Saturday, May 28, 2016

UCI Professor Calls Disruption "Robust Argumentation"

Hat tip New University

This past week, a UC Irvine student wrote an op-ed defending the disruption at UCI wrapped in academic, intellectual language. I added my own critical comment.

I have no desire to publicize my disagreement with the young man who wrote the op-ed on this site. He is, after all, a student, and I will let it go at that.

My comment did, however, elicit a reply from one Tiffany Willoughby-Herard, a professor of African-American studies at UCI. Ms Willoughby-Herard objected to my criticizing the writer's "brilliant essay" by referring to left-wing "loopy professors", whom she prefers to describe as thinking people. In her comment she refers to the disruption at UCI last week by Students for Justice in Palestine as "robust argumentation". Naturally, I have joined the battle.

Here is the relevant thread:

gary fouse says:
Wow. Where did you get that from-Foucault, Paolo Freire-or perhaps from one of your loopy left-wing professors?
Yes, we expect civility in a civilized nation. It is not something that belongs only to “white supremacist imperialists”.
What happened last week illustrates all too well the cancer that exists not only at UCI, not only in UC, but in campuses across this nation. It also illustrates which side is the right side in the dispute at issue.
(And it is not the Palestinian side.)

Tiffany Willoughby-Herard says:
Funny to describe professors who would agree with such robust argumentation as “loopy”–does that imply crazy, or unstable, or ridiculous? Well, I guess all of us who can identify a well made argument that understands the actual stakes of its points are just “loopy”–but to tell you the truth I would prefer to be deemed “loopy” every day all day, as insulting as that name is meant to be if it means I can be an actual thinker and intellectual. Name calling though it reveals the terms that have been set for this discussion is not an intellectual position. At a university we come to conclusions through thinking. Please before you offer a reply to this brilliant essay by Miguel Olveras make sure you remember that a university we are committed to THINKING.
  • gary fouse says:
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    Looking at your faculty profile, it seems your idea of thinking centers around ethnic studies, gender studies and Queer studies. You obviously live in the world of identity politics and theory. Me-I live in the real world.
    As far as the mantle of loopy left-wing professors, if the shoe fits, wear it.
    Happy thinking.
  • gary fouse says:
    Your comment is awaiting moderation.
    Robust argumentation? When people try to crash into a room, block exits, scream and disrupt terrorizing young female students in the process, that is not robust argumentation. That smacks of brown shirt tactics.
    And you know what? I have been attended their (MSU/SJP) events for years. I never disrupt or try to shut down an event. I listen, videotape (which is my right), and ask questions during q and a. I respect their right to hold an event and speak their mind. I counter by speaking my mind but while following the protocols.
    What “thinking” was SJP et al exhibiting last Wednesday night?

Robust argumentation!!!

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