First Amendment enthusiasts are thrilled that Mike Adams, a criminology professor at the University of North Carolina-Wilmington, won his lawsuit against administrators who denied him a promotion because of his conservative, Christian views.
Adams joined the university in 1993. He was an atheist at the time. By the year 2000, he had converted to Christianity and become an outspoken political conservative. He eventually wrote columns for Townhall.com.
In 2006, he was denied a promotion. Administrators were retaliating against him for his conservative views, he claimed.
The jury agreed.
Adams’s lawyers said the victory is an important one for free speech on public university campuses.
“This is an incredibly important victory for the First Amendment,” said Travis Barham, an attorney with the Alliance Defending Freedom, in a statement to Campus Reform. “To be able to speak freely without retaliation is a principle that should be a reality on campus and the jurors reassured that.”
Adams’s conservative views had irked many of his colleagues and some of his students, according to The College Fix.
In one such instance, a student blamed the 911 attacks on U.S. foreign policy. He responded by telling the student that the U.S. Constitution protects her “bigoted, unintelligent and immature” views. She responded by accusing him of harassment.