I just informed on myself to The Professor Watchlist. My US teaching colleagues, consider doing likewise

trumpI just took action with the American Association of University Professors and if you are a  Professor at a US University I think you should too.

The Professor Watchlist maintains and circulates a list of professors whom it considers to be using their academic positions to advance left-wing causes. In the belief that left-wing causes include regarding the views of Vice-President Elect Pence on evolution as garbage, maintaining that human-caused global warming is established fact, and rejecting claims (still accepted by half of Republican voters) that Saddam Hussein presented a threat  because of weapons of mass destruction, I wish to claim my right to be included in this list. I continue to hold the title of Professor Emeritus from the University of North Texas, and while I was actively teaching there was a member of the American Association of University Professors, who have provided the link below for those who wish to take similar action.

Here is the indictment that I brought against myself:

Repeatedly told students that the Earth was undeniably old, that creationism and Intelligent Design were incompatible with the scientific evidence, that global Pandaswarming due to human CO2 emissions was established fact. Ridiculed House Science Committee for disputing this, and Rep. Rohrabacher for continuing to question the link between CFCs and ozone depletion. Described “Of Pandas and People” as scientifically incompetent to students while Kitzmiller was still sub judice. Queried in lectures  the adequacy of evidence for WMD in Saddam Hussein’s Iraq during the buildup to 2003 invasion. In social media, has cast doubt on the veracity of some of President-Elect Trump’s statements, and on the excellence of his temperament. For all these reasons, I assert my claim to be added to this Watchlist.

coverfrontI might have added that I subsequently repeated my remarks about CO2 emissions, CFCs, and Iraq in my book, From Stars to Stalagmites.

Link: https://actionnetwork.org/forms/add-my-name-to-the-professor-watchlist?sp_ref=256509679.374.177497.o.1.2&source=other

AARP writes:

The Professor Watchlist, which purports to expose faculty who “advance leftist propaganda in the classroom,” poses a threat to academic freedom. Such lists have been used to harass and intimidate faculty and have a chilling effect on academic freedom and free speech. Please join me in standing up for free speech, academic freedom and higher education.


About Paul Braterman

Science writer, former chemistry professor; committee member British Centre for Science Education; board member and science adviser Scottish Secular Society; former member editorial board, Origins of Life, and associate, NASA Astrobiology Insitute; first popsci book, From Stars to Stalagmites 2012

Posted on January 4, 2017, in Uncategorized. Bookmark the permalink. 9 Comments.

  1. John Wiltshire

    Yes, good for you Paul but…. by definition, every other position is to the left of the extreme right and the centre remains the proper datum point to use in determining handedness. So us centre right beings can also agree with your other points and not see ourselves as lefties.


  2. Perfect response. Own it.


  3. Christine Janis


    I have repeatedly informed students that present-day intelligent design/creationism is completely bogus and promotes disinformation about genuine science. I have given them essay questions where students were required to take some creationist treatise on some aspect of evolutionary biology (e.g, whale evolution) and to use the scientific literature to point out the errors, quotemines, and deliberate lies. I have to report that they all enjoyed this exercise, and it provoked interesting and intense discussion.


  4. Unfortunately, I was never a Prof. and so don’t qualify for this list of honor.

    -Arthur Snyder, SLAC

    Perhaps this would qualify me for honorary in inclusion on the list:

    Global Warming Made Simple: https://goo.gl/Hwv4vw also here https://skepticalsciencereviews.wordpress.com/reviews/


  5. > am no longer sure if left-right means very much now, but like to think that if some censorious left group were running the list, I would be informing on myself for right-wing deviationinsm.

    Dan Kaufman might be able to supply you with some such groups. He worries some about ‘optical correctness’ though I think his concerns somewhat over blown.

    I first encountered the term ‘politically incorrect’ used to tease other lefties who where a little too anal-retentive.


    • “Politically incorrect” is a spinoff from “politically correct”, which is itself a satirical term. Jerry Coyne’s WEIT blog carries many stories of deplorable over-regulation of conduct for fear that some might find it offensive. But when feelings run high, offensiveness is part of the price of free discussion, and I have myself criticised a blog that takes offence when its sanctimonious atheism is even questioned (disclosure: I’m an atheist); see https://paulbraterman.wordpress.com/2016/09/03/9-questions-atheists-find-insulting-bollocks/

      But Watchlist is something else, as I show in the post by listing the range of topics where my actual sttements could be condemned as “leftist”.

      Liked by 1 person

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