Professors on the Attack

One would think that, of all people, university professors would be guardians of academic freedom and tolerance for the diversity of ideas in the classroom. But the reality on campus is quite different. Usually the educational experience is centered in the classroom, and classrooms, of course, are under the near-dictatorial control of professors, many of whom use their classrooms as controlled settings in which to impose their anti-Christian bigotry on sometimes unsuspecting young students.

Mike Adams, an associate professor of Criminal Justice at UNC Wilmington and a self-described former liberal and agnostic, attests to this. In an article entitled "Campus Crusade Against Christ," Adams wrote that he was "taken aback by the prevalence of anti-Christian sentiment as well as the degree of comfort professors felt in expressing it both inside and outside the classroom." Adams provided a number of examples of anti-Christian hostility he observed firsthand, among them professors who place on their office doors emblems depicting a "Darwin fish" swallowing a "Jesus fish," which signifies the validity of evolution theory and the supposed invalidity of Christianity. Other professors display bumper stickers saying, "Homophobia is a social disease." Adams also noted attitudes that professors display out of the public's hearing and view, such as their anti-Christian bias in job recruitment. Some objected to candidates, for example, because they "seemed too religious" or "too much of a family man."

Consider also the career-oriented hostility of Professor Michael Dini at Texas Tech. Dini, an associate professor in biology, refused to write medical school letters of recommendation for students who wouldn't acknowledge their acceptance of the theory of evolution. Dini even published his policy on a web page, which warned students seeking a recommendation to be prepared to answer the question, "How do you think the human species originated?" Dini added, "If you cannot truthfully and forthrightly affirm a scientific answer to this question, "then you should not seek my recommendation for admittance to further education in the biomedical sciences." Dr. James Brink, the university's assistant provost, supported Dini. "I think a student with a strong faith and belief in creationism should not attend a public university," said Brink, "but rather should attend a Biblically grounded university where their ideas are reinforced instead of scientifically challenged."

The Liberty Legal Institute (LLI) filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of justice and brought a suit against the university and Dini for religious discrimination, calling the professor's policy "open religious bigotry." "Students are being denied recommendations not because of their competence in understanding evolution, but solely because of their personal religious beliefs," said Kelly Shackelford, LLI chief counsel. After the Justice Department opened an investigation into the professor's practices, Dini changed his policy, now merely requiring that students be able to explain the theory of evolution, without requiring them to affirm their personal belief in its validity. The Justice Department promptly closed its investigation, and assistant attorney general for civil rights Ralph F. Boyd Jr. said in a press release, "If the separation of church and state is to mean anything, it must surely mean that such matters of conscience are beyond the reach of government inquiry."

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