Political Pressure in Nebraska

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The University of Nebraska at Lincoln bowed, at least to some degree, to political pressure when it permanently removed a lecturer in English from the classroom last fall. In so doing, and in denying her the dismissal hearing to which she was entitled by campus policy, Nebraska may have violated her academic freedom.

So concludes a new investigative report from the American Association of University Professors. The document provides new insight into the locally infamous Courtney Lawton case at Nebraska and the university’s shifting rationales for her suspension. It also sets the stage for a possible vote to censure Nebraska’s administration at the AAUP’s annual meeting next month.

AAUP censure for alleged violations of academic freedom is a symbolic gesture, since the association has no actual authority over the institutions with which it disagrees. But many campuses see censure as a reputational black eye and work with AAUP to lift it.

The university, which participated in AAUP’s on-campus investigation, expressed “disappointment” with the association’s findings this week and stood by its decision to effectively end Lawton’s teaching appointment, in the interest of the campus as a whole.

In August, Lawton — who was then an adjunct at Nebraska — was recorded protesting an on-campus recruiting table for Turning Point USA. That’s the conservative group behind Professor Watchlist, which many academics believe distorts their views and chills academic freedom. Lawton called the undergraduate behind the table a “neo-fascist Becky” who “wants to destroy public schools, public universities, hates DACA kids,” and flipped her off. The video was shared on online, went viral and drew the ire of Republican state lawmakers.

More from Inside Higher Ed

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Bye Felicia…I mean Omarosa!

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Posted by Libergirl…Laughing OUT LOUD!

Principal stopped school’s shaming free lunch kids with hand stamps, says it got her fired

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Principal stopped school’s shaming free lunch kids with hand stamps, says it got her fired (via Raw Story )

A former principal at a charter elementary school in Colorado said that she was fired last year after she tried to force school officials to stop marking the hands of children who could not afford to buy lunch for full price in the cafeteria.

In an email sent to parents last November, Peak to Peak Charter School insisted that former principal Noelle Roni’s firing was not a form of retaliation after she claimed she had complained about a hostile work environment.

At the time, Roni had said that she refused to sign a buyout offer because “it would have put me in a position of not being able to explain myself to the community I love.”

From the Raw Story

Posted by The NON-Conformist

Wedding photos cost gay teacher his job

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gay marriage

Image: Kevork Djansezian, Getty Images

A gay teacher at a Catholic high school in Southern California lost his job after his wedding pictures were published in a local newspaper, according to the teacher’s lawyer.

Ken Bencomo, 45, was fired from St. Lucy’s Priory after marrying his partner of 10 years, the San Bernardino Sun reported.

Officials were aware of Bencomo’s sexual orientation for at least 10 of the 17 years he worked at the school, according to his lawyer Patrick McGarrigle.

“The reason given was that the marriage occurred and the school’s position was that it violated church teachings,” McGarrigle said.

The firing came days after photos of the wedding appeared in a local newspaper. Bencomo and Christopher Persky, 32, were among the first gay couples to line up at the San Bernardino County Assessor-Recorder’s Office to get married following a U.S. Supreme Court decision that cleared the way for same-sex marriages to resume in the nation’s most populous state.

More from USA Today

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Hannity defends Rutgers coach: ‘My father hit me with a belt, I turned out okay!’

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It’s highly debatable whether either one of them turned out OK!!!! Yes, your father can hit you with a belt because he’s YOUR FATHER! LG

Fox News host Sean Hannity and conservative pundit Michelle Malkin on Wednesday both defended a former Rutgers basketball coach who verbally and physically abused his players, both saying that they had received plenty of spankings and “turned out okay.” On Wednesday Rutgers announced that the school had fired coach Mike Rice after ESPN revealed video tape of him kicking players, throwing balls at the heads of players and shouting homophobic slurs like “fucking faggot” and “fucking fairy.”

More including video at the Raw Story

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Fired worker kills boss at Empire State Building, wounds 9 others before cop shoots him

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Image: AP

A fired worker stalked his boss down a Midtown street, shot him dead and then turned his weapon on police officers — and in the ensuing gun battle he was killed and nine pedestrians were struck, some by cop bullets, Mayor Bloomberg and Police Commissioner Ray Kelly said today.

The 9 a.m. mayhem sent commuters and tourists in a panicked scramble from the jam-packed intersection of 34th Street and Fifth Avenue.

Bloomberg identified the shooter as Jeffrey Johnson, 53, who had been fired a year ago from Hazan Imports at 10 W. 33rd Street, around the corner from the scene.

More from the NY Post

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