A Creighton University professor of theology recently referred to an Omaha, Nebraska pro-law enforcement “Back the Blue” demonstration as a “white supremacist rally” which would “showcase Midwestern racism.”
It’s not known what prompted Professor Zachary Smith to make the tweet; he’s since deleted not only the tweet in question but his entire Twitter account. He did respond to a Fix inquiry about his comments.
The “Back the Blue” event, scheduled for Saturday morning at the city’s Memorial Park, will feature speakers and music performances.
According to a Facebook post by the Creighton College Republicans, Omaha Police Officers Association President Anthony Connor noted that every speaker at the gathering is a member of a minority group, including the first black president of the OPOA.
Creighton CRs President Tyler Henningsen said Professor Smith’s comments “are not just morally repugnant, they are a slap in the face of law enforcement officers who risk their lives every day …”
The CRs added that if Smith does not offer a public apology, he should resign.
Virgil Patlan, an Hispanic former Omaha police officer whose wife will be speaking at the Saturday event, told KFAB‘s Scott Vorhees that he’d “never been called a white supremacist before.”
According to his faculty page, Professor Smith’s scholarship deals mainly with “late antique, medieval, and Byzantine Christianity, focusing on asceticism and monasticism, and the relationship between Christianity and Greco-Roman society.” Aside from religion courses, Smith also teaches in the Women and Gender Studies Program.
IMAGES: RT Images / Shutterstock.com, Twitter archive screencaps, Creighton.edu screencap