Thursday, November 21, 2019

"We cannot, nor would we, fire [the professor] for his posts as a private citizen, as vile and stupid as they are, because the First Amendment of the United States Constitution forbids us to do so"

From a lengthy statement by the Provost of Indiana University Kelley School of Business:

Professor ... has, for many years, used his private social media accounts to disseminate his racist, sexist, and homophobic views. When I label his views in this way, let me note that the labels are not a close call, nor do his posts require careful parsing to reach these conclusions.

...

His latest posts slurring women were picked up by a person with a heavily followed Twitter account, and various officials at Indiana University have been inundated in the last few days with demands that he be fired. We cannot, nor would we, fire Professor ... for his posts as a private citizen, as vile and stupid as they are, because the First Amendment of the United States Constitution forbids us to do so. That is not a close call.

...

Therefore, the Kelley School is taking a number of steps to ensure that students not add the baggage of bigotry to their learning experience:

...

The First Amendment is strong medicine, and works both ways. All of us are free to condemn views that we find reprehensible, and to do so as vehemently and publicly as Professor ... expresses his views. We are free to avoid his classes, and demand that the university ensure that he does not, or has not, acted on those views in ways that violate either the federal and state civil rights laws or IU’s nondiscrimination policies.