Paul L. Caron

Monday, November 17, 2008

Arkansas Con Law Prof Drops Defamation Lawsuit Against His Students Over Racism Charges

Following up on my earlier post, Arkansas Con Law Prof Sues His Students for Defamation, Claiming They Twisted His Anti-Affirmative Action Views to Accuse Him of Racism (4/30/08):  Today's Inside Higher Ed reports that Arkansas-Little Rock Law Prof Richard J. Peltz has dropped his lawsuit:

After you’ve been called racist by some students, can you sue to get your reputation back?

Richard J. Peltz, who teaches law at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, tried. The idea of suing students intrigued and worried many observers of the professoriate, and Peltz’s case prompted much discussion about free speech and the respect that should be accorded both professors and students. Peltz has now dropped his suit — but he did so only after the law school agreed to fully investigate the charges against him and after he received a letter affirming that, based on that investigation, he had done nothing racist or inappropriate.

The university has also agreed to discuss allowing Peltz to again teach required courses, which he was barred from offering once the complaints against him were filed.

For more, see ABA Journal.

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“When I started teaching 10 years ago, I thought universities were the quintessential market place of ideas. I was so naïve, and so, so wrong,” he said. “It’s not an open market place of ideas — I hope we can get back to that notion because our society desperately needs places where we can have truly free discussion. I just can’t say I see that in the American university today.”

Islands of repression is a sea of freedom.

At my law school calling people racists (as soon as you crossed out the classroom door) was standard practice.

The ABA allies with this attitude by demanding that schools break state law regarding racial preferences or face lack of accreditation.

The silence of of the calls for "academic freedom" are deafening.

Posted by: EvilDave | Nov 18, 2008 12:02:15 AM