Marquette Warrior: Marquette’s Suspension of Marquette Warrior Violated Marquette’s Own Rules

Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Marquette’s Suspension of Marquette Warrior Violated Marquette’s Own Rules

We just yesterday reported that we have been “suspended” from our duties at Marquette, due to a blog post of ours that criticized a Philosophy instructor who informed a student that gay marriage could not be discussed in her class because any opposition to the policy would be “homophobic” and would likely “offend” any gay students in the class.

The “suspension” is a bit of a joke, since it’s Christmas break and we aren’t teaching. We are only working on a manuscript, and are allowed to go to campus to do that.

Leave aside issues of academic freedom, and the fact that Marquette, when faced with a brouhaha that was dying down,  chose to heat it up to white hot.  There is the fact that in suspending us Marquette violated its own rules, which can be found here.
Section 307.03

In all cases of nonrenewal, suspension, or termination for absolute or discretionary cause, except Section 307.02(1) and (3), death, and permanent, total disability, the appropriate appointing authority of the University shall notify the faculty member in writing of the University's action. The notice shall include:

(1) The statute allegedly violated; the date of the alleged violation; the location of the alleged violation; a sufficiently detailed description of the facts constituting the violation including the names of the witnesses against the faculty member.

(2) The nature of the University’s contemplated action, with a specification of the date or dates upon which such action is to become effective with respect to faculty status, duties, salary, and benefit entitlements, respectively.

(3) Such notice shall be personally delivered and service shall operate from date of such delivery; if in the exercise of reasonable diligence it is not possible to personally serve the faculty member, it may be served by certified mail addressed to the faculty member’s last known place of residence, and service shall operate from date of mailing.
In fact, all of Section 1 was violated by the letter of suspension we got, which did not specify the statute allegedly violated, the date of the alleged violation, the location of the alleged violation, and any of the supposed facts of the violation.

Since this was about a blog post, there were plenty of witnesses, but none of them were named.

We were also told that the “university is continuing to review your conduct” but were not told the nature of any “contemplated action.”

Did university officials rattle off the letter without consulting counsel?

Did they think they could blow off their published rules? In any legal action, Marquette’s failure to follow its own rules will have negative consequences.

We have first rate legal counsel: Rick Esenberg and his colleagues at the Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty.

Marquette’s inept handling of this whole issue has been obvious. They appear to be on track to get into yet more trouble.

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Blogger Steve M. Galbraith said...

When this is over I'm guessing that - under new ownership - the university will be named the "Marquette Fighting McAdams."

Good luck, John.

10:04 AM  
Blogger Ragtag Media said...

I support ya, where can I send a few bucks towards a legal fund?

12:54 PM  
Blogger Gary Fouse said...


I am an adjunct teacher at UC Irvine. I delight in going after radical professors on my own blog and have often criticized UCI and the UC administration for many things. They may hate my guts, but they have always respected my freedom of speech.

Best of luck. You will surely win.

5:47 PM  
Blogger Frankns said...

McAdams in Lilliput.


Marquette Grad School 1978

6:21 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I am an alumna and am ashamed of my alma mater right now. Good for you for fighting this. You have my support and if you set up a legal fund, I will donate to it instead giving the money to a university that is Catholic in name only.

9:32 PM  
Blogger brian8907 said...

Why do you keep saying "we" and "our" as if you are multiple people? Or are you multiple people? You may want to talk to some of your former colleagues in the psych department, okay?

Love ya!

12:00 AM  
Blogger jack said...

I read about your suspension with pay pending investigation and was aiming to defend your academic freedom. But after reviewing the post in question as well as a number of more recent posts, I've decided instead that you seem emotionally unstable and unworthy of defending. I find it shocking, frankly, that someone who takes an isolated incident--reported only second-hand by an interested party--and uses it to make sweeping generalizations about all liberals, while using the most pedestrian of tea party-type rhetoric, was ever hired as a political science professor and entrusted with a classroom in the first place. And that's not even getting into the bizarre pomposity of the royal "we." You (all) appear to need some help.

1:12 AM  
Blogger BlairGirl said...

Interesting - is there a way to noification of updates to your blog? I don't see any place to sign up for that.

5:33 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Graduated from Marquette in January 1968 and spent next 30 years in the Navy. Greatly disappointed in direction Marquette has taken in recent years. This latest leftist lunacy supports and confirms my decision to stop any financial support to my Alma Mater. Good luck, Professor.

9:47 AM  
Blogger Beorn said...

You are a disgrace to the academic world and I hope you are held accountable for any threats or harm that comes to Abbate as a result of your actions.

I fully support the university and I would never want you as a professor as you do not care for the welfare of your students, only your own aggrandizement. You are the perfect right-wing Christian. Only out for yourself.

10:53 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Professor McAdams - I am both inspired and grateful for your courage to fight for intellectual honesty and open, fair debate at my Alma Mater despite the dirty tactics of the far left loons.

Class of 1996, Political Science, Pi Sigma Alpha.

6:17 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Just a couple of things worth mentioning since the suspension story broke.

1. The Marquette University statement on personnel review released in the wake of the suspension is simply laughable, the opening paragraph especially.

"Given that professor John McAdams has shared his personnel information on his public blog, we are sharing the following information:"

My previous comment spoke of dissimulation: attempts by the university to fool people into thinking that they are not saying, what they are saying. This is what that first paragraph actually says:

“Well we would’ve preferred moving against McAdams by secret intrigue, connivance; but, denied the luxury of clandestine maneuvering, we’re releasing this statement…”

2. Recently in the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel Dorrington has tried to redefine the word suspension. That’ll be one touchdown pass, amongst many, for Esenberg. Every jurisdiction in the nation prohibits what Dorrington has lately attempted via the Journal-Sentinel. From South Carolina law:

“A court will assume that the words used in a statute have their ordinary and popularly understood meanings.”

Any jurisdiction nationwide will include something nearly verbatim.

As much as Dorrington would prefer, you can’t redefine words.

The impotence of Dorrington’s position is shown clear as day from the statutory language on the Faculty Handbook Section 307 page, which specifically excludes Dorrington’s definition. A search of the contents page reveals no glossary. That the university would even allow Dorrington to come out and try to pull such a stunt betrays the incredible weakness of the administration position: The best that the administration could do in response to the new media circus is serve up a gopher-ball, right in McAdams’s wheelhouse, and it’s going to be a towering home run for McAdams and his lawyers.

3. McAdams stated in his Fox News interview that his spring semester classes have been canceled. Last I knew McAdams does teach Public Policy in the spring. For those unaware, the reserve reading compendium for Public Policy is one of the most valuable collections of political reading, to my mind, anywhere in the world. After watching the Fox News interview, any McAdams student can only infer that what is arguably the most important class taught at Marquette University has been canceled for the spring semester.

4. You can’t help but think that, as strategists, the Marquette administration must be the worst in the world. They wait till Christmas break, when everybody in the country needs a conversation piece, to suspend a high-profile professor on dubious grounds. They’ve already hung themselves on due process grounds by the suspension letter, then, as a last-ditch effort, presumably, they’ve had Dorrington come out in the Journal-Sentinel and announce that Marquette has redefined the word “suspension.” Which is also a due process violation, in South Carolina, and everywhere else. As McAdams said, this thing was cooling off, big time. I wanted to give Lovell the benefit of the doubt, but this stuff recently reflects horribly on the new president. Why? Because he goes against Einstein here. From Einstein: “If A is success in life, then A equals x plus y plus z. Work is x; y is play; and z is keeping your mouth shut.” All Lovell had to do before that letter went out is tell everybody, “You know what, we’re going to keep our powder dry - out of sight, out of mind - and voilà, I’ll have weathered my first storm.” Now, if McAdams isn’t in the classroom on the first day of the spring semester, that’s it: Lovell can never come back from that. He’ll be unforgiven forever. He could cure cancer, doesn’t matter; me, lots of people, will still want him gone.

7:20 PM  
Blogger by David McCarthy said...

It would be inspiring and re-assuring if Marquette faculty spoke up and supported Prof. McAdams. The faculty should unite and loudly voice disapproval. Whether they realize it or not, McAdams is defending their rights as well as his own.

Good luck, Professor.

Marquette '74

8:51 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

They want to make that graduate teaching assistant the victim, but what about the student?

Marquette alum - hoping that my alma mater rededicates itself to free speech and the academic pursuit of the truth.

11:44 AM  
Blogger Unknown said...

As a Marquette Alum I would like to see the University respect the speech of all, not just the power hungry left. Its a battle that must be fought.

Here’s to openness in the pursuit of truth in academia as it once was and must be again.

11:55 AM  
Blogger W.LindsayWheeler said...

My heart goes out to you Prof. MacAdams. It is quite a shame how the university is treating you like a common criminal. No free speech. I guess Marxist political correctness is more important than Catholic teaching.

Notre Dame University is the same as Marquette. It is all quite scandalous. I hope that this Catholic university finds its senses and reverses course.

This is shameful behavior.

4:55 PM  
Blogger mike nelson said...

You don't expect this from a JESUIT institution. The Jesuits I had at Campion and Marquette were free thinkers. Too bad for the present students.
Thank you, Prof. McAdams, for standing up to my University.

2:23 PM  
Blogger Unknown said...

Prof. McAdams,
Where can I make a donation to your legal defense fund?

11:19 PM  

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