This month UC Irvine Chancellor Howward Gillman reacted to Donald Trump's controversial call to
ban Muslims from entering the US with a missive to the UCI community condemning those remarks.
The message is contained below. (I apologize for the formatting issues. It is due to cutting and
pasting from the emails.)
The below response was sent to Chancellor Gillman by one of my teaching colleagues at UCI, Larry
Sims. He forwarded it to me and has given permission to post it here.From: Larry Sims
Sent: Thursday, December 10, 2015 11:31 AMTo: firstname.lastname@example.orgSubject: Re: We Stand TogetherDecember 10, 2015Dear Chancellor Gillman
In regard to your email the other day on “standing together” I feel I must comment. Clearly you have something of a tight line to walk, and I don’t necessarily envy you. Thank you for your efforts, but honestly I don’t think continual appeasement is the best strategy.Many of us Americans who were born here are not afraid; we are angry and utterly dismayed by a lack of leadership in this country. Sadly some peoplein our global community cannot be successfully “confront[ed] with intellect andreason, with a spirit of inquiry and discovery, with a commitment to mutualrespect”- as much as we’d hope they would change- because they have repeatedlystated with fanatical intent and with the action to back it up- that they want aworldwide Caliphate where they call the shots and execute those who do not bowto the Sword of Islam. Hardly an open-minded global community where themajority can flourish, wouldn’t you agree? I personally do not relish thethought of going out to a Starbucks and even thinking that my children and Imight be gunned down or blown up by religious fanatics who think they are goingto Heaven if they kill people who do not have the same beliefs as they do. “Oh,all Muslims do not think that way,” is the tired cliché. Granted, but if only 1% of them do, then we have 15 million ‘time bombs’ walking around this ‘advanced global community.’ And if the other 99% do not like what themilitants are doing, why don’t they both say and do something?Many of us are also tired of hearing the words ‘hate speech’when we simply caution others about segments of our society- be it national or global- who have such a predilection for such egregious acts as seen in San Bernardino, Paris, New York City as well as on the mountainous slopes of Iraqwhere Yazidi Christians are being tortured and slaughtered by the hundreds.religion without the fear of tyranny or retribution.Muslims are not under “outrageous attack”- an accurate look at history clearly shows that they are the least persecuted and most aggressive of all religions. Is it Christians, Jews, or Buddhists we immediately think of when some mass murder takes place?I hate to put it this way, but please let us stop kowtowing to Muslims and apologizing for what America stands for- freedom of speech and religion without the fear of tyranny or retribution.Merry Christmas, (Fiat lux finds its origin in Genesis, so I am being consistent here) Larry Sims-----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------Fousesquawk comment: Regular readers of this blog know that I have always made it clear thatinnocent Muslims-especially American Muslims- must not be punished or retaliated against for thecrimes of others. Yet, it is irresponsible not to acknowledge and discuss the threats that weface. I myself have called for a suspension of Islamic immigration as long as the threat ofviolent jihad and terrorism exists.As for the university Muslim community, I have yet to see that they are under some threat. Groups like the Muslim Student Associations and Students for Justice in Palestine have shown they canfend for themselves. They have hardly been victims. In addition, there are many (not all)Muslim professors in academia including the University of California whom I have criticized onthis site-and will continue to do so. I am not calling for a curtailment of their First Amendment rights, but when I feel theyhave engaged in outrageous polemics, I will continue to call them out and exercise my own freedomof speech.I commend Larry for his letter. As for Trump's comments, he may have used inflammatory languageand shown some legal ignorance, but he has opened up a topic for discussion that we must have.