The university that made national headlines in the spring after one of its lecturers asked students to write the name JESUS on paper and step on it has told a local news station that professors are allowed to assign the exercise in class.
Citing academic freedom, WPTV News Channel 5 in Florida interviewed campus officials and learned that educators at Florida Atlantic University can ask students to take part in the notorious exercise that deeply offended at least one student’s religious convictions.
Technically the ‘Jesus Stomp’ exercise is allowed back in the classroom, but that doesn’t mean faculty will use it.
“People will think twice about using that particular exercise in that setting, although there have been faculty who say they want to use it just to make a point,” said professor Tim Lenz.
In a letter to the State University System, FAU’s provost outlined extensive training for faculty come fall. It will focus on how to deal with controversy while respecting academic freedom.
The news report contradicts a statement the university put out shortly after word of the incident broke that stated: “This exercise will not be used again. The University holds dear its core values. We sincerely apologize for any offense this caused. Florida Atlantic University respects all religions and welcomes people of all faiths, backgrounds and beliefs.”
So much for respecting all religions. A professor would never ask students to step on Mohammad, but it’s OK to step on Jesus. He’s used to it, after all.