Texas A&M philosophy professor Tommy Curry, who has been under scrutiny following comments made in a resurfaced podcast from 2012 responded to The Eagle defending his remarks.
"At no point did I advocate violence of any kind. I have a major problem with the way my remarks have been framed. This wasn't a random tweet or me expressing my personal opinion," Curry said. “The context was this: It was part of a scholarly analysis. That's an important distinction. I was making a historical point. We have professors in philosophy who study Nazis, among many other topics. Is it rational to think a discussion about Nazis means the professor is espousing those beliefs? Where does the university see the limits here?"
Curry further told The Eagle that he has received death threats and racist emails. The article written by The American Conservative, where the podcast resurfaced, included a link to Curry’s Texas A&M academic page, which includes his contact information.
Curry said his comments are being taken out of context.
"Within the historical trajectory, some black people have in fact believed that the only way to get liberation is through killing white people. It's been a major debate throughout history," Curry said.
Curry also said he believes there is an effort to discredit his academic work.
"I'm suggesting this is a deliberate attempt to devalue my work in a world where I've exceeded the standards for this discipline," Curry said. "One way a university measures the success of faculty is through promotion. I have earned that through the stringent tenure process accepted by peer review, and that very work now is being mischaracterized."
Texas A&M Sociology professor Joe Feagin, who is considered an expert in race theory, said that Curry was referencing that people of all races have the right to self defense.
“As for Professor Curry's comments about the current threats of white violence that Black Americans still face, he is clearly arguing that they have the right to self-defense against white violence,” Feagin said. “That is a value, as they say, as ‘American as apple pie.’ That is, self-defense is normal.”
Feagin also said that he finds it worrisome that The American Conservative is being taken as serious source, and reiterated that Curry is regarded as an expert in his field.
“In this case, I also find it highly problematical that a publication on a far-right website set up by and for white nationalists and white supremacists is cited as a major source on this matter and taken seriously, while leading social science scholars who research and know what they are talking about on US racism are rarely or never consulted,” Feagin said.