Alas, in our present political climate wherein political correctness has become enforced groupthink and common sense has become endangered and dangerous, one of our prestigious private schools, Marquette University, has entered the 21st century proudly maintaining the Catholic Church’s centuries-old tradition of silencing, nay, vigorously punishing dissent.
Let us all be grateful the Church can no longer burn heretics at the stake, as it did Jan Hus or threaten brilliant thinkers with torture as it did Galileo. However, Marquette has done its best to castigate now-former Professor John McAdams for defending a student’s right to disagree.
In 2014, a student in an ethics class taught by Cheryl Abbate dared to dispute Abbate’s approval of same sex marriage. Really? An ethics class of all things, and the teacher slams down all discussion post haste and with a vengeance!
McAdams was subsequently fired because he wrote a blog criticizing Abbate’s silencing of the aforementioned student. Marquette’s president, Michael Lovell, gave McAdams an ultimatum: Apologize or be suspended without pay indefinitely. McAdams did not apologize. While the school, as a private institution, is apparently entitled to disregard First Amendment rights, Marquette guarantees academic freedom to its tenured faculty.
Consequently, McAdams sued, and last May a Wisconsin trial court ruled in favor of the school. However, McAdams has appealed, hoping his case will be accepted by the state Supreme Court.
I pray the court takes the case and has the wisdom to decide in McAdams’ favor.
HESPERUS L. SPOONER