Talk:Ward Churchill/Archive 3

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Unsatisfied with a whitewash article, now Viajero illegally edits Talk

[[|right|frame|Ward Churchill- Perpertrated $2 Million Fraud pretending to be "Native American" gained notoriety by saying 9/11 victims received an appropriate "penalty"]] Ward LeRoy Churchill (born October 2, 1947) is an American academic currently under investigation for academic fraud who has also fraudulently claimed partly Native American descent, despite being officially recorded as white. Until controversy erupted over his remarks about 9/11, he was a somewhat obscure although well-paid leftist activist and author.

Key Ward Churchill Facts

  • He is a wealthy, privileged white male pretending to be Native American
  • He became infamous for accusing the victims of 9/11 to be morally equivalent to Adolf Eichmann who masterminded the Holocaust
  • He is being investigated for academic fraud both for pretending to be Native American and repeated plagiarism

I include this for the purposes only of debate. I certainly believe Ward Churchill to be a criminal however just as a Jewish editor can write of Hitler, I feel I can write objectively about Churchill, despite my strong opinions, which I have set out on my user page.

I cannot see any factual errors or point of view issues with the above. Is any of the above untrue. He does claim to be a native american despite having no evidence at all. He has made a lot of money as a result. He did say 9/11 victims were "little Eichmanns." He is being investigated for plagiarism. He is a leftist.

This is an important debate and whitewashing Churchill's public record is indeed very Orwellian (well Orwell would oppose it actually although not be surprised by it). We have on this discussion page a number of people whose contribution on Churchill has been repeatedly ignored by those with a strong POV who have whitewashed this article blatantly.

Perhaps when Churchill is finally terminated there will be a revisiting of the issue. I understand many CU donors and alumni are growing tired of him, just a matter of time.

JailWardChurchillNow 16:55, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

info removal discussion

This whole thing looks like a giant slander attempt, I mean "Ward Churchill- $92000 per annum Professor who Argues the Victims of 9/11 Deserved to be Killed" what a bunch of shit. This whole thing should be deleted and re-written without the hysterical right-wing biased.

That was Jolutz, whose version has since been reverted. Tufflaw 02:55, Apr 15, 2005 (UTC)

Even better, now we have Ward Churchill- Perpertrated $2 Million Fraud pretending to be "Native American" gained notoriety by saying 9/11 victims received an appropriate "penalty". Im not sure how much money he makes really has anything to do with this. The biase seems to be getting worse here. --CT April 14 2005.(looks better now, I jumped the gun) article

I believe it is wikipedia policy that you have to state a reason to remove cited info on the talk page first (you have to specifically state exactly why it wasn't NPOV and why it shouldn't be allowed in a bio, it is a response to the 9/11 essay criticism brouhaha so very relevant, and I should also note that professor Emma Perez took over as chairperson of the CU ethnic studies department after Churchill resigned that post, so her opinion is even more relevant). If it's written in POV fashion then we should correct that rather than delete? I look forward to your explanation on the talk page. zen master T 23:59, 19 Mar 2005 (UTC)

This above comment was placed on my Talk page instead of being placed on this Talk page, as I believe it should have been. If Zen-master had been participating in the Talk page conversation all along then he would been privy to the discussion--but he has not been.--Keetoowah 00:10, 20 Mar 2005 (UTC)
I have removed a reference to the opinion of another University of Colorado professor. Zen-master has not been participating in the Talk page discussion however he reverted my revert and told me to participate in the Talk page discussion--I found that quite bold. Following is why I reverted him. I have attempted to put in comments of well-respected American Indians and experts by well-respected experts on American Indian history, language and culture and those comments have been deleted by other editors on the ground that those comments are either: 1. redundant or 2. off-topic. Now, if the long, long list of well respected American Indian experts that crticized are going to put taken out of the article because the pro-WC editors believe that the comments are redundant and/or off-topic (Examples: 1. Jodi Rave, reporter from Montana, her own personal experience of retailation by WC was removed and 2. Editors of Indian Country Today outlining the criticism of WC fake Indian heritage), then adding comments of a pro-WC supporters--from flaming partisan Web sites like forward will be removed--unless, of course, we can start putting in each and every example of where Churchill has physically assaulted people that disagreed with him or he has academically retaliated, or some other type of horrid retaliation.--Keetoowah 00:10, 20 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Ok, first of all you seem to be misdirecting the issue in terms of being a "POV website", that essay was written exclusively by a colleague of Ward Churchill's at CU so how is the location of the article relevant? Secondly, you seem to mention at length "American Indian experts" without saying much of anything. How does that relate to the paragraph I added that you removed? What previous editors have done to this article may also have been wrong, but I believe you have removed valid, factually cited information in a relevant article. Please succinctly list your exact reasons for the removal and let's please work together from here forward to bring the article inline with true wikipedia policy. zen master T 00:21, 20 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Misdirection. I don't think so. If you want to talk about misdirection, instead of the article, then we can. You went to my Talk page and told me to explain on the WC talk page why I did what I did--when you have never been here before. Also, when I told you to quit commenting on my talk page and to comment over here on the WC talk page the first thing that you did was take all of the discussion on the WC talk page and archives it so it can't be seen. Now that's misdirection. If you had been involved in the WC discussion before then you would be aware of the personal, relavant comments and experience of a Mandan Indian named Jodi Rave. This discussion is in the archives. Rave was once a student of WC at UC years ago. She straight forwardly questions WC false, lying, horrid claims of being an Indian and WC lowered her grade from an A to a D. She did her research and he retaliated. She is now a newspaper reporter for a newspaper in Montana and her story has been outlined in the Denver Post and the Rocky Mountain News and she has written about the experience in her Montana paper. Her personal experience, which is backed up with facts and not just opinion, was taken out of this article. Now if you were ever involved in the talk page you would know this story. Now the Rave story is out and I'm more than willing to see the comments of the prof who replaced WC, but the Rave story needs to go in and all of the other stories where WC has either physically abused Indians or spit on Indians or somehow or another retaliated against Indians that dare question the fake Indian heritage of WC. Do your homework before you lecture others zen master. --Keetoowah 00:41, 20 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Any previous discussion can not possibly be a justification for removing what appearss to be validly cited, factual new information, can it? If you have a problem with the wording then we can modify it, rather than deleting it entirely. I archived the old discussion because you placed this new section at the very top as opposed to the bottom which is the general talk page practice (it seemed to me your intent might be to hide this discussion?). I also only posted on your talk page once, and then made a copy edit. The treatment of Indians and previous talk page discussion is irrelevant to the issue of why you removed factually cited relevant new information, please come back to just that issue. To state thing more directly, you have yet to list any valid specific reason why you removed the Emma Perez essay info and in my opinion you have even failed to present an argument that can be debated logically. I will give you one more chance to defend your action before I create an RFC on this issue. zen master T 01:16, 20 Mar 2005 (UTC)

I have reinserted the content in question as I believe that it presents a relevant viewpoint in an accurate and neutral fashion. Keetowah, please do not use the cry of "NPOV" as an excuse for censorship of viewpoints you do not agree with. Kelly Martin 01:18, Mar 20, 2005 (UTC)
Dear zen master & Kelly Martin: From the tone of each of your posts it is clear that you both have a brow-beating attitude. It is unpleasant, unwanted and unacceptable. Try to maintain a professional attitude. I don't mind the information from the professor being placed in the article. I only am making the point that Wikipedia should err on the side placing more information in an article than not enough. So fine. By all means keep the information in the article. Now, the Jodi Rave information WILL go back into the article and all other relavant documented criticisms of WC that are available to be placed in the article will be placed in the article. Don't censor the viewpoint of Jodi Rave and others--like Vajero did--and I won't, as Kelly Martin so dogmatically put it, censor the critics of the fake Indian either.----Keetoowah 03:26, 20 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Keetoowah, please refrain from personal insults. I have never proposed censoring anybody's viewpoints. As far as I am concerned, if the Jodi Rave comments you allude to are documentable, then they're relevant and should be included in the article so long as they can be phrased in a neutral manner. I would advise you to refrain from referring to Churchill as "the fake Indian", however, as talk in this manner is strongly suggestive of bias, and tends to lead others to question your neutrality as an editor. If you wish to be taken seriously here, you should act appropriately. I would advise you to try harder not to be so antagonistic in your dealings with other editors. I do not have a dog in this fight; I am not your "enemy". Kelly Martin 03:39, Mar 20, 2005 (UTC)


It was written in the ethnicity portion of Churchill's article: "To date no one has specifically accused Ward Churchill of lying about his ancestry." Is such a statement true? I think many many people have specifically accused Ward Churchill of lying about his ancestry. While I agree none of these allegations have been proven, they were definitely made. I am suspecting what the writer meant was no formal allegations have been made against Ward Churchill by the University of Colorado regarding his ethnicity.

Very subtle distinction there. If someone is directly claiming that Ward Churchill lied then we should cite that specifically (but slander comes to mind). All the citations that I've seen in the article are basically arguing since he's not full blooded (or at least 1/4th blooded) Native American he should be forced to resign as professor. Ward Churchall says he always claimed he was less than 1/4th Native American. Such a controversy should not damage the credibility of a professor unless the person specifically lied about his ancestry. Additionally, no one should be forced to prove ancestry for a job (which would likely be impossible anyway except maybe genetic testing). The critics seem to be trying to bash Ward Churchill with the ethnicity thing in a very sneaky round about way. zen master T 22:53, 22 Mar 2005 (UTC)
There have been hundreds of people who have accused Churchill lying about his ethnicity. There are tons of examples in the articles cited at the bottom of the article. There is no need to relive this argument.-----Keetoowah 02:28, 23 Mar 2005 (UTC)
You fail to note the distinction, they aren't saying he's lying, they are saying he shouldn't be a Native American activist because he's not "really" Native American. To show someone has lied you have to first show a statment of theirs that is later determined to have been false. Currently it's only pundits bashing Ward Churchill for things and insinuating he should be fired if he lied about his ethnicity. He admits he is less than 1/4th Native American so all the tribes stating he does not belong proves nothing, what is your point? I will change the sentence in question to "To date no one has offered evidence of Ward Churchill lying about his ethnicity". It's obvious the right wing propoganda machine chose Ward Churchill because they have a lot of dirt on him. zen master T 04:55, 23 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Plenty of people have stated out and out that he is lying. [1]. Now your sentence is not backed up by any citation whatsoever. It is your opinion. Since it is just your opinion it is not NPOV. It will be removed until you find a source or citation that state that exact sentence other than just you a Wikipedia editor. It is one sentence essay by you and it violates the Wikipedia policy of being neutral. You have reached a conclusion. That is not your job.-----Keetoowah 14:52, 25 Mar 2005 (UTC)
It's obvious to me that this is an issue which is going to be the subject of persistent dispute. Can we all agree that the article should reflect that some people believe that Churchill misrepresented his ancestry to Colorado University and that such misrepresentation, if proven, may be grounds for termination of his employment relationship? I think we need to avoid using the loaded term "lied". I don't think any of us are privy to the exact nature of the representations Churchill made to CU, and I think we should wait for the university to complete its investigation before making any positive claim on the matter. I would once again remind those editing this article that Wikipedia is not a forum for either trashing or rehabilitating someone else's reputation. Kelly Martin 16:40, Mar 25, 2005 (UTC)
While I agree that the article needs to mention the controversy around his ethnic background, we shouldn't step into the realm of speculation as to whether this may be grounds for his termination. Once these things have been determined by those concerned, then we address it. -- Viajero 15:38, 26 Mar 2005 (UTC)
It is not an area of "speculation." It is NOT speculation that CU is looking at the ethnicity issue as a issue to dismiss him. That is a fact. There are dozens of newspaper articles confirming that fact. No we don't wait until the until "these things have been determined." We know that the issue is one of the issues being looked so we put it in the article. [2]

The article states: Churchill was hired by the University of Colorado partly because of ethnic background, and there is some speculation that he might be fired should he fail to prove his ethnicity. While the reference provided in that paragraph confirms the speculation part, it does support the Churchill was hired by the University of Colorado partly because of ethnic background. Is there any evidence (e.g, hiring committee deliberations) which supports the assertion that ethnicity was a factor in his hiring? While Affirmative Action allows ethnicity to be taken into account in hiring decisions, but it does not allow ethnic quotas - the position could not have been open only to any single ethnic group. Unless some sort of documentation can be provided for this part of the statement, it should not be stated as a fact. Guettarda 17:03, 25 Mar 2005 (UTC)

I removed the sentence, "Others point out ethnicity is not generally a requirement to be a professor of a certain department as there are many ethnic studies professors that do not have the corresponding ethnicity." This sentence was removed because:
1. It is the opinion of Wikipedia editor. It is not backed up by a citation to a non-Wikipedia source, therefore, it is non-NPOV. It is basically a one sentence essay expressing a defense of Churchill. Provide a citation for the sentence and it perfectly acceptable, but there is NOT one provided.
2. It uses the weasel word "others point out" to make it look like someone outside of Wikipedia stated this and since there is no outside source cited I can only conclude that it is the opinion of the Wikipedia editor that put it there.
3. It makes the implication that the clain against Churchill go back to whether he an Ethnic Studies professor without being a minority. The issue is much larger than that concerning the implications of simply not being truthful about who you are.
4. It implies that somebody made the statement that to be an ethnics studies professor someone has to be a minority. No one has state that. Anyone can be an ethnic studies professor--minority or non-mionority. It is the fabrication that is the issue.-----Keetoowah 15:20, 26 Mar 2005 (UTC)
I cleaned up the problem I had with that section by correcting the sentence that stated he could be fired if he doesn't prove his ancestry, I do not believe that is true and all the citations I've seem to agree, I changed that to he could be fired if it is proved he lied about his ancestry. Two sentences later the article already stated "misrepresenting a claim of indian heritage could be construed as fraud" so that related point was already covered. Is it possible he believed he is of Native American heritage but is unable to prove it? Should someone have to prove their ancestry to get a job? In my opinion, no and that would likely violate all sorts of laws. The only thing that could resolve the ethnicity dispute might be a genetic test which I think would be a ridiculous thing to require of a professor. Additionally, it is in fact a true statement that many ethnic studies professors do not have the corresponding ethnicity, your citation request for something obviously true reveals your apparent motive regarding this article. zen master T 22:19, 26 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Your argument has a logical fallacy. So what? There are non-Indian teaching about Indian issues. That fact does not prove what my motives are. Just in case you haven't got it yet: my motive is that Churchill is a fake Indian and he is a fraud and he steals jobs from real Indians. That is my motivation. What is you motivation to defend the fraud? If can't prove it then he should run around and state it. It is an easy thing to prove. If your parents are Indian then you are Indian. No big deal. What is your motivation? You have questioned my motivation. What is your motivation to defend the fraud?-----Keetoowah 19:14, 29 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Is there any evidence that his ethnicity was a factor in his hiring? Unless it can be substantiated, that statement should not be in the article. Misrepresentation of your ethnicity could be construed as fraud, but I think it would come down to whether you believe it to be true. So I would suspect that there would have to be evidence that he intentionally misrepresented his ethnicity (assuming, of course, that he did). As for proof one way or the other, genetic testing wouldn't be able to prove things conclusively one way or the other. The only proof would be historical documentation. Guettarda 22:29, 26 Mar 2005 (UTC)
I believe he listed his ethnicity as part Native American or Native American directly to get on some affirmative action program that got him the initial job as associate professor or having to do with a loan or something (it's in one of the citations). I agree that is a far cry from fraud even if he can't prove the Native American heritage. Genetic testing is more conclusive than historical documents which can be faked, it would be conclusive if genetic testing did prove he's at least distantly related to current day Native Americans. zen master T 22:50, 26 Mar 2005 (UTC)
I don't doubt that he might have done that. The problem is, the article states that this had a role in his being hired...states it as a fact. Without seeing the notes of the search committee, there is no way to establish this as a fact. It's speculation. Genetic testing cannot establish anything with certainty. There is not American Indian gene that everyone with more than a certain quantum of blood has, and everyone without it lacks. There are statistical tools which can speak to likelihood, but they cannot say anything with certainty. Guettarda 22:58, 26 Mar 2005 (UTC)
I agree any such sentences in the article should be cleaned up. There may be some confusion in that his Native American heritage played no role in his becoming a tenured professor. I believe genetic testing has the ability to prove someone is a distant cousin (2nd or 3rd cousins) of someone else. In Ward Churchill's case if this someone else is a full blooded Native American then it proves he has at least some Native American heritage. zen master T 23:10, 26 Mar 2005 (UTC)
Mitochondrial DNA can show shared female ancestry, Y-chromosomes can show shared male ancestry, but they only go mother to daughter and father to son (so I share neither with my father's sisters' children and my mother's brother's son). I share Y chromosomes with my father's brother's son, and some of my father's cousin's sons. I share mt DNA with my mother's siblings, her sister's children, etc. Microsatellites can show relatedness between specific people, but they don't have to. Mostly you can look at probabilities - what proportion of your genes do you share with such-and-such a group. But you might inherit none of the characteristic genes and still have the ancestry. Native Americans have mixed extensively with white Americans. Since it's a matter of chance what genes you inherit, it would be very difficult to say unequivocably that you had or did not have certain ancestry based on your genetics. Genetic testing could demonstrate that he had NA ancestry (or that it was highly likely that he did)...the problem is disproving that he did. Guettarda 23:33, 26 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Ok, you obviously know more about DNA testing than I do. Were you going to be the one that cleaned up the sentence that errantly states as a fact his ethnicity played a direct role in his hiring? zen master T 23:51, 26 Mar 2005 (UTC)

You're right, I should quit talking and do something, huh? :) Guettarda 00:03, 27 Mar 2005 (UTC)

This recent report from the university should give you closure for this section (though I doubt that the controversy will end soon). "Report on Conclusion of Preliminary Review in the Matter of Professor Ward Churchill" [3]. -- Dan O. 16:43, 27 Mar 2005 (UTC)

Actually, no, it doesn't. It outlines some of the complaints and some of the evidence, but does not make a final conclusion, especially in the area of ethnicity. Guettarda 19:44, 29 Mar 2005 (UTC)

I have been following the Churchill controversy and have some of the documents, or their locations. A copy of an e-mail concerning the Churchill hiring decision states that it is a positive factor in the hiring decision (increasing cultural diversity on campus). The e-mail can be accessed at


Sorry, I'm just now learning how to use these comments. On the point in contention: the hired-as-an-Indian question has been mooted by the three-member review committee, wherein they said "The question about Professor Churchill's employment application must be considered closed as a result of this ten-year old review." What remains for the Standing Committee on Research Misconduct to decide is--in the words of that same three-member committee--"whether Professor Churchill has attempted to gain a scholarly voice, credibility, and an audience for his scholarship by wrongfully asserting that he is an Indian."



So does the L. stand for Leroy, or not?

No, it stands for LeRoy; he is named after his paternal grandfather, Ward LeRoy Churchill. From an extensive article in the Rocky Mountain News, March 26, 2005. Fred Bauder 16:22, Apr 10, 2005 (UTC)

Freedom of Speech and Academic Freedom

Calicocat writes: I maintain the issues of Freedom of Speech and Academic Freedom are cental to the Ward Churchill controversy and at the root of this article's content. Others fought hard to have these issues removed, a manifestation, perhaps, of the extant fight againt freedom of speech and academic freedom itself. It was falsely asserted that inclusion of this material was an "essay," when in fact it was a well crafted, highly germane and sourced section, researched and added to focus on these critical issues. In looking at this article again, and having followed the news on Churchill, I still am of the opinion that these issues are perhaps the most materially significant to understanding the controversy surrounding Churchill, certainly at least equal to his disputed ethnicity. I am still of the opinion this material would have added valuable information to the article -- even including the break in style of adding the two free links within quoted text was warranted and would have added richness to the overall article.

When a man's life is threatened, when his livelihood is attacked (as is the case with Churchill); when a venerable institution like Hamilton is theatened with violence, it is appropriate to devote some space in the article to what the institution involved said about it, to read the references contained in Hamilton's statment, and to examin other views on the subject.

It was my intention to add more views and develop this section, but after its removal I lost interest and was "fired" as an editor on this article. As it stands these hub issues are inadequately reduced to but one line in the article, but do not deserve to be given such short shrift. As others have said on these talk pages, the only really interesting thing about Churchill is this essay controvery, cental to that are the issues of Freedom of Speech and academic freedom. Therefore, I'm placing the original section here, between lines, so it may be considered by any who might take interest in the real heart of Churchill controversy. See below: (section removed from article. Lines added to demark removed material; some slight editing to original draft)Calicocat 10:03, 11 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Section Heading: Freedom of Speech/Academic Freedom

Churchill's role as an academic, combined with the public controversy over his 9/11 essay have seen calls for his censure, dismissal from his position, prosection as a traitor and theats against his life (as well as credible threats of violence against Hamilton College). These have raised serious issues related to academic freedom and freedom of speech.

On March 3, 2005, Hamilton College, a private instituion, released a statement saying:[4]

"It is...important to remember that, however offensive or even deplorable Churchill's remarks about 9/11 may have been, those remarks were by currently recognized legal standards neither unlawful nor an incitement to violence. However hateful, they were essentially political speech of the kind that, as part of a sound liberal education, students must learn to confront intellectually and, if so inclined, to dispute. The only illegal acts in this situation were the threats of violence received by the College. Unfortunately, those threats imposed a lawless veto on the normal process of civil discourse and open debate on the campus and made it impossible to go forward with a previously scheduled program."

The Hamilton College statment goes on saying:

"Two classic statements of these guiding constitutional principles provide eloquent support for Hamilton's decision to defend academic freedom in the Ward Churchill controversy.
"Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes once wisely observed: "If there is any principle of the Constitution that more imperatively calls for attachment than any other it is the principle of free thought, not free thought for those who agree with us but freedom for the thought that we hate."
"On another occasion, [Justice Louis Brandeis] famously reasoned: "If there be time to expose through discussion the falsehood and fallacies, to avert the evil by the processes of education, the remedy to be applied is more speech, not enforced silence."
  • A Rocky Mountain News editorial editoral dated March 11, 2005 by Rodney Muth argues that "In our culture, it is through free exchanges, even clashes, of ideas that intellectual progress is made, knowledge is advanced, wisdom is achieved and truth revealed. As many commentators have pointed out, if Churchill keeps his job it will be because protecting speech that we dislike is the price we must pay to protect all speech." [5]
  • Another commentator, Jon Caldara in a February 27, 2005 editorial from the Independence Institute, argued that Churchill takes a double-standard on the First Amendment: "Churchill's First Amendment double standard is the norm in higher education. Case in point is the outrageous statements made this week by Colorado University President Betsy Hoffman. The same Betsy Hoffman who suspended (CU Professor) Gary Barnett for his speech said state legislators and elected officials should stop talking about the Churchill affair." [6]
  • "A February 15, 2005 Capital Magainze editoral, "Professor Ward Churchill, The First Amendment and Free Speech on Campus," by Onkar Ghate puts the question is stirctly economic terms, but still argues against censorship, "Only private universities can ensure that every citizen's freedom of speech is respected." Echoing Colorado Gov. Bill Owens who, in calling for Churchill’s resignation, said taxpayers should not have to subsidize Churchill’s 'outrageous and insupportable' views. The editorial argues, "To force [by payment of taxes] another person to support ideas he opposes violates his freedom of speech." The audtor is a resident fellow at the Ayn Rand Institute. Capital Magazine advises the views of that author do not necessarily represent those of the magainze. [7]

(end section removed)Calicocat 10:03, 11 Apr 2005 (UTC)

911focus: which demos?

User:911focus, in the text you just added

whom he derides for trying to prevent window breaking and other minor acts of outrage at the demonstrations which he sardonically derides as mere "sign-waving".

to which demonstrations is Churchill referring? This is ambiguous. -- 21:39, 13 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Who wrote this question? Sign your name.----Keetoowah 13:22, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)

(copied here, from User talk:Fred_Bauder)

Ward Churchill is Not An Indian

I am an enrolled member of Cherokee Nation of Oklahoma and I used to work for the BIA. I added into the article the written opinions of people that have researched Churchill's Indian ancestry and 99% of these Indian folks point out that Churchill has not provided the basic information required to prove that he is an Indian. I put it up last night and it much of it was taken down early this morning. It was information where I provided sources for the comments. I understand that what I wrote can and should be edited. But taking out information that provides sources and citations seems to be an attempt to stifle the information. Dear Fred Bauder, it IS fair to ask if Churchill really is an Indian. He is taking away from actual Indian people the ability to speak for themselves. He has build his whole career on being someone who has experienced the oppression of a minority culture. It is similar to a white middle class Protestant person from Idaho was writing books about himself being a Jew in Hitler's Germany. And don't even say that I just made a inaccurate analogy because Churchill himself compares and uses Hitler and Nazi analogies. I'm sure that is how you learned about him in the first place because he made this most recent comment about 9/11 victims are all "Eichmann's." Look, providing information about whether you are an Indian or not should not be that difficult. Why? You have Indian parents. It is simple as that. Even if you don't have brothers and sisters then you have Indian parents and your parents have brothers and sisters. Correct? Why doesn't anyone in Indian Country know any of these people? This is NOT a cheap shot as you indicated above. It goes to the heart of who he claims that he is. As Suzan Harjo pointed out: Churchill is taking jobs and speaking engagements from real actual Indians and building a whole career on it. Those jobs and speaking engagements should go to actual Indian. Also, Harjo made the point that Churchill's comments are having a backlash and where is that backlash going? On to Indian Country. Look, no one believes that he should not have the right to say what he wants. We all believe in the First Amendment even if it is difficult speech. However, just don't run around and claim that you are an Indian when you aren't and that you personally have been oppressed. Let's say that I am a white person that lives in Kentucky and I attend a Baptist church and my parents came the United States from South Africa, do you really believe that I could run around and write books on Irish experience of oppression in Belfast? No. But that is what he is doing. And you are calling it a cheap shot. It is not a cheap shot. It goes to who and what he is. He is what we call in Indian Country a Wannabee. There is a whole tribe of Indians called the Wannabee Indians and he is the Chief. The people that making the complaints about his fake Indian heritage are not conservatives by any stretch of the imagination either: Suzan Harjo (worked for Bill Clinton), Dennis Banks (Founder of the American Indian Movement), etc. He can say wherever he wants about 9/11 or America, but he shouldn't lie and claim that he is an Indian when he isn't. And schools like the Univ of Colorado should do a better job of doing there homework when they hire a someone and put out to the world that he is an Indian because he isn't.----Keetoowah 17:45, 20 Feb 2005 (UTC)

I am sorry that your edits were removed from the article. I did not remove them, although I did think about how to edit that material. I will look further at what you wrote on my talk page when I get a chance. I am in agreement with your distaste at Ward Churchill putting himself forth as a spokesman for the Native community but even more at those who have accepted him as a spokesman, like the people at the University of Colorado who put him on a fast tenure track, bypassing others, most of whom were not even interviewed. However, judging from his appearance I do think he probably has some Native American ancestory and feel we should take his word for it. The real issues have to do with his actions and ideas. Fred Bauder 18:11, Feb 20, 2005 (UTC)
Fred, this quote of yours "However, judging from his appearance I do think he probably has some Native American ancestory" is the epitome of racial stereotyping. I am part Native American (no joke) and I am extremely shocked you would say this. BTW: I was on your talk page just now to inquire why you did not answer the email I sent to you a few days ago at "". Is that not your email address? I was attempting to contact you from the "wikien-l" mailing list archive pages of April, 2005. Also, my email was on the subject of a "user block" and I see that you did comment about a different "block" to another user [8]. Why did you not answer my email about a "block"? Suffice it to say, while my "block" question has been resolved elsewise, I am still interested to hear back from you. I thought you and I were in good standing, dialog-wise. Your no-reply surprised me. Rex071404 08:31, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Reponse to Rex071404

User:Rex071404 wrote above:

this quote of yours "However, judging from his appearance I do think he probably has some Native American ancestory" is the epitome of racial stereotyping. I am part Native American (no joke) and I am extremely shocked you would say this.

Rex071404 also brought this matter up on my talk page, and I am taking the liberty of replying here. In my understanding of the term, "racial stereotyping" has a strong perjorative component. A notorious example would be the practice by some police departments of stopping black drivers more frequently than white ones, the assumption being that blacks are more likely to be engaged in illegal activities (or whatever). I don't think Fred was being perjorative with that comment; it was a simple observation. While we can argue whether Fred is correct, I don't think we can claim he was being offensive. After all, we all carry traces of our ethnic background in our faces. -- Viajero 10:58, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)

What Viajero refers to is racial profiling. No one is suggesting that Fred is doing that. However, on this Wiki, there is a redirect from Racial stereotype to Ethnic stereotype and on that page, one finds this definition " overly-simplified representation of the typical characteristics of members of an ethnic group...". This I feel, is what Fred is suggesting; that somehow Ward Churchill has facial features which typify him to be Native American. Implicit in such a suggestion, is that Fred could elucidate for us what facial features he sees in Mr. Churchill that allows him to assert (as he did) "However, judging from his appearance I do think he probably has some Native American ancestory. Fred is not a forensic sketch artist with a background in human anthropology. And since he's not, his obervations about Mr. Churchill's appearence can only be coming from a layman's obervations. That being the case, I'd rather Fred keep his opinions about personal appearance to himself. And I'd also like him to recognize that his limited personal knowledge about human appearances does not qualify him to draw inferences about a person's race (or ethnicity). Certainly skilled and trained observers are able to see general patterns of appearance among large groups of persons with similar heredity, but such observations ought only be made in the context of scientific study - not for pigeonholing people in our minds 'he looks like an Injun to me'... Granted, Fred did not phrase his statement that way, but this is the message I took from him. Rex071404 13:07, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)

While discussing Ward Churchill recently on his personal talk page, Fred Bauder said this: "However, judging from his appearance I do think he probably has some Native American ancestory".. I am part Native American (Mi'kmaq aka Micmac), most certainly more so than Mr. Churchill and I don't like to be judged by my appearance. I think Bauder's comments are offensive racial stereotyping. I think he ought to apologize and have basically said as much on his talk page. What do you think? Rex071404 08:38, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I agree with your comments about NOT judging people based upon their looks. I think that is completely stupid way to decide if someone is an Indian or not. However, I don't think that we should engage in the actions of forcing people to apologize for stupid comments. It stifles Free Speech and it makes martyers out of people like Ward Churchcill. Churchill is a complete and total fraud and he is being defended by a bunch of people that think they are doing the right thing. These are people that has a tunnel vision view of the world. They believe that if someone is in an academic environment then no one has a right to question their authority. It is blind, stupid, brain-washed, knee-jerk liberalism, but it is their right. You read his comments and you got it. You knew instinctively that the comment was stupid and wrong-headed, but the folks that blindly support Churchill when he lies about his Indian heritage truly believe that they are doing the right thing. You and I know that to be stupid, but we can only argue against their point of view--not force them into false apologizes, etc. Even if the Fred Bauder or the other Churchill apologists actually came clean and admitted that they are blindly defending Churchill on the fake Indian issue because they simply want to defend him because he is spouting off anti-America rhetoric, it wouldn't matter because we know that any apology would be as fake as Churchill. Just drop it and point out to them that no one in Indian Country really believes Churchill to be an Indian--except liberal, white folks.-----Keetoowah 13:20, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Well said. Still, I feel that perhaps Fred is smart enough to concede on the stereotype concerns. If he does, it undercuts his support for the "evidence" he sees which he uses to infer that his suppositions about Mr. Churchill's supposed heritage are somehow valid. Rex071404 13:30, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)

(copied from User talk:Fred_Bauder):

Dear Rex: Please keep in mind that Viajero is one of the knee-jerk defenders of the fake Indian. He is not ever going to agree with your comments concerning Fred's comments, so really don't waste your time. You know that people should not be judged by their looks, but Viajero has a political agenda to work and he wants to us Wikipedia to further that political agenda and he sure as heck isn't going to let some Indian get the way of that political agenda.-----Keetoowah 13:29, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Message received. Rex071404 13:48, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)
One last thing, they will circle the wagons, so to speak, when one Indian gets out of line. Wikipedia has a Star Chamber where they invite people to throw stones at folks who don't go along with their agenda. Viajero is part of that group. He will go out and gather together his pack of thugs to beat you into submission. So don't even think about making an issue of Churchill's fake Indian-ness. These folks--Viajero, ZenMaster, etc--don't like criticism of their anti-America hero--even if it is true, like the fact that he is complete and totally fake Indian. Of course, if you do decide to pull a Custer on them, I will be there right along with you.-----Keetoowah 14:08, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Discussions like these don't belong here; they belong on user talk pages or in private email. This page is to discuss our article on Ward Churchill. -- Viajero 14:34, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)
See what I mean? Rex. Viajero is going to one of buddies and they are going to commence a Star Chamber proceeding or they are going to a sympathetic Admin who will have us blocked or banned, etc. So he can continue to portary Churchill as an Indian--even though Churchill isn't one. See you dared to question the authority of the ruling know it alls. Of course a double standard applies. Of course, they can make comments like, "I think he looks like an Indian." But you aren't allowed question those comments--just comments that don't agree with Viajero, Fred or ZenMaster, and the rest of Churchill's apologists.-----Keetoowah 15:24, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)
My comment on Ward Churchill's appearance was based on his resemblance to some of my close relatives (my mother and grandmother) whom I know to be partly Native American. Fred Bauder 15:39, Apr 14, 2005 (UTC)

(copied from User talk:Rex071404):

It would have been less prone to misinterpretation, had you said that to begin with. Still, you would never say that someone "has a big nose" or "thick lips" and then suggest that they are this or that, would you? Why then try to divine Churchill's geneology from his appearance? And by doing that, aren't you weighing your edits with your personal opinion? And if so, that's truly POV. The public facts do not reasonably support any assertions or suppositions about Churchill actually being a Native American (not in any true sense). That being the case, I frankly am unmoved that you "feel we should take his word for it" based on your personal opinion of his appearance. I think Fred, as an attorney, you ought to be able to see the error of your logic here. Your personal feelings are not one of the public facts which we can rest our editorial standards on. Indeed, we've already established that such methods are not the rule here - as evidenced by the fierce way my personal feelings are scrubbed by others from articles such as John Kerry. Also, as evidence by the blocking of my edits to Dedham, Massachusetts, it's not enough that an individual editor personally "know" or "feel" something to be true. Rather, it must be backed up by public fact sources that other editors will accept. I have two problems with using your "feelings" as a source: a) feelings are subject to change and therefore are not reliable as an ongoing fact referrence and b) I am repulsed by the notion we ought to judge people by appearance. That said, thanks for answering about Ward Churchill. But, I am still curious, why did you not answer my email? And why do you stand mute on that topic in this reply to me? Rex071404 15:58, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I did say that to begin with and only on the talk page. As to your mail, I do not recall a particular message to me. Fred Bauder 16:09, Apr 14, 2005 (UTC)
Did say what? Rex071404 16:20, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)

A New Look at Ward Churchill, Rich White Guy

Ward Churchill is white. He all but admits it himself. For a "native American" activist, this is a central and crucial fact that deserves prominence in this article.

Ward Churchill would not be noteworthy at all except for his remarks about the victims of 9/11 which deserve the highest prominence. They are very confronting views, and while I don't agree with them, deserve to be prominently displayed with little editorializing.

Ward Churchill has a checkered academic history with many claims of plagiarism that would have brought down others. His ethics violations must also be detailed.

Carlshooters 18:32, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Fanatics have taken over this article. The key characteristics of Ward "Rich White Guy" Churchill are:

  • He's white while pretending to be Native American
  • He's privileged, with post-graduate degree, with academic tenure
  • He's a plagiarist and a bully of women
  • He made comments about the victims of 9/11 that to the vast majority of Americans are chilling and stomach churning.

To whitewash any of the above out of the article is dishonest in the extreme.Johnnyio 21:34, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Get a grip on reality! The material being inserted by Johnnyio and Carlshooters is outlandishly POV and hyperbolic. Folks. This in an encyclopedia, not Fox News.--Cberlet 21:42, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)
It is pretty obvious that Johnnyvio and Carlshooters are the same user. -- Viajero 21:47, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Many of the proposed changes are inaccurate and very poor word choices are being attempted, "a systematic fraudster"? come on. The accusations of lack of true native american ethnicity strike me as an attempt to frame the debate away from Churchill's criticisms of U.S. policy that may be related to 9/11. It wouldn't be as notable if someone was accused of not being of native american decent, the essence of the Ward Churchill controversy is over his 9/11 essays, the article should primarily focus on that. zen master T 21:53, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I have reverted the text and asked that one edit be made at a time and discussed here.--Cberlet 21:54, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Making one change every minute is cheating, Johnnyio. Have you no ethics whatsoever?--Cberlet 21:56, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I reverted for POV usage of "fraudster" (among other massive POV). The word choices in the massive edit is very poor suggestive POV wise. zen master T 22:04, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I see a Star Chamber investigation coming with Viajero as Grand Head Know It All of the Star Chamber. He's out there right gathering together his friends to put together one Great Witch Burning. Someone dared to call Churchill a FAKE INDIAN! Someone dared to call Churchill a BULLY! Viajero and his buddies are going to get the THOUGHT POLICE. Viajero and ZenMaster are not going to let anyone anyone get in the their bias.-----Keetoowah 22:08, 14 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Thank you

Thank you to those contributing to a much improved article. There are agenda pushers here who must be opposed. Together we can improve the article and take it out of the hands of Marxists. Johnnyio 03:26, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

What a distorted claim and an outrageous Orwellian attempt to whitewash intellectual bullying and aggressive insertion of Point of View. This page is controversial. The type of biased rhetoric inserted by Johnnyio and his allies violates the letter and spirit of what Wikipedia aspires to attain. Thank you indeed...for once again demonstration your bias. On a multitude of other pages, editors with left, right, and center ideological viewpoints cooperate to find a consensus. The type of drunken frat-boy insults posted on this page by a handful of zealots should be cause for alarm for all serious editors on Wikipedia. --Cberlet 15:12, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

As a Muslim and new user, I took some interest in this exchange. I believe some of the rhetorics involved are inappropriate. However, the quotation about the occupants of the World Trade Center ought to be included in full so people can make their own assessment. The issue of whether he is really an Indian and the accusations of fraud and so on seem less pertinent. HishamMelham 16:40, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

A serious debate on Ward Churchill's Academic Fraud

The blocking of those attempting to bring balance to the article is a major concern. Indeed one user foreshadowed that Viajero would bring in the Thought Police to stop any changes he disagreed with. Prescient.

My own belief as disclosed fully in my user page is that Ward Churchill has indeed engaged in massive fraud against CU and his readers. If I write a book about how I was an oppressed Arab slave in Saddam Hussein's dungeon and it turns out that I am a Norwegian aristocrat then it would be justly said of me that I was:

  • A liar
  • A fraudster
  • Guilty of writing nonsense

Ward Churchill by falsely claiming Indian heritage has lost all credibility from the start. His views on 9/11 while macabre and evil are not that relevant. Not now. The debate has moved on to whether the taxpayers should continue to pay him $92000 per annum and whether his readers should continue to support a man so clearly morally bankrupt and politically fraudulent. JailWardChurchillNow 17:06, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Ward Churchill's Bullying of Women Colleagues

Ward Churchill's late-night threatening telephone calls to a woman who complained about him plagiarizing her work is currently being investigated by UC.

There are apparently new colleagues coming out with their own stories about how Ward Churchill threatened them over various issues at the Ethnic Studies department which he ruled in a totalitarian and sexist manner.

Why are these issues not dealt with adequately in the article? Why protect an article that serves only to desperately rehabilitate the reputation of a disgraced academic who is months away from losing his position. JailWardChurchillNow 17:15, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Opinionated Vandals

The problem here is outrageous personal attacks and hyperbolice opinions being inserted into the article in huge blocks. Lets' take it a paragraph at a time and do not mess with the lead until consensus is reached on the body of the text.--Cberlet 20:31, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Protected again

As Curps has had to protect that page again, feel free to use Ward Churchill/Temp as a sandbox for changes. Don't take any notice of vandalism attempts, don't bother to revert them, just choose an unvandalized version from the history and edit your proposed changes into it. Consensual changes can then be inserted into the protected article by an administrator. Sorry to have to do it this way, but it seems like the only way to deal with the opinionated loonies. --Tony Sidaway|Talk 20:52, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Basic guidelines

Use of sockpuppet accounts to carry on an edit war (reverts) is against Wikipedia policy (see for instance Wikipedia:Requests for arbitration/Iasson).

Articles in Wikipedia have to read like encyclopedia articles. They should not read like blog entries or impassioned essays.

See also Wikipedia:Neutral point of view

-- Curps 21:20, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Yes exactly right. The only reason Churchill is notable is his offensive commentary about 9/11, to exclude a full description or quotation of the these comments is most unencyclopedic. This article is the captive of those who love or hate Churchill.

If he is being investigated (I believe he was being but don't know what has happened subsequently) for academic integrity issues that should be noted but so should academic freedom principles which go to the heart of tenure.

If he's a plagiarist, he will be sacked, there is no need to try him on Wikipedia. If he's just guilty of speaking his mind (however disgusting his views) as long as he's not being racist then it's vital his position be defended. You may as well shut down universities if professors cannot speak out, even in the most provocative manner.

I agree his salary should be disclosed because it is not unusually high for a senior academician but he should not be beaten over the head for it nor for making a living.

Reading through the article I get the impression that it is cobbled together with an introduction that is probably not sufficiently detailed about Churchill's controversies. There is plenty of detail of it in the rest of the article so the main question is how to provide a meaningful introduction without tabloid sensationalist claims about an imagined $2 million fraud. To my mind he's controversial enough without inventing cr*p. Academicintegrity 21:44, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Yes, I have tried to add more detail about the controversies into the intro. The controversy over the essay was just the initial phase, a more complete yet concise summary of the controversies and how they unfolded needs to be in the intro. -- Curps 21:55, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Comments on Curps' changes

I think we need to clearly differentiate between the controversy over Churchill's 9/11 essays (which is what started the controversy in the first place), and the subsequent follow on attempts at discrediting him (such as can't prove native american decent, and charges of plagiarism). zen master T 21:49, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Rationale for compromise changes

In the spirit of compromise between two versions, I have re-incorporated a couple of paragraphs from the "other" version that seem to be written in an NPOV manner and cite references (reporting comments by Colorado governor, relevant detail from paper by Brown). In a revert-on-sight edit war, sometimes even contributions like this get reverted away in the crossfire (another reason why us-against-the-world edit wars are counterproductive).

Also the introductory paragraph needed a little more detail: the intense media scrutiny over the essay was only the start of the affair. The role of conservative bloggers, commentators and state lawmakers in fanning the controversy should be mentioned, but also the basic details of the controversy itself, which quickly moved beyond the essay itself. -- Curps 21:53, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Somehow the article should indicate the controversy started over his 9/11 essays, but then the controversy morphed into a allegations of plagiarism and being unable to prove his native american heritage. zen master T 21:55, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Yes, the remarks (themselves protected under tenure I believe) led to his enemies wanting to investigate every aspect of his existence as another way of getting rid of him. Sad but true. But that said, it seems he has plagiarism issues to deal with (as do many academics) and from what I can see from Google is facing investigation into his initial application for his position at CU, as it relates to his heritage. What a mess. Academicintegrity 22:00, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

The intro should succinctly summarize what the 9/11 controversy was over and mention that it is the primary controversy. "cause celebre'" doesn't tell the reader anything. Intro should mention free speech in addition to "academic freedom". The last sentence in the intro is redundant (the article already states at the very top his claim of native american heritage is disputed). zen master T 22:02, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Zen-master: The 9/11 essay controversy was the initial controversy; it is no longer the primary controversy. The overall set of controversies does need to be presented in the intro. Cause celebre is simply the standard term describing this sort of case, just like "Internet phenomenon" is the standard term to describe the Star Wars Kid case. Free speech is not an issue, under the First Amendment; the issue is academic freedom protected by tenure, the right of academics to make controversial remarks. The claim that he is not Native American needs to be stated in the second intro paragraph, because it is in the context of alleged academic fraud. -- Curps 22:21, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)
If Wikipedia is supposed to work under compromise and consensus why is it that zenMaster can simple just flat out state that Churchill's fake Indian fraud is not relavant. It is relavant to American Indian people. It is American Indian people that are getting screwed out of jobs by Churchill. It is a fraud and whitewash to argue that Wikipeida is a collaborative effort when zenMaster can unilaterally decide that Churchill's ethnicity fraud is irrelavant. It is NOT up to him to unilaterally decide that. The fact that he demands and gets more editorial control over the article points out everything that is wrong with Wikipedia. There have been many American Indian people that have attempted to focus the article on Churchill's lies about his ancestry, but as I warned zenMaster went and brought his THOUGHT POLICE over and and a sympathetic Admin and now the article in completely in zenMaster's hands. What makes zenMaster's viewpoint superior to the other viewpoints? It is a charade.-----Keetoowah 22:10, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Hey calm down. What fraud are we talking about? The accusations of academic fraud which include claims he lied on his job application (of fifteen years ago! that's how desperate his critics are) and plagiarism. As anyone who has worked in an educational instituion is aware, these are serious matters which are dealt with properly and not conducted in witch-hunt style. I have made some compromise proposals for the introduction. The rest of the article seems to have been written by committee and needs a rewrite too.

I understand your sensitivity about the issue after I read your user page and I respect your view but the article is not and cannot be a forum for Churchill bashing. I personally find his remarks about the victims of 9/11 disgusting as I have said. One of my oldest friends went missing that day and has never been found. He was a janitor, so hardly a contributor to US imperialism. So that's my view, and it doesn't prevent me from seeing bigger issues like academic freedom and integrity. Without them we have no universities, no learning and no society. Academicintegrity 22:19, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I am calm, thank you very much. But your comments are exactly what I have been stating over and over again. You lump all critics of Churchill into one complete and total category (You stated: "that's how desperate his critics are"). That is the problem in a nutshell. American Indian people in Indian Country have been complaining about Churchill's lies about his heritage for 30 years. American Indian people just did NOT start complaining about his lies about his heritage a couple of months ago when the 911 comments became fodder for the the news networks. I understand your sensitivity about academic freedom and wanting to avoid witich hunts, but I really get tired of reading over and over again on this talk page about how the claims about Churchill's ethnicity are just "attempts to discredit Churchill by the conservatives, etc." I read constantly about how Churchill's ethnicity is just not relavant. Of course, it is relavant. Do really believe that if George W. Bush went around talking about how he was 3/16th African American that you would be stating "George W. Bush's ethnicity is not relavant, it is just an attempt to discredit him." No way.-----Keetoowah 22:41, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)
I agree the native american heritage controversy definitely should be mentioned, but the point is the main controversy is the 9/11 essay controversy and the intro currently doesn't summarize it, a notable discrepancy. I am not advocating removing anything having to do with the native american controversy. Are you saying the intro shouldn't summarize the 9/11 essay controversy? zen master T 22:22, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Ward LeRoy Churchill (born October 2, 1947) is an outspoken American academic and activist who claims partial Native American descent, a claim disputed by the Native American community and its leadership. He is a tenured professor of ethnic studies at University of Colorado at Boulder and is co-chairman of the American Indian Movement of Colorado. In 2005, Churchill was attacked for saying that those killed in the September 11, 2001 attacks were not innocent victims and had received an "effective penalty" for being "little Eichmanns" (Adolf Eichmann was the Nazi leader in charge of the Holocaust). The furore around his remarks led to increased scrutiny of his work, and he is currently being investigated for Research Misconduct by University authorities and would almost certainly lose his tenure if found to have committed plagiarism or to have lied in his job application as has been alleged. Churchill has denied all allegations of academic fraud against him.
That's my attempt. It may satisfy everyone or no-one. LOL.Academicintegrity 22:24, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I note there are changes going on on a protected page. I think there are a problems with what is being written there, mainly stylistic problems. Are we going to review the Temp page or the protected one? I believe a one paragraph introduction is enough. Academicintegrity 22:29, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Academicintegrity's version kind of takes Churchill's quotations out of context, don't you think? "furore" is a poor word choice. The intro should go into more detail about the 9/11 essay controversy. His native american claim isn't so much "disputed" as it is "not proven", he's never claimed to be more than 1/4th native american I believe. zen master T 22:32, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Since Curps put in his compromise changes, I've decided to copy it to the temp article at Ward Churchill/Temp. This of course overwrites some work that AcademicFreedom has done, but feel free to do what you like, edit any version from the history. It's just a sandbox so don't worry about overwriting masses of changes. WP:3RR doesn't apply as it's a sandbox, a scratchpad. --Tony Sidaway|Talk
OK, I won't edit the protected page any more. Maybe that was a misguided attempt to produce a compromise version. -- Curps 22:38, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)
What should we do if we disagree with some of Curps' changes? zen master T 22:42, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Well, edit them at Ward Churchill/Temp, I suppose. I tried to address some of the issues you had. -- Curps 22:46, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)
The 'context' actually makes the quotes look worse, he talks of how good it was that 9/11 killed yuppies "braying" into their cellphones etc. It's one of the ugliest things I've ever read to be honest. My concern with including the full paragraph quote is that it makes him look a lot worse. Furore I think is a fair description of what happened but am not stuck on the word, his words were hateful and they provoked a massive over-reaction in my view. There seems to be a very serious dispute about his heritage, a subject that is very difficult probably for outsiders to delve into without being guilty of paternalism and impropriety. I would rather note the dispute, as there is one without accusing him of not being able to prove his claim. That's fairer to him I believe. It is apparently also being investigated at UC, and I fear is part of a witch-hunt against an academic with unpopular views. I hope the charges against Churchill are unfounded and that he continues to be the provocative and challenging academic that he has been. I can work with the new version and am not attached to anything other than being fair to the man and summarizing in hopefully one para. Academicintegrity 22:44, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)
See my point? American Indian people have been complaining about his fake Indian fraud for 30 years and now folks such as Academicintegrity are making the argument that the issue is only about academic freedom. What a load! Academicintegrity only wants to be fair to him. That says it all. Academicintegrity does NOT want to be fair to the folks in Indian Country that have been complaining about his fake Indian charade for thirty (30!) years.-----Keetoowah 22:54, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I really don't wish to offend at all. If he lied in his job application about his heritage then he will have a problem, I am the first to concede that. Same applies with plagiarism etc. The point is that we need to be careful not to attack someone's heritage or claims to it without very carefully considering the evidence. I believe your view is important and the dispute over his heritage should be recorded - prominently - in the article. My concern is that all of this is being dredged up to remove him for expressing an unpopular view. I find his view disgusting but I defend to the death his right to say it. What would be the point of having education if professors had to ensure everything they said or wrote or thought was popular with Bill Owens. It would have a chilling effect on education that would undermine everything we cherish about learning. Sure, some things are out of bounds like racism but expressing an unpopular political view should always be protected, academic freedom doesn't need to protect popular views or popular people, it is there to protect minorities, provocative people. That's the point. If he's the fake charade fraud that you say (and I really have no way of knowing) then presumably he will be exposed by the UC inquiry. And if he isn't then can we calm down and leave him go back to teaching??? Academicintegrity 23:07, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Please note that not everyone in the American Indian community thinks it is appropriate to challenge Churchill's ethnicity. The critical line should be "a claim disputed by some in the the Native American community and its leadership." Also note the dispute over the terms American Indian and Native American with most in AIM rejecting the term Native American.--Cberlet 23:23, 15 Apr 2005 (UTC)
On the subject of Curps edits to the protected article, well I think any specific content change that is objected to by anyone for cause should be removed pending consensus. Administrators aren't really supposed to take advantage of their power to edit a protected article to insert content that is disputed. It's okay to put in changes that have near-unanimous agreement. --Tony Sidaway|Talk 01:06, 16 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Consensus for update?

I've benchmarked Viajero's edit of 14:20, 16 Apr 2005 in the article sandbox for a possible update of the main article. I am deliberately avoiding examining the content, because I just want to facilitate rather than influence editing.

You can look at differences between the sandbox version and the current protected version by looking at this diff link.

What is the general feeling about that version? Would there be serious objections if I updated the main article from that version? I'd like to do that if the general feeling is that it's an improvement on the current, protected, version. The idea is that I'd update today now that everybody has had a chance to work on improving it in the sandbox version. I'll do the same the next day and so on until the article is unprotected. --Tony Sidaway|Talk 16:17, 16 Apr 2005 (UTC)

I like the long intro version I came up with yesterday better, the current intro has 0 context. You guys didn't like my "see below" link for details? ;-) I suppose the current version isn't too bad but there are some other minor gramatical errors with the current version spread through out. zen master T 17:48, 16 Apr 2005 (UTC)
I am against lengthy intros like that one for several reasons. First, there is inevitably redundancy, stating the same things twice, such as in yours the "little Eichmanns" text, Gov. Owen, and that kind of thing. Second, with volatile topics like this one, inevitably the duplicated bits grow out of synch, as people add and delete the predicatable qualifiers, parenthetical phrases, contrasting points, etc etc etc. It makes it far more manageable to keep the intro short and concise, and deal with the details of the controversies in the respective sections. And go to within a short article is bad style; people read from top to bottom, they will get there eventually. -- Viajero 18:30, 16 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Well, a governor publically calling for a professor's dismissal is rather a big deal, the fact that he resigned as department chairperson is kind of a big deal. I think some sense of the timeline of how things happened should be conveyed in the intro. Also, it might be a good idea to mention in the intro that his claim of native american heritage is disputed and there are charges of plagiarism against him (mentioning those in the intro might calm down the sock puppet army). Though I do like it the way it is now in that the article conveys that the focus of the controversy started over his 9/11 essays. I think we can come up with a neutral one sentence summary of both sides to his 9/11 essay controversy, though perhaps that means not quoting his little "little Eichmanns" statement (since that requires lenghty context). There are still other minor clean ups to today's previous change that need to be made. zen master T 19:05, 16 Apr 2005 (UTC)
I believe not recording his remarks and their impact re September 11 is crazy. The reason we've heard of Ward Churchill is because of his statements about the guilt of the victims. I believe that's the most important fact about him. I wouldn't have heard of him otherwise. The second most important is that he's an academic/author who is being investigated for various things with the response being that he's really being investigated for those things BECAUSE of his views (which he won't be fired for). The third is the question of his descent. I believe all the other issues, including the detail of which politicians, victims' families etc said what are dealt with already, although there should be more. I personally think the Eichmanns quote is worthwhile because it neatly captures just how controversial he has been. But I've left it out in an attempt to get to a conclusion. I submit that those who want to exclude from the first paragraph a summary of 1) the 9/11 remarks, 2) the investigation and 3) the dispute about his claim to Native American heritage should justify that specifically. It is not acceptable to say it is dealt with in the 49th paragraph. I agree the introduction should be kept short but it needs to deal with the reasons why Churchill is so notable that we are spending many hours arguing about how he should be described in an online encyclopedia article. (btw I am AcademicIntegrity but I preferred to use my name) Thanks, TonyMarvin 04:57, 17 Apr 2005 (UTC)
Is anyone suggesting that we not address his 9/11 remarks? Not that I am aware; the article as it currently stands devotes a lengthy section to it. Indeed, Churchill became an "infamous" figure in January after the Hamilton College controversy, when it appears you learned who he was, but I for one have been reading his books for a decade, and I assume many other readers as well (he is nothing if not a prolific writer). Taking the long view, it is clear that most if not all of the recent "charges" against him is pure opportunism. As for his ethnic background, he appers to have a small amount of Indian blood and he self-indentifies to some degree with Native American culture. Is that a crime? Do we insist Jewish writers prove their Jewishness before they are eligible to write on Jewish issues? Yes, I believe all of these issues must be dealt with in the article, but in proper balance, in context, and this is best done in the relevent sections. -- Viajero 11:22, 17 Apr 2005 (UTC)

PS I urge those who haven't to read the Weekly Standard (yes, that Weekly Standard) article about Ward Churchill. It's not favorable to him, as we might have expected but it's worth a read because it shows:

  • How well-known an advocate for his political views he is becoming, with long queues and big crowds
  • How much of a very good sport he is to be interviewed (several different times it seems) for such a partisan conservative publication
  • He does seem to have a problem explaining his heritage links with Native Americans although currently says he is 1/16th which means I think that he is saying his great great grandfather was Indian. Call me old fashioned but this seems to be about as Native American as I am. And I'm not.
  • His Colorado chapter of the American Indian Movement has been expelled from the national body
  • He was brought up in a white family, it seems.
  • He has advocated violence and has even trained people in gun use and owns many guns
  • Finally, the Walking Eagle reference does seem to neatly summarize the view of Native Americans of this gent who says he is one of them.

All in all it's a very interesting exchange the conservative and Churchill have, I recommend it to those interested. Ward Churchill v Weekly Standard

TonyMarvin 04:57, 17 Apr 2005 (UTC)

[American Indian Movement Grand Governing Council Statement on Ward Churchill]

I think it is worth reproducing this in full here so we can reflect on the amazingly strong denunciation of Churchill by the people he claims affiliation with. I find the strength of the language particularly puzzling (he is accused of rip-off, fraud, being hateful, outrageous, etc. etc.) Can someone explain the status of the American Indian Movement? Is it the central movement for American Indians or a conservative group? If it is a group with some status then I believe it is imperative the article reflect this. I apologize for assuming Keetoowah was just agenda-pushing about the Indian fraud claims, there does seem to genuine angst about Churchill's claims to Indian heritage within their community and it would be misleading and paternalistic not to acknowledge that prominently. This is indeed a complex issue and the article should reflect that. TonyMarvin 05:33, 17 Apr 2005 (UTC)


MINISTRY FOR INFORMATION P.O. Box 13521 Minneapolis MN 55414 612/ 721-3914 . fax 612/ 721-7826 Email: Web Address:

Ward Churchill was scheduled to speak at Hamilton College in Clinton, New York on February 3, 2005. His appearance was canceled by the college after he caused a public furor over his loathsome remarks about the 9-11 tragedy in New York. AIM's Grand Governing Council has been dealing with Churchill's hateful attitude and rip-off of Indian people for years.

The American Indian Movement Grand Governing Council representing the National and International leadership of the American Indian Movement once again is vehemently and emphatically repudiating and condemning the outrageous statements made by academic literary and Indian fraud, Ward Churchill in relationship to the 9-11 tragedy in New York City that claimed thousands of innocent people’s lives.

Churchill’s statement that these people deserved what happened to them, and calling them little Eichmanns, comparing them to Nazi war criminal Adolf Eichmann, who implemented Adolf Hitler’s plan to exterminate European Jews and others, should be condemned by all.

The sorry part of this is Ward Churchill has fraudulently represented himself as an Indian, and a member of the American Indian Movement, a situation that has lifted him into the position of a lecturer on Indian activism. He has used the American Indian Movement’s chapter in Denver to attack the leadership of the official American Indian Movement with his misinformation and propaganda campaigns.

Ward Churchill has been masquerading as an Indian for years behind his dark glasses and beaded headband. He waves around an honorary membership card that at one time was issued to anyone by the Keetoowah Tribe of Oklahoma. Former President Bill Clinton and many others received these cards, but these cards do not qualify the holder a member of any tribe. He has deceitfully and treacherously fooled innocent and naïve Indian community members in Denver, Colorado, as well as many other people worldwide. Churchill does not represent, nor does he speak on behalf of the American Indian Movement.

New York’s Hamilton College Kirklands Project should be aware that in their search for truth and justice, the idea that they have hired a fraud to speak on Indian activism is in itself a betrayal of their goals.

Dennis J. Banks, Ojibwa Nation Chairman of the Board American Indian Movement Phone: 218-654-5885

Nee Gon Nway Wee Dung, aka, Clyde H. Bellecourt, Ojibwa Nation National Executive Director American Indian Movement Cell: 612-251-5836 Office: 612-724-3129

Press Contact: WaBun-Inini, aka, Vernon Bellecourt, Ojibwa Nation Executive Committee Member Director Council on Foreign Relations American Indian Movement Office: 612-721-3914 Cell: 612-889-0796

See the following:

Us vs AIM

Us vs AIM Backgound

Indian Country Today: Editors' Report

Keetoowah Tribe Response

The Public's Response

Churchill Cartoon

For more information regarding Churchill’s fraudulent enrollment:

United Keetoowah Band of Cherokee Indians of Oklahoma Enrollment officer: 918-431-0385 or 918-456-8698

Tony, as a contrasting point of view to the one above, here is how the Indian activist Russel Means introduced Ward Churchill when the latter gave a speech February 8, 2005, at the University of Colorado. (I'd recommend reading it in its entirety if you have a chance: [9] -- Viajero 11:32, 17 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Russell Means: Thank you my relatives. I want to, first, apprise you before I introduce the many accomplishments of Ward Churchill among my people. We are the only ethnic group in the world that has to prove our degree of blood, like the dogs and the horses. It is because we live on America's concentration camps; the 'little Iraqs' called reservations, you know? We also don't have control of our natural resources, and the corporate might has been ripping us off from day one. That's part of the books, and part of the education that Ward has given ­ not only to the university and its generations of students, but throughout the country and indeed, throughout the world. I want you to know that we are forbidden from choosing who are our Indian people, by the United States government. My own twin brothers were 32 years of age, and it was only after the American Indian Movement, and ­ one of the leaders being Ward Churchill ­ in the late seventies, got the right to be enrolled on my father's reservation, where I am enrolled. I wonder how many of Clear Channel columnists and naysayers are gonna condemn my brothers for not being Indian. Ward is my brother. Ward has followed the ways of indigenous people worldwide. If you do not believe so, then go to Geneva Switzerland, to the United Nations office of the working group of indigenous peoples, and you will find out that we as one people in the world, we say, if you know your ancestry, then you are who you say you are. [applause]
In the writings of Adolf Hitler, he began his idea of separation by race, in such a preference, by following and reading about the Indian policy of the United States of America, and he wrote in Mein Kampf, or in other writings, that it was a good idea to put people in reservations; hence his labor camps, hence ­ which became concentration camps. And he classified people they did not want, by race. Apartheid South Africa, in 1964, passed the Bantu Development Act thirty years after the United States government passed the Indian Reorganization Act. The act that institutionalized apartheid, by race and degree of blood, in South Africa was literally copied from the Indian Reorganization Act of the United States. Both of those governments no longer exist, and you have these corporate minions from Clear Channel and the corporate media telling us who is our Indian leaders! Telling me that my brother is not an Indian! Because he hasn't been adequately registered. Now I am happy to understand the media can't answer any questions here ­ ask questions, because if Silverman was going to ask a question, I was going to demand he show me he's pure of Jewish blood, before he could ask a question. [applause]
Now, understand our struggle. Ward Churchill has understood it and you only have to read his dozens of essays and almost two dozen books that he's written. I know the Regents aren't going to get through them all. [laughter, applause] Those cowards. Those cowards that cannot stand up for women, and cannot stand up for the rights of teachers! [loud cheers & applause]
Ward has received many, many honors from the non-Indian world; but the biggest honor and the only honor we can give him, and we have, for dozens of years, is to make him what we call in my language [?], a leader, a statesman. And he's going around the country with that label, and it is a true label. And I don't care what Clear Channel says about ­ or the Indianate says about his sixteenth, or three-sixteenths ­ he's what counts. [applause] And his writings are proof. You ­ I cannot convey to you the amount of pride we have in Ward Churchill, and the amount of pride he gives us ­ the sovereignty he gives us, so that we can [inaudible] our young people. You just heard one here tonight, student here, that is walking tall because of Ward Churchill. And the effect he's had not only on Indian policy, but on the minds of the young people who are activists throughout our country, from coast to coast and beyond borders. The American Indian Movement, when we had a together leadership, we appointed him as an ambassador, and he traveled internationally representing us and all Indian people because we are a free people.
So I want, from this day forward, every media person nationally, internationally and locally to know that we have ascertained that Ward Churchill is a full-blooded Indian leader. Thank you.
Questioning someone's ethnicity is a very difficult business. Especially when the issue has been promoted by those determined to silence a provocative voice. BUT, it has been raised by the leadership of the Native American community.
I see that an activist, Russell Means has defended Churchill and has challenged whether the facts of his heritage is relevant at all. Forgive my ignorance, but who is Russell Means, and what is his status within the Native American community. He may well be very prominent, and if so I apologize for being ignorant. But the leadership of the Native American community seems to have a very clear view so I'd be interested in reconciling that with Russell Means' view/status within the Native American community.
I agree that the idea of "racial purity" etc is very uncomfortable, so what is relevant I think is the cultural background, how someone grew up, whether they were brought up in the tradition, their self-identification as well and, yes, who their ancestors are. There are many factors that would lead to whether a community will accept them as part of them. And it seems to me if I claim to be Ukrainian and I write about Ukrainian suffering, when I'm not Ukrainian, and have no Ukrainian ancestry, or no ability to prove it, then I would have a problem as an academic. This is a very interesting debate to my mind in the area of ethnic studies and I don't have all the answers but we must always respect the views of the community's we are purporting to include. I have no doubt Ward Churchill is SINCERE about what he's doing, but this article must reflect the concerns about him expressed by those he professes affiliation with. And while there may be a few supporters of Churchill out there, it seems that the consensus within the Native American community is that not only does he not speak for their community but he is not one of them. The article simply must state that prominently and in the introduction otherwise we are deliberately omitting a very important fact. And don't get me started about whether he should put in some of the remarks that brought him to our attention initially. They are even more important. TonyMarvin 00:24, 18 Apr 2005 (UTC)
There is a split in the American Indian Movement that goes back years. The major factions are based in Colorado and Minnesota. The Colorado folks support Churchill, the Minnesota folks do not. --Cberlet 00:39, 18 Apr 2005 (UTC)
I see. But there are many more Indian communities than CO and MN? I don't get it. And are they part of the same tribe or different? Is there a leadership of Ward's tribe and if so what do they think of his status?

TonyMarvin 09:00, 18 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Moving to a resolution of the first paragraph

I have a feeling there is a conservative v liberal spat over this article, which has not been at all helpful in getting it settled. I believe neither view on its own makes for a very good article. I am I admit quite liberal most of the time (although I don't think my country is evil as Ward seems to, indeed the whole problem with the Bush Administration is that wants to defend the country at the expense sometimes of removing the rights that make us worth protecting) and I value academic freedom as a cornerstone of education (and liberty itself). But that doesn't mean I think we should remove everything controversial about Ward out of the first paragraph as Zenmaster/Viajero seems to be advocating nor that it read like an indictment as Hausaud and others have proposed. I have tried to include everything relevant from the two versions with counterpoints so there's a pro/con thing going on. I think this is the most informative and fair way of dealing with it. Perhaps then we can look at the rest of the article if my format is deemed acceptable. TonyMarvin 09:00, 18 Apr 2005 (UTC)

  1. No, it is not acceptable. No one is arguing that nothing controversial should be indicated in the itro. The intro simply is not the place to introduce arguments/counterarguments. We state the essentials and deal with the controversies in details in the relevant sections.
  2. That Churchill's classmates don't recall him mentioning his ethnic background proves just one thing: that they don't recall him mentioning his ethnic background, period. -- Viajero 10:57, 18 Apr 2005 (UTC)
And another thing I don't like about your version of the intro: it makes no connection between the 9/11 essay controversy and the UC academic investigation, as though the two are just randomly connected events. This is quite ridiculous. -- Viajero 11:09, 18 Apr 2005 (UTC)

The temp version still needs a lot of work. "He grew up in a white family..." implies he's definitely 100% white. I don't think the current version mentions the "little Eichemans" statement at all. The resolution passed by colorado state legislature is way over the top, the article keeps repeating the same mantra over and over again, focusing on churchill "attacking" the innocent victims of the 9/11 attacks rather than focusing on what he was saying, namely there are reasons people are attacking us because of our imperialistic policies around the world. zen master T 18:05, 18 Apr 2005 (UTC)

This statement from zenMaster just drips with bias: "people are attacking us because of our imperialistic policies around the world." Isn't possible that someone that who makes statements like the one that I just quoted is going to press his bias onto the article by eliminating any criticism of Churchill? Of course. Statements like one make the point that zenMaster is bias and should back off the editing a little bit. TonyMarvin and the others seem to have a better grip on balance. I have tried to stay out of making changes. Of course, I am hugely vocal on this talk page, but I'm trying to restrain the constant desire to edit the article into shreds.-----Keetoowah 20:02, 18 Apr 2005 (UTC)
I have my doubts as well as about the inclusion of the full text of the resolution by the Colorado state legislature. -- Viajero 18:29, 18 Apr 2005 (UTC)

Has everyone given up on the /Temp version? (I think it still needs massive POV clean up work). Should people just start editing from the non temp version? zen master T 02:07, 19 Apr 2005 (UTC)