Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Victory for Academic Freedom: Jury Rules UNC-Wilmington Retaliated Against Conservative Professor

A jury in North Carolina on Thursday found that the University of North Carolina-Wilmington retaliated against criminology professor Dr. Mike Adams for his political and social views.

Adams, a Townhall columnist, explained last year that despite his track record of success at the university in terms of teaching, research and service, he was denied a promotion to full professor because of the views he advanced in his opinion columns. He described the promotion process as being “replete with procedural irregularities and with direct criticism of [his] columns and [his] beliefs.”

The ACLJ, who represented Adams along with Alliance Defending Freedom attorney Travis Barham, explains further:

 When Dr. Adams submitted his application for full professor, university officials rejected it through the use of a completely-fabricated promotion standard, passed along false and misleading information about his academic record, explicitly considered the content of his protected speech in promotion documents, and – incredibly – allowed a professor who’d filed a false criminal complaint against Dr. Adams to cast a vote against his application.

“[N]o individual loses his ability to speak as a private citizen by virtue of public employment,” the U.S. Court of Appeals for the 4th Circuit wrote in 2011. “Adams’ columns addressed topics such as academic freedom, civil rights, campus culture, sex, feminism, abortion, homosexuality, religion, and morality. Such topics plainly touched on issues of public, rather than private, concern.”

The university hired Adams, a former atheist, in 1993 as an assistant professor, and promoted him to associate professor in 1998. The “campaign of academic persecution that culminated in his denial of promotion to full professor” began when he converted to Christianity in 2000, which greatly influenced his views on social and political issues.

“We are grateful that the jury today reaffirmed the fundamental principle that universities are a marketplace of ideas, not a place where professors face retaliation for having a different view than university officials,” Barham said.

“The jury saw what we have long known to be true about the wrong done to Dr. Adams,” said Senior Legal Counsel David Hacker. “The verdict is a powerful message for academic freedom and free speech at America’s public universities.”

Update: According to the ACLJ, the verdict was only for liability. The judge will later decide Adams' relief


Virginia Student Gets Suspended for Taking Razor From Kid Who Was Cutting

Note to American tweens: Don't be a Good Samaritan on the state's watch. A sixth grader at a Virginia Beach public school was suspended this week for having a razor blade. She took the blade from another student who was cutting himself with it. Bad move, apparently.

The Bayside Middle School student, Adrionna Harris, said she took a razor blade away from another student because he was using it to cut himself. She threw the blade away and told school officials. Then she was suspended for 10 days, with a recommendation for expulsion, according to Virginia Beach news station WAVY.

Note that Harris didn't even have the razor blade in her possession when she went to school administrators. The only evidence this razor blade existed is Harris' own admission of it, when she told school officials what had happened and that she had already thrown it away.

"I was very shocked that a student would get suspended for saving another child," Rachael Harris, Adrionna’s mother, told WAVY. "The school system over-reached absolutely."

On Wednesday night, Virginia Beach City Public Schools agreed to move Adrionna's suspension hearing, which was scheduled for next week, to Thursday night.


The "Campus Climate" Buzzphrase: Encouraging Kids To Mold Permanently Self-Pitying Identities Around Their Transient Social Discomfort

The University of California has conducted a giant Campus Climate Study to see if students are comfortable. From my experience, the climate on UC campuses is very comfortable. For example, right now at UCLA, it's sunny and 64 degrees. When I got my MBA there in 1980-1982, that was pretty much what it was like year round. Maybe UC Riverside isn't quite so mild, but, hey, even that's not exactly Cornell.

Oh, but actually, the jargon terms campus climate comfort don't have anything to do with the weather anymore. They have to do with how aggrieved aggrieved groups feel about the level of microaggressions and/or nanoaggressions on campus.

As I wrote ten years ago after visiting Claremont Colleges to check out one of those false flag attacks (a liberal feminist professor trashed her car, then told the FBI it was likely committed by her white male students) that are such a commonplace on contemporary campuses:

It was 72 degrees with a gentle breeze blowing, so the climate seemed okay to me, but a flier on Pitzer bulletin boards made the local idée fixe a little clearer: "Diversity and Campus Climate: You are invited to participate in a discussion about campus climate."

Another advertised: "Queer Dreams and Nightmares: What is it like to be a student at the Claremont Colleges? Student panel discussion addressing the current climate at the 5-Cs, both academically and socially."

This was part of a conference entitled, with that profusion of punctuation that is the secret fraternity handshake of post-modern academics, "[Re]Defining a Queer Space at the Claremont Colleges."

The university's main concern appears to be to make students feel "comfortable," a word that reappears constantly in Claremont publications despite the obvious hopelessness of the project. The only way to make 19-year-olds feel comfortable is to wait 30 years while they sag into their well-padded maturities. Right now, they are teenagers and their surging hormones have far more important emotions for them to feel than comfort.

Adults, however, who make careers out of encouraging kids to mold permanently self-pitying identities around their transient social discomforts have much to answer for.

From the San Jose Mercury-News:

University of California challenges highlighted in survey of student, employee experiences

About one-quarter of University of California students and employees responding to a survey said they had experienced intimidating or hostile conduct or felt excluded on campus -- and 9 percent said it was bad enough to affect their work or study, according to a new report released by the university system.
Although the findings were consistent with those of smaller previous surveys, the number of people reporting problems was concerning, said Gibor Basri, UC Berkeley's vice chancellor for Division of Equity, Inclusion and Diversity, a position created in 2007.

"We don't like almost a quarter of the population feeling like they're having a negative experience," Basri said. "Maybe that's similar across the country, but that's still not OK."

The findings, mirrored at UC Berkeley, came to light Wednesday as part of a systemwide Campus Climate Study. A popular buzzword, campus climate describes attitudes, behaviors and interactions at schools -- often, as they affect minority group members.

As at many colleges, UC's work to make campuses healthier and more harmonious began after an uproar: In early 2010, students protested a series of acts targeting minority groups on UC campuses, including a swastika carved into the door of a Jewish student's room at UC Davis and an off-campus party at UC San Diego -- the so-called Compton Cookout -- mocking poor African-Americans.
Of course, all this adult attention just encourages students and professors to generate false flag incidents. For example, as I wrote in 2010:

Another Campus Hate Hoax

In the latest Noose News, the University of California at San Diego, that cauldron of white supremacy, where white undergrads make up about 30% of the campus, has been roiled by charges of racism, with the campus administration joining in -- see their official rabble-rousing website: BattleHate.UCSD.Edu.

Not surprisingly, as this Two Weeks Hate against white students built to a climax, a noose was discovered in the library to vast and completely credulous publicity, despite the long history of Hate Hoaxes on campuses.

Also, not surprisingly, the Administration wouldn't reveal the racial identity of the young woman involved. Today, I called a UCSD PR flack, and she confirmed that the student involved with the noose was a minority.


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