Imagine this, you are a young college student and are entering your Sophomore year, having had just decided upon a double major in Journalism and Political Science. You are proceeding to take your core requirement classes, the ones that you need to get out of the way before you get into the more advanced classes. You register for History of Mass Communication, and show up on your first day ready to learn.
At your first day in class, the Professor introduces himself and goes over the class syllabus, talking about how you should be on time, how assignments will be graded, what topics will be discussed, and then the discussion goes to extra credit points and how you can receive them. One of the methods discussed for receiving extra credit — burning the American Flag or the U.S. Constitution and getting arrested “defending free speech.”
Outrageous you say? Well in a just world it would be outrageous, but unfortunately that is the state of academia in our country. Only being a few years removed myself from having graduated College, I can recall similar incidents. While I was lucky enough never to have a Professor go to the extreme such as this case, I’ve had plenty of occasion to sit in classes where the professor to get their liberal points of view in — even in classes that had nothing to do with politics, history and the such.
The above scenario was completely true, it happened not too long ago to Rebekah McDade in Paul Grosswiler’s History of Mass Communication class at the University of Maine.
From the Bangor Daily News:
ORONO, Maine – A University of Maine student alleges her former professor offered extra credit to class members if they burned the American flag or the U.S. Constitution or were arrested defending free speech.
On the first day of class, associate professor Paul Grosswiler offered the credit to members of his History of Mass Communications class, according to sophomore Rebekah McDade. Disturbed by the comment, McDade dropped the class and intends to take the course again next semester with a different professor.
“I was offended,” McDade said Friday. “I come from a family of military men and women, and the flag and Constitution are really important symbols to me because of my family background.”
In an e-mail responding to a request for comment from the Bangor Daily News on Friday, Grosswiler said he thought McDade misunderstood the class discussion, which was intended to elicit thought about the First Amendment. He said he has held this same discussion for years without incident.
How much do you bet that burning a foreign countries flag on campus would get you suspended or expelled?
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