Or rather, his attorney has. The Alliance Defense Fund has taken up the case of Dr. Kenneth Howell, the University of Illinois religion professor who was fired essentially because the school couldn’t stand up to a single anonymous complaint from a student thug. David French of the ADF put the case in a nutshell:
A university cannot censor professors’ speech–including classroom speech related to the topic of the class–merely because certain ideas ‘offend’ an anonymous student. To fire a professor for teaching the actual subject matter of his course is outrageous. It’s ridiculous that a school would fire a professor without even giving him a chance to defend himself when he simply taught Catholic beliefs in a class about Catholic beliefs.
The First Amendment protects the ability of faculty to speak freely, especially when the material is of direct relevance to the class. Professors’ careers cannot be made to stand or fall based on the emotions of intolerant, anonymous students who do not yet understand that opposing viewpoints exist within a free society.
Travis Barham of the ADF Center for Academic Freedom has sent the university a letter outlining the facts, offering legal analysis, accusing the university of giving into a “heckler’s veto,” and demanding that Dr. Howell be reinstated. Personally, I almost hope the university balks at doing so. The longer this is before the public, the longer the opportunity to inform the public, using a graphic example, what their publicly-funded universities have all too often become.