Category: Academia

“Decolonize a Classroom”: Ex-UCSD Professor Defends Course with Guaranteed As and No Homework

As many of us gear up for our final exams and the long slog of grading, the approach of a former University of California (San Diego) teacher is particularly enticing. Libs of Tik Tok, the previously banned group on Twitter, posted a video of Chandler Puritty where she explained that one way that she has found to “decolonize a classroom” has been to guarantee all students As and no homework.  She also said that she built in “weeks of excused absences” for those who need to skip classes entirely. Continue reading ““Decolonize a Classroom”: Ex-UCSD Professor Defends Course with Guaranteed As and No Homework”

Zero Tolerance: Survey Finds 33 of 65 Academic Departments Lack a Single Republican Professor

We have been discussing the virtual elimination of Republican and conservative scholars from many faculties despite the fact that roughly half of the country regularly votes for Republicans or conservative causes. Now a new survey by The College Fix of 65 departments in various states found that 33 do not have a single registered Republican. For these departments, the systemic elimination of Republican faculty has finally reached zero, but there is still little recognition of the crushing bias reflected in these numbers. Others, as discussed below, have defended the elimination of conservative or Republican faculty as entirely justified and commendable. Overall, registered Democrats outnumbered registered Republicans by a margin of over 10-1. Continue reading “Zero Tolerance: Survey Finds 33 of 65 Academic Departments Lack a Single Republican Professor”

Stern Rebuke: Auburn University Hit With Punitive Damages in Free Speech Case

Auburn University has lost a major case involving free speech after a jury ruled in favor of Prof. Michael Stern, a tenured economics professor. The jury ruled that Auburn retaliated against Stern for his public criticism of the school’s treatment of student athletes, particularly their alleged favored treatment in the College of Liberal Arts. Notably, the jury awarded punitive damages against the university, a relative rarity for juries but well deserved in this case. Continue reading “Stern Rebuke: Auburn University Hit With Punitive Damages in Free Speech Case”

Professor Sues University of Louisville for Alleged Termination Due to his Transgender Views

Leiden University Removes Work of Famed Dutch Artist Due to the Depiction of Only White Males

A painting from the renowned contemporary Dutch painter Rein Dool has been removed from a wall at Leiden University in the Netherlands after the objection that it depicts only white men. Political Science PHD candidate Elina Zonina said that the painting of white men smoking cigars made her feel uncomfortable. According to Dutch News, Zonina insisted that the school needed to add an “ironic or critical” note with such a painting.  In the meantime, it is now turned toward the wall to avoid harming or offending anyone else at the school.

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Clovis Community College Loses Critical Decision over Free Speech

Clovis Community College in California lost a major ruling in its effort to quash a free speech lawsuit by students censored by the school. U.S. District Judge Jennifer Thurston  granted a preliminary injunction against the college, which requires a finding of a substantial likelihood of prevailing on the merits. The college ordered the removal of flyers promoting Freedom Week in November 2021, a week in which student groups oppose socialism and support conservative causes. Continue reading “Clovis Community College Loses Critical Decision over Free Speech”

Hastings College of Law Bars the “Heckler’s Veto” in Defense of Free Speech

For years, some of us have called upon schools to impose stricter rules against students or faculty disrupting classes or events by shouting down speakers or preventing them from being heard. While some law professors and legal sites have supported such cancel tactics, the University of California Hastings College of the Law has joined those schools in barring the use of what is loosely called the “heckler’s veto.” It is now routine for protesters to prevent others from hearing opposing views and there are often allegations that some schools quietly allow the use of the heckler’s veto

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“Your Words are Violence!”: Coulter Cancelled at Cornell

This week, we saw another incident of protesters shutting down an event to prevent others from hearing opposing views. At an event with commentator and author Ann Coulter, one protester yelled “Your words are violence.” It is the latest example of how some on the left are treating free speech as harm on college campuses. Unlike many other incidents, however, Cornell has stood by the right of the student group, Network of Enlightened Women, to hold the event and pledged to hold students accountable for the cancellation of the speech.

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“China Was Right”? A Response to Professor Jack Goldsmith

Harvard Professor Jack Goldsmith has penned a column this week contesting my characterization of his past call for limiting free speech on the Internet.  Professor Goldsmith insists that when he and Professor Andrew Woods said “China was right” about such controls, he was not advocating censorship or in any way opposing free speech. I felt that I should respond. There are views that Professor Goldsmith and I share. I regret that we are at loggerheads over free speech, but this disagreement highlights a growing divide among academics and advocates over censorship.

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Professor Luna Teaches Animal Liability at George Washington University

Professor Luna with her evening class

Yesterday, I co-taught my torts class with leading authority Luna Turley, Professor of Animal Welfare (PAW). Professor Luna has spent her life working on animal liability questions and taught both my day and evening classes on the common law rules governing dogs and other animals. Continue reading “Professor Luna Teaches Animal Liability at George Washington University”

Crickets: Illinois Professor Publishes Racist Attacks Against Herschel Walker With No Outcry from the Faculty or Media

Professor Sundiata Cha-Jua, a prominent history and African-American studies professor at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, is under fire after using racist slurs to describe Georgia Republican Senate candidate Herschel Walker. While the racist attack has drawn criticism on conservative sites, there has been no opposing statement or protest at the university. The media has also been largely quiet. The contrast to past controversies involving conservative faculty members again raises the concern over a double standard applied by colleges and universities as well as the media. Thus far, the response to the use of racist slurs or tropes against Republicans has been the familiar sound of crickets. Continue reading “Crickets: Illinois Professor Publishes Racist Attacks Against Herschel Walker With No Outcry from the Faculty or Media”

Writers, Publishers and Editors Call for Termination of Barrett Book Deal in Latest Censorship Campaign

We have been discussing the rising support for censorship on the left in the last few years. Silencing opposing views has become an article of faith for many on the left, including leading Democratic leaders from President Joe Biden to former President Barack Obama. What is most distressing is how many journalists and writers have joined the call for censorship. However, even with this growing movement, the letter of hundreds of “literary figures” this week to Penguin Random House is chilling. The editors and writers call on the company to rescind a book deal with Supreme Court Justice Amy Coney Barrett because they disagree with her judicial philosophy. After all, why burn books when you can effectivelyban them?

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Is Raising Fetterman’s Cognitive Issues a Form of Discriminatory “Ableism”?

C-Span

Many of us watched the debate of John Fetterman (D) and Republican Mehmet Oz (R) last night and it was at times very difficult to watch. Fetterman is clearly still experiencing serious problems in cognitive processing and communication after his stroke five months ago. However, when some raised disconnected or incomprehensible responses, commentators like MSNBC’s Liz Plank objected to such criticisms as discriminatory “ableism.” The Philadelphia Inquirer wrote that these questions only reflect our “discomfort” with disabilities.

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MSNBC Legal Analyst Declares Trump Could Be Charged With Manslaughter

We previously discussed the declaration of Harvard Professor Lawrence Tribe that former president Donald Trump could be charged with the attempted murder of former Vice President Michael Pence. Now, MSNBC legal analyst and Michigan Law Professor Barbara McQuade has gone one better. She told MSNBC viewers that Trump could be charged with manslaughter for his role in the January 6 Capitol riot. Continue reading “MSNBC Legal Analyst Declares Trump Could Be Charged With Manslaughter”

Breaking News: Students Prefer Courses Without Exams, Papers or Assignments

Professor Constance Kassor at Lawrence University in Wisconsin is reporting that her course has the highest enrollment in the university. She said that “this should tell us something about the current state of college students.” Indeed it does. Students have changed little. Kassor’s course “Doing nothing” gives credit pass/fail in a course that requires literally nothing beyond showing up: no paper, no assignments, no exam. Surprise: it is very popular. Continue reading “Breaking News: Students Prefer Courses Without Exams, Papers or Assignments”