Commentary

The Saga of the Nutty Professor and Drexel University

Leesa K. Donner
By Leesa K. Donner | December 28, 2016 | 10:41 AM EST

The seemingly ever-present trite but relevant phrase “he must be rolling over in his grave” must surely apply to banker and financier Anthony J. Drexel. Sr.  In 1891, the American philanthropist established an institution of higher learning in his name in what is now known as Drexel University.

The reason that phrase applies to Mr. Drexel is this: On Christmas day, Drexel University Professor George Ciccariello-Maher was caught with a twitchy tweet finger by American Thinker Editor Thomas Lifson, who published the professor’s Christmas message:

All I Want for Christmas Is White Genocide

-- George Ciccariello (@clccmaher) December 25, 2016

Lifson had the presence of mind to capture an actual screen shot of Ciccariello’s tweet before it was removed:

But wait -- there’s more. On Monday, Mr. Ciccariello-Maher walked back his comment, indicating it was merely satirical, per an article by Reuters

"To clarify: when the whites were massacred during the Haitian revolution, that was a good thing indeed."

Say what? Perhaps a little background on the Drexel professor will elucidate the matter. Here is some contextual history on Mr. Ciccariello-Maher along with an official Drexel response from Alex Pfeiffer of The Daily Caller:

Ciccariello-Maher, who describes himself as a communist, joined Drexel University in 2010. Drexel University said in a statement Sunday afternoon: “While the University recognizes the right of its faculty to freely express their thoughts and opinions in public debate, Professor Ciccariello-Maher’s comments are utterly reprehensible, deeply disturbing, and do not in any way reflect the values of the University.”

“The University is taking this situation very seriously. We contacted Ciccariello-Maher today to arrange a meeting to discuss this matter in detail,” the statement said. Ciccariello-Maher did not immediately respond to a request for comment.

Ciccariello-Maher also reportedly tweeted in September 2016 a purported exchange between him and his son: “Son: If I was a slave, I’d bake a cake & put a potion in it & the white people would steal it. Me: What would the potion do? Him: Kill them,” Ciccariello-Maher wrote.

One would hope that the university is taking the professor’s comments seriously. Still, this disturbing saga persists even today. Now backed into a corner, Ciccariello-Maher has apparently decided the best defense is a good offense. Again, from the Reuter’s report:

Ciccariello-Maher said in an email on Monday that the tweets were only aimed at poking fun at white supremacists and that he and Drexel had become targets of a smear campaign.

He said that the concept of ‘white genocide’ was used by white nationalists to denounce everything from interracial relationships to policies aimed at promoting multiple cultures.

(Screenshot: Democracy NOW!)

"It is a figment of the racist imagination, it should be mocked, and I'm glad to have mocked it," Ciccariello-Maher wrote. Access to his Twitter account had been restricted on Monday.

He has drawn online support, with a Change.org petition backing him, generating almost 3,000 signatures by Monday.

"Let Drexel know - in the midst of the deafening, organized troll-storm - that racist trolls deserve no platform in dictating academic discourse, let alone the off-duty tweets of academics," the petition said.

You can’t make this stuff up, folks. When all else fails, the left always finds a way out by name-calling. Those who disagree with the professor’s comments are reduced to “racist trolls.” They have no place “dictating academic discourse,” as if promoting white genocide (even in satire) is genuine academic dialogue.

So, that brings us to where we are today and the real issue:  The ideological overhaul of our nation’s colleges and universities by academic Marxists. Parents of students shelling out a little more than $65K a year for tuition and living expenses to attend this fine institution may want to take a second look at exactly who is teaching what to their child.

In what has become a virtual political invasion of extreme leftist thought, conservative minded parents must not capitulate, must not surrender to this hostile occupation of college campuses like Drexel.

Women being executed during the genocidal Holocaust of the Jews under

Adolf Hitler's National Socialist Third Reich. (AP) 

But make no mistake, Drexel is but one illustration in a paragon of academic hostility with respect to conservative beliefs found on college campuses. For more on that, read Scott Greer’s skillful exposition of the issue in the Daily Caller.

So, the question remains: Is this leftist academic discourse influencing students attending college? I’m not certain of the aggregate numbers, but a personal mini-survey might give us some clues.

A friend of mine recently mentioned that her conservative-minded niece who went away to college came home a raging liberal. Two staunchly conservative parents lamented over dinner that both their children who went away to Brown University came back home espousing leftist doctrine. And another mother practically sobbed in her salad that her conservative son is no longer conservative after four years at an institution of “higher learning.”

Admittedly, a small sample, but with professors like Mr. Ciccariello-Maher, is it any wonder? 

Sad to say, but parents who send Billy off to college are being conned. Case in point, here’s what’s written on Drexel’s own web page:

“Mr. Drexel envisioned an institution of higher learning uniquely suited to the needs of a rapidly growing industrial society and of the young men and women seeking their place in it — core values that continue to guide the University in its modern era.”

Is it even imaginable that Mr. Drexel’s core values constituted white genocide – even satirical genocide—which, by the way, isn’t exactly funny. To paraphrase the words of the president-elect, what the Hell is going on here?  Perhaps we should allow Mr. Ciccariello-Maher -- as captured by that racist troll (sic) Thomas Lifson of American Thinker—to have the last word: