I wanted to take the time to respond to your rather harsh statements about the legacy of North Carolina Senator Jesse Helms, who, like John Adams and Thomas Jefferson, passed away on the Fourth of July. I regret that I did not have the time to respond sooner.
I assume that you were serious when you said that having Jesse Helms as a North Carolina Senator once hurt the UNC system in its efforts to attract quality faculty from around the country. I further assume you weren’t exaggerating when you said that on more than one occasion (when you were a department Chairman) a job candidate declined a position, at least in part, because he did not want to live and work in “Helms country.”
Actually, Mack, I would argue that Jesse Helms really helped us out in those job searches. But, before I make that argument, I’d like to enumerate the three reasons why I think Leftist academics hated the late Senator Helms.
1. Unmitigated anti-Southern bigotry. There really isn’t much need to elaborate on this one. Senator Helms spoke with a slow southern drawl. I’ll even admit that he often sounded like he had a golf ball stuck in his mouth. But for anti-Southern bigots this is ample proof of having a below-room-temperature IQ.
Of course, the requirement that one be eloquent to be intelligent does not extend to the judgment of Northern liberals. For example, it’s okay if Caroline Kennedy does an interview with the New York Times and uses the phrase “you know” 49 times per minute. They will not call her “stupid.” They’ll just call her “Senator,” or, more appropriately, “Princess.”
(Note: The anti-Southern double-standard does not apply to black men from the South. They may say “aks another question” or “nome sayin’” with impunity. For this, they will be dubbed “articulate” or “well-spoken”).
2. Helms’ Repudiation of Communism. Communists are attracted to university systems because of the tenure system. It’s all very simple. A professor only has to play the “from each according to his ability” role for about five years. After he gets tenure, he can play “to each according to his need” until he retires. That is why I call professors “parasites” – as opposed to something crude, or even sexist, like “lazy bastards.”