Activism Discussion: Ideological Exclusion Threatens Academic & Intellectual Freedom

Ideological Exclusion Threatens Academic & Intellectual Freedom
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Dan Clore
2005-11-10 22:46:36 EST
News & Views for Anarchists & Activists:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/smygo

http://www.aclu.org/NationalSecurity/NationalSecurity.cfm?ID=19386&c=111

Government Refusing to Turn Over Records on Exclusion of
Foreign Scholars, Lawsuit Charges
November 10, 2005

NEW YORK -- The State Department and other government
agencies are illegally withholding records concerning the
practice of excluding foreign scholars and other prominent
intellectuals from the United States because of their
political views, according to a lawsuit filed today by the
American Civil Liberties Union, the American Association of
University Professors and PEN American Center.

Government Practice of "Ideological Exclusion" Threatens
Academic and Intellectual Freedom, Says ACLU

NEW YORK -- The State Department and other government
agencies are illegally withholding records concerning the
practice of excluding foreign scholars and other prominent
intellectuals from the United States because of their
political views, according to a lawsuit filed today by the
American Civil Liberties Union, the American Association of
University Professors and PEN American Center.

"The right to hear a full range of ideas and opinions is a
vital part of American democracy," said ACLU attorney
Melissa Goodman. "The government should not be in the
business of censoring ideas that it deems inappropriate for
the American public to hear."

The groups charge that the government's refusal to turn over
documents violates its obligation to comply with a Freedom
of Information Act (FOIA) request filed by the ACLU in
March. The ACLU's FOIA request, filed with the State
Department, the Justice Department, the Department of
Homeland Security and the Central Intelligence Agency, seeks
information on the government's use of immigration laws,
including a provision added by the Patriot Act, to exclude
scholars and other prominent individuals from entering the
United States because of their political views.

Section 411 of the Patriot Act permits the government to
exclude foreign scholars from the country if -- in the
government's view -- they have "used [their] position of
prominence to endorse or espouse terrorist activity or to
persuade others to support terrorist activity." However, the
ACLU said that there is evidence that the government is
using the provision more broadly to deny entry to people
whose political views it disfavors.

News reports suggest the government invoked Section 411 in
2004 to deny admission to Tariq Ramadan, a Swiss
intellectual who is widely regarded as a leading scholar of
the Muslim world. As a result, Ramadan was forced to resign
his teaching position at the University of Notre Dame.
Ramadan was previously granted a U.S. visa in 2002 to carry
out his lecture tour, which included a presentation
sponsored by the Chicago Council on Foreign Relations.

"The government should not be barring scholars from the
country simply because it disagrees with what they have to
say," said Jameel Jaffer, an ACLU staff attorney. "The
government's abuse of immigration laws skews and
impoverishes political debate in the United States and
deprives citizens of information that they need in order to
make informed decisions about government policy."

Several other prominent figures who have been denied entry
to the United States in recent years similarly appear to
have been excluded for ideological reasons. For example, in
2005, Dora María Telléz, a leader in the 1979 movement that
overthrew Nicaraguan dictator Anastasio Somoza, was forced
to turn down a position as the Robert F. Kennedy visiting
professor in Latin American studies at Harvard University
after she was denied a visa. Telléz, who has traveled to the
United States several times in the past on personal visits
and business trips, said she was shocked when officials told
her she was denied entry because of supposed involvement
with "terrorism."

In October 2004, 61 Cuban scholars, who were scheduled to
attend the Latin American Studies Association's
international congress, were denied entry less than two
weeks before the congress convened. According to the State
Department, the denials were in keeping with the Bush
administration goal to hasten democratic reform in Cuba.

In 2002, John Clarke, an organizer for the Ontario Coalition
Against Poverty, was stopped at the customs booth at the
U.S.-Canada border while on his way to a speaking engagement
in Michigan. After officials checked his identification,
Clarke was asked if he was opposed to the "ideology of the
United States." Officials then searched his car and Clarke
was forced to wait until a State Department agent drove up
from Detroit to interrogate him. He was turned away after
five hours.

The ACLU expressed concern that the recent exclusions mark a
return to a time when the government "blacklisted" prominent
figures because of their political associations or for
criticizing U.S. policy. During the Cold War, the United
States routinely used the immigration laws to deny entry to
those associated with the Communist Party. Under this
policy, the government excluded writers and playwrights such
as Graham Greene, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Dario Fo, Pablo
Neruda and Carlos Fuentes, as well as former Canadian Prime
Minister Pierre Trudeau and former NATO Deputy Supreme
Commander Nino Pasti.

For more information and a list of prominent scholars who
have been denied U.S. entry on ideological grounds, go to:
http://www.aclu.org/exclusion

--
Dan Clore

Now available: _The Unspeakable and Others_
http://www.wildsidepress.com/index2.htm
http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/ASIN/1587154838/thedanclorenecro
Lord Weÿrdgliffe & Necronomicon Page:
http://www.geocities.com/SoHo/9879/
News & Views for Anarchists & Activists:
http://groups.yahoo.com/group/smygo

"Don't just question authority,
Don't forget to question me."
-- Jello Biafra

















James A. Donald
2005-11-11 00:11:54 EST
--
On Thu, 10 Nov 2005 19:46:36 -0800, Dan Clore
> Section 411 of the Patriot Act permits the government
> to exclude foreign scholars from the country if -- in
> the government's view -- they have "used [their]
> position of prominence to endorse or espouse terrorist
> activity or to persuade others to support terrorist
> activity." However, the ACLU said that there is
> evidence that the government is using the provision
> more broadly to deny entry to people whose political
> views it disfavors.
>
> News reports suggest the government invoked Section
> 411 in 2004 to deny admission to Tariq Ramadan, a
> Swiss intellectual who is widely regarded as a leading
> scholar of the Muslim world. As a result, Ramadan was
> forced to resign his teaching position at the
> University of Notre Dame. Ramadan was previously
> granted a U.S. visa in 2002 to carry out his lecture
> tour, which included a presentation sponsored by the
> Chicago Council on Foreign Relations.

But Tariq Ramadan *did* use his "position of prominence
to endorse or espouse terrorist activity"

If that is the best example the ACLU has, the government
is acting responsibly.

--digsig
James A. Donald
6YeGpsZR+nOTh/cGwvITnSR3TdzclVpR0+pr3YYQdkG
YvOLOeFyRZAIZI4d8Ia8INspi9rDSnqO4oekLYt2
40owu2bZRi2iKRgx1YrpTxJX/Ye2Iu3Z9WKo44ry9


Toby
2005-11-11 00:34:09 EST
>
> But Tariq Ramadan *did* use his "position of prominence
> to endorse or espouse terrorist activity"
>
> If that is the best example the ACLU has, the government
> is acting responsibly.

I thought you were against the government....?

Toby



C*@gmail.com
2005-11-11 01:56:55 EST
Toby wrote:
> >
> > But Tariq Ramadan *did* use his "position of prominence
> > to endorse or espouse terrorist activity"
> >
> > If that is the best example the ACLU has, the government
> > is acting responsibly.
>
> I thought you were against the government....?

His statement was perfectly unobjectionable and rather narrow in
context. Which you snipped, thereby broadening its apparent meaning.


Toby
2005-11-11 04:37:01 EST

<*i@gmail.com> wrote in message
news:1131692215.671995.102910@g43g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...
> Toby wrote:
>> >
>> > But Tariq Ramadan *did* use his "position of prominence
>> > to endorse or espouse terrorist activity"
>> >
>> > If that is the best example the ACLU has, the government
>> > is acting responsibly.
>>
>> I thought you were against the government....?
>
> His statement was perfectly unobjectionable and rather narrow in
> context. Which you snipped, thereby broadening its apparent meaning.

I beg to differ. What I snipped is irrelevant to the point: James goes on
and on about how terrible the government is--a bunch of con men, thugs and
extortionists--and then he applauds their actions vis-a-vis a foreign
threat. So which way do you want it--no state and no protection against
foreign threats, or are you actually willing to admit that the state has
useful functions?

Toby



James A. Donald
2005-11-11 05:21:29 EST
--
On 11 Nov 2005 03:37:01 -0600, "Toby"
<*o@gool.com> wrote:
> I beg to differ. What I snipped is irrelevant to the
> point: James goes on and on about how terrible the
> government is--a bunch of con men, thugs and
> extortionists--and then he applauds their actions
> vis-a-vis a foreign threat. So which way do you want
> it--no state and no protection against foreign
> threats, or are you actually willing to admit that the
> state has useful functions?

The state is not necessary to protect against foreign
threats, but when it does protect against foreign
threats, rather than preventing people from protecting
themselves against foreign threats, it acts
legitimately.

--digsig
James A. Donald
6YeGpsZR+nOTh/cGwvITnSR3TdzclVpR0+pr3YYQdkG
PYK1+BDYfy8X3Fxhh2xPIjgwCa7l8JApljfakcnX
4t9BXCHUsn8gP15/CiVvGITSc4eBxAecfLr2cHYsa


M J Carley
2005-11-11 05:25:12 EST
In the referenced article, James A. Donald <jamesd@echeque.com> writes:

>But Tariq Ramadan *did* use his "position of prominence to endorse or
>espouse terrorist activity"

When and how did he did this?
--
Differenza fra il rivoluzionaro e il cialtrone. Il rivoluzionario
rompe l'orologio e invece di presentarsi alle nove si presenta alle
nove meno cinque. Il cialtrone rompe l'orologio e si alza alle undici.
Home page: http://people.bath.ac.uk/ensmjc/

Josh Dougherty
2005-11-11 05:35:34 EST
"Toby" <zdftokyo@gool.com> wrote in message
news:437465f8$0$187$bb4e3ad8@newscene.com...
>
> <constantinopoli@gmail.com> wrote in message
> news:1131692215.671995.102910@g43g2000cwa.googlegroups.com...
> > Toby wrote:
> >> >
> >> > But Tariq Ramadan *did* use his "position of prominence
> >> > to endorse or espouse terrorist activity"
> >> >
> >> > If that is the best example the ACLU has, the government
> >> > is acting responsibly.
> >>
> >> I thought you were against the government....?
> >
> > His statement was perfectly unobjectionable and rather narrow in
> > context. Which you snipped, thereby broadening its apparent meaning.
>
> I beg to differ. What I snipped is irrelevant to the point: James goes on
> and on about how terrible the government is--a bunch of con men, thugs and
> extortionists--and then he applauds their actions vis-a-vis a foreign
> threat. So which way do you want it--no state and no protection against
> foreign threats, or are you actually willing to admit that the state has
> useful functions?
>
> Toby

You didn't actually take all that anarchist stuff seriously did you?



Ha-Emet
2005-11-11 08:05:41 EST


Outside of the United States and his fundamentalist Christian base, who
doesn't now have complete contempt for George W. Bush? What foreign leader
can feel the same way about America it once did? Why does the rest of the
world fear us? And they do fear us. Once, not long ago, America was
admired. Because of George Bush, they do not like or trust us. By
proclaiming they are either for us or against us has now put them all
firmly against us.

"He's poisoned alliances; he's torn up treaties. He has convinced foes
they had better get nuclear weapons, and get them quick. He's made America
the global enemy of law and order. No enemy of human rights, or of the
environment, or of a realistic approach to dealing with the problems of
living sanely on this planet is friendless as long as George W. Bush is in
the White House." 1

"George Bush has destroyed belief in America's goodness and America's
wisdom among hundreds of millions of people. Gratuitously, with his
trademark smirk, he's turned a friendly world into a hostile world.
Nations and people who once saw America as a global protector now see the
United States as the greatest threat to civilized human values currently
at large in the world."


Continued here:
http://pnews.org/ArT/WaR/CoP.shtml

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Ha-Emet
2005-11-11 08:07:15 EST

If the U.S. was honestly interested in justice and an equitable
distribution of borders to suit ethnic divisions and prevent much future
conflict between Kurds, Iraqis, Syrians, Turks, it would support an
independent Kurdistan - something it has never done. And if not, if the
honorable cause Americans and Iraqis are dying for is to keep Iraq
together, if the U.S. was really interested in holding Iraq together it
would not have invaded. There were no terrorists in Iraq when Saddam
Hussein was the president. There was no civil war when Saddam Hussein was
their leader, although we could have encouraged one. But if we really
wanted to avoid a civil war and we really wanted to encourage democracy we
could have encouraged it by lifting the sanctions and aid, not bullets.

Before this wannabe cowboy in the White House attacked Iraq, he should
have considered the consequences of getting rid of the only person who was
apparently capable of keeping Iraq Iraq - (just as Tito kept Yugoslavia
Yugoslavia). George HW Bush's father understood this. George W. Bush did
not.


Continued here:
http://pnews.org/ArT/WaR/WaR.shtml



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