Skip to comments.Teacher 'sorry' for singling out UNC student (Leftwing Prof. forced to appologize)
Posted on 02/22/2004 3:18:06 AM PST by longtermmemmory
Teacher 'sorry' for singling out UNC student
By JANE STANCILL, Staff Writer
A UNC-Chapel Hill instructor has apologized after a student said during a class discussion that he opposed homosexuality -- and found himself singled out by the teacher for hate speech. In an e-mail message sent Feb. 6 to her "Literature and Cultural Diversity" students, the lecturer, Elyse Crystall, wrote, "[W]hat we heard [T]hursday at the end of class constitutes 'hate speech' and is completely unacceptable. [I]t has created a hostile environment." Crystall went on to name the student, identified as Tim, and said he was a perfect example of the topic of discussion during class: privilege.
She referred to Tim as "a white, heterosexual, [C]hristian male" who "can feel entitled to make violent, heterosexist comments and not feel marked or threatened or vulnerable."
Crystall apologized to the class Monday, and university officials said they're monitoring the class to ensure students' free speech.
The episode is whipping up a fresh political uproar at a campus that has gained national attention for its freshman reading assignments the past two years.
On Thursday, U.S. Rep. Walter B. Jones, a Farmville Republican, called for state Attorney General Roy Cooper to look into whether the professor broke any state laws. Jones also is asking the U.S. Department of Education's Office of Civil Rights to investigate.
"Had Ms. Crystall substituted the word 'black' for 'white,' 'homosexual' for 'heterosexual' or 'Muslim' for 'Christian,' she would have been suspended or fired immediately," Jones wrote in a letter to UNC-CH Chancellor James Moeser. "Instead, the student in question was forced to go to an online message board to defend himself to his classmates, his academic future left in the hands of the likes of Ms. Crystall."
The class message board is not open to the public.
In a letter to Jones on Thursday, Moeser said the university took the incident very seriously and would see to it that students in the class are treated fairly and not penalized by their views.
"At Carolina, our responsibility is to remain a vibrant intellectual community in which all viewpoints can be comfortably expressed and heard in an atmosphere of respect," he wrote. "Universities exist to promote the free exchange of ideas. As a public university, we at Carolina have a special responsibility to vigorously protect the right of everyone to be heard."
The student, contacted late Thursday, asked that his name not be used. Crystall did not return phone calls or e-mail.
English Department Chairman James Thompson said he had spoken with the student and the lecturer on several occasions, persuaded Crystall to apologize, and appointed a faculty member to monitor the class for the rest of the semester. That person occasionally will sit in and make sure grading is fair, Thompson said.
"We investigated the situation and corrected it, and that was sufficient," Thompson said.
On Monday, Crystall sent an e-mail apology to her students. "I regret that my e-mail to you last week crossed a line and inhibited free discussion," she wrote. "And I am sorry if anyone was offended by my e-mail; my intention was to promote respectful conversation among us, not to censor anyone. We should not make specific examples of anyone, and I should not have named anyone."
The episode has been criticized by conservative activists and a student newspaper columnist, who wrote, "The Chapel Hill Thought Police are at it again."
Some students say the incident reflects a hostility to conservative ideas at UNC-CH.
"I do think it's indicative of a larger atmosphere on campus," said junior Laura Thomas, a member of the College Republicans and a recent candidate for student body president. "It shows the bias that some professors hold."
Staff writer Jane Stancill can be reached at 956-2464 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Notice the way this student was forced to defend himself. If this was years ago, the student would have no defense.
"....my intention was to promote respectful conversation among us, not to censor anyone."
Dunno' what specifically the kid said, but since his remarks weren't "violent" (as indicated by UNC's actions), he should sue for libel.
He should also lodge a lawsuit for the racist, sexist, and religious attack made in writing by this b**ch.
I'm gonna' guess that UNC's attorneys saw their terrific legal exposure, which is why they took any action against her.
I did some research and found you can file a compliant w/DOE's 'Civil Rights Division' So I did against the Prof and the Dep't Head. Let's see what action if any is taken.
She managed in one sentence to to attack him based on race, sex and religious beliefs. Let's see if the Civil Rights Division is color blind or they check first to see if he's a legitimate target; the white male.
Actually I expect othing to happen. But then again, some Nat'l press has resulted out of this. Therefore, some press should pick up the follow up story that the DOE Civil Rights group did nothing here, whereas they would have had the student been black, hispanic, muslim.
THAT story will find it's way to a Congressman who sits on appropriations for DOE. With some luck, the Civil Rights Division may be dinged financially. (Why do we fund these people when they thenselves discriminate) Wack 'em 10%; that's what gets their attention.
The UNC English Dep't hires racist, sexist, anti-religious bigots. We'll see if DOE Civil Rights Div. sanctions it.
I'm not sure I know the answer to why TWENTY FIVE % of the population came to control the rest of us but I for one am sick of the double standards, and I'm sick of watching this country go down the tubes. Heck we don't even have government by the people when our "representatives" vote against the majority on immigration, homosexuality, ad infinitum, because they are gertting paid off by corporate interests.
Revolution anyone??? I didn't think so. Then we shall get what we deserve.
Many third or fourth graders can spell "grammar" correctly.
They used to. Now Universities exist to politically indoctrinate young minds with far left wing propaganda.
That's the 1960's to 1980's model. The new model, deomonstrated here by the facist Crystall and the racist Thompson, is to indoctrinate while shutting down any counter views and opinions. Alternate views are hate crimes and noting them publically is creatiing a hostile environment.
They can't win in the exchange of ideas, so they try and stack the deck and criminalize the counter view. Liberals are the most prolific champions of intolerence and against free expression. Left with enough power - there is no doubt they would jail people like this kid in class.
This statement is racist, sexist and anti-Christian.
Me thinks some coorespondence here may be appropriate. Esp. in 'watching the DOE Civil Rights watchdogs'. Suppose they have some appropriations oversight on DOE's budget. (Who has some oversight on racist University English Departments...
I would imagine they had their attorneys work this one out.
That anything happened at all means the university took it pretty darned seriously. They saw their legal exposure, which at minimum was libel and three technical violations of antidiscrimination statutes. It's irrefutable, right there in the email, sent to the entire class.
IMHO, the student didn't have good legal counsel (or none at all). He should have negotiated pass credit, money damages, refund of tuition, and the "lecturer's" head on a silver platter.
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