Monday, April 5, 2010

threats to academic freedom

just got this forwarded message. see other writing here:

---------- Forwarded message ----------
From: ivan evans
Date: Mon, Apr 5, 2010 at 9:54 AM
Subject: Emergency Faculty Meeting in Support of Academic Freedom and Tenure
Cc: ivan evans

Emergency Faculty Meeting in Support of Academic Freedom and Tenure

Tuesday, April 6 5PM in SSB 101.

Our colleague and member of the UCSD Faculty Anti-Racism Coalition Professor Ricardo Dominguez (Visual Arts) is being targeted by members of the Senior Leadership Team for criminal charges and revocation of tenure.

Professor Dominguez researches and engages in various forms of technology-based art, activism and protest, including facilitating virtual sit-ins, which allow individuals to protest organizations by occupying their web sites virtually. Ample precedent has established both the legality and effectiveness of Professor Dominguez' research. Professor Dominguez' internationally acclaimed leadership in digital activism led to his hiring as an Assistant Professor at UCSD and promotion to tenure. Most recently, Professor Dominguez' b.a.n.g. lab has developed a Transborder Immigrant Tool to reduce the death toll of immigrants crossing the border by helping them navigate to water caches, and facilitated a virtual sit-in of the UCOP web site in support of students protesting budget cuts.

Professor Dominguez' recent activities have resulted in numerous violent threats by local racists. Instead of committing university resources for securing Professor Dominguez' safety, members of the Senior Leadership Team have:

-harassed Professor Dominguez' B.A.N.G. Lab with a time-consuming audit
-initiated the process of revoking Professor Dominguez' tenure
-sent UCSD detectives to threaten Professor Dominguez with criminal charges of city, county, state and federal statutes.

Not only do these actions undercut Professor Dominguez' physical safety, they also threaten the academic freedom and tenure of all faculty, especially those who have been working to address and improve the toxic climate at UCSD.

The Senior Leadership Team's brazen misuse of the audit, criminal and tenure systems to go after a faculty member of color working to better our campus climate and the border region in which we live demands an immediate and forceful response by the faculty. Note that no-one at the Koala has been charged with anything to date. The student who hung the noose in the library will almost certainly not be charged too. Exploring criminal charges against Professor Dominquez is yet another insult that we refuse to accept. It is a rapid reversion to the racial insensitivity that is the norm for this campus.

The Faculty Anti-Racism Coalition has called an emergency meeting for Tuesday, April 6 at 5PM in SSB 10 to organize such a response. Please sprtead this email to as many colleagues, students and staff as you are can.

In Solidarity,
UCSD Faculty Anti-Racism Coalition
"Another University is Possible"

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