Georgia Junior College Prof Has Nutty Ideas
Rusty Shackleford has discovered that Hassan Ali El-Najjara, a Palestine-born sociology professor at Dalton State College in Georgia, is pushing crackpot theories about American foreign policy and Zionist plots on a website and a self-published book. He finds it “really surprising” that “the people of Georgia aren’t demanding the immediate firing of Dr. Hassan A. El-Najjar.”
I’m really not sure on what basis he’d be fired. He is an associate professor, which almost certainly means he has tenure. By definition, it’s hard to get rid of tenured professors, let alone for expressing crackpot ideas. Further, he’s at a junior college teaching “three introductory courses to Cultural Anthropology, Sociology, and Marriage and Family.” Unless he’s bringing his anti-Semitic rantings into those courses, there’s not much grounds for dismissal.
According to the article by Stacy McCain linked in Rusty’s post, El-Najjara has “an agreement with Dalton College not to talk to the news media.” This was in 2003. Presumably, the college is well aware of the situation and have distanced themselves from his extra-curricular activities.
Nor, according to the same article, does the nutty professor seem to be having much sway, at least locally.
“Ordinary people here are very pro-war,” said Peter Augustine Lawler, a political-science professor at Berry College near Rome, Ga., about 40 miles from Dalton. The state has a strong military tradition, Mr. Lawler explained. “A disproportionate number of the men in battle are from Georgia. It’s a very military state, comparatively speaking.”
And the anti-Israel rhetoric of the Al-Jazeerah site clashes with the Bible Belt beliefs of most northern Georgians, Mr. Lawler said. “There’s really no constituency for that here,” he said, adding that many evangelical Christians believe the state of Israel is prophetically important. “People are very pro-Israel. Even the rednecks are pro-Israel, because of evangelical teachings.”
The existence of the Al-Jazeerah site came as a surprise to an official of the Dalton-Whitfield County Chamber of Commerce. “That’s really very strange,” said the official, who did not want to be named. “I have never heard of either of these professors.”
Mr. Lawler said he was also “stunned” that the site was based in Dalton, but added, “Professors are a different breed, even in Dalton, I guess.”