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Wednesday, December 07, 2005

Professor Mirecki Resigns His Chair Position

There was a story yesterday in the Lawrence Journal World that cast some doubt on Mirecki's account of being beaten up.

Now he has resigned as Chair of the Religious Studies.

The embattled Kansas University religious studies professor who drew ire from Christian conservatives for his derisive remarks on an online discussion board has withdrawn from his post as chair of the department.

"Professor Mirecki said he thought it appropriate to step down and did so on the recommendation of his colleagues in the department and I have accepted his resignation," said Barbara Romzek, interim dean of the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. "This allows the department to focus on what's most important - teaching, research and service - and to minimize the distractions of the last couple of weeks."

Mirecki, a tenured professor who had planned to teach a course on intelligent design, came under fire recently when his remarks about the course and other statements made on the Internet became public.

I feel bad for the students in the Kusoma group who Mirecki advised.

From the comment thread on this story:

Okay, seriously, have any of you ever taken a class with Mirecki? I have, and while I don't agree with the controversy his comment has provoked, let me tell you that I was as shocked as anyone--because in class, he is not biased. He is as fair and balanced as any professor at KU I've ever had. The idea that a personal correspondance, which was made public without his permission or intent, is being used to ruin this fine teacher's career, is very bothersome to me. Before you attempt to assassinate his character, why don't you meet the man? Take a class with him. Then you can rant and rail to your bloody little hearts' content.

I'd like to hear more first accounts from students.