Steven Shaviro, a professor in Wayne State University‘s English department, was suspended without pay after he made a Facebook post that encouraged people to kill their political opponents instead of merely protest them.
“I think it is far more admirable to kill a racist, homophobic, or transphobic speaker than it is to shout them down,” Shaviro wrote. “When right-wing groups invite such speakers to campus, it is precisely because they want to provoke an incident that discredits the left, and gives more publicity and validation to these reprehensible views than they could otherwise attain.”
He continued, “The protesters get blamed instead of the bigoted speaker; the university administration finds a perfect excuse to side publicly with the racists or phobes; the national and international press has a field day saying that bigots are the ones being oppressed, rather than the people those bigots actually hate being the victims of oppression,” he said.
Shaviro pointed to the assassination of Symon Petliura, an antisemitic Ukrainian politician, and his murderer’s subsequent acquittal as evidence that this approach works.