A professor at Duke University is facing two disciplinary proceedings after condemning diversity training initiatives taking place on campus.
Professor Paul Griffiths of Duke University’s Divinity School is facing charges of “harassment” and “unprofessional conduct” after arguing that socially-engineered diversity efforts have “illiberal roots and totalitarian tendencies.”
In an email on the faculty listserv, Griffiths claimed that mandatory “re-education” programs have a “long and ignoble history.” “When (if) it gets beyond that, its illiberal roots and totalitarian tendencies will show. Events of this sort are definitively anti-intellectual,” he wrote. “(Re)trainings of intellectuals by bureaucrats and apparatchiks have a long and ignoble history; I hope you’ll keep that history in mind as you think about this instance.”
In response to Griffith’s email, Dean Elaine Heath chastised him for disagreeing, claiming that it for was “inappropriate and unprofessional” for Griffiths to “humiliate or undermine” his colleague. “The use of mass emails,” she continued, “to express racism, sexism, and other forms of bigotry is offensive and unacceptable, especially in a Christian institution.”
Professor Thomas Pfau of Duke’s Divinity School fired back in Griffith’s defense, arguing that there was absolutely no discernible evidence of bigotry in Griffith’s email.