An NYU professor crusading against political correctness and student coddling was booted from the classroom last week after his colleagues complained about his “incivility,” The Post has learned.
Liberal studies prof Michael Rectenwald, 57, said he was forced Wednesday to go on paid leave for the rest of the semester.
“They are actually pushing me out the door for having a different perspective,” the academic told The Post.
Rectenwald launched an undercover Twitter account called Deplorable NYU Prof on Sept. 12 to argue against campus trends like “safe spaces,” “trigger warnings” and other aspects of academia’s growing PC culture….
Two weeks ago he posted on his “anti-PC” feed a photo of a flyer put out by NYU resident advisers telling students how to avoid wearing potentially offensive Halloween costumes.
“The scariest thing about Halloween today is . . . the liberal totalitarian costume surveillance,” he wrote.
Then Rechtenwald, who had promised to shed his anonymity once he reached 500 followers, gave this interview to the NYU student newspaper:
Identity politics on campus have made an infirmary of the whole, damn campus. Let’s face it: every room is like a hospital ward. What are we supposed to do? I can’t deal with it — it’s insane. Look at the rules about Halloween costumes now. There’s a hoopla and hysteria surrounding Halloween. I tweeted something the other night about this self-surveillance — that they’re calling on people to do as reference to their Halloween costumes. It literally says “track your own online behavior” — self-surveillance. Safe spaces are turning the whole campus into an infirmary.
Uh-oh, according to the Post:
But Rectenwald says he began getting “dirty looks” in his department and on Wednesday figured out why: A 12-person committee calling itself the Liberal Studies Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Working Group, including two deans, published a letter to the editor in the same paper.
“As long as he airs his views with so little appeal to evidence and civility, we must find him guilty of illogic and incivility in a community that predicates its work in great part on rational thought and the civil exchange of ideas,” they wrote.
“We seek to create a dynamic community that values full participation. Such efforts are not the ‘destruction of academic integrity’ Professor Rectenwald suggests, but rather what make possible our program’s approach to global studies,” they argued.
And then, immediately:
The same day that letter was published, Rectenwald was summoned to a meeting with his department dean and an HR representative, he says.
“They claimed they were worried about me and a couple people had expressed concern about my mental health,” Rectenwald told The Post.
That's what the Soviet psychiatrists used to say when they jailed dissidents for life. Happy Halloween, Prof. Rectenwald. And welcome to real world of campus political enforcement.