and perspectives freely, even when we disagree with them.

I care for all of my students equally. None of them are overrepresented or underrepresented to me: They represent themselves. Their grades are based on a process that I define at the beginning of the quarter. That process treats each student fairly and equally. I hold office hours for students who would like extra help so that everyone has the opportunity to improve his or her grade through hard work and discipline.

Dorian Abbot, “The Views That Made Me Persona Non Grata at MIT” at Wall Street Journal (October 29, 2021)

Closed access unfortunately. But you get the picture. He thought what the Woke wanted was fairness. No, they want to Run Things according to whatever they would like to see happen.

By the way, here is the second installment of the Bret Weinstein saga at Evergreen University:

The thing is, at that time (2017), it was ultra-progressive places like Evergreen where the liberal biology teachers could be run off campus. Now it’s MIT, folks.

Abbot’s story is a watershed, really because MIT Cancelled a science prof whose anticipated lecture was irrelevant to Wokeness.

Either Woke goes or science does. But bureaucrats find it easier to cater to Woke than to resist. The more bureaucrats there are, the less university there will be.

You may also wish to read, re the Dorian Abbot affair:

Darwinian evolutionary biologist Jerry Coyne learns a thing or three about censorship – when he’s not doling it out. The explanation for Coyne’s sudden support for academic freedom might be fairly simple: He thought that Cancel Culture would only ever be deployed against people who think that nature shows evidence of design. He never expected it to come for people HE values.

Berkeley Scientist and center director resigns over MIT’s deplatforming of exoplanet scientist Note how little difference facts of science make in these matters — whether Abbot has anything to say that contributes to our knowledge does not matter of the Woke are displeased. Darwinism was the original Wokeness in science — immune to fact-based critique. The people who thought that that didn’t concern them are now formally wrong. It’s everywhere now.

"The more bureaucrats, the less university". That's an important QUANTITATIVE point that doesn't get discussed in this context. Colleges have been expanding their bureaucracies massively in the last 20 years, while faculty and students are decreasing. It's good old Parkinson. When an institution loses its puirpose, it becomes pure bureaucracy, devoted solely to growing the bureaucracy. polistra

Leave a Reply