Say this for clueless state Rep. DebraLee Hovey of Newtown, she of the “Gabby Gifford [sic] stay out of my towns!!” comments: She’s selfish, moronic, egotistical and gave an apology that only compounded it all. But she is no longer owner of the “Stupidest Post-Newtown Comments Award.” That distinction now goes to Florida Atlantic University (FAU) communications professor James Tracy.
Tracy is an obviously deranged professor of communications at FAU which itself has the reputation of being the only academically challenged institution of higher learning in that state that doesn’t have a great football program.
In essence, Tracy used the confusion and some inaccurate media reporting immediately after the massacre to suggest the events of that tragic, heartbreaking day may have been staged by actors or simply never happen. He published his delusions on his personal blog, MemoryHole.com. It’s akin to kicking the families, officials, first responders and everyone in Connecticut right in the gut.
The rock-solid First Selectman of Newtown, E. Patricia Llodra, labeled Tracy an “embarrassment.” “Shame on you, too, FAU, to even have someone like this on your payroll,” Llodra wrote. “I can assure you, sadly, that the events here in Newtown unfolded exactly as are being reported, with the horrible outcome of the violent death of 26 innocent people, including 20 children.” See the whole Courant story here and the Sun Sentinel story here.
The truly amazing thing about all of this is that FAU won’t have the courage to fire to this lunatic Tracy; plus, he’s tenured. School President Jane Saunders hides in cowardice behind the fact that the offending words were written on Tracy’s personal blog. So what? Doesn’t FAU or any school—particularly those the taxpayers’ support—have the right choose its employees based on their personal views?
Before anyone starts crying, “freedom of speech,” consider this: Tracy can say anything he wants—the world is flat, the sun revolves around the earth, 9-11 was a government conspiracy (which he’s actually suggested), the moon landing never happened—whatever nonsense he wants. But FAU has the right, indeed the responsibility with taxpayers’ money, to employ thoughtful, reasoned faculty. Tracy doesn’t even come close to that standard. Fire him! And Rep. Hovey? Count your blessings—there’s someone more ridiculous than you.