Many college and university professors espouse crazy ideas. But Grover Carr Furr III from Montclair State University in New Jersey takes the cake as one of the most delusional and dangerous gadflies ever allowed to grace the halls of academia. Furr fashions himself as an expert on Soviet history under Joseph Stalin. Boiling down his writings to their absurd essence, he argues that Stalin has been unfairly maligned, that he was actually a Great Big Teddy Bear who never ordered any pogroms or purges, didn’t establish gulags and had no hand in orchestrating the mass murder of upwards of 20 million of his political opponents.
Furr is not just out there — he’s way out there in Siberia. As long as Montclair State University is hiring holocaust deniers for teaching gigs, why not keep a tenured faculty post warm for Mahmoud Ahmadinejad?
Here, a few of Furr’s students — seemingly the class clowns in the back of the hall — applaud his outrageous and bellicose rant. That brings to mind what P.J. O’Rourke wrote, “No drug, not even alcohol, causes the fundamental ills of society. If we’re looking for the source of our troubles, we shouldn’t test people for drugs, we should test them for stupidity, ignorance, greed and love of power.”
In fairness, a lot of his students recognize him as a Stalinist and doctrinaire Leftist — pretentious, smug and condescending. Here’s what one student said evaluating him on Rate My Professors: “Annoying class and teacher. So rigid that you’re screwed if you mess up the subject line in an e-mail to him. You could lose credit and never know it, because he won’t tell you. You never know your grades, talks down to you, and the whole class is about him promoting his ideas and putting down yours.” H/T small dead animals