Wednesday, July 29, 2015

Targeted for Tweets

Inside Higher Ed
July 29th, 2015


As a scholar of media studies, Deepa Kumar knew her tweet comparing the U.S. wars in Iraq and Afghanistan to the Islamic State (ISIS) was provocative. But the tweet, posted in March, didn’t stir up much controversy until recently, when it resurfaced on far-right blogs and on Fox News. Now Kumar, an associate professor at Rutgers University, is being flooded with hate mail and even violent threats. And unlike several others scholars who’ve been slammed in recent media reports for their controversial tweets, Kumar is speaking out against coverage she says is unfair.
“This is not the only case of a professor being targeted by Fox News and by the right -- in fact, there’s a long history here of trying to silence and intimidate faculty who have dissenting opinions on the U.S. government and policies in the Middle East,” Kumar said in an interview. “The only way to push back and defend myself is to be public about it.”

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