Emory University's Outcry Against Its President

George W. Dent

George W. Dent, Jr. is a professor at Case Western Reserve University School of Law. He is an NAS Board member and President of its Ohio chapter.

Emory University President John Wagner has been vilified by faculty and students for praising the compromise in the original Constitution between pro- and anti-slavery factions by which three-fifths of slaves were counted for purposes of representation in the House of Representatives. (Emory University's Leader Reopens Its Racial Wounds, N.Y. Times, Feb. 24, 2012) If he had sided with the anti-slavery forces and argued that slaves should not have been counted at all, he would have been vilified for belittling African-Americans. In CL Atlanta one critic charged Wagner with implying that "individual slaves didn't count as whole people." If he had argued that the slaves should have been counted in full, he would have been vilified for siding with slave owners. 

Contrary to the criticism leveled in the article by Emory history professor Leslie Harris, the compromise was a success. In 1786 the North was neither willing nor able to militarily invade the South in order to end slavery. The compromise helped bring the Republic into existence and kept it together until 1861, when the North was willing and able to wage and win the Civil War to end slavery.

It is appalling that some Emory students are so ignorant of American history that they paraded calling for Wagner's ouster. And it is outrageous that the Emory faculty voted to censure Wagner for his statement. 

However, one cannot feel sorry for Dr. Wagner. He got his position by pandering to a political correctness that forbids honest discussion of many serious issues in academia. He reaped what he sowed.

  • Share

Most Commented

October 25, 2022

1.

NAS President Peter Wood Addresses the Pending Racial Preferences Cases

Read NAS president Peter Wood's remarks on the upcoming Supreme Court cases, which he presented at a meeting of "Oasis," an informal group of academics and intellectuals based in......

July 25, 2022

2.

Against Transgenderism

The ideology of transgenderism strives to slam shut any door that offers opposition to its attempts to acquire power and control. This statement explains our opposition to such an ideology i......

October 20, 2022

3.

NAS Statement on Nomination of Ben Sasse for University of Florida President

We believe that Senator Sasse would make an excellent president of the University of Florida, and we urge the Board of Trustees to follow the search committee’s recommendation....

Most Read

May 15, 2015

1.

Where Did We Get the Idea That Only White People Can Be Racist?

A look at the double standard that has arisen regarding racism, illustrated recently by the reaction to a black professor's biased comments on Twitter....

October 12, 2010

2.

Ask a Scholar: What is the True Definition of Latino?

What does it mean to be Latino? Are only Latin American people Latino, or does the term apply to anyone whose language derived from Latin?...

May 12, 2017

3.

Harvard Prepares to Host All Black Graduation

Is Harvard's all black graduation a benign trend or a step backwards? ...