UPDATE: 2PM PST After more complaints were lodged today by WUWT readers about the watered down version of Parncutt’s essay which had replaced the original on the University of Graz website, it was removed and replaced with an apology. See below in the body of the story. – Anthony
UPDATE2: 2:55:PM PST In an email received today from Skeptical Science contributor Dana Nuccitelli, he has flat out refused to distance himself or the SkS website publicly from the Parncutt essay. Readers may recall that Parncutt used SkS as a reference in his essay calling for the death penalty. No word yet on whether John Cook (owner of the website) agrees and no word yet from DeSmog blog. – Anthony
Readers may recall this particular bit of ugliness: Beyond bizarre: University of Graz music professor calls for skeptic death sentences
David M. Hoffer writes in comments:
I sent a rather firm letter to the University which is reproduced upthread. I didn’t expect a response, but I got one. I reproduce their response here:
Die Karl-Franzens-Universität Graz ist bestürzt und entsetzt über die Ansicht und distanziert sich davon klar und deutlich. Die Universität legt größten Wert, dass die Wahrung aller Menschenrechte zu den obersten Prinzipien der Universität Graz gehört und menschenverachtende Aussagen mit aller Entschiedenheit zurückgewiesen werden. Die Universität weist zusätzlich mit Nachdruck darauf hin, dass eine rein persönliche Ansicht, die nicht im Zusammenhang mit der wissenschaftlichen Arbeit steht, auf universitären Webseiten nicht toleriert wird.
The University of Graz is shocked and appalled by the article and rejects its arguments entirely. The University places considerable importance on respecting all human rights and does not accept inhuman statements. Furthermore, the University of Graz points out clearly that a personal and individual opinion which is not related to scientific work cannot be tolerated on websites of the University.
Dean, Faculty of Humanities and the Arts
Here is Hoffer’s letter to the University of Graz:
I’ve sent the rector a complaint as worded below. Should I receive a reply (I know, unlikely) I will post it here as well:
I [am] writing to you in protest of the remarks made by Richard Parncutt. While the university has done the right thing by removing these remarks from their website, that is hardly strong enough action. I’m sure you need no reminder that advocating for forced “re-education” and death penalties for one’s beliefs carries with it the stench of barbarism from history’s darkest chapters. I am not one of those who “deny” the science of global warming, in fact the opposite. But having studied the science closely, I’ve also concluded that many of the draconian measures proposed to mitigate global warming would themselves cause more harm than good. As a single example, we are already converting crops into bio-fuels, in essence burning the food while millions around the world are starving. Are the deaths of those people similarly on Richard Parncutt’s conscious? By his own standard, should he not be punished in the precise same manner he proposes to punish others?
The issues regarding climate science are many and complex. They deserve to be debated publicly. Indeed, it is crucial that they be debated publicly that facts, logic and science may prevail over politics, rhetoric, and in the case of those such as Richard Parncutt, hate speech reminiscent of last centuries darkest horrors.
The university owes the world not simply an apology for what appeared on their web site, but a strong and unequivocal statement denouncing this blatant attempt to silence the debate by threat of violence. – David M. Hoffer
I checked to make certain he is a representative of the university. He is listed on the University of Graz website here.
We are still waiting for DeSmog Blog and “Skeptical Science” to disavow this man’s ideas, since he lists them as references in his hate speech essay. The original is archived here:
Richard Parncutt. Death penalty for global warming deniers?. University of Graz. 2012-12-24. URL: http://www.uni-graz.at/richard.parncutt/climatechange.html. Accessed: 2012-12-24. (Archived by WebCite® at http://www.webcitation.org/6D8yy8NUJ)
One final note, Helmut Konrad in his statement says:
Furthermore, the University of Graz points out clearly that a personal and individual opinion which is not related to scientific work cannot be tolerated on websites of the University.
Despite that, Parncutt’s watered down opinion (changed after the uproar) still exists on the University of Graz website as seen here:
Perhaps Herr Konrad should be reminded of what he wrote. His email is on his University page here.
UPDATE: WUWT readers get results. After more complaints were lodged today by WUWT readers about the watered down version (PDF here) of Parncutt’s essay which had replaced the original, it was removed and replaced with an apology. It seems Monckton of Brenchley was instrumental in the about-face. This is what is there now:
I wish to apologize publicly to all those who were offended by texts that were previously posted at this address. I made claims that were incorrect and comparisons that were completely inappropriate, which I deeply regret. I would also like to thank all those who took the time and trouble to share their thoughts in emails.
In October 2012, I wrote the following on this page: “I have always been opposed to the death penalty in all cases, and I have always supported the clear and consistent stand of Amnesty International on this issue. The death penalty is barbaric, racist, expensive, and is often applied by mistake.” I wish to confirm that this is indeed my opinion. I have been a member of Amnesty International for at least 14 years, and I admire and support their consistent stance on this issue.
Richard Parncutt, 27 December 2012
The opinions expressed on this page are the personal opinions of the author.