The Florida chapter of the Council on American-Islamic Relations wants a state university to give one of its award-winning professors the boot — or at least muzzle him from reciting facts and rendering opinion.
CAIR’s problem is with University of Central Florida communications professor, Dr. Jonathan Matusitz and several of his courses, Terrorism and Communication and another on intercultural communication. He also wrote a book on the subject, published last year and titled, “Terrorism & Communication: A Critical Introduction,” according to the Orlando Sentinel.
CAIR claims Matusitz’s “Islamophobia” is demonstrated in a YouTube video, which appears to be a classroom lecture but which UCF notes was actually a January “outside-of-the-classroom presentation.”
The professor begins by noting that according to a Rand Corporation study, 96 percent of global terrorism is rooted in radical Islam.
“Why do so many Muslims, relative to other religions, want to kill us?” he asks in the video. “The answer is easy, very easy. It is seven letters: culture.” As an example, he notes that “The Qur’an uses the term ‘jihad’ 41 times,” a word meaning “holy war” according to the professor.
Neither Matusitz’s students nor his colleagues have lodged any complaints because of his work, and he was actually honored last year for his outstanding performance, according to UCF spokesman Grant Heston.
As for the video, Heston noted, “Dr. Matusitz expressed his opinion, which is his right.”
Matusitz indicated on a South Florida radio station Thursday that he refuses to be “politically correct just to please everybody.”
“I think that in academia, I’m sure a lot of people don’t share my views,” he noted. “But I also think that a lot of people share my views, but they’re not as open as I am.”
Dr. Matusitz’s fearless commentary on world events recently resulted in a cancelled invitation to speak before the Pinellas County Republican Executive Committee.
In a letter to the editor of the SaintPetersBlog following that brouhaha, he wrote, “as a UCF faculty, I never intend to be controversial; rather, I try to be factual and 100% correct.”
And therein lies the problem — people are often afraid to face the facts.
Most cultures, societies and even many religions have experienced their share of “dark periods” at one point or another. Ancient Rome, for all its greatness, had its period of depravity, Christianity had the Spanish Inquisition, and more recently, Germany brought us the horrors of the Nazi regime.
We all learn from those periods and move on — or at least that’s the theory.
If CAIR wants to truly serve the Muslim community as it purports to, it should do the same. It should quit whining and note the role that radical Islam has assumed in global terrorism and renounce it — over and over again.
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