Paul Mirecki has some odd ideas about freedom of speech. In this article about his “forced resignation” from his post as Chairman of Religious Studies, his statement to the press is quoted:
“The University penalized me and denied me my Constitutionally protected right to speak and express my mind.”
Hmmm… Really? It seems to me that he’s expressing his mind right now, in front of a national audience. What the University denied him was the opportunity to be paid out of taxpayer money for teaching things that the University didn’t want him to.
Let’s face it: journalists, teachers, TV and Film producers and everybody else who gets paid to provide a message to an audience do so because of PRIVILEGE, not because of RIGHT. If their employers decide they don’t like the message, their employers can AND SHOULD discipline them, or even fire them. These people can still speak their minds, but they don’t have a constitutionally-protected right to get PAID for that.
And whether or not Intelligent Design is a thinly-veiled crock of fundamentalist intellectual dishonesty, it looks pretty bad for the Chair of Religious Studies at your university to be denigrating religious people. Of COURSE you remove him. Send him off to “Social Sciences” and let him flame the “fundies” from there. But if donations to the school drop off, you might have to let him go altogether.
He’ll land on his feet. There are plenty of educational institutions that will cater to his style of teaching.
(note: It’s possible that there is legislation with court precedent in Kansas or at the Federal level that protects teachers and their precious tenure from the fallout of their big mouths. But that’s not “constitutionally-protected” free speech.)