Thursday, April 11, 2024

Small: OU assignment putting the 'boom' in 'Boomer Sooner'?

Putting the ‘boom’ in ‘Boomer Sooner’?
By Jonathan Small

Harvard Law School has drawn strong criticism for hosting a movie screening of “How to Blow Up a Pipeline,” based on the book of the same name by Andreas Malm, which advocates terrorism as a tool of environmental policy.

Notably, the movie’s website includes a “Take Action” page that includes a map of U.S. oil and gas pipelines.

But Harvard is not the only university where this nonsense has been given a platform.

At the University of Oklahoma, a graduate English seminar on “Forms of Protest” includes “How to Blow Up a Pipeline” among the assigned reading.

Associate Professor James Zeigler says most assignments are documents advocating for political change and nearly all class readings “are devoted to non-violence in principle and as a matter of strategy.” Andreas Malm’s book, he said, “is an exception.”

Indeed, it is.

Malm writes, “So here is what this movement of millions should do, for a start: announce and enforce the prohibition. Damage and destroy new CO2-emitting devices. Put them out of commission, pick them apart, demolish them, burn them, blow them up. Let the capitalists who keep on investing in the fire know that their properties will be trashed.”

He holds up the Women’s Social and Political Union in Great Britian as an example, noting those suffragette activists engaged in things such as “planting bombs on sites along the routes of royal visits, fighting policemen with staves, charging against hostile politicians with dogwhips,” and engaging in a “systematic campaign of arson.”

Malm has acknowledged pipeline violence could cause deaths.

Many Oklahomans—particularly those who work in the oil field—are upset that their tax dollars are (directly or indirectly) providing a platform for advocacy of violent extremism that could cost their lives.

“How to Blow Up a Pipeline” was first published in 2021. It is not a historical document, only current-day propaganda.

Defenders may argue students should be exposed to extremist literature so they can recognize it. But colleges typically – and rightfully – refuse to promote much extremist literature comparable to “How to Blow Up a Pipeline.”

For example, Tim McVeigh bombed the Murrah Building in Oklahoma City allegedly due in part to the influence of a racist book, “The Turner Diaries.” How many college students are required to read that book? How often are materials produced by the Ku Klux Klan and similar hate groups assigned reading?

Obviously, there is no real value in assigning “The Turner Diaries,” nor is there valid academic worth to “How to Blow Up a Pipeline.” Both are extremist dreck. Neither deserves platforming by colleges.

Clearly, it’s time to cease all philanthropic giving to colleges, and reduce state appropriations to them as well. Only an environment of excess would permit such destructive waste.

Jonathan Small serves as president of the Oklahoma Council of Public Affairs.

1 comment:

  1. I agree in stopping state appropriations to colleges. Don’t appreciate or approve of My tax dollars supporting so many woke ideologies like this one.

    1) What is the reason or basis for state appropriations to higher education?

    2) What are the criterion used to make appropriations to these institutions?


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