Nov 14, 2011Print This Post
A Suffolk University law professor has issued a blistering e-mail calling plans to collect care packages for U.S. troops “shameful.” Professor Michael Avery also questioned the intent of an American flag hanging in the law school’s atrium
“I think it is shameful that it is perceived as legitimate to solicit in an academic institution for support for men and women who have gone overseas to kill other human beings,” Avery wrote in an e-mail to his colleagues. “The United States may well be the most war prone country in the history of civilization.”
The professor was critical of a program called, “Packages for the Troops.” It was an effort within the law school to collect care packages for the nation’s military. The e-mail has generated complaints from students and alumni.
“He’s probably not somebody who’s going to be the featured speaker at the American Legion or the VFW any time soon,” Katz told Fox News & Commentary.
“I very much disagree with the sentiment expressed in that email,” student Brandon Tower told MyFoxBoston. “That’s academia for you, I guess.”
Barry Brown, the university’s acting president and provost posted a response on Suffolk’s website, backing both the professor and the care packages.
“We respect the right of our faculty members to exercise academic freedom and support all members of our community in speaking freely and expressing their opinions,” Brown wrote. “A consequence of this open dialogue is the articulation of many points of view. As a diverse community, no one opinion or perspective is representative of the views of the whole community.”
Brown said Suffolk University has a “long and proud history of supporting our men and women who have served their country in the armed forces.”
But Professor Avery said the email requesting care packages was a “political statement.”
“The politics of that solicitation are that war is legitimate, perhaps inevitable, and that patriotic Americans should get behind our troops,” Avery wrote.
Camille Nelson, the dean of the Suffolk University Law School, voiced her support for the professor on the university’s website.
“While I personally intend to donate a care package for our troops, I respect the right of others to hold a differing perspective,” Nelson wrote. ‘Ultimately, it is this robust exchange of ideas that makes for great university.”
“I don’t think that represents the feelings of Suffolk law in general,” added student Marisa Roman. “I mean clearly, we’re a patriotic school. We have a huge American flag in the atrium.”
As for the American flag – Avery accused the university practicing “excessive patriotic zeal.”
The flag has been hanging in the law school atrium since 2001.
“This is not a politically neutral act,” Avery wrote. “Excessive patriotic zeal is a hallmark of national security states.”
Katz said his team has been in touch with the university to try and help students collect care packages.
The talk radio host did have some words of wisdom for the professor:
“Even as you are busy hating our troops, there are many of us standing with them and it doesn’t pain me to say, God bless America,” he said.