This coming Monday, I give my son, an ROTC Cadet at University of Illinois, his Oath of Office to commission him as an officer in the United States Army. Casting a pall on this honor, will be my knowledge of the fact that as my son swears to “… support and defend the Constitution of the United States against all enemies, foreign and domestic,” professors and others at the very university that has trained and educated him, are supporting the reinstatement of known terrorist, James Kilgore, as a professor.
Mr. Kilgore isn’t your average criminal. He is a terrorist. Kilgore’s were crimes against his country and its citizens. He is a traitor and should be treated as such.
Kilgore should not be educating students. He is a convicted murderer, bank robber, ex-convict and terrorist linked to a string of bombings that targeted, among others, police officers through his alliance with the Symbionese Liberation Army (SLA). To hide from authorities he took an alias and lived abroad until eventually caught 27 years later. It is more than likely that he would have never come clean about his past and continued to hide if not discovered when one of the accomplices in the original murder/bank robbery incident was discovered hiding in Minnesota.
At issue is not whether there should be academic diversity of a broad spectrum of life experiences amongst the faculty at a university. At issue is that there are certainly dozens, if not hundreds, of potential professors just as qualified, who have never taken part in the killing of innocent people in an attempt to fund a revolution.
As Christopher Kennedy stated in a letter arguing against the conferment of the title of “Professor Emeritus” on known terrorist, Bill Ayers, “There is nothing more antithetical to the hopes for a university that is lively and yet civil, or to the hope of our founding fathers for their great experiment of a self-governing people, than to permanently seal off debate with one’s opponents by killing them. There can be no place in democracy to celebrate political assassinations or honor those who do so.”
Allowing Kilgore to both educate and research at the university is both reckless and disgraceful. Using any taxpayer money to fund someone like him sickens me as a veteran and Illinois taxpayer.
Mr. Kilgore was notified that his contract with the University of Illinois will not be renewed, however, apparently under pressure that contract is now instead under review.
I encourage the University of Illinois to stand strong in their decision to eliminate known terrorists from their faculty roles.