20.06.13, 07:38 PM

   I thought this letter from Steven Pinker might be of interest to readers. I have several more like it.                   



                Harvard College Professor 

              Johnstone Family Professor 



Professor Edwin Ervin 

Department of Philosophy 

University of Miami 

Miami, FL 


June 13, 2013 


Dear Professor Ervin, 


I join you and other scholars, writers, and activists in protesting the threat of dismissal 

of a brilliant and distinguished scholar, Colin McGinn, from the University of Miami for 

apparently nothing more serious than exchanging sexual banter with a graduate 

student. Even if the University had a clear policy that regulated communications 

between professor and student, the punishment is ludicrously disproportionate to the 

alleged offense. As well as harming the reputation and intellectual quality of the 

University of Miami, such an action would put a chill on communication between 

faculty and graduate students and on the openness and informality on which 

scholarship depends.  


If the dismissal proceeds, I will certainly bring it up with the Foundation for Individual 

Rights in Education, on whose advisory board I sit.  


Feel free to circulate this letter, and to add my name to any list of McGinn’s supporters.  






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