As Governor, Mitch Daniels Sought to Censor Liberal Academic Writings and Courses
Former Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels pledged to promote academic freedom when he became president of Purdue University in January, but newly released emails show he attempted to eliminate what he considered liberal “propaganda” at Indiana’s public universities while governor
Former Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels pledged to promote academic freedom when he became president of Purdue University in January, but newly released emails show he attempted to eliminate what he considered liberal “propaganda” at Indiana’s public universities while governor.
Emails obtained by The Associated Press through a Freedom of Information Act request show Daniels requested that historian and anti-war activist Howard Zinn’s writings be banned from classrooms and asked for a “cleanup” of college courses. In another exchange, the Republican talks about cutting funding for a program run by a local university professor who was one of his sharpest critics.
The success of those efforts remains unclear; Zinn’s book, for example, is still used in some courses for aspiring teachers. But Daniels did launch an expansive push while governor to change what courses those hopeful teachers could take for credit at Indiana colleges. That effort is ongoing.
The emails are raising eyebrows about Daniels’ appointment as president of a major research university just months after critics questioned his lack of academic credentials and his hiring by a board of trustees he appointed.
Ken Paulson, president of the First Amendment Center, said it’s not unusual for governors or mayors to denounce art, music or popular culture. But he said he couldn’t find any other examples of governors trying to censor political opponents.
Join the Discussion
After you comment, click Post. You can enter an anonymous Display Name or connect to a social profile.
LATEST EDUCATION HEADLINES
Why Water in Schools Is So Susceptible to Lead Poisoning17 minutes ago
Washington Superintendent Sues 7 School Districts and the State6 days ago
Lead Water Crisis Drives Away Portland's Longtime Superintendent1 week ago
California Adds LGBT History to School Curriculum1 week ago
In Texas, Prison Spending Has Increased More Than Schools1 week ago
Teachers in North Carolina No Longer Lowest Paid in U.S.1 week ago