bye bye free speech in US?

carabid at MPM.EDU carabid at MPM.EDU
Thu Mar 25 14:49:14 CST 2004


You can do what I did recently, telephone the offices of representatives and
senators and explain your problem. If you state that you are complaining as
a scientist and a citizen and do not want to give the name of your employer,
they will ask for your name and either look up your home address right on
the spot with a computer or ask you to give it to them. No need to mention
your employer. I used my cell phone to contact both my representative and a
senator and gave both the URL to representative Behrman press release along
with background information about the peer review process. The
representative is a Republican, and the senator is a Democrat. I also
probably as a private individual in the next day or two will contact a
newspaper by e-mail from home.


Gerald R. Noonan Ph.D.
Curator of Coleoptera
Editor of Insight
Milwaukee Public Museum
800 West Wells Street
Milwaukee WI 53233
e-mail: carabid at mpm.edu
office telephone: (414) 278-2762
fax: (414) 278-6100
WWW homepage: <<http://www.mpm.edu/collect/gary.html>>
Insight Publication Series homepage:
<http://<http://www.mpm.edu/cr/insight/insighthome.html>>

-----Original Message-----
From: Taxacom Discussion List [mailto:TAXACOM at LISTSERV.NHM.KU.EDU]On
Behalf Of Michael W Palmer
Sent: Thursday, March 25, 2004 1:58 PM
To: TAXACOM at LISTSERV.NHM.KU.EDU
Subject: Re: bye bye free speech in US?


Richard Jensen wrote:
"Perhaps we should contact our own congressional representatives to
encourage
reconsideration of this policy."
I agree - but other policies may get in the way! Our OSU lawyers recently
sent us a memo saying that it is against state law for a state employee to
express opinions to our elected representatives, in which we identify our
place of employment.  The deans and department heads tell me "well, of
course, in your capacity as a scientist you should be able to express your
scientific opinions to congressman" but the lawyer's note does not mention
this exception.  So, theoretically, I should write as a concerned citizen,
somewhere in rural Payne County, and discuss subtle aspects of peer
review?  When my senator describes climate change as a hoax
(http://inhofe.senate.gov/pressapp/record.cfm?id=206907) I cannot respond
with my professional affiliation (and presumed credibility derived from
it).
Of course, I do not see any complaints from university lawyers when
university administrators are lobbying for funding.


Michael W. Palmer
Botany Dept. OSU
104 LSE   Stillwater OK 74078 USA
405-744-7717  fax:405-744-7074
 http://ecology.okstate.edu/
 http://www.okstate.edu/artsci/botany/
carex at okstate.edu




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