Speak Your Mind, Unless We Don’t Like What You Say

Journalism professor David Guth of the University of Kansas is at the center of a controversy over a tweet that he made on Monday in reaction to the Navy Yard shootings in Washington, D.C. This is the tweet:

#NavyYardShooting The blood is on the hands of the #NRA. Next time, let it be your sons and daughters. Shame on you. May God damn you.

Professor Guth has been put on leave by the university, and legislators in Kansas are calling for him to be fired. His Twitter account, @DWGuth, doesn’t appear to be available at present, so I can’t speak to him directly, and his webpage offers no contact information, so here’s my message to him:

Dear Professor Guth,

As a supporter of gun rights and as a human being, I find your comment revolting. The idea that those who stand up for basic rights deserve to have their children die as a consequence leaves me pleased that you are not in a position of much power. The NRA is no more responsible for the D.C. shooting than the NAACP is responsible for the gang violence in Chicago recently. Those of us who stand for rights recognize that each person is responsible for himself or herself.

At the same time, as a supporter of freedom of expression and of academic freedom, I deplore the actions of the University of Kansas and of some of your state’s legislators in putting you on leave and demanding your firing. Academia cannot function unless its members are free to speak their minds, no matter how vehemently the rest of us may disagree with what is said. In no way do I support the content of your comment, but I do defend your right to say it.

Greg Camp


8 thoughts on “Speak Your Mind, Unless We Don’t Like What You Say

  1. Retired Mustang

    Once again, that pesky freedom of speech thing rears its ugly head. Once again, I find we are better off with it than without it. The desire to have him fired reminds me, unpleasantly, of the reality of the view of freedom in many parts of the world (and yes, the Middle East comes specifically to mind). While it may well be true that “people everywhere just wanna be free” it is most emphatically not true that people everywhere want to live in a society where everyone else is also free. It’s distressing when I see that same attitude reflected in America.

    1. Greg Camp Post author

      Freedom is threatening to people who are weak in their beliefs. After all, if my neighbor doesn’t do things the way I do them, that shows that I don’t have an exclusive hold on the truth.

      Those of us who are stronger in our minds know that people can come to different answers without invalidating our way of living.

      1. Texas Colt carry

        Couldn’t have said it better myself Greg, If you don’t agree with them they will just cut you off and feel safe in their beliefs that way. Plenty of anti blogs are that way.

        And I just got totally blocked from MikeB blog for speaking my mind. I guess he cant handle the truth. So he doesn’t want to hear it and be safe in his mind by cutting off opposing opinions.

        I guess you wont be seeing me there anymore Greg, but it was fun winding his clock.

    1. Texas Colt carry

      Its no big loss really, but I would like to know why I am blocked tho. I never used hate language or foul language either. Only my personal experience and logic as I see it. The only thing I can think of is calling a troll,,,, a troll. But I guess if your an ANTI, then you can be as foul or hateful as you want with no reprisal from MikeB.

      Greg, I thank you for the invite. I just have to get used to a different format that you use here, so if I am slow on the start, forgive me. I am still not that great with this internet/computer stuff. To be honest, I don’t even have my own computer and “e-mail”, I use friends and family instead with their constant help. They really get a big laugh helping me with this stuff.

      1. Greg Camp

        I know how you feel. I’ve been struggling with computers since the mid-eighties, and they still refuse to make sense.

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