The Vermont Cynic Revisited

Published: 2016-03-15

My last report on the Vermont Cynic, which was part of the last project that Bradley Smith and I did together on the “Campus Project”, I’d written that the Vermont Cynic had published an article in which it told about  how students received an email that argued the inconsistencies on the narrative of the Gas Chamber at Auschwitz, Krema I, to be precise, an article written by Eric Hunt for Smith’s Report #219 titled “3D Imagery Demonstrates the Auschwitz Hole Hoax

University of Vermont

The Vermont Cynic assured on his publication “Email incites bias reports” that Hunt’s article was not only lies but it was directed to Jewish students and therefore was anti-Semitic. Vogel and Stevens, two of Hillel’s soldiers at the U Vermont turned quickly to the common rhetorical statement that was recorded in this article and directed to students, saying “…a communication such as this that perpetuates anti-Semitism by falsely proclaiming inaccurate historical events has no place at the University of Vermont,” .They did not bother with details or any intention to refute the narrative of Hunt’s article. Nothing new for me. This is always the easy way of avoiding free inquiry and intellectual freedom in campus with regard to the H question. But one thing is to be noticed, the newspaper, The Vermont Cynic, run by students, had the courage take this argument to their student press. Something we see now happening less and less on campus.

In this article from the Vermont Cynic, it was also said that they were waiting for an answer from Bradley Smith, as they acknowledged this email students received with Hunt’s article in it, was “…signed by Bradley R. Smith, the founder of the Committee for Open Debate on the Holocaust

David Merlin took the task of sending a letter to the editor titled “Architectural Considerations Not Anti-Semitic. Open Letter to The Vermont Cynic” in which he first explained that the email was not at all anti-Semitic  and was not e-mailed to Jewish students alone, as Hillel members were trying to persuade  everyone to believe at U Vermont and second, gave further and precise details of this false narrative at Auschwitz, described in Hunt’s article.

The letter to the editor that David Merlin sent was never published, even though they were waiting for Smith to respond to the information sent via email…odd isn’t it? Well  not really, as one of the American Institutions that is supposed not only to allow but also promote intellectual freedom, the free exchange of ideas and freedom of speech have been contaminated by the compound ADL/ Hillel with fear of being political incorrect and accused  publically of anti-Semitism by allowing free inquiry re the H question.

One last thing has developed in this entire saga, and that is a letter to the editor  of the Vermont Cynic by Gerry Silverstein, PhD Emeritus Lecturer-UVM, in which he expresses  that  - and here I must do a direct quote since it is not often that you read such sweet words in print in a student newspaper from an academic- “When an email was sent to UVM students suggesting an Auschwitz crematorium was a hoax, the response from the UVM vice provost for student affairs was a statement that any communication that falsely proclaims inaccurate historical events has no place at UVM.

A more purposeful response could have come from the president of UVM stating that there are many objectives of a university education, foremost of which is students must develop the ability to think for themselves, and to intelligently evaluate statements by anyone that appear incompatible with historical realities.” Well there is a bit of light at the end of the tunnel, it seems, and he ads in another paragraph of his letter “the American Association of University Professors recently warned: “The presumption that students need to be protected rather than challenged in a classroom is at once infantilizing and anti-intellectual.” I’m pretty much happy with that! For now…


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Author(s): Roberto Hernández
Title: The Vermont Cynic Revisited
Published: 2016-03-15
First posted on CODOH: March 15, 2016, 10:12 a.m.
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