The faculty at Black Hawk College in Illinois have rallied around sociology professor Bruce LeBlanc after an advisory committee said he violated the school’s harassment policy. Though LeBlanc was not penalized in any way, the fact that the committee recommended he apologize to the offended student led him to challenge this decision through the school’s collective bargaining agreement.
The professor, a former Catholic priest and admitted homosexual, is known for his practice of graphically describing homosexual acts in the classroom, and for his habit of mocking Christian beliefs. The last straw came last spring when a student, who claims he was harassed by LeBlanc because he is a conservative and a Christian, reported that LeBlanc wrote “F— God” on the blackboard. The faculty have defended LeBlanc on free speech grounds.
Catholic League president William Donohue jumped on this one:
“There is a huge difference between academic freedom and academic license, the latter being a form of academic malpractice. Furthermore, academic freedom is not an end in itself, it is a means towards the discovery of truth. But in the mind of Professor LeBlanc, truth does not exist. Neither, obviously, does civility.
“Leave it to the faculty to protect themselves at all costs. For example, Professor Joan Eastlund, president of the faculty union, says that LeBlanc’s blackboard creation was done to teach about ‘the power of symbols in human culture.’ One wonders what she would be saying now if LeBlanc had substituted the ‘N’ word (pluralized) for God.
“After 9-11, Black Hawk College was awash with ‘Hate Free Zone’ bumper stickers, pins and magnets. But it did no good, for hatred of Christians is in vogue in LeBlanc’s ‘Hate Free’ classroom. Similarly, the college’s website touts the following Core Values: Appreciation of Diversity; Caring and Compassion; Fairness; Honesty; Integrity; Respect; and Responsibility. They need an asterisk at the end to say, ‘Christians not included.’”