Dear President Fearon,
The Czech and Slovak Association of Canada, an organization representing Czech and Slovak Canadians, was founded in June 1939 — after Czechoslovakia was occupied by Nazi Germany.
During the German occupation many people were executed and deported to concentration camps. Yet soldiers who managed to flee went to join the Allies in W.W. II., as did Czech and Slovak Canadians who bravely fought alongside the Canadians. The 1938/1939 immigration wave was followed by another after the 1948 communist coup, and finally after the Soviet occupation of 1968 (which lasted 23 years).
Many Czechs and Slovaks immigrated to Canada and found liberty and also freedom of speech, such as the late Victor Fic, professor at Brock University, who was one of our organization’s most esteemed members.
Another refugee family were the Hudlickys. Their son went on to become a professor of chemistry at Brock University, and to be recognized as a leading authority in the field of organic chemistry. He was awarded the Silver Medal by the Charles University in Prague.
We are very concerned by the censorship of Dr. Tomas Hudlicky’s essay published in the German magazine Angewandte Chemie, and by the criticism he was subjected to from your University. We consider freedom of speech to be an extremely important part of life in democratic Canada — something we were seeking when we came here. We should never allow this right to be violated under any pretext, especially not in the academe.
We therefore fully support prof. Hudlicky’s right to express his views and hope that Brock University will agree. We would appreciate if you were to confirm that we are of one mind on this important issue.