Can you be fired for teaching basic biology? That seems to be the case with Professor Johnson Varkey who was fired for “teaching standard principles about human biology and reproduction.” First Liberty Institute is defending him and has filed a complaint with the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) naming St. Philip’s College in San Antonio, Texas.
On my radio program, we talked with several of the lawyers from First Liberty about the case. The professor has taught Human Anatomy and Physiology to more than 1,500 students since 2003. He has always received positive student feedback.
But the student world is changing. You can be considered bigoted for teaching that sex is determined by X and Y chromosomes. Students walked out of his class, complained, and he received a letter of termination in January. Teaching basic biology was labeled as “discriminatory about homosexuals and transgender individuals.”
Although Professor Varkey is a Christian, it is worth noting that many non-Christians are frustrated with attempts by faculty and students to misrepresent basic biology. Back in February, I did a commentary about a secular, evolutionary biology professor at Williams College frustrated that some of her fellow science professors were teaching that sex (not gender) is on a continuum. She pointed to an obvious fact of biology: “sexes are defined by the size of their gametes—that is, their reproductive cells. Large gametes occur in females, small gametes in males.”
The complaint to the EEOC argues that what was done to him by the college is wrong and that he should be able to get his job back. Colleges should not be firing professors for teaching actual science, even if that teaching also aligns with the professor’s religious beliefs.
This post originally appeared at https://pointofview.net/viewpoints/teaching-biology/?utm_source=rss&utm_medium=rss&utm_campaign=teaching-biology