The following is an open letter by Professor Nathan Jun, Associate Professor of Philosophy at Midwestern State University Texas (ht: Roderick Long). Please distribute widely.
As many if not most of you are already aware, I was subjected to an intense campaign of doxing, harassment, threats, and vandalism this past summer owing to comments I had posted on social media in the aftermath of George Floyd’s murder. Although this campaign had waned significantly by August, it has since resumed with a vengeance this past week following a speech I delivered at a campus rally for Breonna Taylor on Thursday, 24 September. Within 24 hours of that event I had already received several death threats. The situation quickly escalated after fascists (acting in concert with local media) disseminated a comment I posted on a friend’s Facebook page.
As of this morning I have received more than 300 death threats by phone, email, text, and private message. I also discovered that my home had been vandalized again—the fifth time since June.
I am presently staying in a hotel because my address has been disseminated online and several individuals have threatened to “bomb” and “blow up” my house.
This time around, fortunately, my employer (Midwestern State University) has issued a public statement defending my right to free speech. While this is consistent with assurances provided to me and my attorney last month that I would not face institutional retaliation or discipline for controversial utterances online, it remains to be seen whether the university will stay true to its word in the face of public pressure, let alone whether it will publicly condemn the violent, antisemitic attacks to which I have been subject.
As much as it pains me to have to keep doing this, I am once again requesting your support and solidarity. At this point there ways you can help:
- first, by sending a brief email to Dr. Suzanne Shipley, President of Midwestern State University (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Dr. James Johnston, Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs (email@example.com) to demand that they (a) honor their pledge to refrain from disciplining or otherwise retaliating against me in response to my private utterances; (b) take steps to ensure my safety and security; and (c) publicly condemn the violent, racist attacks that have been leveled against me.
- second, by copying the content of this message and disseminating it as widely as possible on Facebook, Twitter, and other media (I am dark at the moment and so am not in a position to do so myself).
Thank you for your ongoing support and solidarity throughout this [ordeal]. I do not have the words to express how grateful I am to the (literally) hundreds of comrades who have already sent emails on my behalf, organized and signed letters of support, contributed to my legal fund, and—most importantly—provided much-needed consolation on a personal level. As I have said many times before, please know that I am ready and willing to do the same for you should it become necessary.