The administration had the chance to redeem the institution’s hasty decision to fire a professor for doing his job. They blew it.

When the press release went out last week that the U of I had called a meeting with Prof. Kenneth Howell and his Alliance Defense Fund attorneys, supporters were hopeful that they would reconsider their irrational and knee-jerk action against a popular professor who taught Catholic studies and the rare academic discipline of critical thinking skills.

Why else would the school go to such extent?

Because Prof. Howell has such a huge following and the cause is so noble and the grievance so gaping, they had to do something. But it turns out they chose to contrive a more ridiculous defense of their actions.

In response to a lawsuit filed on behalf of a Catholic professor who was barred from teaching after he explained Catholic teaching on homosexuality to the students in a class on Catholicism, the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (UIUC) has defended the decision by saying that the professor was not actually “fired” – he’s just not allowed to teach any more classes.

Further proving that in what was once known as the institutions of higher learning, intellectual exercises have given way to semantic gymnastics.

Sheila Liaugminas

Sheila Liaugminas is an Emmy award-winning Chicago-based journalist in print and broadcast media. Her writing and broadcasting covers matters of faith, culture, politics and the media....