“I’m only racist on my mother’s side. My father’s people were misanthropes.”

That Brevard Community College will be firing Sharon Sweet for compelling her students to vote for Obama is, of course, evidence that such indoctrination is ubiquitous in contemporary academia. The first comment on that Daily Caller link states the case in its strongest form:

Liberal fascism at home on every campus.

Exactly! Those two words always belong next to each other on campus. Goes without saying. What I find interesting about this story is that there’s no racial angle to it. Sweet’s race is never mentioned in the article nor does a search turn up an image that’s unequivocally of her. But Jim Hoft knows what she must look like, so when he did a Google Image search for “Sharon Sweet” he carefully considered all of the faces that might be hers and went with his gut.

That it told him she must be the black woman in the mug shot doesn’t make Hoft himself a racist—just his gut. Which makes him, what? About thirty percent racist?

106 comments on this post.
  1. montag2:

    Umm, Jim Hoft is a really big bag o’ guts, so, I’d have to say, oh, 60-70%.

  2. Jonas:

    “That’s where the truth lies, right down here in the gut. Do you know you have more nerve endings in your gut than you have in your head? You can look it up. Now, I know some of you are going to say, “I did look it up, and that’s not true.” That’s ’cause you looked it up in a book. Next time, look it up in your gut. I did. My gut tells me that’s how our nervous system works.”

  3. Johnny Sack:

    As soon as conservatives accuse liberals of something, they’ve given up their game. It’s always projection. Always.

    Also, nuke Florida from orbit. It’s ok, I moved out a long time ago.

  4. Derelict:

    Is there any moronic/racist/incredibly dopey thing the stupidest man on the internet can do that is not ridicule-worthy? My gut tells me “no,” but my brain tells me there must be some lower bound below which it become like mocking participants at the Special Olympics.

  5. Johnny Sack:

    I should say, they’ve given away their game. They never give up.

  6. somethingblue:

    About three-fifths, then?

  7. David Kaib:

    How did she compel her students to vote for Obama? Did she make them get absentee ballots?

  8. SEK:

    I wasn’t making a fat crack, I just think the human body’s like 33 percent head/chest, 33 percent guts, and 33 percent legs. I don’t know why I think that, mind you, but my gut tells me I’m not wrong.

  9. Brian:


  10. Johnny Sack:

    Yes, she had them get absentee ballots and fill them out under the supervision of Black Panthers

  11. SEK:

    She had them sign “a pledge.” Insidious! And no doubt 100 percent effective!

  12. wjts:

    I hardly think that the unthinking association of a mug shot of a woman who lives in Fort Myers with a professor of the same name who teaches in Cocoa (some 230 miles away on the opposite side of the peninsula) can in any way be considered even the slightest bit racist.

  13. BigHank53:

    Given that you have about 100 trillion bacteria living in your gut, you’d better hope those little bastards never figure out voting.

  14. isaiah:

    If you search google images for “professor sharon sweet” you can see that a bunch of right wing web sites have used that mug shot for this story. Although a few of them have comments saying that it isn’t the right picture.

  15. Megan McArdle's intern:

    It wasn’t a pledge, it was a statistical analysis.

  16. Carol:

    Ummm, how on earth did she compel her students to vote for Obama? Did she go with each one to the booth? How did she do that? Did they all claim they were blind and needed her to read the ballot to them? And did she really do what the Daily Caller accuses her of doing? Or did she simply do what she said she was dong? A bunch of right wing students in your classroom is a promise of problems to come.

  17. spencer:

    Also, nuke Florida from orbit. It’s ok, I moved out a long time ago.

    Also, fuck you, but some of us haven’t been able to make it out just yet.

  18. elm:

    Please, warn people before sending them to that website. Holy crap, I didn’t need to read an anti-semitic racist’s conspiracy rants.

  19. Speak Truth:

    At the time of this comment, there are 17 other comments before mine. None of them address the issue of politics to children that are a captive audience and the power the teacher has over them.

    If this were the workplace and your boss let you know in no uncertain terms that you should vote and support a conservative candidate, would that be just OK with you, too?

  20. Speak Truth:

    In the eyes of the college, Sweet clearly created a hostile environment for students, since many feared their grades would be affected if they did not sign the pledge.

    Hey, this is kinda like “card check” ain’t it!!

    You should be all about this.

  21. SEK:

    None of them address the issue of politics to children that are a captive audience and the power the teacher has over them.

    If you understood sarcasm, you’d see that I address the “unjust” nature of her firing in the original post.

  22. timb:

    Email us once you are clear, so we can go ahead and take care of that place.

  23. cpinva:

    i find it odd that a report on a personnel matter has been made public, in violation of multiple privacy statutes, federal & state. this causes me to wonder if the school is going to find itself the respondent in a civil action? as well, at no point have we seen prof. sweet’s response, since the report was released just 3 days ago. they could only convince 43 out of 85 students to take part in their “survey”? seems odd, if prof. sweet’s behaviour was as eggregious as it’s been described, but maybe that’s just me.

    if she is guilty of the acts she’s accused of, then clearly she has no business in a classroom. being a mathematician, i doubt she’ll have trouble finding gainful employment.

  24. CaptBackslap:

    If bacteria had any ability to politically organize, Chi-Chi’s would still be around.

  25. cpinva:

    actually, it’s about 80% water, especially in your gut.

  26. Uncle Kvetch:

    Hey, this is kinda like “card check” ain’t it!!

    Let’s connect the dots:

    “Card check” contains two words, both in English.

    “College professor” contains two words, both in English.

    “Buckwheat pancakes” contains two words, both in English.

    OH. MY. GOD…[staggers away from computer]

  27. timb:

    He told you he was sending you to Hoft’s place…..


  28. cpinva:

    could you leave sanibel island alone, it’s a really nice place. but go ahead and take out the toll booth on the causeway, that would be fine.

  29. timb:

    Well, of course, the list of Republican CEO’s who threatened their employees was pretty long

  30. Uncle Kvetch:

    Oh, and bonus points for referring to community college students as “children.” Those poor widdle rugrats didn’t stand a chance.

  31. Colin Day:

    No! Only abstinence pledges are 100% effective. :-)

  32. cpinva:

    they aren’t children, they are college aged or even older. it’s a community college, not a high school.

    “None of them address the issue of politics to children that are a captive audience and the power the teacher has over them.”

    nor are they a “captive audience”, being adults, they could get up and leave any time they chose. as well, being a math class, where problems have definite, objective answers, i wondered how she would seek reprisal against them, change their answers on tests?

  33. Uncle Ebeneezer:

    How does Econ professors openly touting the merits of Supply Side/Invisible Hand etc., for the past 30 years, fit into Liberal Fascism?

  34. Stag Party Palin:

    None of them address the issue of politics

    “None of them addresses” you clod. Jeebus, nothing upsets me more than using one of two acceptable grammatical forms that upset me. Except pancakes without genuine maple syrup. Now that really pisses me off.

  35. cpinva:

    she threatened them with numbers, probably integers, they’re the most dangerous.

    “Ummm, how on earth did she compel her students to vote for Obama?”

  36. Substance McGravitas:

    I wonder how the student body at Liberty University makes up its mind.

  37. somethingblue:

    Won’t somebody please think of the Pfannkuchen???

  38. BigHank53:

    I had the misfortune of being exposed to a microeconomics text last year that classified “entrepreneurship” as an additional fourth basic category, in addition to labor, capital, and natural resources. No, inventing a new business isn’t a specialized form of labor, like being a professor or doctor; it is unique and therefore deserving of an ever-greater slice of the pie.

  39. BigHank53:

    They don’t accept students who have doubts.

  40. Mike G:

    “Liberal fascism on every campus”

    Yes, because conservative-dominated institutions like the military and corporations are such bastions of free expression and tolerance of dissent.

  41. Kyle:

    Economics and engineering faculty are inconveniently too conservative to fit the right-wing bogeyman role, so they pretend that colleges consist entirely of Black Studies, Chicano Studies and Women’s Studies departments.

  42. Vance Maverick:

    This is a myth. Pancake Kid has plenty of real defects to attack — but the choice of number agreement for “none” isn’t one of them.

  43. Manju:

    Those two words always belong next to each other on campus.

    OK, but Dinesh D’Souza – whose (ex?) wife’s name is Dixie (I add gratuitously just because its funny) – gets full credit for “Illiberal Education”.

    This is a relatively sophisticated use of “liberal”, especially considering the source.

    *note: No, I’ve never read Liberal Fascism. DW-Nominate is not the same thing.

  44. cpinva:

    according to my son, who goes to school just a bit down the road from liberty, a six-pack or two usually does the trick.

    “I wonder how the student body at Liberty University makes up its mind.”

  45. cpinva:

    having made the mistake of reading some of mr. d’souza’s “work”, i’ve always come away thinking he’s just a ginormous dipshit, in a very expensive suit. it requires little in the way of hard analysis to deconstruct him, and i’m not all that bright. just imagine he and paul krugman in the same room. wait, that wouldn’t take long at all.

  46. montag2:

    Thus, begging for this quote: “One through nine, no maybes, no supposes, no fractions. You can’t travel in space, you can’t go out into space, you know, without, like, you know, uh, with fractions – what are you going to land on – one-quarter, three-eighths? What are you going to do when you go from here to Venus or something?”

  47. Malaclypse:

    So, as I think I’ve mentioned, I was educmacated in a fundamentalist “academy” up through high school. And every year in middle school, our English teacher (there was only one, for all of middle school) would have “writing assignments” where we would write a letter to our congresscritter on some cause (and the assignment, not we, determined if we were for or against). She would grade them, and them mail them off for us.

    That was genuinely abusive. I remember that one of the assignments involved trying to get the IRS to leave poor Bob Jones University alone (and if anybody asks, yes, I did the assignments – to my discredit, it took until college to realize how fucked up my primary education was. Those Wonkette “Sundays with Christianist textbooks” series? I had an older edition of that text).

    So, yea, what this lady is accused of doing? Freaking amateur hour.

  48. somethingblue:

    Hey, if you hate job creators so much, maybe you should just move to France. I’m told they don’t even have a word for entrepreneur.

  49. Bill Murray:

    well our anti-microbial habits are killing them off anyway, so it’s going to be a lesser issue as time goes by

  50. DrDick:

    Or business profs proclaiming that government regulations destroy businesses (which I have actually overheard in a lecture).

  51. Happy Jack:

    That photo doesn’t look to me like a 58 yr old woman. Then again, I’ve never been involved in an internet snipe hunt.

  52. commie atheist:

    Along with the move a few years back to turn the Officers’ Club into the Blue Oyster Bar

    In times square now people do the polka
    Dominance….submission…radios appear
    This new year’s eve was the final barrier
    Dominance….submission…radios appear
    We took you up and we put you in the back seat
    Dominance….submission…radios appear
    From year to year we looked out for the venture
    Dominance….submission…radios appear

  53. Malaclypse:

    With a purposeful grimace and a terrible sound
    He pulls the spitting high-tension wires down

    Godzilla, or Loomis?

  54. Bill Murray:

    Maple Syrup also is two words both in English and it goes well with buckwheat pancakes — and I, a college professor, have had maple syrup on buckwheat pancakes. I have also checked cards (although not in the Wittgensteinian card check sense)

  55. sparks:

    b…but the irrationals!!!

  56. Bill Murray:

    as if there is a difference

  57. Bill Murray:

    so D’Souza is the one who drove old Dixie down

  58. sparks:

    You forgot Native American Studies.

  59. efgoldman:

    Hey, I’m old enough that we said the lord’s prayer and had a bible reading every morning along with the pledge of allegiance. In public school, where some very large fraction of the student body was Jewish. The Murray decision happened when I was in high school.

  60. efgoldman:

    ….internet snipe hunt.

    For the win.

  61. ralphdibny:

    Ah, the memories. Like the time I was beaten with a paddle by my Bible teacher, who informed me that he wished he could take me outside the city walls and stone me, as the Old Testament commands for disobedient children. Or the time we took a “field trip” to a Reagan rally and we were all excited we were on the evening news.

    In other words–yep, amateur hour.

  62. Manju:

    Well I heard D’Souza sing about her
    Well, I heard ole D put her down
    Well, I hope Dinesh will remember
    A Southern gal don’t need him around anyhow

  63. Malaclypse:

    The pledge of allegiance? We had two: I pledge allegiance to the Christian Flag, and to the Saviour, for whose kingdom it stands. One Saviour, crucified, risen and coming again, with life and liberty for all who believe.

  64. MAJeff:

    We got out of school every Wednesday to go to church for confirmation classes. Kids who didn’t do that had study hall.

  65. JustRuss:

    That’s almost win-the-internets worthy! Keep it up, they’ll all be yours someday!

  66. Green Caboose:

    And I read that and thought – geez that sounds like Colbert. And I googled and it was, from that terrific roasting he did of Bush and the Villagers in 2006.

    Sigh. That roasting had no effect of course. But whatever he does with the rest of his lift, Colbert’s decision to blow up any potential future career he had with politicians and make that speech will alway be one of the great, great, great moments in human history.

  67. Pestilence:

    Godzilla doesnt have a stick

  68. commie atheist:

    Actually, he pissed off the assembled media stenographers and asslickers more than he did the politicians. And, wow, color me surprised that Ana Marie Cox, during her ascendant phase, didn’t see what was so special about it:

    Comedy can have a political point but it is not political action, and what Colbert said on the stage of the Washington Hilton — funny or not — means far less than what the ardent posters at ThankYouStephenColbert.org would like it to. While it may have shocked the President to hear someone talk so openly about his misdeeds in the setting of the correspondents dinner — joking about “the most powerful photo-ops in the world” and NSA wiretaps — I somehow doubt that Bush has never heard these criticisms before. To laud Colbert for saying them seems to me, a card-carrying lefty, to be settling. Colbert’s defenders might aim for the same stinging criticisms to be issued not from the Hilton ballroom but from the dais in a Senate Judiciary committee hearing. And I wouldn’t really care if they were funny or not.

  69. DrDick:

    They are already smarter than Hoft.

  70. Leopold Kronecker:

    probably integers, they’re the most dangerous

    Mere man-made numbers are less destructive.

  71. commie atheist:


    Also, D’Souza just published a book titled “What So Great About Christianity?” No lie. Here’s a review:

    D’Souza raised a question on page 258 that touches on how one knows the right and wrong standard of morality within themselves in light of our imperfection: “What principle do you have that distinguishes the good inner self from the bad inner self?” D’Souza’s answer: “The Christian solution to this problem is oddly enough not a religious one. It is not to embrace Christ and become a born again believer. Rather, it is to follow the examine path of the impartial spectator which is to take conscience as your guide” (258-59).

  72. Throw all the bums out:

    Fire this weasel loser and every other professor at a public university who mandates that his or her students vote for a Democrat, or who requires that his or her students volunteer for a particular political organization. I am all for it; for far too long many of my liberal colleagues have used their bully pulpit to endorse, or worse, enforce the choice of political candidates. But let’s not stop there. Let’s fire those at state universities who give extra credit for going to particular religious institutions. (Yes, it does happen.) And, whle we are at it, let’s revoke the tax exemption of every church or synagogue or temple where the congregation was told for whom to vote in the last presidential election. After all, fair is fair.

  73. rea:

    Entrepeneurship as distinct from capital? Okay . . .

  74. cpinva:

    no one’s ever accused ms. cox of being a particularly bright “card-carrying lefty”.

  75. expatchad:

    You’ve counted???

  76. expatchad:

    Your gut is getting a big head …

  77. Tybalt:

    for far too long many of my liberal colleagues have used their bully pulpit to endorse, or worse, enforce the choice of political candidates


  78. expatchad:

    Confronted them with a googolplex

  79. expatchad:

    Yes, but its it’s in French.

  80. expatchad:

    I cannot find the EDIT FUNCTION. I shall DIE

  81. The Dark Avenger:

    One of my mother’s most scathing critiques was to call someone a ‘gutless wonder’.

    That fits Jim Hoft, the world’s stupidest man on the Internet.

  82. The Dark Avenger:

    Transfinite numbers aren’t for sissies!

  83. Vance Maverick:

    Also, in TATBO’s state, is there a secret ballot? I can believe a few professors make themselves unpleasant, but unless I’m missing something, they literally can’t force a vote.

  84. DocAmazing:

    We’re learning our theology from Jiminy Cricket?

  85. Warren Terra:

    Ok, you all hold still now …

  86. Warren Terra:

    More like that she had to carry the card for proof, because otherwise how could anyone tell? Her blatant careerist opportunism certainly wasn’t going to let her progress be derailed by any considerations of principles or ideals (or ideas).

  87. Warren Terra:

    It’s Poe’s law made flesh.

  88. redrob64:

    Why in the name of all that is unholy are there even such creatures as business professors? I thought the whole point of the folklore of capitalism was that businessmen were brave doers, who didn’t need a bunch of eggheads to tell them how to do whatever it is they do to make a profit. Doesn’t the whole idea of business school run against the grain of their self-image?

  89. wengler:

    That is the dumbest sentence I’ve read all day.

  90. mijaba:

    Christianity has a flag?

  91. Informant:

    Precisely what federal “privacy statute[s]” would preclude the release of this information? (There may be state statutes relating to personnel matters, but I’m aware of no federal law that would be likely to apply.)

  92. john (not mccain):

    sadly, only 27% of people know that timeless, gut-obvious truth.

  93. john (not mccain):

    1 – i lie to my boss all the time about things she could verify. i am certainly not going to get all tense over something she couldn’t. 2 – CHILDREN CAN’T VOTE.

  94. NorthLeft12:

    I thought the orange jumpsuit was the standard uniform for professors at Brevard Community College.

    Jim Hoft

    That may be the next Republican breakthrough idea in reducing education expenditures. Sentence felons to terms of service as college teachers.

  95. NorthLeft12:

    Conservatives always forget about Natives/Aboriginals.

    Take it from a Canadian.

  96. NorthLeft12:

    With a head on it?

  97. Malaclypse:


  98. The Dark Avenger:

    I’d like to know what variety of Christianity that D’Souza belongs to where an man and woman who aren’t married to one another can share a hotel suite together and not break any Christian teachings.

    That my friends, is literally the million-dollar question.


  99. FLRealist:

    Also, nuke Florida from orbit. It’s ok, I moved out a long time ago.

    While I heartily agree with the sentiment, please don’t. Hubby’s a native, and he won’t let us move out of this god-forsaken place.

  100. liberal:

    Entrepreneurship per se is clearly labor, not capital.

  101. chris:

    To be fair, that goes for the pastors too, but they’re both still being jerks to use their pulpits (one of them literal) to try to coerce people’s political beliefs.

  102. DrDick:

    Cthulhu alone only knows. B-schools are where minds go to die, horribly mutilated.

  103. Njorl:

    One thing we have to thank George Bush for is being such a good example to delineate the line between entrepreneurship and capital. When he was starting all of those businesses which went bankrupt, he was engaging in entrepreneurship, while his daddy’s friends were supplying the capital. He should be used in every econ 101 class as an example of how capitalism works, just so the kids can avoid confusion.

  104. STH:

    If she did pressure or compel her students to vote in a certain way, no, it isn’t right.

    But I guarantee you that every single conservative who is horrified by this is also an advocate for mandatory prayer in grade schools, which DOES involve kids, while this case doesn’t. Because they don’t have any problem at all with pressure or compulsion, as long as they’re the ones doing the compelling. They only care about rights when somebody else is in charge.

  105. STH:

    I’m taking Business 101 right now (send help) and the lecture on Economics consisted of nothing but Republican talking points: the ACA and Social Security are socialist, Democrats are socialist, no minimum wage is needed because all minimum wage workers are teenagers, the ACA will mean old people won’t get health care, etc. When I pointed out that health care is presently allocated by who can pay, he responded with the usual talking point: poor people can just go to emergency room! I responded that this drives up the cost of health care, but he obviously didn’t want to hear it and ignored me. What pisses me off the most about this is that we’re in a pretty conservative area here and now all those students have had their biases and ignorance confirmed rather than challenged. (It also irritated me that I know more about Adam Smith than the prof apparently does.)

    I sometimes feel like a freaking undercover agent in that class.

  106. Mike Schilling:

    This is the only time in history a conservative assumed that a math professor would be black.

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