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Controversial author named to UNC-TV Trustees

Posted September 9, 2013 11:58 a.m. EDT
Updated September 10, 2013 12:07 p.m. EDT

— Controversial author Orson Scott Card has been named to the UNC-TV Board of Trustees, appointed by Senate President Pro Tem Phil Berger. 

The glowing news release from UNC-TV mentions Card's two most famous books, Ender's Game and Speaker for the Dead, published in 1985 and 1986. "Both books received Hugo and Nebula Awards, making Mr. Card the only author to win both of the top American awards for science fiction in consecutive years," reads the release.

"We are pleased to welcome Mr. Card to the UNC-TV Board of Trustees,” Chairman Robb Teer said in a statement. “We are grateful for his willingness to serve and look forward to working with him to continue providing the people of our state with enriching, life-changing television in these challenging times.”

Not mentioned is recent controversy around Card's political writings, published in Greensboro's Rhinoceros Times.

A May 2013 column compared President Barack Obama to Hitler and Stalin.

"Obama is, by character and preference, a dictator. He hates the very idea of compromise; he demonizes his critics and despises even his own toadies in the liberal press," Card wrote.

The essay also theorized that the president might want to turn "urban men" into his own "Brown Shirts."

"Like Hitler, he needs a powerful domestic army to terrify any opposition that might arise," Card wrote. "In other words, Obama will put a thin veneer of training and military structure on urban gangs and send them out to channel their violence against Obama's enemies."

Card called the essay a "thought experiment," but it attracted national and international attention nonetheless. 

The author is also an outspoken opponent of same-sex marriage, prompting some activists to call for a boycott of the movie version of "Ender's Game," slated for release in the U.S. later this year. 

He's also a vocal critic of what he calls the "Leftaliban" in academia, as well as the media in general (excepting Fox News), comparing them to "Nazis and Bolsheviks."  

"So yes, CBS, CNN, ABC, NBC, MSNBC, New York Times, Washington Post and all the rest of you in the Ministry of Public Enlightenment and Propaganda: You won," Card wrote after the 2012 election. "But we know you now. We know just how low you'll go, how compliant you will be with the Beloved Leader."

Card, who lives in Greensboro and is Distinguished Professor of Writing and Literature at Southern Virginia University, will serve a two-year term on UNC-TV's board.