Repression of Dissidents in the West

Academic Censorship and Self-Censorship in Germany

Students at the University of Siegen, Germany

Students at the University of Siegen, Germany

“This is a subject that is very difficult for academics to discuss. In fact, I think academics steer way clear of this subject. I found in writing stories about the human genome, anything that touched on race, for example, just petrified the academics I would speak to. I thought it was very sad, that we would have intimidation in this country. So I thought there was an opportunity, maybe a duty to write this book and to break the ice and try to discuss some of these issues.”
Nicholas Wade in a discussion of his book, A Troublesome Inheritance in response to a question from Jason Richwine: “How confident were you that writing this book would not result in the loss of your livelihood?”

Sometimes bad news from the System can turn out to be good news for advocates of free speech. Especially when the System implicitly admits of having to backpedal on its own self-proclaimed canons of free speech, reject is its own much-lauded free academic inquiry, and resort instead to censorship and gagging orders. This was recently the case when I had been invited to give a lecture at the University of Siegen in Germany on the topic of the Der Untergang des Abendlandes, (“The Decline of the West).”

The invitation, as was to be expected, was promptly cancelled by the University Board of Directors. On May 13, 2014, the cancellation of the event was reported by the influential mainstream German daily Westdeutsche Allgemeine Zeitung (WAZ). Professor Jürgen Bellers, who had sent an invitation, is an old colleague of mine, a former visiting professor at Juniata College in Pennsylvania, where I taught in the early ‘90s as a full-time professor of political science. Read more

The gloves come off in England

The arrest of Paul Weston, an anti-immigration campaigner in England, for repeating Winston Churchill’s unflattering observations about Islam in a public speech has been reported around the world with headlines from the US to Russia to Japan. Weston, who leads a small party called LibertyGB, was bundled into a police van outside the Guildhall in the town of Winchester, after being  arrested for suspected racial harassment.

It is a shocking event because to many people overseas, Britain is still a country where there is freedom of speech. But the Weston arrest is only the latest in a series of incidents that show that the British state’s gloves are coming off and police are coming down hard on anti-immigration campaigners — and they are not being too scrupulous about how they go about it, as the shocking arrests in of Clive Jefferson and Dawn Charlton in Cumbria last summer showed.

The two British National Party activists were both standing for local council elections in the town of Maryport and looked like giving the local Labour Party a run for their money, as both had been elected before and were popular figures.  But Labour were playing dirty and when the BNP pair discovered evidence of vote tampering in Allerdale Council they filed a 22-page dossier to the police. Read more