University Professor Suspended, Referred to Police After Reportedly Calling for the Murder of 'Right-Wing' Speakers


A professor at Michigan’s Wayne State University has been suspended after allegedly posting a disturbing remark on social media.

Steven Shaviro, described as an English professor, philosopher and writer, recently posted a statement to Facebook that appeared to endorse the murder of those who hold political viewpoints he opposes, WJBK-TV in Detroit reported Monday.

“So here is what I think about free speech on campus,” Shaviro reportedly said in the post. “Although I do not advocate violating federal and state criminal codes, I think it is far more admirable to kill a racist, homophobic, or transphobic speaker than it is to shout them down.”

According to the Detroit Free Press, the since-deleted post said “right-wing” groups invite speakers to campuses to provoke a reaction from left-wing groups.

“The protesters get blamed instead of the bigoted speaker; the university administration finds a perfect excuse to side publicly with the racists or phobes; the national and international press has a field day saying that bigots are the ones being oppressed, rather than the people those bigots actually hate being the victims of oppression,” the post continued, according to the report.

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It cited the 1926 assassination of former Ukrainian leader Symon Petliura, whom the post said was killed by Sholem Schwarzbard because his own family had been killed in the 1919 pogroms.

“Remember that Schwarzbard was acquitted by a jury, which found his actions justified,” Shaviro’s post concluded, according to the Free Press.

The post has since been taken down, but not before it had been widely screen-shotted and commented upon.

In a letter on the school’s website Monday, Wayne State President M. Roy Wilson indicated Shaviro had been suspended with pay, “effective immediately,” and the post had been referred to law enforcement.

“This morning, I was made aware of a social media post by a Wayne State University professor in our Department of English,” Wilson said.

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“The post stated that rather than ‘shouting down’ those with whom we disagree, one would be justified to commit murder to silence them,” he said.

“We have on many occasions defended the right of free speech guaranteed by the First Amendment to the U.S. Constitution, but we feel this post far exceeds the bounds of reasonable or protected speech,” Wilson said.

“It is, at best, morally reprehensible and, at worst, criminal,” he said.

Should this professor face criminal charges?

“We have referred this to law enforcement agencies for further review and investigation. Pending their review, we have suspended the professor with pay, effective immediately.”

A WJBK reporter said she contacted Shaviro about the incident, but the professor declined to comment.

A Twitter bio that appears to be Shaviro’s proclaims him as “Stealth assassin from the clouds. Science fiction. Music video. Alfred North Whitehead. Kitsch Marxist. Sex negative.”

That account is locked, meaning posts cannot be viewed without the poster’s permission.

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Lorri Wickenhauser has worked at news organizations in California and Arizona. She joined The Western Journal in 2021.
Lorri Wickenhauser has worked at news organizations in California and Arizona. She joined The Western Journal in 2021.