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“Auckland University professor losses job for telling the truth”

Posted by te2ataria on March 23, 2016

Sent by a reader in Waikato

Telling the truth is anti-Semitic ?

A University of Auckland professor is to leave his job after an anti-Semitism row sparked by a letter to the Waikato Times.

Acclaimed hate crimes expert Professor Scott Poynting​ compared an Israeli company employing Palestinians to a German company employing Jews. The commentary rankled various groups, including the New Zealand Jewish Council and a fellow academic, who complained to the university, branding the professor’s letter to the editor as anti-Semitic.

University Vice-Chancellor Stuart McCutcheon addressed the complainants in a letter, which he detailed investigations had been undertaken.
Lecturer Scott Poynting is leaving his job.
University of Auckland Lecturer Scott Poynting is leaving his job.

The institution had found Poynting not guilty of professional misconduct and it had been suggested to Poynting he should write a second letter to the editor of the Waikato Times clarifying he was not intending to make anti-Semitic remarks, McCutcheon said.

Poynting had refused to write a clarification, so McCutcheon apologised on behalf of the educational institution.

When questioned whether Poynting was retiring, the university said it had no further comment on this matter, other than what was in the letter was accurate.

​In a joint statement, New Zealand Jewish Council chairman Geoff Levy and president Stephen Goodman said they were still seeking an apology from Poynting, and wanted the University of Auckland to publicly distance itself from the remarks.

“The hateful views expressed by Professor Poynting in his letter to the Waikato Times have no place in New Zealand, let alone within our academic institutions. While it is reassuring to know that Poynting will not be working at the University of Auckland much longer, the private nature of the apology from Professor McCutcheon does not promote transparency or proper accountability.

“The New Zealand Jewish Council would have expected the University of Auckland to publicly distance itself from the views of Professor Poynting, as other universities have done in similar situations, rather than privately apologise for any distress caused.” Read more…

The blog moderators were unable to find text of Poyniting’s letter on the Internet and are therefore unable to comment.

If anyone has a copy of the letter, please forward it to the blog.

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