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Tom Gilson has a post on The Stream about Charles Negy, a tenured professor of psychology with the University of Central Florida, who touched off a firestorm by tweeting the following:
Sincere question: If Afr. Americans as a group, had the same behavioral profile as Asian Americans (on average, performing the best academically, having the highest income, committing the lowest crime, etc.), would we still be proclaiming “systematic racism” exists?
Negy’s “abhorrent” and “vile” act was to compare African and Asian Americans and to imply that at least some of the problems black Americans face could be addressed through their own actions. As the professor explained in his interview with Gilson:
Blacks have agency, they have their free will, and they can take advantage of opportunities in the United States. And even if they come from a disadvantaged background, like other whites do, other Hispanics so, and even some Asians do, with their own effort and dedication to change their lot in life, they can achieve things that are important to them.
According to Gilson, “His university has him under investigation, with UCF’s president calling for students to come forth with reports of ‘any racial mistreatment’ they’ve experienced in his classes.” So far, at least 15 students have made charges against him, including some that are obvious and outrageous lies. According to one, Negy taught that “Whites are superior to blacks because whites have cerebral cortexes.” Another claimed that he offered extra credit to students who would denounce their religion.
Of his classes that are under “investigation,” Negy said:
I take a critical, though not negative look at the different racial groups that I cover: whites, Hispanics, African-Americans, Native Americans and Arabs/Muslims. And actually most of the material I cover is neutral, based on the literature or national surveys. And then I reserve the last part of that lecture to cover challenges or problems that each of these groups has.
I cover the challenges and problems that African-Americans have as a group. And it’s coming straight from national surveys or FBI statistics. There are people in my class you don’t like what I say. But there are those individuals — who happen to be black — who are not accustomed to having someone say anything critical about their group.
At the end of the interview with Gilson, Negy added:
I just want to say that we can debate whether or not what I said or what anyone says is valid or not. The problem is the left/liberal/progressive/Democrat side now won’t allow the other side to speak. If you say something they disagree with they want to annihilate you. They want to get you fired, they want to punish you. They are total authoritarians.