The faculty at Black Hawk College in Illinois have come to the defense of a sociology professor's right to free speech after he was reprimanded by college administration for offending a Christian student when he wrote "F--- God" on the blackboard.
A college advisory committee decided that the professor, Bruce LeBlanc, violated the school's harassment policy and recommended he apologize to the student. However, LeBlanc, a former Catholic priest, challenged the decision through the school's collective bargaining agreement.
LeBlanc has already established a reputation on campus for speaking about his homosexuality, for describing homosexual acts in the classroom, and for mocking Christian beliefs.
Catholic League president William Donohue said such behavior on the part of college staff directly contradicts the school's core values, as stated on the college Web site, such as appreciation of diversity; caring and compassion; fairness; honesty; integrity; respect; and responsibility.
"There is a huge difference between academic freedom and academic license, the latter being a form of academic malpractice," said Donohue. "Furthermore, academic freedom is not an end in itself, it is a means towards the discovery of truth.
"But in the mind of Professor LeBlanc, truth does not exist," he commented. "Neither, obviously, does civility."