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April 13, 2006

University Librarian Recommends Conservative Books To Students, Then Gets Hit With Sexual Harrassment Rap

Corrected.

Outrageous.


Officials at the Ohio State University are investigating an OSU Mansfield librarian for “sexual harassment” after he recommended four conservative books for a freshman reading program. ADF has demanded that OSU cease its frivolous investigation, yet the university is pressing forward, claiming that it takes the charges “seriously.”

“Universities are one of the most hostile places for Christians and conservatives in America,” said ADF Senior Legal Counsel David French, who heads ADF’s Center for Academic Freedom. “It is shameful that OSU would investigate a Christian librarian for simply recommending books that are at odds with the prevailing politics of the university.”

Scott Savage, who serves as a reference librarian for the university, suggested four best-selling conservative books for freshman reading in his role as a member of OSU Mansfield’s First Year Reading Experience Committee. The four books he suggested were The Marketing of Evil by David Kupelian, The Professors by David Horowitz, Eurabia: The Euro-Arab Axis by Bat Ye’or, and It Takes a Family by Senator Rick Santorum. Savage made the recommendations after other committee members had suggested a series of books with a left-wing perspective, by authors such as Jimmy Carter and Maria Shriver.

Savage was put under “investigation” by OSU’s Office of Human Resources after three professors filed a complaint of discrimination and harassment against him, saying that the book suggestions made them feel “unsafe.” The complaint came after the OSU Mansfield faculty voted without dissent to file charges against Savage. The faculty later voted to allow the individual professors to file charges.

On March 28, ADF sent OSU officials a letter informing them of Savage’s constitutional rights. A copy of the letter can be read at www.telladf.org/UserDocs/OSUMansfieldletter.pdf. The university so far has declined to stop the investigation, saying in its response that it takes “any allegation of sexual harassment seriously.”

“The OSU Mansfield faculty is attempting to label a librarian as a ‘sexual harasser’ because they disagree with his book suggestions,” said French. “It is astonishing that an entire faculty would vote to launch a sexual harassment investigation because a librarian offered book suggestions in a committee whose purpose was to solicit such suggestions.”

If true, it's a new form of Oleanna Stalinism. If an adult professor cries "harrassment" because she doesn't like a librarian's book suggestions, the faculty jumps to investigate, rather than dismissing the charges as unhinged crankery... so long as she targets the right sort of "harrasser."

Thanks to Andrew's Dad.

Correction: I initally misread this and thought the charges came from students. I also expressed some skepticism at the story, thinking that maybe there wasn't a real connection between the books and the harrassment charge.

Given the fact that these charges come from adult fucking women claiming to feel "unsafe" based on book recommendations, I retract all skepticism. This is unbelievable.

Thanks again to Andrew's Dad for correcting me.

Oleanna... is worth a rental, if you haven't seen it. It's stagey, it's a little slow, it's got David Mamet showing off his capacity for fractured oddly-cadence psuedodialogue, but it's pretty good. It's pretty much precisely what's happened to this librarian, only it was presented in 1994 as a cautionary tale that could probably never, ever happen.

One thing that perplexes me: Reviewers, and the film's tag-line, think this is a play with no clear hero or villain. That's jackass. If that's what Mamet intended, he failed (and he's even more lefty than I imagined-- how could he imagine the false-sexual-harassment-accuser in this play is anything but an unhinged villainess?). It's not that the man is hero; it's just that his female student is clearly the villain.

I guess that shows how far gone our elite media really are. They actually think this play is ambiguous.

Proper Credit: To Andrew's Dad. I got my tipsters mixed up the first time around.


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posted by Ace at 09:39 PM

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