The price for bias

Peter Slezak, Sydney Morning Herald, October 20:

I should probably be writing under a pseudonym. If submissions to the Senate inquiry into bias and academic freedom are taken seriously, I’m in trouble.

As a university lecturer, I confess my teaching and publications are thoroughly biased, riddled with prejudice and entirely lacking in even-handedness.

I am undeniably guilty of the sins the submissions warn against. My reading lists are not representative of all points of view. My lectures not only criticise but sometimes ridicule views I regard as misguided and pernicious nonsense – often the views of other colleagues. I vigorously assert my prejudices without any pretence of neutrality. I confront my students and provoke them to defend their views, especially when I disagree with them, which is most of the time.

In short, I am precisely the kind of academic who some submissions propose to deal with by means that include disciplinary procedures and even sacking.