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Penn wants to slash conservative professor’s pay


Amy Wax continues to fight ‘major sanctions’

The University of Pennsylvania wants to cut a conservative professor’s pay in half as part of its sanctions against her.

Former law school Dean Ted Ruger’s efforts to punish Wax for comments she has made through the years, including criticizing Asian immigration into the country, are now coming to fruition.

Ruger called for “major sanctions” against Wax (pictured) in 2022. Those “major sanctions” now include “a one-year suspension at half pay with benefits intact,” according to The Philadelphia Inquirer.

The faculty hearing board recommended the punishment in June 2023, but the news of Wax’s appeal was only recently reported. The newspaper reported yesterday:

The hearing board also recommended: a public reprimand issued by university leadership, the loss of her named chair and summer pay, and a requirement to note in her public appearances that she is not speaking for or as a member of the Penn Carey Law school or Penn, according to the sources, who spoke on condition of anonymity because they are not authorized to speak on the matter.

Then-President Liz Magill supported the sanctions, the newspaper reported. Magill has since resigned following controversy over her response to antisemitism on campus.

Penn Professor Jonathan Zimmerman told The Philadelphia Inquirer he supports Wax’s freedom to speak in public, but supports sanctions against her for classroom comments.

“I don’t think she should be fired for that, but there should be accountability for it,” the Heterodox Academy member told the newspaper, in apparent reference to allegedly “racist” comments she made to students.

Zimmerman is on the committee looking into Wax’s appeal.

Dean Ruger also removed Wax from teaching mandatory first-year courses in 2018 after she said, “I don’t think I’ve ever seen a black student graduate in the top quarter of the [law school] class, and rarely, rarely in the top half.”

The university would not provide data to rebut Wax’s claim, as previously reported by The Fix.

Wax has remained in the spotlight.

Black students called for her to be fired last fall after she invited self-described “white advocate” Jared Taylor to speak to her class. She previously found herself in trouble for inviting Taylor to speak to a law class.

“By allowing Wax to remain employed by the Law School, Penn Carey Law has normalized a culture of white supremacy,” the Black Law Students Association stated.

It is not just conservative professors who find themselves facing scrutiny at Penn.

A professor who has previously denounced President Donald Trump found himself the target of a complaint because he allowed for debate on sex and gender.

Anthropologist Theodore Schurr “encouraged discussion” in his “Human Nature” course, finding himself removed from teaching it in 2019.

Allowed to teach the class again, he “encouraged discussion of why trans healthcare could be controversial, opening up some students’ points that ‘a fair number of people detransition,’ that ‘taxes should not be spent on trans healthcare and should instead be going to a useful place like the military,’ and that ‘the treatment of transgender people is driven by big pharma who just want the money,” one student told The Fix.

Editor’s note: Taylor’s description of himself as a “white advocate” has been added in place of “white supremacist.”

MORE: Penn affiliates want merit and ‘intellectual diversity’ to guide university

IMAGE: Greg Piper

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About the Author
Associate Editor
Matt has previously worked at Students for Life of America, Students for Life Action and Turning Point USA. While in college, he wrote for The College Fix as well as his college newspaper, The Loyola Phoenix. He holds a B.A. from Loyola University-Chicago and an M.A. from the University of Nebraska-Omaha. He lives in northwest Indiana with his family.