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Marxist Penn State associate professor wished for the deaths of Donald Trump, Jordan Peterson, Ben Shapiro, and more

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Mark Wilson/Jason Kempin/Getty Images

A Penn State associate professor allegedly hoped for the deaths of prominent conservative voices, including former President Donald Trump, Jordan Peterson, and Ben Shapiro.

The Post Millennial editor-at-large Andy Ngo shared alleged screenshots of alarming tweets sent by Zack Furness – a Penn State University associate professor of communications at the Greater Allegheny campus. Furness reportedly replied to a popular Twitter account that posts unusual moments from American politics.

On March 26, the Twitter account shared a photo from 2017 of then-President Trump tossing out paper towels to Puerto Ricans who were ravaged by Hurricane Maria.

According to screenshots posted by Ngo, Furness replied to the tweet of Trump by writing, "Should've been Lincoln’d five minutes later." Furness is referencing the assassination of President Abraham Lincoln, who was shot in the head by John Wilkes Booth in 1865.

Ngo also shared a screenshot of an alleged tweet from Furness written in September 2020, in which he hoped that several conservative commentators, as well as centrist and left-leaning figures, be killed.

"I'd like to build an arc and fill it with, Michael Tracey, Andrew Sullivan, Bari Weiss, Andy Ngo, Ian Miles Cheong, Jordan Peterson, Ben Shapiro, and Fox & Friends. And then launch it toward the sun," Furness wrote on Sept. 9, 2020.

Tracey is a journalist and political commentator who was a member of the progressive The Young Turks network and is known for his anti-war ideology. Sullivan is a British author and writer who has written for New York Times Magazine, The Atlantic, Time, and Newsweek. Weiss is a left-leaning writer who previously covered culture and politics at the New York Times until she resigned and later said the "newspaper of record" attempts to "satisfy the narrowest of audiences." Cheong is an online commentator who has written for several media outlets about gaming, culture, and politics. Peterson is a clinical psychologist and professor emeritus at the University of Toronto. Shapiro is a conservative commentator and founder of the Daily Wire.

Furness has since deleted his account with the handle "@punkademic."

On the Penn State University website, Furness wrote a description of himself.

"My name is Zack Furness and I am Associate Professor of Communications at Penn State University’s Greater Allegheny campus, where I also serve as the Communications Program Coordinator and the WMKP Radio General Manager," Furness said.

"My work as both a researcher and a teacher draws upon a web of influences that include communication and cultural studies, cultural geography, feminist and Marxist theory, anarchism, environmentalism, critical pedagogy, history and philosophy of technology, and punk rock," he added.

Furness also said that he has "performed in punk bands and other musical projects since 1997, most recently in Barons, and my current research is all related to music in some way."

"During the 2018-2019 academic year, I began that work as a Visiting Scholar in the Department of Music at the University of Pittsburgh, while on sabbatical from Penn State," he noted.

The Post Millenial reported, "One particular communications class, titled 'Gender, Diversity & the Media,' explores the cultural, socioeconomic, historical, and political implications of media content, media practices, and media literacy."

The course syllabus stated, "Course readings and assignments are designed to help students build deeper understandings of gender, race, ethnicity, ability, sexual orientation and class diversity in media. Communication theory helps explain how media representations impact human construction of meaning in social relationships, in both the US and throughout the world."

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