The “inclusiveness” saga of the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) and its persecution of Dr. Ken Howell continues to make headlines. I have reported, inter alia, here the facts at the origin of this seemingly unreal controversy.
LifeSiteNews.com now reports that UIUC has issued a barely believable statement maintaining that as Dr. Howell is still a member of the faculty, he has not been fired and there is therefore no ground for litigation.
The speciousness of this claim is obvious, but the attorneys of the Alliance Defense Fund (ADF) who have undertaken Dr. Howell’s defence have readily debunked the claim pointing out to the utter uselessness of being a member of the faculty when one is not allowed to teach.
Perhaps the University of Illinois is trying to keep the fire escape open, hinting at a possible reintegration of Dr. Howell that would be presented as “business as usual”. With the words of the University’s President Michael Hogan:
“No decision has been made regarding the appointment of an instructor for the course Prof. Howell previously taught in the Fall semester; and no decision will be made until the review is complete.”
Or perhaps the “inclusive” chaps at UIUC are just trying to block Dr. Howell’s legal action. We’ll soon find out.
It is anyway evident from UIUC’s sources that they believe that Dr. Howell’s emails
“violate university standards of inclusiveness, which would then entitle us to have him discontinue his teaching arrangement with us.”
This last statement leaves one breathless. If the criterium of “inclusiveness” is allowed to override academic freedom, the obvious result of this is that nothing else can be taught, than what is considered inclusive. This excludes the almost totality of world religions and every non-religious expression going in any way, shape or form against the wishes of the PC-obsessed and the sexually deviant (more often than not the same people btw). The real issue at stake is very obvious here: whatever goes against the grain of the “inclusive troops” has no place in the university. A priceless pearl of stupidity and intolerance and a clear enunciation of “inclusiveness” as the new Führerprinzip.
UIUC is probably running out of ammunitions. ADF attorneys have given UIUC time until the 27th to fully reintegrate Dr. Howell or face the continuation of the suit. Stay tuned.
An online petition in support of Dr. Howell is available here
Facebook’s Dr. Ken fan page is here
Michael Hogan’s email is: email@example.com
Dr. Ken Howell’s adversities (I should say: religious persecution) have now made it to the national press. The Washington Times dedicates to the matter a rather perceptive article pointing out not only to the absurdity of being fired for teaching what one is supposed to teach, but on the larger problem of the fact that institutions of superior education like the University of Illinois have come to the point that they utterly fail the very academic freedom that should be at the core of their entire existence.
Interestingly, the author of the article (Patrick Gillen) puts a name at the centre of the controversy: Robert McKim. Mr. McKim is not only the head of the University’s “Department of Religion”, but a sponsor of the “queer studies” in the same university. The intellectual integrity of Mr. McKim is openly put into question and in the next weeks he might feel all the heat of the summer.
With a bit of luck, this story will end with Dr. Howell not being the only person losing his job.
P.s. Those of you who love novels based on the issue of “political correctness gone mad” so spread in the academic world would probably enjoy two interesting books: Tom Wolfe’s “I am Charlotte Simmons” and Philip Roth’s “The Human Stain”.
I have reported some time ago about Dr. Ken Howell. Dr.Howell’s Catholic courses at the University of Illinois were terminated after the complaint of a student and the “concerns” of the – unbelievably, truly existing – “Office of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgendered concerns” about, well, what Catholicism teaches.
Fortunately, the reaction of many Catholics (a facebook support group with 1600 members, the University obviously bombarded with protest emails) are producing some effects. The American Papist blog reports that the University of Illinois now at least pretends to be interested in protecting Catholic freedom of expression from the fanaticism of deviant groups.
In another positive turn, we are informed that the relevant Diocese of Peoria has taken action with the University, though this had not been made immediately public and had therefore given cause to concern and criticism.
I will continue to follow this unbelievable story, which seems taken directly out of Philip Roth’s The Human Stain. This is certainly not going to be the end of the politically correct madness and of the thought control aspirations of a bunch of perverts but there is some hope that, at least in this matter, reason will in the end prevail.
Read on American Papist the incredible story of Ken Howell, an adjunct professor at the University of Illinois. Mr Howell has been told that he will not be able to teach about Catholicism because his course “Introduction to Catholicism” mentions that Catholicism condemns homosexual acts; also that he has been so cheeky as to follow up with emails on the subject, after one student’s strong opposition to this Catholic teaching.
The episode is disconcerting for several reasons:
1) The course is about Catholicism. You can’t ask Catholicism to be what it is not. You either “introduce people to Catholicism” or you don’t.
2) The University in question has – as it appears from Mr Howell’s letter – an “Office of Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgendered concerns”. I kid you not. No trace whatsoever of an “Office of Catholic concerns”. The world has probably gone mad. Some universities certainly have.
3) The idea that people against a certain religion may find any “concern” about what that religion teaches is preposterous. Pure thought control. Not even I would have dreamt of saying that I have “concerns” with Hindus believing in reincarnation or Buddhists subscribing to metempsychosis.
4) Mr. Powell’s reaction is also entirely disconcerting. He presented the argument that if Catholic teaching about homosexuality is offensive, than he should be advised not to touch the matter in his course! This is an astonishingly weak reaction and one which defeats itself from the beginning. If you accept the idea that Catholicism may be censored, you can’t complain when it is. The idea of an “Introduction to Catholicism”excluding the controversial bits is as ridiculous as saying that there should be no “Introduction to Catholicism” if one is so bad as to……talk about Catholicism.
As always, the United States leads the way in political correctness gone mad. The case is now under judicial review and I do hope that the stance will be on the harsh side of “we are ready not to talk of anything which is of concern to lesbians, homosexuals, and other deviants”.
Kudos to the “American Papist” for having the guts to relate such extraordinary events instead of hiding behind the “we don’t discuss controversial topics” stance of so many Catholics, who are interested only in a quiet life and “going along to get along” with everyone.