Lincoln University professor Kaukab Siddique has reportedly written virulent anti-semitic propaganda denying Jews were killed in a holocaust during World War II and appears in a video calling for the destruction of Israel.
A Pennsylvania lawmaker wants to know if Siddique is teaching this perspective to college students in his classrooms.
This week, state Sen. Daylin Leach sent a letter to Lincoln University President Ivory V. Nelson asking if the university was aware of the professor's philosophy when he was hired and later awarded tenure, if the "anti-Semitic diatribes" are part of his college instruction or repeated elsewhere on campus, what steps are being taken to ensure Siddique isn't teaching students that the Holocaust is a myth and not perpetuating false and derogatory information about people of the Jewish faith.
Leach recognizes criticism of the professor must take into account his First Amendment rights.
"While he has a right to free speech on his own time, he does not have the right to teach this trash to students in a classroom," he said.
The state legislature recently passed a resolution (SR 315) that prohibits "hate-speech" or anti-semitic expression by state employees and state-supported universities.
"I want to know why (Siddique) isn't being condemned by the university," Leach said.
The letter, signed by Leach and state Sen. Anthony H. Williams for the 8th District, reminds Nelson of the state government's financial support of the institution:
"As members of the Pennsylvania General Assembly, we, as I'm sure you know, not only support Lincoln University financially, we also have a high regard for the University's excellent reputation and a large stake in its future success. Given this, we maintain a keen interest in what is happening at Lincoln, and how it affects the image of the school, and by extension, our image as a state."
Siddique, who has a Ph.D., is an associate professor in the school's Department of English and Mass Communications. Leach believes he heads two campus clubs.
The senator's letter says Siddique wrote these words regarding the Holocaust:
"Open up the DISCUSSION of the HOLOCAUST story. What did really happen in World War II? The Auschwitz 'gas chambers' story has been meticulously analyzed, rebutted and destroyed by critics like Mark Weber, David Irving. Germar Rudolf and Wilhelm Staeglich. These are scholars following the highest levels of scholarship. Notice that the chain bookstores do not carry their books and the corporate media simply don't mention them. Read even one of them and you'll be rid of the holocaust myth forever. Don't take the 'holocaust' issue lightly. It is the main source of funds for international Jewry. It is Israel's milk cow."
With regards to Israel, the professor has reportedly written:
"Israel is an ILLEGITIMATE, TERRORIST entity ... DO NOT ASSOCIATE WITH JEWS unless they clearly say that Israel is illegitimate. If you are careless, you might find that you have a doctor or a lawyer who supports Israel. You can pick and choose lawyers and doctors. Rabbis are the worst of the lot."
Siddique asserts the familiar stereotype that "the Jews are a small minority in America, yet they have taken over this country by devious and immoral means. They control the government, the media, education, the libraries, the book chains, the banks, Hollywood, Wall Street, Madison Avenue."
Leach and Williams write in support of academic freedom and say the professor has the right to criticize Israel or any other entity or policy, the old adage "you are entitled to your own opinions, but you are not entitled to your own facts" applies here.
"The Holocaust is not a theory or opinion, it is a historically documented fact, denied only by those with a hateful anti-Semitic agenda," the senators wrote.
When The Times Herald called Lincoln University for a comments on the letter, the following prepared statement was e-mailed by Ashley Gabb, the school's Interim Director of Communications and Public Relations:
"Dr. Kaukab Siddique's personal views and expressed comments do not represent Lincoln University. Furthermore, the University has not been made aware of any instances where Dr. Siddique's recent offensive views have been introduced to the University's students in classrooms or in any public forum on the University's campus."