In this blog, I have posted public criticism of a public scholar, Dr. Kamalipour. This is well known, at least within the Purdue University Calumet community. Of course, anything I say or do is immediately attacked by other members of the University community. Thus, did the University community swing into action to protect the emminent scholar, Dr. Kamalipour.
Fast forward: The Faculty Senate at PUC passed a resolution supporting Dr. Kamalipour by a vote of 21 for, 7 against, and 2 abstained. Here is the resolution; SD-14-02-Resolution-in-Support-of-Yahya-Kamalipour. (The vote at the bottom of this resolution is the committee vote; the full Senate vote occurred the following month.) First, it is not any surprise to me that this resolution passed. Second, it should be realized that 30% of the faculty representatives did not support it -- for various reasons.
The resolution stated that there was a personal attack against Dr. Kamalipour by a fellow faculty member. Although that person was not identified -- it was me according to what members of the Senate said and what Dr. Kamalipour said. It specifically said that Dr. Kamalipour was "subject to personal attacks in the form of public comments." The comments were public; but, in what way were they personal, or are any critiques a personal attack? It then states that "(t)he attack is baseless and may damage the reputation of Professor Kamalipour." There is no evidence that either case is accurate. The critique is not baseless and the "may" cannot be discussed. What "may" not happen?
Finally, the resolution states: "Professor Kamalipour is an eminent scholar and educator of impeccable international reputation, and an esteemed colleague and member of the Purdue Calumet community." If one wants to view him as an "eminent scholar" so be it. That issue was never raised. Now, that he has an "impeccable international reputation" is open for question and criticism and is NOT a personal attack in any way, except as interpreted by Prof. Kamalipour. To him, maybe any criticism is personal.
What is really amazing is that Dr. Kamalipour apparently believes that his work is somehow beyond criticism. I have criticized him one time. He is a public figure, has multiple web sites, multiple blogs, and comments regularly in various public venues -- all by his own identification. My one criticism resulted in an attempt by him to silence me by filing a formal complaint with the University. When the university would not proceed; he went on a public attack of me personally -- all of his attacks against me are personal. I have not attacked him personally only what he publicly presents as policy. He has now proceeded to move to try to characterize me as a "bully." Apparently, it is not bullying to file work-related complaints against me, to ask your fellow colleagues to try to censure me in other work related venues (Dr. Colin Fewer tried to get the AAUP to censure me on behalf of Dr. Kamalipour), to post multiple emails about me on the University email system and now to create an entire website dedicated solely to me sending the link to that website out to the entire University community. In contrast Chancellor Keon has prohibited me from linking to my personal blog, FIRE to PUC re Eisenstein email blog link.
The imbalance between Dr. Kamalipour and myself is significant. He is in Wikapedia; I am not. He was a Department Head for many years; I have not been. He is a full professor; I am an Associate Professor. He writes on public policy consistently; I have criticized his "international" actions once. He is a leftist with full support of the like thinking faculty; I am a conservative with limited if any support in the faculty. And yet, I am the one who causes Prof. Kamalipour to go all out to try and shut me up by misapplying the First Amendment -- freedom of speech and academic freedom.
This is not bullying, this is not an attack, this is public discourse. The marketplace of ideas is not solely for Dr. Kamalipour to promote his love of humanity. It is also available for me and others to question and critique the views and statements put into the public domain by Dr. Kamalipour and anyone else who deigns to enter public discourse.
And, really, how can I possibly damage anyone's reputation? My University colleagues work overtime to try to paint me as a "disgrace". I cannot be both a "disgrace" and also so "esteemed" as to impact a fellow professors reputation. My detractors cannot have it both ways.