Skip to comments.Professor says was forced out over comment (Mirecki of Kansas)
Posted on 12/10/2005 8:38:21 PM PST by neverdem
LAWRENCE, Kan. -- A college professor who drew sharp criticism for comments deriding Christian fundamentalists over "intelligent design" said he was forced out as chairman of the university's religious studies department.
Paul Mirecki, who remains a professor at the University of Kansas, said he had no choice when he signed the resignation letter, typed on stationary from the dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.
"The University penalized me and denied me my Constitutionally protected right to speak and express my mind," he said in a written statement Friday for the Lawrence Journal-World. He said his career had been ruined and his speaking engagements canceled.
Mirecki also said he had retained an attorney.
The university "has a duty, as a protector of intellectual honesty and debate, to support its teaching staff when controversial issues are raised," he wrote.
University spokeswoman Lynn Bretz said Saturday that Mirecki resigned the chairmanship last week on the recommendation of faculty members.
The university "stands unequivocally in support of his First Amendment rights and his rights to academic freedom," Bretz said.
The controversy began with a course Mirecki planned to teach called "Special Topics in Religion: Intelligent Design, Creationism and other Religious Mythologies." The class was proposed after the Kansas Board of Education decided to include more criticism of evolution in its school science standards.
The class was canceled last week after e-mails surfaced in which Mirecki mocked religious conservatives as "fundies" and said a course describing intelligent design as mythology would be a "nice slap in their big fat face." He has apologized for those comments.
I don't recall anyone censoring this idiot. He spoke, and spoke and spoke again.
Mirecki seems to think that his speech should be free of consequences, though. A critical mistake.
Boy they sure like to whine don't they?
Where would he be now if he had criticised gays, women, or minorities in the same way he did "fundies"? All you have to do it read Mike Adams to find out.
The First Ammednment is not a shield against criticism. You have no right to be that stupid.
Perhaps now this pond scum is free to achieve his natural potential -- rolling cigars in Castro's Cuba.
Too bad, Mirecki. Couldn't happen to a nicer putz. Don't let the door hit you on the ass on your way out.
I smell a hoax.
Fat face? I'll show you a fat face needing to be slapped (figuratively of course):
Memo to self: Pick up an extra quart of sympathy in the morning.
I'm sorry; I must have missed the part where he's been "denied" his right to speak or express his mind or anything like that. Unless I'm mistaken, the right to free speech is only (supposed to be) a protection from the government's suppression of your speech; not a blanket immunity from consequence of your speech.
Maybe his ideas and expressions aren't being condoned or supported but hey, he's got the right to say it. Being the smart guy he is, I'm sure he understands the difference between the right to say something and the fact that free speech also has consequences.
Some people never get it.
<< The University penalized me and denied me my Constitutionally protected right to speak and express my mind .... >>
The Constitution protects my right to speak to and of the government, not any imagined "right" it and its lickspittles might give themseves.
And this misinformed ignoramous [Like U-Colorado's Churchill] must own to the fact that once his institution accepted the king's shilling, the government's dole - and he the institution's - he made himself the servant of the government.
Which may then excercise its employer's rights over whatever he may say and may not - and, should he chose to put his in the circumstances subordinate rights as an American ahead of his responsibilities as a servant? Afford him the dignity of the consequences of his actions.
I beg to differ. Everyone has a right to be stupid and intolerant as well. When consequences happen, you have a right to be surprised. He signed the resignation. That was stupid too. I want see what happens with a court challenge. I doubt that he wins.
I think every religion, major and minor has a creation story...
So what the hell is an Athesit doing as Dean of the Religious Studies Department....? I just don;t know anymore--I really ust don;t know...
Uh, you did speak your mind. There's no constitutional protection from the results of you speaking your mind. Read a book. A real one. And the constitution. Then learn to shut yer yap.
And for the record, he was not "hospitalized". He was treated and released.
cry me a river
"Congress shall make no law" does not equal "can't get fired for conduct." Hoe do these supposed smart people get it wrong so often?
"He said his career had been ruined and his speaking engagements canceled."
"The university "has a duty, as a protector of intellectual honesty and debate, to support its teaching staff when controversial issues are raised," he wrote."
This isn't just a matter of "raising controversial issues"; it's a matter of mockery and derision that is unacceptable from a man in his position representing the university by being on its staff. It's simply not professional. He ruined his career himself when he opened his mouth. He has no one to blame but himself.
Thanks for the link.
I ran into Professor Mirecki in Lawrence Thursday evening.... or more accurately, he almost ran into me.
He was walking into the Eldridge Hotel as I was walking out. He had his head down and was looking at his feet while he walked, and almost ran smack into my chest before he stepped to one side and ducked into the hotel bar. He never looked higher than my chest; I am about 5 inches taller than the professor, and a great deal wider in the shoulders, so maybe I scared him.
When he looked up from his own feet, I recognized him. Professor Mirecki had the dark spots under his eyes (I won't dignify them by calling them "bruises"), but was otherwise fine. He looked far better than I would expect from a man who had supposedly been beaten by two country boys armed with a metal pipe.
He smelled like a man who drank his dinner.
He also had no qualms about walking alone on Massachusetts Street after 10PM, even with those "evil fundies" still "out there".
What a wuss.
A professor who publicly expresses anti-Christian bigotry has no business presenting himself in a classroom to teach. They should fire ALL of these kind of smarmy liberal secular humanist wacko eggheads.
If he had called blacks by the "n" word or gays by the "f" word (equivalent to using "fundie" as a slur term) he'd have been fired completely. Ditto if he'd proposed a course he described as a big slap in the face directed at blacks, gays, or any other group liberals support.