VOLOKH at law.ucla.edu
Mon Apr 12 11:22:58 PDT 2010
Folks: I never cease to be amazed by a good deal of appalling stuff that I hear from certain members of this listserv. I actually think that Nelson's posts are considerably more tolerant than some of what he responds to. I have often been tempted to say much the same things as he says, because I too have felt the anger - sometimes reaching the point of rage - at some of the casual bigotry and double standards that I have routinely seen applied on the list. And, as I've said before, all my desire to be a calm and moderating tone on the list will not lead me to sit silent when such attacks happen.
I refuse, I utterly refuse, to continue to allow so many on the Left to throw around casual smears and bigotry against others. Ignoring those in the interests of civility unfortunately just sends a message that we on the Right, being the small minority that we are in the legal academy and on the list, can be casually bullied and insulted with no repercussions, without any of the insulters even being called out for their actions.
But while I certainly have particular people, and particular posts, in mind, let me try one more time: I don't want to call them out by name, at least now, at least when there is still some faint hope that this list can continue as a device for actual productive discourse rather than name-calling. I don't want us to spend my or our time and energy, and fritter away what little store of mutual good will our profession still has to call on when serious debate is called for, in this. So let me ask one more time: Could we please stick to calm discussion of technical legal issues, and step away from poisonous general debates about which professor and which politician is an idiot or a racist or a bigot or intolerant or intolerable or whatever else?
From: conlawprof-bounces at lists.ucla.edu [mailto:conlawprof-bounces at lists.ucla.edu] On Behalf Of Gilbert, Lauren
Sent: Monday, April 12, 2010 10:50 AM
To: Robert Sheridan; Nelson Lund
Cc: CONLAWPROFS professors
Subject: RE: A musing
Here, here. I never cease to be amazed by the highly disrespectful tone of of the attacks that Prof. Lund has leveled against members of this listserve, incivility that would be unacceptable on other listserves, and which does little to contribute to the quality of the discourse on this listserve and may actually tend to chill speech. If there were to be another category of low-value speech that does little to contribute to the essential exchange of ideas in a free society, this, the essential equivalent of fighting words, should be it.
Lauren Gilbert, Esq.
Professor of Law
St. Thomas University School of Law
16401 NW 37th Ave.
Miami Gardens, FL 33054
Tel: (305) 623-2386 (work)
You can access my papers on the Social Science Research Network (SSRN) at http://ssrn.com/author=339800
From: conlawprof-bounces at lists.ucla.edu on behalf of Robert Sheridan
Sent: Mon 4/12/2010 12:26 PM
To: Nelson Lund
Cc: CONLAWPROFS professors
Subject: Re: A musing
I think it needs to be observed that anyone with whom Prof. Lund
disagrees is therefore a bigot.
As to what is tolerated on this list, Prof. Lund's style is proof of the
list's great expanse to include the intolerable.
Nelson Lund wrote:
> Paul Finkelman wrote:
>> . . . I think you only have to look at the racism of the right wing
>> of the Republicans -- Rep. Wilson yelling out that Obama is a liar . . .
> If it's acceptable for Prof. Finkelman to invoke Rep. Wilson's
> perfectly plausible statement about Obama as proof that Wilson is a
> racist, then it should be equally acceptable to invoke Prof.
> Finkelman's own statement as proof that Prof. Finkelman is a racist.
> It appears, however, that Prof. Finkelman's kind of bigotry is
> acceptable on this list, whereas its parallel would never be tolerated.
> Nelson Lund
> George Mason
> Paul Finkelman wrote:
>> Robert writes; " Today we don't think opposition to discrimination
>> against blacks to be 'liberal' but mainstream and the discrimination
>> plain wrong as well as illegal and immoral. What happened? Where
>> did the shift occur?"
>> Has the shift really occurred? I think you only have to look at the
>> racism of the right wing of the Republicans -- Rep. Wilson yelling
>> out that Obama is a liar; tea party people yelling "nigger" at black
>> members of Congress to see that substantial numbers of white
>> Americans -- from the tea party crowd to South Carolina Congressmen
>> to Glen Beck -- are deeply racist and deeply hostile, not only to
>> blacks but to anyone who is not "white" but their definition of the
>> term. In much of the country it is also perfectly ok to campaign
>> against Hispanics as long as you phrase it in terms like "illegal
>> aliens" and "illegal voting." I think vast numbers of Americans
>> (look at the ratings of those who listen to the rants of Glen Beck
>> and Rush Limbaugh; look at the suggestions over and over again that
>> Obama is not an "American") do NOT think it is immoral to discriminate.
>> Paul Finkelman
>> President William McKinley Distinguished Professor of Law
>> Albany Law School
>> 80 New Scotland Avenue
>> Albany, NY 12208
>> 518-445-3386 (p)
>> 518-445-3363 (f)
>> paul.finkelman at albanylaw.edu
>> www.paulfinkelman.com <http://www.paulfinkelman.com<http://www.paulfinkelman.com/>>
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