A University of Kansas associate professor said Tuesday that he had a laugh when he noticed his name on a “leftist propaganda in the classroom” watch list site.
As of Tuesday, David Guth – an associate professor at the university’s William Allen White School of Journalism and Mass Communications – was one of two Kansas professors listed on Professor Watchlist.
The website, which was profiled in a New York Times story this week, first appeared Nov. 21.
“I had a chuckle over it,” Guth said Tuesday. “I don’t pay much attention to it, especially because a lot of what they have is inaccurate.
“God bless free speech. I’m not going to try to deny freedom of expression.”
Guth said a fellow professor at the university alerted him to the website last week. The site accuses close to 200 college professors of spreading leftist propaganda and discriminating against conservative students.
Critics have called the site a threat to academic freedom, according to the New York Times story. The site is the work of a nonprofit organization called Turning Point USA, which was founded by a Chicago-based millennial named Charlie Kirk.
In a brief listing about Guth, Professor Watchlist includes his photo and mentions a controversial social media post by Guth from 2013 after a shooting at the Navy Yard in Washington, D.C., that left 13 dead.
Guth was critical of the National Rifle Association in a tweet after the shooting and was later put on administrative leave by the university.
In the tweet, Guth said “blood is on the hands of the #NRA. Next time, let it be YOUR sons and daughters.”
The Twitter post was covered extensively in the media and eventually led to a new social media policy for public universities in Kansas, which was adopted in late 2013.
Guth said Tuesday that the “characterization” of the tweet was not correct. Guth also pointed out that Professor Watchlist incorrectly listed him as “Dr. Guth.”
“The intent of the tweet was (to ask), ‘How would you feel if it happened to you?’ ” Guth said. “Seeing other people harmed was never my intent.”