NEW BEDFORD -- A senior at UMass Dartmouth was visited by federal agents two months ago, after he requested a copy of Mao Tse-Tung's tome on Communism called "The Little Red Book."Just how old is this “watch list” and what are they watching for? Maoism is a threat to the U.S.? Mao doesn’t even have much credibility in China anymore.
Two history professors at UMass Dartmouth, Brian Glyn Williams and Robert Pontbriand, said the student told them he requested the book through the UMass Dartmouth library's interlibrary loan program.
The student, who was completing a research paper on Communism for Professor Pontbriand's class on fascism and totalitarianism, filled out a form for the request, leaving his name, address, phone number and Social Security number. He was later visited at his parents' home in New Bedford by two agents of the Department of Homeland Security, the professors said.
The professors said the student was told by the agents that the book is on a "watch list," and that his background, which included significant time abroad, triggered them to investigate the student further.
I have confession to make. I have a copy of Mao’s Little Red Book. I’ve had it for 30 years now. I got it from Radio Peking when I wrote and requested one as a teenager. I wasn’t a Maoist, I just thought it would be cool to have one of the most famous (infamous?) publications in the world straight from the country of its origin. So, DHS, you probably know how to get in touch with me if you’d like to discuss the matter.