Saturday, August 6, 2011
The Volokh Conspiracy, Widener’s Dean Linda Ammons Doubles Down, by David Bernstein (Geore Mason):
The saga of Dean Ammons vendetta against Professor Lawrence Connell, revolving around trumped up charges of harassment and discrimination, gets more and more absurd. Having been almost entirely vindicated by a faculty committee, with the only remaining “charge” that he dared to rebut false accusations against himself publicly, Dean Ammons has recommended that Connell be suspended for a year without pay and be forced to undergo a psychiatric evaluation. Widener’s administration, apparently oblivious to the long-term damage this is doing to the law school’s and university’s reputation, agreed.
Legal Insurrection, Widener Law School Goes Soviet, Demands Law Professor Undergo Psychiatric Evaluation, by William Jacobson (Cornell):
[T]he only conduct of Connell himself which the committee found violated university policy were emails he sent to the student poplulation defending himself against false accusations of racism and sexism.
In a rational world, the university would seek no or minimal sanctions against Connell since he was completely vindicated of the underlying charges, so that his defense of himself in emails to students ultimately was proven to be valid. But Dean Ammons recommended that the university suspend Connell for a year without pay, which the university accepted.
But Dean Ammons recommendation, accepted by the university, went much further, demanding that Connell submit to a psychiatric evaluation, undergo ”anger management” counseling, and issue an apology. ...
These conditions are as outrageous as Widener Law School’s underlying conduct in refusing to stand up to false accusations of racism and sexism made against Connell. There was no retaliation or “anger” expressed by Connell except the vigrous defense of what were proven to be false accusations.
Widener’s requirement of a psychiatric evaluation under these circumstances clearly is intended to further damage Connell even though the committee found no conduct which reflected any alleged psychiatric or anger management issues. Connell simply defended himself.
Widener Law School Dean Linda Ammons has done further damage to her law school and her own reputation by using psychiatry as a vindictive tool against a law professor whose worst crime was defending himself against false accusations of racism and sexism.
Legal Insurrection, Liberal Women, Conservative Men, and “Anger Management,” by William Jacobson (Cornell):
[D]efending oneself against potentially career-ending false accusaitons is a sign of mental illness, and requires “anger management” therapy, at least in the eyes of Dean Ammons. Curiously, there is no indication that the female students who made the false accusations — and whose conduct in classes was disruptive and confrontational – will have similar preconditions placed on their continued matriculation at Widener Law School. ...
How convenient is the use of the “anger management” paradigm. No matter how outrageous the conduct of the female students in making false accusations, or of Dean Ammons in facilitating the accusations, it was the male conservative law professor who had the anger management problem.
InstaPundit, Legal Education Update, by Glenn Reynolds (Tennessee)
Prior TaxProf Blog coverage:
- Law Prof May Lose Tenure For Classroom Hypos on Shooting His Dean (Feb. 15, 2011)
- Interview With Tenured Law Prof Fighting For His Job After Using Dean in Hypos (Feb. 21, 2011)
- Committee: Don't Fire Tenured Law Prof for Classroom Hypos About His Dean (Mar. 11, 2011)
- Students File Disciplinary Charges Against Law Prof for Classroom Hypos (Mar. 17, 2011)
- Law Prof Sues Dean for Defamation (Apr. 8, 2011)
- Panel: Law School Did Not Prove That Prof's Classroom Hypos Were Racist (July 22, 2011)