Ann Althouse Refuses Debate Proposal, Hurls More Insults
University of Wisconsin law professor Ann Althouse has upped the ante. Now she says 9/11 truth is not just "truly nutty," it's "despicable," and 9/11 truth-seekers are like "Nazis or Klansmen."
If it's that nutty and despicable, it ought to be easy for a law professor to shoot down in a debate. But once again, Ann has taken the cowardly route of hurling vicious insults while refusing a polite offer for a debate based on logic and evidence. Below is my recent correspondence with her.
On Feb 2, 2008, at 2:44 PM, Kevin Barrett wrote:
Dear Ann Althouse,
I am writing to request that you back up your characterization of 9/11 skepticism as "nutty," and your many public attacks on me, by stepping forward to defend the official story, using logic and evidence, in a free and fair debate.
As you may know, last year the UW-Madison History Club attempted to sponsor a debate or panel discussion pitting critics of the government's version of 9/11 against its defenders. After thoroughly canvassing the UW faculty, especially the History and Political Science departments, they were unable to find any defenders.
A similar effort was made at the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor. Thousands of faculty members received DVDs and invitations to defend the official story in a debate with Kevin Ryan and me. The only response was from a couple of engineers who said (off the record) that it was obvious that we were right that the World Trade Center was destroyed by controlled demolition, but that saying so in public would put their careers at risk.
I have been subjected to public ad hominem attacks by three UW-Madison professors: Donald Downs, M.F. Onellian, and yourself. It is interesting, and telling, that those willing to launch ad hominem attacks have not yet been willing to defend their positions.
I am sure you will agree that if there were even a 5% chance that 9/11 was an inside job, the gravity of such a possibility would dictate that trained critical thinkers carefully sift and winnow the evidence, if only to remove all reasonable doubt and reassure our fellow citizens. Given scientific polls showing that only 16% of Americans believe the government is telling the truth about 9/11, while 36% think 9/11 was an inside job designed to trigger pre-planned wars, anyone who supports the official version, as you do, ought to make it a priority to help set the record straight.
To that end, I propose that you and I debate the issue in a public forum. I am sure that UW-Madison Students for 9/11 Truth, and probably many other organizations, would love to sponsor the event.
Please let me know that you have accepted this proposal so we can work out the details. I would be happy to schedule the debate for April or early May, which will give you plenty of time to get up to speed on the issue. David Griffin's books, and http://patriotsquestion911.com, are good places to learn about the arguments you will be attempting to refute.
Thank you for helping bring this important issue to public awareness, and I look forward to hearing from you.
On Feb 3, 2008, at 5:31 PM, Ann Althouse wrote:
Please stop emailing me. I think your theory is despicable and have no intention of helping you promote it.
On Feb 3, 2008, at 6:41 PM, Kevin Barrett wrote:
I'm asking you to refute it, not promote it.
On Feb 3, 2008, at 5:59 PM, Ann Althouse wrote:
You are using my name to promote something that I find despicable. I would no more debate you than I would Nazis or Klansman. So stop contacting me.
Me, using your name? Ann, you have been using MY name by repeatedly publishing insults and ad-hominem attacks directed at me for more than a year and a half. I have ignored the vast majority of your insults. Today is the third time in that year-and-a-half that I have politely requested that you defend your views using logic and evidence in a public debate. How can that possibly be construed as "promoting" anything other than fearless sifting and winnowing in search of truth?
If you continue with the truly despicable "I'll insult you but I won't debate you" approach you may rest assured that I, and hundreds of supporters, will continue to contact you, by email, phone, and perhaps in-person requests, until you find the courage to stand behind your beliefs, and subject them to the scrutiny of logic and evidence.
ANN ALTHOUSE, 5110 Law Building, 975 Bascom Mall, Madison, WI 53706-1399 (608) 262-2444, firstname.lastname@example.org
KENNETH B DAVIS Jr., Dean of U.W.-Madison Law School 5110 Law Building, 975 Bascom Mall, Madison, WI 53706-1399 (608) 262-0618, (608) 262-0962, email@example.com
Provost Patrick Farrell, firstname.lastname@example.org
Capital Times email@example.com
Wisconsin State Journal firstname.lastname@example.org
email: Ann Althouse email@example.com
cc: firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org, email@example.com, firstname.lastname@example.org,