- The Washington Times - Thursday, November 12, 2015

A black conservative professor is fighting back against an online petition demanding she be suspended for alleged “discriminatory practices” in the classroom.

Carol Swain, a professor of law and political science at Vanderbilt University in Nashville, is under fire for posting materials of interest to “Christian conservatives” on the Internet, EAG News reported.

“Although Ms. Swain is free to speak openly and have her own views, no matter how disagreeable they may be, it is generally unprofessional to attach your job title to a channel promoting your personally held beliefs,” reads the petition, which has garnered more than 1,500 signatures. “Keeping personal beliefs and University-endorsed statements separate is crucial to maintaining the integrity of Vanderbilt’s values.”

Students also accuse her of “expressing hatred towards minorities,” EAG reported.

The petition demands that Ms. Swain be suspended so that administrators can “confer with the ACLU to create and mandate a diversity training program for all Vanderbilt faculty — including Professor Carol Swain — to increase their cultural awareness, foster inclusion of various identity groups, prevent discrimination in the classroom, and to protect the University against inadvertent civil rights violations

Ms. Swain reacted to the petition in an interview with a local ABC News affiliate.

“I think they’re sad and pathetic, in the sense that they’re college students and they should be open to hearing more than one viewpoint,” she told the station.

Vanderbilt Chancellor Nicholas S. Zeppos released the following statement concerning the students’ demands:

“I have heard and appreciate the serious concerns of our many students and alumni who have signed an online petition calling for the suspension of Carol Swain, professor of political science and professor of law. Professor Swain’s opinions are her own,” the statement said. “They do not reflect the opinions of the university in any way. They are not my opinions, the opinions of the provost, or the opinions of university leadership.”

But Ms. Swain said she was unmoved by Mr. Zeppos’ words.

“Chancellor Zeppos”s statement offered me no comfort,” she wrote in a Facebook post Thursday. “It accepts as true the false narrative that is being advanced by what I see as the strongest groups on campus. One of the groups claiming victimhood is responsible for the ‘non-discrimination’ policy that marginalizes and discriminates against orthodox Christians. Half of the Christian groups are no longer recognized. The others tip-toe around political correctness. Most Christians are cowering in fear on that campus.”

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