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Professor says was forced out over comment (Mirecki of Kansas)
Seattle Post-Intelligencer ^ | December 10, 2005 | NA

Posted on 12/10/2005 8:38:21 PM PST by neverdem

ASSOCIATED PRESS

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.


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Front Page News; News/Current Events; Politics/Elections; US: District of Columbia; US: Kansas
KEYWORDS: academia; crevolist; fired; freespeech; intelligentdesign; ku; mirecki

1 posted on 12/10/2005 8:38:23 PM PST by neverdem
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Comment #2 Removed by Moderator

To: neverdem

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.


3 posted on 12/10/2005 8:42:18 PM PST by RegulatorCountry
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To: neverdem
Mugshot of this distinguished intellectual giant. Reminds me a little of Ward Churchill.


4 posted on 12/10/2005 8:43:43 PM PST by FormerACLUmember
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To: neverdem

Boy they sure like to whine don't they?


5 posted on 12/10/2005 8:44:52 PM PST by lexington minuteman 1775
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To: neverdem
This guy is the biggest whiner I've ever seen. He got caught with his prejudices showing and he just can't believe he has to take responsibility for his words and actions. I guess he got over that "beating" by guys that no one saw and who failed to do him any real damage. I further guess it's hard to beat up on yourself and make it look real. And this is the type of person we want to teach our children values? I don't think so.
6 posted on 12/10/2005 8:44:59 PM PST by pepperdog
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To: FormerACLUmember
Wow, it's undoubtedly the same DNA. This is scary, is some mad professor/scientist cloning these fools?
7 posted on 12/10/2005 8:46:57 PM PST by pepperdog
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To: FormerACLUmember
ROTFLMAO!
8 posted on 12/10/2005 8:48:31 PM PST by Fiddlstix (Tagline Repair Service. Let us fix those broken Taglines. Inquire within(Presented by TagLines R US))
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To: neverdem
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.

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.

9 posted on 12/10/2005 8:50:23 PM PST by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: FormerACLUmember

The First Ammednment is not a shield against criticism. You have no right to be that stupid.


10 posted on 12/10/2005 9:11:47 PM PST by Doctor Raoul (Raoul's First Law of Journalism: BIAS = LAYOFFS)
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To: FormerACLUmember
Mugshot of this distinguished intellectual giant.

Perhaps now this pond scum is free to achieve his natural potential -- rolling cigars in Castro's Cuba.

11 posted on 12/10/2005 9:12:47 PM PST by Mad_Tom_Rackham (De gustibus non est disputandum.)
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To: neverdem
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."

Too bad, Mirecki. Couldn't happen to a nicer putz. Don't let the door hit you on the ass on your way out.

12 posted on 12/10/2005 9:14:44 PM PST by VeniVidiVici (What? Me worry?)
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To: neverdem
Mirecki hospitalized after beating

I smell a hoax.

13 posted on 12/10/2005 9:17:33 PM PST by Doctor Raoul (Raoul's First Law of Journalism: BIAS = LAYOFFS)
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To: FormerACLUmember
Professor Paul A. Mirecki
Chair, Department of Religious Studies
The University of Kansas
205 Smith Hall
Lawrence, Kansas 66045
Phone: 785.864.7252
FAX: 785.864.5205
pmirecki@ku.edu
14 posted on 12/10/2005 9:19:11 PM PST by Doctor Raoul (Raoul's First Law of Journalism: BIAS = LAYOFFS)
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To: Doctor Raoul
Mirecki mocked religious conservatives as "fundies" and said ....(it)would be a "nice slap in their big fat face."

Fat face? I'll show you a fat face needing to be slapped (figuratively of course):


15 posted on 12/10/2005 9:20:15 PM PST by FormerACLUmember
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To: neverdem

Memo to self: Pick up an extra quart of sympathy in the morning.


16 posted on 12/10/2005 9:26:14 PM PST by Valin (Everyone is entitled to be stupid, but some abuse the privilege)
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To: neverdem
..."The University penalized me and denied me my Constitutionally protected right to speak and express my mind..."

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.

Right?

17 posted on 12/10/2005 9:26:30 PM PST by Chasaway (My puppy can lick your honor student...)
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To: neverdem
"The University penalized me and denied me my Constitutionally protected right to speak and express my mind,"

Some people never get it.

18 posted on 12/10/2005 9:27:06 PM PST by Moonman62 (Federal creed: If it moves tax it. If it keeps moving regulate it. If it stops moving subsidize it)
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To: neverdem

<< The University penalized me and denied me my Constitutionally protected right to speak and express my mind .... >>

Rubbish.

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.


19 posted on 12/10/2005 9:31:46 PM PST by Brian Allen (How arrogant need we be to reckon our self-serving career political lumpen superior to theirs?)
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To: Doctor Raoul
You have no right to be that stupid.

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.

20 posted on 12/10/2005 9:32:08 PM PST by neverdem (May you be in heaven a half hour before the devil knows that you're dead.)
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To: neverdem
Sorry, prof. First, you resigned. Nobody was forced. If you wanted, you could have made them fire you. It was cowardace. Second, it wasn't until after your unfortunate encounter with the two "Christians" (who really do exist, really) that your colleagues decided you should be sacked. So, what do they know???
21 posted on 12/10/2005 9:38:25 PM PST by AmishDude (Your corporate slogan could be here! FReepmail me for my confiscatory rates.)
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To: FormerACLUmember
So let me get this straight, the Dean of the Religious studies department resigns because of pressure over a class he designed to mock religion....

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...

22 posted on 12/10/2005 9:41:39 PM PST by abigkahuna (Step on up folks and see the "Strange Thing"--only a thin dollar, babies free!)
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To: neverdem
...and denied me my Constitutionally protected right to speak and express my mind

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.

23 posted on 12/10/2005 9:42:14 PM PST by SoDak
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To: neverdem

24 posted on 12/10/2005 9:44:26 PM PST by Petronski (I love Cyborg!)
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To: Doctor Raoul

And for the record, he was not "hospitalized". He was treated and released.


25 posted on 12/10/2005 9:50:18 PM PST by AmishDude (Your corporate slogan could be here! FReepmail me for my confiscatory rates.)
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To: neverdem
This links to a picture of his "injuries" from a story in FR from a couple days ago. Under his eyes it looks EXACTLY like the football makeup they use to keep the glare from the lights down.

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/f-news/1537819/posts
26 posted on 12/10/2005 10:12:09 PM PST by starbase (Understanding Written Propaganda (click "starbase" to learn 22 manipulating tricks!!))
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To: neverdem

cry me a river


27 posted on 12/10/2005 10:13:00 PM PST by wardaddy (A Christian President whom I like who would say Christmas on his cards is all I ask for.)
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To: neverdem
"The University penalized me and denied me my Constitutionally protected right to speak and express my mind,"

"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?

28 posted on 12/10/2005 10:18:01 PM PST by Mad Dawgg ("`Eddies,' said Ford, `in the space-time continuum.' `Ah,' nodded Arthur, `is he? Is he?'")
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To: Chasaway

"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.


29 posted on 12/10/2005 10:54:58 PM PST by metmom (Welfare was never meant to be a career choice.)
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To: starbase

Thanks for the link.


30 posted on 12/10/2005 11:02:57 PM PST by neverdem (May you be in heaven a half hour before the devil knows that you're dead.)
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To: starbase

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".


31 posted on 12/11/2005 2:10:33 AM PST by KSParalegal (Ride with us! www.patriotguard.org)
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To: KSParalegal
Maybe those marks were "Beer Goggles"?
32 posted on 12/11/2005 7:05:51 AM PST by Doctor Raoul (Raoul's First Law of Journalism: BIAS = LAYOFFS)
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To: neverdem
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.

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.

33 posted on 12/11/2005 8:47:16 AM PST by HowlinglyMind-BendingAbsurdity
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To: metmom

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.


34 posted on 12/11/2005 9:02:00 AM PST by puroresu (Conservatism is an observation; Liberalism is an ideology)
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