Michigan State U. Professor Is Under Fire for Denouncing Republicans in Class

A professor of creative writing at Michigan State University is under fire from conservatives after he was recorded by a student railing against Republicans and “closet racists” in class last week, the Detroit Free Press reported.

The video was posted online by the conservative group Campus Reform, which describes itself as a news site that “exposes bias, abuse, waste, and fraud on the nation’s college campuses.” The group says the video shows the professor, William S. Penn, attacking Republicans on the first day of a creative-writing class last Thursday. In the video, the professor is heard saying that Republicans are cheap and “don’t want to pay taxes because they have already raped this country and gotten everything out of it they possibly could.”

Mr. Penn is a noted Native American author and scholar who often writes about issues of identity and stereotypes. The newspaper said he could not be reached for comment on Wednesday.

Kent Cassella, a spokesman for Michigan State, told the Free Press that the university’s provost was reviewing the situation. “At MSU,” he said, “it is important the classroom environment is conducive to a free exchange of ideas and is respectful of the opinions of others.”

Return to Top