by Ted on March 13, 2004

I’ve written, revised and rejected a number of thoughts about the terrorist massacre in Madrid. I would have liked to have written something like this.

If only you knew the whole story …

by John Q on March 13, 2004

In the case of the dismissal of tenured professor Nona Gerard from Penn State (details here, Brian Leiter cites the generic response

Thank you for your email. President Spanier is out of the country so I am responding on his behalf. I will be sure he is aware of your opinion. I can assure you that there is much, much more to this than you are reading in the papers. I hope you realize that the University is also limited in what it can say publicly about this case at this point in time, especially given that the faculty member has already indicated she plans to file a lawsuit. I can also assure you that the University’s hearing process was followed explicitly at every step of the way.

“We have never taken away anyone’s job for criticizing the quality of a program, and we never will. You should also know that when five members of the University community who heard over 40 hours of testimony in what was a quasi-legal proceeding would vote unanimously that the faculty member was guilty of grave misconduct, there is not just smoke but a lot of fire. For the faculty member to make public statements about due process not being served is understandable in her circumstances, but simply untrue.

“What you have been reading in the press has simply not reflected the whole story.”

As it happened, I recently received an almost identical letter in relation to a property dispute in which I am peripherally involved. In both cases, I’m tempted by the simple response MRD> But I think it might be worth exploring the issues a bit further.

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