University professor and conservative rabble-rouser Mike Adams was officially denied promotion to full professor today at UNC-Wilmington. Loyal Torch readers are familiar with Adams as he has written dozens of articles on FIRE-related issues over the years. FIRE first became acquainted with Adams back in 2001 when UNC-W decided to invade his private e-mails due to spurious claims that he had libeled a student in the wake of 9/11. As we reported back then:
Four days after the terrorist attacks on New York City and the Pentagon, a student sent [Adams], and others, an e-mail that blamed the United States for the attacks. She asked recipients to forward it to those interested in further “open” discussion. When the professor responded with criticism of her opinions, and when others to whom he forwarded her e-mail responded with forceful criticism, the student demanded that the University grant her access to the professor’s private e-mails so that she could sue him. Although UNC-W’s own legal counsel twice acknowledged that the student’s claims are entirely without legal merit, the administration has nevertheless capitulated to her irrational demands and examined the professor’s private correspondence.
Ever since that incident Adams has been an outspoken critic of the academy writing a regular column for Townhall.com and two books, including Welcome to the Ivory Tower of Babel: Confessions of a Conservative College Professor. He is presently writing “Feminists Say the Darndest Things” for publication with Penguin USA next year. Given, as Jon Sanders over at The Locker Room reports, that Adams is a “two-time professor of the year award-winner,” it seems pretty clear that this decision was made on the basis of his punditry rather than his academic achievements. Adams plans to appeal, and we will be monitoring this case for further developments.