November 30, 2007

SU Prof to Troops: FU

But Students Disagree
When Marine Major Christian Devine asked Syracuse University's Maxwell School to host a presentation by his DoD outreach program, "Why We Serve," the chair, Mark Rupert , decided to tell him to go pound sand. He felt that allowing serving members of the military to speak would not meet the department's goal to ""foster open and honest discussion."

Rupert apparently based his decision on an article in which Major Devine talked about winning the information war in the mainstream media. Evidently, Rupert prefers that someone else win the information war.

Then Rupert shared his email conversation with Devine with other SU faculty members, and things changed.

From the Syracuse Post-Standard:

After responding to Devine, Rupert made copies of the e-mails available to other faculty members. In that way, the matter came to the attention of Bill Coplin, chair of Maxwell's Public Affairs Program.

Coplin is teaching an honors class focused on ways to improve undergraduate education. One of the topics selected by the class, he said, was whether American universities slant toward left-wing positions. After learning of Rupert's decision about "Why We Serve," Coplin said, he brought the question to his students, who decided to ask Rupert to come in and explain.

Rupert did. The students listened, he said, "but I think they had already made up their minds." He told them he had no objection to the servicemen speaking on campus; he simply did not see this particular offer as appropriate to the mission of his department. In the end, the honors class decided to host "Why We Serve," on behalf of the Public Affairs Program.

Through Devine, the students put together a forum in which three members of the military representing the Air Force, the Marine Corps and the Army will make a presentation Friday at 3 p.m. in the Grant Auditorium at the SU College of Law.

It's a pretty sad state of affairs when students are forced to educate their professors.
"I didn't understand the problem with having the actual troops come and speak," said Katelyn Hancock, a student who helped to organize the event. "We can have Michael Moore come and speak on campus, but the troops can't come?"
Yes, Katelyn, that's what Professor Rupert means by "fostering open and honest discussion."

Farbeit from me to suggest that Professor Rupert decided to suppress the military speakers because he is grossly biased, based on this screen cap of Rupert's personal website.

By Bluto11:06 AM | Comments |