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MIT cancels U. of Chicago geophysics professor’s upcoming science lecture because of his unwoke position on ‘diversity, equity, and inclusion’ –


University of Chicago associate professor and geophysicist Dorian Abbot was set to deliver a lecture at MIT later this month. We say “was set” because his lecture has been canceled.

MIT cancelled a lecture by distinguished geophysicist because activists objected to his politics. Please read and retweet this thread.

— Christina Sommers (@CHSommers) October 4, 2021

Princeton University professor and legal scholar Robert P. George breaks down what happened:

1/ Dorian Abbot is a geophysicist at the University of Chicago. He was to give MIT’s prestigious Carlson Lecture on Oct. 21. The topic was to be climates of extrasolar planets. Shamefully, MIT canceled the lecture under pressure from activists who objected to his political views.

— Robert P. George (@McCormickProf) October 3, 2021

2/ Those who pressured MIT to cancel Dr. Abbot’s lecture oppose his views on “diversity, equity, and inclusion”: As you can see, these have nothing to do with the topic of his Carlson Lecture. The activists cancel anyone who dissents from their dogmas.

— Robert P. George (@McCormickProf) October 3, 2021

Here’s what Prof. Abbot and Stanford associate professor of accounting Ivan Marinovic wrote in an opinion piece this past August:

The words “diversity, equity and inclusion” sound just, and are often supported by well-intentioned people, but their effects are the opposite of noble sentiments. Most importantly, “equity” does not mean fair and equal treatment. DEI seeks to increase the representation of some groups through discrimination against members of other groups. The underlying premise of DEI is that any statistical difference between group representation on campus and national averages reflects systemic injustice and discrimination by the university itself. The magnitude of the distortions is significant: for some job searches discrimination rises to the level of implicitly or explicitly excluding applicants from certain groups.

DEI violates the ethical and legal principle of equal treatment. It entails treating people as members of a group rather than as individuals, repeating the mistake that made possible the atrocities of the 20th century. It requires being willing to tell an applicant “I will ignore your merits and qualifications and deny you admission because you belong to the wrong group, and I have defined a more important social objective that justifies doing so.” It treats persons as merely means to an end, giving primacy to a statistic over the individuality of a human being.

DEI compromises the university’s mission. The core business of the university is the search for truth. A university’s intellectual environment depends fundamentally on its commitment to hiring the most talented and best trained minds: any departure from this commitment must come at the expense of academic excellence, and ultimately will compromise the university’s contribution to society. This point is particularly urgent given that DEI considerations often reduce the pool of truly eligible candidates by a factor of two or more.

And for daring to suggest that DEI programs actually hamper diversity and can result in brain drains, Abbot had to pay.

3/ It is impossible to exaggerate how disgraceful MIT’s capitulation to a mob’s demands to cancel Dr. Dorian Abbot’s lecture is. That he was qualified on the basis of his achievements as as a geophysical scientist to give the Carlson Lecture was never questioned–nor could it be.

— Robert P. George (@McCormickProf) October 3, 2021

4/ MIT’s caving in to a cancel mob’s demand to disinvite a distinguished scientist who had been invited on the basis of his achievements to give an honorific lecture shows just how badly science today has been politicized. The integrity of science can’t survive politicization.

— Robert P. George (@McCormickProf) October 3, 2021

5/ Every honorable scientist should be raising his or her voice in condemnation of the cravenness of those at MIT who are responsible for canceling Dorian Abbot’s Carlson Lecture. In condemning the politicization of science, there should be unanimity–at least among scientists.

— Robert P. George (@McCormickProf) October 3, 2021

6/ It’s not just the scientists who need to speak up against this outrage against academic freedom and integrity. It is all of us in academia–scholars in every field, and scholars from across the ideological spectrum. Please, don’t be silent. Speak! Let your voice be heard.

— Robert P. George (@McCormickProf) October 3, 2021

7/ MIT alumni, please make your voices heard on the Institute’s shameful capitulation to political pressure to cancel the 2021 Carlson Lecture by University of Chicago geophysicist Dorian Abbot. MIT’s honor is at stake. So is the integrity of science at MIT and beyond.

— Robert P. George (@McCormickProf) October 3, 2021

8/ Everyone, please spread the word about this outrage. Help make the authorities at MIT see how disgraceful–and indefensible–the canceling of Dr. Dorian Abbot’s Carlson Lecture is. Let’s strike a blow for academic freedom and the integrity of science.

— Robert P. George (@McCormickProf) October 3, 2021

9/ It’s time to stand up to these mobs and hold accountable institutions that capitulate to them. Let’s finally say enough is enough. “You yield to a mob; you’ll have to deal with us.” @bariweiss @JonHaidt @glukianoff @AmnaUncensored @sapinker @peterboghossian @jflier @GlennLoury

— Robert P. George (@McCormickProf) October 3, 2021

1. This is sad.
2. There’s nothing we can do about it.

We can start teaching our kids that this is wrong.

Amen to that.

We’ll give the last word to Prof. Abbot, who’s a lot more gracious toward MIT than MIT deserves, and certainly more gracious than we would be in his position:

EAPS at MIT is a great department full of excellent scientists who I admire and respect. The department chair ultimately made the decision to cancel my Carlson Lecture, not them. The chair is a good person, but made a bad decision under pressure in this case.

— Dorian Schuyler Abbot (@DorianAbbot) October 2, 2021

I forgive the activists who led the campaign against me. Please do not attack them personally. They are fish swimming in a sea of moral confusion. Some of the responsibility for their behavior rests on their elders, who have not helped them form properly.

— Dorian Schuyler Abbot (@DorianAbbot) October 2, 2021

Prof. Abbot is a class act. Any university would be lucky to have him lecture there.

This content was originally published here.

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