Regarding the Nov. 1 Style article “A prof has freedom of speech and from facts”:

As a Virginia taxpayer and former journalist, I am absolutely appalled by George Mason University’s “academic freedom” defense of journalism educator Christopher J. Farrell’s shocking — and baseless — assertion on Fox Business Network that a “Soros-occupied State Department” was funding a caravan traveling through Latin America to the United States.

Whether Mr. Farrell’s assertions were made with anti-Semitic animus is irrelevant. We live in a time when journalistic truth is under daily assault. By his actions, Mr. Farrell has shown himself to be a conspiracy theorist, not a truth seeker, which has long defined the best of journalism in this country. His comments should be viewed as academic malpractice, not academic freedom.

I implore George Mason to examine whether Mr. Farrell has the academic qualifications to serve as an adjunct professor of journalism, just as I hope George Mason would question the academic qualifications of an avowed Holocaust denier teaching in its history department. Mr. Farrell should be dismissed. 

Peter L. Pieragostini, Reston

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