One of the biggest realities of adulthood is that actions have consequences. It seems a childish professor in California still hasn’t learned that lesson, but now her university is bracing for the fallout of her hateful words.
After the late first lady Barbara Bush passed away at the age of 92, tributes to the much-loved matriarch poured in from conservatives and liberals alike. But not from Randa Jarrar, a bitter and apparently arrogant professor at Fresno State University.
“Barbara Bush was a generous and smart and amazing racist who, along with her husband, raised a war criminal. F*** outta here with your nice words,” the acerbic professor tweeted. “I’m happy the witch is dead. Can’t wait for the rest of her family to fall to their demise the way 1.5 million Iraqis have.”
Doubling down on hubris, Jarrar then taunted readers with the fact that she has tenure and can’t be fired from her position at the taxpayer-funded university.
True enough, it’s pretty tough for a university to let a tenured professor go. Of course, the point of tenure is to encourage deep thinking and original research in a professor’s field. Jarrar is a professor of English. Re-read her vile tweet and ask yourself if her tenure is improving English prose.
She may still have a job — for now — but Fresno State is facing a potential backlash from major donors to the university.
“(Donors are) outraged, and I’m outraged as well,” university President Joseph Castro told The Fresno Bee. “This is behavior that is unacceptable as a university that models the development of leaders. We just cannot tolerate it.”
Ed Dunkel Jr. is one such donor who is concerned about the hateful professor and the school’s currently mild response. He’s been recognized by the university for his financial contributions in the past and is a member of Fresno State’s President’s Circle For Excellence.
“Dunkel Jr., a second-generation engineering graduate from Fresno State and president of Precision Civil Engineering in Fresno, is taking a wait-and-see position,” explained The Fresno Bee.
The Fresno State supporter pointed out that the school almost certainly knew how unhinged this professor is, but gave her a prominent position and tenure anyway.
“I have huge concerns. This represents such an embarrassment to the university and the community,” he explained. “It’s hard to believe this is an isolated thing that just happened. I have to imagine people previously knew of this person’s character and what she’s about.”
Other major donors, however, were willing to give the university a bit more slack.
“The actions of an individual professor, while embarrassing to the university and that professor, have no impact on the value that this university brings to the community and its students,” stated Robert Oliver, an appellate court judge in the Fresno area and a university benefactor.
He indicated that he would wait to see how the school handled the incident before be made donation decisions.
“I have great confidence in (university president) Castro and those with whom he is in consultation that they will go forward in a way that is legally appropriate,” the judge said.
The entire situation is a good example of how freedom of speech does not mean freedom of consequences. Contrary to what many on the left would have the public believe, the conservative view isn’t that this professor should be censored, muted, tarred and jailed.
What conservatives are saying is that part of speaking in public involves facing the repercussions of one’s words. Like it or not, a tenured professor does represent the university, and donors to that school have no obligation to keep writing checks if her vileness doesn’t reflect their values.
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