Wisconsin Supreme Court Rules for Academic Liberty

It is almost ironic that Conservatives are the ones who have to fight in court for academic freedom. That used to be a cause that liberals supported.

July 6, 2018 – Milwaukee, WI — Today the Supreme Court of Wisconsin delivered a clear, decisive victory for our client, Dr. John McAdams, a conservative political science professor who was indefinitely suspended by Marquette University for blogging on a controversial topic. The victory ends a nearly four year fight between the Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty and Marquette University to have McAdams reinstated.

As we have argued since the beginning, the only thing Professor McAdams wants to do is to teach students with the academic freedom protections promised by Marquette University. And, because of today’s ruling, McAdams will be back in the classroom very soon.

The Wisconsin Supreme Court, in a decision written by Justice Dan Kelly, found that Professor McAdams’ blog post in defense of an undergraduate student – and criticizing a graduate student instructor – could not possibly have shown him to be unfit as a member of Marquette’s faculty, and Marquette’s decision to fire him violated its contractual promise to protect his academic freedom.

In addition, according to the Court, a faculty member’s expression of opinion as a citizen cannot constitute grounds for dismissal unless it clearly demonstrates the faculty member’s unfitness for his or her position. The Court rejected the notion that disciplinary decisions regarding free speech by faculty members should be made by administration or faculty. The concept of academic freedom is worthless unless it protects expression which is opposed by the institution and is unpopular with most of the faculty.

Furthermore, today’s decision from the Wisconsin Supreme Court relies on one of the simplest rules of fairness – you cannot punish somebody for violating a rule that did not exist when it was supposedly “broken.” Universities are free to create rules – even strict rules – about what their tenured professors can and cannot say publicly. What they cannot do is make up rules after the fact to punish a professor they want to get rid of.

33 Responses to Wisconsin Supreme Court Rules for Academic Liberty

  1. Kevin Scheunemann says:

    A very satisfying Supreme Court slap down of the godless liberals running Marquette.

    I hope Marquette has to pay dearly. They are suppose to be against gay marriage s Christians not punishing those exposing the godless liberals running counter to basicChristian teaching.

    Marquette should fire every complicit administrator and faculty member involved in this illegal, anti-academic behavior against McAdams.

    Prof McAdams you are a true hero against the liberal hate!!! Well done!

  2. Le Roi du Nord says:

    Yup, those godless Jesuits.  Kind of ironic that everyone that you disagree with is a godless liberal.  What is the one constant in all your rants;  You. Perhaps therein lies the problem.

  3. Kevin Scheunemann says:

    Nord,

    Marquette rejects the very things that make them Christian by the way they acted.

    If they acted as true Christians, they should have thanked Professor McAdams for exposing the sin of their staff member, and should have removed the TA for teaching marriage other than God’s design.

    Marquette’s attitude shows their walk against Christ and with the devil.

  4. dad29 says:

    Nordski, it appears that you are ignorant of Marquette University’s slide into agnosticism which has been happening over the last 50 years, ever since the Land’O’Lakes agreement.

    It is inaccurate to say that the Jesuits are “godless.”  It is a good question, however, as to who, exactly, is their “god.”

  5. Kevin Scheunemann says:

    Dad 29,

    You have courage.   Usually liberals have “God cooties” and get incensed if you imply they have a god other than science.   You are brave in your political incorrectness.

    Your point is well taken.   Marquette, if they have a god, it is no longer Christ, or the true Triune God of the bible.

  6. Le Roi du Nord says:

    Like I said, the one constant in all the “godless liberals” you attack is you.  It is a cheap and easy way that doesn’t take much thought or reason for you to denigrate any and all with opposing viewpoints.  For a self-proclaimed proponent of free speech you are pretty much opposed to it in reality.

  7. Paul says:

    Nobody cares. Go back to gumming your early bird special, white nationalist gramps.

  8. MHMaley says:

    The ruling was the correct one but the idea that this board’s members have any special insight into the nature or approval of a mythical sky being is ludicrous .

  9. dad29 says:

    The Board at MU is–like every Board for an educational institution–put in place for fund-raising activity, period.  What they do or do not know about God is totally irrelevant to their position.

    However, what the JESUITS know about God, and what the Theo faculty knows about God (we could add Philosophy, too) is very relevant to their positions on the faculty.

    But at this point in time, MU is merely a $55K version of UW-M.

  10. Kevin Scheunemann says:

    Nord,

    Marquette is suppose to brome a Christian institution. They are suppose to reject sin, not embrace it.

    Their sinful attitude is clear: Punish those that stick up for marriage under God’s design. They are suppose to be discouraging perverted lifestyles as Christian leaders, instead they embrace them cementing their rejection of Christ.

    We can only hope they repent.

  11. Le Roi du Nord says:

    k:

    I’m not sure what you are talking about, but brome is common name for several grass species in the genus Bromus.  How that relates to the issue at hand is unclear.

    Since neither you nor dad are on the board of directors for Marquette their decisions should be taken as such; their decisions.  If and when either of you get on the board then you can do things your way.  How would you react to the WI SC interfering with a decision made by the board of a Lutheran institution, also a private school ?

  12. Paul says:

    Stick to Metamucil and Polident, geezer.

  13. Le Roi du Nord says:

    Sorry little fella, but I don’t use either.  You are still 0 for 2018.  That won’t even get you to Little League.

  14. Paul says:

    Nobody cares, gramps. Go change your Depends.

  15. Kevin Scheunemann says:

    Nord,

    Just an auto correct error, suppose to be “be”.

    Don’t stand for “academic freedom” and “Christian principles” then as a board punish a good professor for sticking up for marriage under God’s design. These Satan worshippers brought this upon themselves, and I am ecstatic over the Supreme Court ruling.

    Political correctness and identity politics is a bigger, more insidious evil than even the ungodly in an allegedly Christian institution failing to stand and defend marriage under God’s design. This ruling was a strike at both.

    We know public, godless institutions, speed people spiritually on road to hell. When the allegedly Christian institutions do it, that is an abomination that needs to go.

    The way Marquette acted toward McAdams, and acts after the court ruling shows it walks with Satan, not Christ.

  16. Le Roi du Nord says:

    k:

    Well there are probably 100,000’s of Jesuits and followers out there that disagree with you.  But since you are the one and only all knowing arbiter of good and evil we should all believe you.  Not.

    And since you still aren’t on the Marquette board you really have no dog in the fight.  But you continue to press your version of reality on others with differing opinions.

    I tried, my auto correct won’t turn “be” into “brome”.  Maybe you should proof your work like little paul.

  17. Kevin Scheunemann says:

    Nord,

    The jesuits shoulders their bible:

    Matthew 19

    1When Jesus had finished saying these things, he left Galilee and went into the region of Judea to the other side of the Jordan. 2 Large crowds followed him, and he healed them there.

    3 Some Pharisees came to him to test him. They asked, “Is it lawful for a man to divorce his wife for any and every reason?”

    4 “Haven’t you read,” he replied, “that at the beginning the Creator ‘made them male and female,’ 5 and said, ‘For this reason a man will leave his father and mother and be united to his wife, and the two will become one flesh’? 6 So they are no longer two, but one flesh. Therefore what God has joined together, let no one separate.”

    This is again repeated in Mark 10 in case anyone thinks Jesus was misquoted.

    You can’t claim to be a follower of Jesus and openly mock and reject his teachings. It’s one thing too be mistaken, it’s another thing to be willfully obstinate about clear Gospel teaching. This section of scripture is one of the sections that is not even debatable when it comes to God’s design for marriage.

    A Christian honoring that design should have been rallying to Prof McAdams defense and would have, at a minimum corrected the TA under Matthew 18. That did not happen because leadership at Marquette is corrupted from the Gospel on this issue. It is teaching a Gospel other than Christ at this point.

  18. Merlin says:

    This decision also makes it more difficult for institutions, public or private, to use/abuse a management-skewed peer review process simply to validate desired administrative actions. The Wisconsin Supremes affirmed that despite a peer review board’s recommendations, it ain’t over until the Court’s fat lady sings.

    Marquette blew this on so many levels it’s incredibly embarrassing to the institution and they haven’t even gotten around to the punitive damages phase of the suit. Money talks. Not just by a court ordered punishment, but by the donors and alumni, too. There’s no way Lovell should survive the year at the helm of Marquette University.

  19. Le Roi du Nord says:

    OK, your POTUS has been divorced numerous times, committed adultery, assaulted women,yada, yada, yada….., yet you still defend him at every turn.  No hypocrite like an evangelical conservative.

  20. Kevin Scheunemann says:

    Nord,

    Trump has never claimed to be a practicing Christian or Christian leader.

    Marquette leaders claim both.

    Right now, Trump is more honest about who he is than leaders of Marquette.

    I’m really impressed you did not try to dismiss the Bible on this. Marriage under God’s design is clear cut, that is why it is so painful to see so many “Christians” ignore the direct words of Christ on the subject. They are not distinguishable from the godless pagans on the subject, which is just awful.

  21. Kevin Scheunemann says:

    Merlin,

    Lovell should be fired at a minimum, unless godless paganism is what they are shooting for. Then I just hope they would be honest about it.

  22. Le Roi du Nord says:

    “Trump is more honest”.

    Now you are really getting silly.  3200 lies and counting since inauguration.  Guess you would know honest if it bit you.

  23. Kevin Scheunemann says:

    Nord,

    Trump is more honest about his lack of Christianity than Marquette leaders.

    Christians have a different standard for those outside the faith. Those claiming to be inside the faith need to be corrected for open and unrepentant sin under Matthew 18. It is not the sin of approving of gay marriage that throws them from the kingdom, it is fact they are unrepentant about it after being corrected by the truth numerous times by staff like McAdams or outside Christians.

    If Trump repented of his wrongdoing and came to the faith, I would be more critical if he continued ungodly, pagan like behavior as a Christian. That is why I cut you more slack for your ungodly positions, especially any biblical misunderstandings, you do not profess to be Christian.

    You can’t expect unbelievers to hold to biblical standards until they come to the light of grace.

    So it is difficult to treat Trump as a Christian, when he is not. (As far as I know, maybe Pence has converted him.)

  24. Kevin Scheunemann says:

    Nord,

    And remember Clinton, George W, and Obama all claimed to be Christian, so they should be held to higher standards and correction for any morally reprehensible behavior.

  25. Le Roi du Nord says:

    “The other guy did it too” excuse doesn’t make it.  45 is morally unfit, like it or not.

    Such a hypocritical position for an alleged christian like you.

  26. Kevin Scheunemann says:

    Nord,

    Not at all. When it comes to a Christian correcting sin:

    1.) With a fellow Christian we correct under Matthew 18 process described by Jesus. Even under that process it should be gentle correction at first with deeper stern warnings as it moves up the ladder.

    2.) With an unbeliever we encourage them to grace of Christ with truth of gospel in hope it takes hold and gets them out of darkness into the light. Until that point, the kind of correction, or admonishment we are talking about is not permissible until the heart confesses Christ as Savior.

    Is Trump #1 or #2? Before office, I am convinced he was unbeliever by action. Last 3 months, I am not so sure anymore. I think Pence has had some very good influence on him.

    When Trump confesses Christ as his Savior openly, and forgiveness for his past sins, those sins should be forgotten under grace. (Judging the repentant for sins wiped under Christ’s grace is a sin) Now if he has ongoing sin, after confessing Christ as his Savior, like cheating on his wife, I would admonish him like I would Clinton.

    In the godless liberal sphere, any chance for forgiveness beyond the narrow minded, sinful, identity politics and the hierarchy of victimhood?

  27. Le Roi du Nord says:

    So you want the US to be a religious state in violation of the Constitution?  What happened to the separation of church and state?  Once again, the irony of a hypocritical conservative evangelical. .

  28. Kevin Scheunemann says:

    Nord,

    I’m explaining to you, as a Christian, that unbelievers, like Trump, are not held to same moral standards as a fellow Christian.

    You are interesting that as a pagan, you want to hold your fellow pagan to a standard of sexual morality. I would think you would bless all sexual immorality.

  29. Le Roi du Nord says:

    No, I want our president, regardless of party/religion to be held to a higher standard, and be a role model for any and all.  You only defend trump because of the R behind his name.

  30. Kevin Scheunemann says:

    Nord,

    Higher standard for Leadership on issues related to the country.

    What he said in a locker room 15 years ago is meaningless by the importance of real issues. Nobody is perfect.

  31. dad29 says:

    I want our president, regardless of party/religion to be held to a higher standard, and be a role model for any and all.

    Like Bill Clinton, or Lyndon Johnson, or John Kennedy, or FDR, or “Woody” Wilson.  Yup.  Role models, one and all.

  32. Kevin Scheunemann says:

    Nord is worst kind of partisan hack…one that cannot even admit which side he is on.

  33. Le Roi du Nord says:

    Just like Nixon and Harding and A. Johnson…..

    I didn’t vote for any of them but Nixon, as he told us that he would get us out of SE Asia.  That sure didn’t work.

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