Tag: slurs

Professor who tweeted homophobic slurs placed on leave

Thomas Brennan Ferris State University Michigan

Thomas Brennan was placed on administrative leave by Ferris State University (Facebook/Twitter)

A Michigan university professor who tweeted “racist, anti-Semitic and homophobic slurs” and dismissed COVID-19 as a “leftist stunt” has been placed on administrative leave.

Thomas Brennan, an assistant physical science professor at the Ferris State University in Michigan, was placed on leave on Thursday (November 19) after student newspaper The Torch shared screenshots of tweets he posted in which he used racist and homophobic slurs.

In a bizarre and lengthy statement posted to his own website, Brennan said the student newspaper’s article was a “hit piece”.

“This controversy started after I made a few statements in a College of Arts and Sciences meeting of faculty and staff about the COVID-19 pandemic,” Brennan wrote.

“My statements were to the effect that I believe the COVID-19 pandemic is a stunt designed to enslave humanity and strip us all of our rights and freedoms.”

Michigan professor Thomas Brennan claimed the severity of COVID-19 has been ‘exaggerated’ by ‘leftists’.

While Brennan said he does not believe the COVID-19 pandemic is a “hoax”, he claimed its severity has been “exaggerated by revolutionary leftists in the media and government”, despite the fact that 1.4 million people have died from the virus worldwide.

He went on to defend his use of slurs on Twitter, saying he likes to “test the boundaries of language and ideas” and will “sometimes say some things that sound inflammatory or strange”.

“It’s been my way of ‘poking the dragon.’ Until now, it’s gone unnoticed, but I have finally caught the attention of the ‘cancel culture’,” Brennan wrote.

In his statement, Brennan did not reference his use of homophobic slurs, but claimed that he used the N-word because he wanted to “neutralise its power”.

Brennan went on to wheel out bizarre conspiracy theories in his statement, suggesting that atomic bombs are not real and that the moon landings were faked.

Our students, faculty, staff and members of the community are upset and offended by these comments, and they should be.

University president David L Eisler condemned Brennan’s comments in a statement released on Monday (November 23).

“Last week the university learned of racist, anti-Semitic and homophobic slurs made on Twitter that appear to be posted by Thomas Brennan, an assistant physical science professor in the College of Arts, Sciences and Education,” Eisler wrote.

“Individually and collectively we were shocked and outraged by these tweets. They are extremely offensive and run counter to the values of our university and our commitment to diversity, equity and inclusion.

“Our students, faculty, staff and members of the community are upset and offended by these comments, and they should be.”

Eisler also referenced a staff meeting in August, at which Brennan, over Zoom, claimed that COVID-19 death rates had been exaggerated. At that meeting, Brennan claimed that the pandemic and rioting were “leftist stunts”, Eisler wrote.

“Our university was founded on the concept that education is for all of the people all of the time, that all people are welcome here. We strongly reject these statements, condemn them and will not tolerate them.

“We have worked diligently to become a more diverse university, and these statements demonstrate vividly how one person can set back the work of many.

“I call on our university community to come together, to discuss these challenges and to begin to repair the damage from these actions,” Eisler concluded.

 

Iain Lee criticises BBC for allowing caller to use racist slurs live on air

Broadcaster Iain Lee comes out as bisexual

Broadcaster Iain Lee has criticised the BBC for allowing a caller to use racist slurs and make threatening remarks about gay people on air.

The BBC has faced backlash after married couple Mandeep “Sunny” and Gursharonjit “Shay” Grewal allowed a caller to remain on the air despite repeating racist slurs and threats about gay people.

The incident, which occurred on Sunny and Shay’s BBC Radio London show, saw a caller phone in during a chat about board games to mark National Monopoly Day on Friday (20 November).

The caller said: “Since I have moved to London from Greece, I have played Monopoly with my friend,” Metro reports.

“But in my country we play a game where you are a white nationalist and kill all the n*****s and gays.”

An uncomfortable sounding Shay simply replied: “Right,” but the caller was allowed to remain on air.

Why did BBC London allow a caller on to say ‘I f**king hate n-words and gays’ over and over again?

Sunny then asked the caller: “Maybe I’m losing you in translation. Explain to me when did you first discover Monopoly?”

After the caller explained their version of Monopoly, Sunny said: “Thank you for sharing that with us, I really appreciate that,” and went on to ask the caller if they wanted to “add to the conversation” about the ongoing controversy surrounding Priti Patel.

The caller replied: “I want to say that I f**king hate n*****s.”

The comment finally prompted the show’s presenters to terminate the call, with Sunny apologising to listeners.

“I don’t understand where he was going with that conversation but he’s obviously someone who doesn’t understand how you come on to engage here on the radio,” Sunny said.

The caller repeated the racist slur eight times on air, and also made a number of anti-gay remarks.

Iain Lee hit out at BBC Radio for allowing a caller to make racist and homophobic comments on air

Iain Lee, who used to present a show on talkRADIO, hit out the presenters and producers of the show on Twitter, writing: “Why did BBC London allow a caller on to say ‘I f**king hate n-words and gays’ over and over again? Absolutely incredible listening. The host asked him more questions after he’d said it!”

He continued: “It makes me so angry. Amateur hour with kids producing. And I can’t get a gig.”

When Lee faced criticism from Twitter users who insisted that the incident was a “mistake”, he replied: “One n-word is a mistake. Eight or nine is incompetence on the part of the presenters and producers. One threat to kill a gay person is one too many.

“I’m not accusing them and the producer of racism, but dangerous incompetence that can’t be allowed.”

A spokesperson for the BBC told Metro: “An on-air apology was made and it has been removed from BBC Sounds. This was clearly a malicious call and we are looking into how this happened.”