The senior vice president for research and innovation at Michigan State University has resigned from his post after an employees’ union at the school campaigned to have him removed. The school’s Graduate Employees Union (GEU) accused Professor Steven Hsu of “scientific racism” for sharing content on genetic differences between the races.
But his real crime was that Hsu shared research that found that police are not more likely to shoot African-Americans. This, of course, runs afoul of the Black Lives Matter (BLM) dogma that everybody is now required to accept or be labeled a racist.
Hsu was the victim of a instigated by the GEU. Among other things, Hsu was called a “scientific racist” and a “eugenicist.”
“The victory of the Twitter mob will likely have a chilling effect on academic freedom on campus,” Hsu told the College Fix.
Hsu will continue on as a physics professor at the university for now, although, as mentioned above, he will no longer serve as senior vice president of research and innovation.
Besides the Twitter barrage and attacks on Professor Hsu’s character, a petition was circulated calling for Hsu to be fired for not properly representing the university’s values.
“The concerns expressed by the Graduate Employees Union and other individuals familiar with Hsu indicates an individual that cannot uphold our University Mission or our commitment to Diversity, Equity and Inclusion. Given this discordance with university values, Stephen Hsu should not be privileged with the power and responsibility of recruiting and funding scholars, overseeing ethical conduct or coordinating graduate study.”
A counter-petition in support of Hsu gained more signatures than the petition to remove him. Among the signers were were professors concerned with academic freedom from around the world.
“The charges of racism and sexism against Dr. Hsu are unequivocally false and the purported evidence supporting these charges ranges from innuendo and rumor to outright lies. We highlight that there is zero concrete evidence that Hsu has performed his duties as VP in an unfair or biased manner. Therefore, removing Hsu from his post as VP would be to capitulate to rumor and character assassination,” the counter-petition read.
Hsu was also pressured to resign by the president of the university, Samuel L. Stanley. “A video from a 2017 podcast interview with Senior Vice President for Research and Innovation Stephen Hsu has offended many people,” Stanley said in a statement. “Regardless of his intent, the impact of his remarks was significant, insensitive and divisive. We are incredibly sorry to those who felt that impact.”
The podcast that Stanley was referring to was a 2017 discussion featuring Canadian philosopher Stefan Molyneux, whom the Left has labeled a leader of the “alt-right,” a white supremacist, and a scientific racist. A portion of that podcast can be heard here. But don’t expect the video to stay up for very long, since YouTube has banned Molyneux from its platform for “hate speech.”
Set aside for the moment whether or not Molyneux is a racist — that’s another question. This fatwa against Hsu is nothing but guilt by association. Simply by speaking to Molyneux in an interview, Hsu is branded as a bigot and a racist.
The counter-petition argued this as well: “To remove Hsu for holding controversial views, or for inquiring about controversial topics, or for simply talking to controversial personalities, based on the number of people demanding he be removed and the intensity of their demands would be to capitulate to a pre-enlightenment approach to the academy.”
In the podcast, Hsu suggested that IQ might be a better predictor of future poverty than race. In other words, a person’s intelligence — regardless of race — is a more accurate way to predict the future success a person might have in life. That’s not a racist view — in fact, it’s the opposite.
Despite his interview with Molyneux and his belief that race is not the supreme factor in movement between the financial classes, perhaps the biggest reason Hsu was targeted was because he signed off on a 2019 study done by Michigan State that shattered the narrative that Blacks were more likely to be shot by police than other races.
“The GEU alleged that I am a racist because I interviewed MSU Psychology professor Joe Cesario, who studies police shootings,” Hsu told the College Fix. “But Cesario’s work (along with similar work by others such as Roland Fryer at Harvard) is essential to understanding deadly force and how to improve policing.”
Maybe Hsu’s biggest mistake was believing that the leftists who smear him truly want to improve policing — or anything else connected to “the system.” They want to blow up the system and replace it with their own version of a socialist utopia where the individual exists to serve the state. And in such a system, academic freedom — or any freedom — cannot be allowed to exist.
Image: screenshot from YouTube video