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Foul Ayers

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Thursday, March 18, 2010

It's bad enough that 1970s domestic terrorist William Ayers will be the featured speaker at a University of Pittsburgh function on March 26. Worse is that the sponsoring group has whitewashed Mr. Ayers' history in its promotional materials.

The co-founder of the radical Weather Underground will keynote the Spring 2010 Conference of Pitt's Council of Graduate Students in Education a week from Friday. The Weathermen, as they were known, participated in a series of bombings in the early 1970s, including the 1974 bombing of Pittsburgh's Gulf Tower.

Mr. Ayers admits to participating in bombings at a New York City police headquarters in 1970, the U.S. Capitol in 1971 and the Pentagon in 1972. Federal conspiracy charges against him were dropped in 1974 because of illegal surveillance.

But a January newsletter promoting Ayers' appearance does not mention his domestic terrorism past. In part, it notes that Ayers, now 65, has written extensively about "teaching as an essentially intellectual (and) ethical ... enterprise."

One would think that in the interest of education, intellectualism and ethics, Pitt's Council of Graduate Students in Education would be more forthright about the foul life of its honored guest.

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