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Former police chief: Unhinged leftist math professor wants to put “non-woke” colleagues on “enemies list”

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WILLIAMSTOWN, MA- If you ever wonder why students attending college are devoid of reasoning meet Chad Topaz, a math professor at the uber-liberal Williams College in Williamstown, Massachusetts. One clue—he is the founder of the Institute for the Quantitative Study of Inclusion, Diversity and Equity (QSIDE). That should tell you all you need to know.

According to Topaz, the field of mathematics is “informed by white supremacy,” and the only way to combat this is to identify all suspected “white supremacist” mathematicians and place them on an “enemies list.”

Topaz is, according to a blog called Campus Insanity a self-proclaimed expert in so-called “antiracist teaching.” He recently authored an essay in which he explained why he believes his “non-woke” colleagues need to be placed under surveillance and punished for not subscribing to his clearly insane ideologies.

Warning: Topaz gets his definitions of racism and antiracism from race-hustler Ibram X. Kendi as derived from his fictional work “How to be an Antiracist.” He goes on to define so-called “antiracist teaching” as “teaching that produces or sustains racial equity.”

Want to know how insane this guy is? He practices something called “ungrading” in his classroom, as follows:

  • Nothing in this course is graded. The professor doesn’t assign points/letter grades
  • Instead you’ll get copious written and oral feedback from the professor and TA.
  • You’ll evaluate yourself each week and you’ll choose your own final letter grade.*
  • Rec letters will be based on my view of your work. I require advance notice of 4 weeks.
  • *Your chosen grade cannot be an A+. In cases of extreme abuse of the system, I reserve the right to alter your chosen grade (though I have never before had to do so).

The enemies list Topaz is formulating is intended to “study” the so-called “racist views” of his colleagues. Thus far, QSIDE has identified some 4,000 names among 26 different categories dependent on whether or not they signed letters that opposed his radical leftist agenda, or if they belong to professional organizations he doesn’t support.

An example of one such letter written in opposition to Topaz’s intimidation has 680 signatures, and calls upon the American Mathematical Society (AMS) to “make a clear statement that bullying and intimidation have no place in our community.”

That letter is in reference to an incident from 2019, in which the unhinged Topaz attempted to get University of California, Davis math professor Abigail Thompson fired because she opposed mandatory diversity statements.

One signatory, Jerry Coyne, emeritus professor of biology at The University of Chicago said:

“Topaz funds [QSIDE] in part by giving donors the gift of ‘diversity statement help’ from his organization. Thus, by promoting requirements for diversity statements, Topaz is also plumping for donations to his own organization.”

On individual who has tired of Topaz’s antics is a blogger named Chris Brunet, who writes for Karlstack on Substack.com. Chris said that he attempted to contact all 680 signatories of the letter to the AMS, and received responses from 125 of them.

He said “reactions ranged from mild amusement to complete indifference, to anger, shock and disgust.” He noted that many pointed out that the “list was for Topaz to damage the career prospects of his enemies.”

Following are some of the responses:

“Chad Topaz has been vocally active in trying to damage the careers of those whom he disagrees with politically.”- Aryeh Kontorovich, computer sciences professor at Ben-Gurion University.

“I have no problem being on the list myself but tremble to think how this will affect the practice of our science, especially its effect on young mathematicians.”- Sergiu Klainerman, math professor at Princeton.

“There was one individual who tried to ‘shame’ me by email. It didn’t work. (She has a long history of confrontational behaviour, both with me and with others).”-Peter Ozsvath, math professor at Princeton.

“I agree that the motivation behind QSIDE’s actions was likely, in part, to chill speech…this is a huge problem for people earlier in their career.”- Brendon Rhoades, math professor at UC San Diego.

“The authors, predominantly members of QSIDE, have a very specific political agenda…it is reasonable to believe that the QSIDE authors believe that a scorched earth approach to obtaining their political ends is appropriate.”- Jeffrey Stuart, math professor at Pacific Lutheran University.

“In the old Soviet Union, many people came to do mathematics because it was the least prone to political manipulation, and so it is a shock to the many of us who came to the US to see that the political component here is, astoundingly, far worse than it was in the USSR.”- Igor Rivin, math professor at Temple University.

And another who escaped the old Soviet Union:

“I actually was not aware about this site Quantitative Study of Inclusion, Diversity, and Equity, but I do not care if someone thinks I had wrong views. I grew up in the Soviet Union so I am not intimidated easily.”- Benjamin Sudakov, math professor at ETH Zurich.

“My guess is the ‘institute’ is not much more than a one-man project, as turning oneself into an institute is a standard academic ruse to inflate one’s importance…With 1/3 of a billion Americans sitting around in a pandemic with little to do, some will go nutty, and inevitably some of those will also self-identify as mathematicians and/or institutes.”- Martin Scharlemann, math professor at the University of California, Santa Barbara.

That is only a small sample of the letter signatories. Karlstack goes on to note that a number of them later became founding members of a group called the Association for Mathematical Research (AMR), which launched last year.

“It’s not just a coincidence that the AMR was founded on the heels of a greater push for diversity within the AMS,” writes Lee Peralta. “In this way, the AMR seems more like a separatist organization for those who are striving for some kind of ‘purity’ within mathematics away from ‘impure’ considerations of race, gender, class, ability ,sexual orientation, and socioeconomic status (among others).”

The president of AMR, Joel Haas, a math professor at UC Davis told Karlstack that the organization “intends to focus exclusively on matters of research and scholarship.” They noted a number of other professors agreed with that sentiment.

While some claim there is no animus between the AMR and AMS, the latter seems to have much in common with QSIDE, as noted in the following statement from a computer science professor at UT Austin:

“Starting a new mathematical society, even an avowedly diverse and apolitical one, is really just an implicit claim that existing societies, like the AMS, have been co-opted by woke true-believers,” wrote the professor, Scott Aronson. “But that’s paranoid and insane! I mean, it’s not as if an AMS blog has called for the mass resignation of white male mathematicians to make room for the marginalized, or the boycott of Israeli universities, or the abolition of the criminal justice system.”

Brunet said he reached out to Topaz to get his input, however only received a snarky reply on Twitter.

Then, Topaz started posting tweets with sexual innuendo toward Brunet:

Brunet noted that a number of professors at Williams College suggested he file an official complaint against Topaz. He said however that while he believes Topaz had indeed sexually harassed him, he thought it was more of a bullying/intimidation type of approach albeit “in a really sexually aggressive way.”


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