A New York college professor has learned an important lesson: excessive groveling and touting your wokeness may not be enough to save your job.
The College Fix, a conservative campus news website, reported on Tuesday that Fordham University recently fired English professor Christopher Trogan over a controversy involving two black students.
Trogan, who is white, apparently mixed up the names of the two students, who are women.
The incident occurred when they entered his class one day as he was reading a paper by another student. Trogan apparently confused the two when addressing them at the time.
They emailed Trogan that they felt “disheartened and disrespected” by the episode, which they believed happened because they are black.
Trogan claimed it was an honest mistake. And it seems the issue was nearly resolved without incident.
One of the women told the campus newspaper that she was not overly bothered by the mix-up and had not reported him to administrators.
Yet what seemed to land Trogan in hot water was his response.
According to The Observer, the campus newspaper, Trogan emailed the students back and claimed he was “centered specifically and explicitly around issues of justice, equality, and inclusion.”
He also told them that he has devoted his “entire life” to Social Justice Warrioring, and went on in depth about his “his dedication to racial justice throughout his career,” The Observer reported.
Trogan then went into details about his credentials, and commented on “everything he has done for minorities.”
That was overkill. As one of the students involved told The Observer, “It seemed a little excessive, like all you needed to do was say sorry and it would have been fine. We were not actually that upset about him mixing up our names. It was more so the random things he would throw into the response.”
The students agreed that Trogan was giving off the vibe of a “white savior complex,” which he appeared to seal by offering to give up his job if the students felt they had been discriminated against, and inviting them to file a grievance to his superiors, The Observer noted.
“Depending on your response,” he wrote in the email, “I may — or may not — be your professor in class next week. It’s all up to you.”
Two days later Fordham’s administration suspended him. A month later, he was unemployed.
The Observer reported that Trogan’s email was the “catalyst” in his termination, and that, in a meeting with the dean of his department after the misnaming incident, the dean determined he had not shown the “proper development” to remain.
Trogan noted in a separate email to his students after he got canned that he was “never informed of the charges against me, nor of the nature of the investigation of which I was the subject. I was kept completely in the dark.”
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