A Wayne State University (WSU) professor was suspended with pay after writing on Facebook that it is more “admirable” to kill a right-wing speaker than it is to shout them down on a college campus, The New Guard reported.
Steven Shaviro, a College of Liberal Arts and Sciences professor, wrote in a Facebook post on Sunday that while he does not “advocating violating federal and state criminal codes,” it is “far more admirable to kill a racist, homophobic, or transphobic speaker than it is to shout them down,” according to the New Guard.
The professor was reportedly placed on leave and the incident was reported to law enforcement agencies for review.
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“When right-wing groups invite such speakers to campus, it is precisely because they want to provoke an incident that discredits the left, and gives more publicity and validation to these reprehensible views than they could otherwise attain,” Shaviro wrote, according to a screenshot of the new deleted post. “These protesters get blamed instead of the bigoted speaker; the university administration finds a perfect excuse to side publicly with the racist or phobes; the national and international press has a field day saying that bigots are the ones being oppressed, rather than the people those bigots actually hate being the victims of oppression.”
He cited the assassination of Ukrainian People’s Republic Simon Petlirua, who was assassinated in 1926 by Scholem Schwarzbard out of revenge for the deaths of thousands of Jewish people, according to Open Democracy.
“Remember that Schwarzbard was acquitted by a jury, which found his actions justified,” Shaviro wrote, according to the screenshot.
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WSU President Roy Wilson responded to the post in a Monday email to the campus community condemning Shaviro’s language, according to a screenshot obtained by the New Guard.
“The post stated that rather than ‘shouting down’ those with whom we disagree, one would be justified to commit murder to silence them,” he wrote. “We have on many occasions defended the right of free speech guaranteed by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, but we feel this post far exceeds the bounds of reasonable or protected speech. It is, at best, morally reprehensible and, at worst, criminal.”
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