Bart Knijnenburg, an assistant professor in the School of Computing at South Carolina’s Clemson University posted to his Facebook page that Republicans are “racist scum.” According to a report in the Washington Free Beacon, Professor Knijnenburg allegedly wrote prior posts in which he calls for violence against white supremacists.
In one of his recent posts Knijnenburg wrote, “I admire anyone who stands up against white supremacy. Violent or non-violent,” and includes the hashtag “#PunchNazis.”
In another post, Knijnenburg claimed that, “All republicans” are responsible for alt-right violence and demanded they either “denounce” and “renounce” their GOP affiliation, “or admit you’re a racist.”
Knijnenburg Facebook posts were picked up and republished by Campus Reform (a website site for college news), which included such comments as, “We must be careful not to generalize as this is arguably the root cause of the extreme right’s existence,” and, “I’ve always looked up to you, as my 1st yr mentor but also for passing on the idea to study abroad. But it saddens me a bit to see this coming from you,” the man added.
In response to the comments, Knijnenburg wrote, “You should come live in the south for a while. It’s exhausting,” Knijnenburg responded on Aug. 16. “Many of my students belong to minority group (black, immigrant, LGBTQ+)…The pushback they get from conservatives — even decent, non-Trump-voting ones — is incredibly disheartening. The republican ideology of ‘everyone is equal and nobody deserves a handout’ is naive at best, covertly racist at worst.”
In another response, Knijnenburg wrote, “This society is aggressively structured to make cis white males succeed, at the expense of minorities.”
Strangely, Knijnenburg’s online profile describes his research as answering questions such as, “Should I post this on Facebook or not?”
John Gouch, the assistant director/online news manager of the Clemson Newsstand and Mark Land, vice president for university relations, responded to Knijnenburg’s posts in a joint statement, “The university is aware of remarks attributed to a Clemson faculty member, which appear to have come from his personal Facebook account. Those remarks are not reflective of the university’s views, and university leadership has consistently made it clear that expressions advocating violence or hatred have no place on this, or any, college campus.”
When asked whether Clemson would be taking any further action against Knijnenburg, it declined to comment. Knijnenburg and the School of Computing are also refraining from comment.
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