Mizzou Professor Melissa Click has been fired by the board that operates the University of Missouri.
It seems the Mizzou board of curators (as the governing body is called there) has “muscled” Melissa Click out of a job, as it were.
According to the Columbia Daily Tribune, “the board voted 4-2 in favor of termination during a closed session in Kansas City” on Wednesday, but the news of the decision broke today.
Dr. Click, 45, became nationally famous when she was filmed on November 9, 2015, attempting to censor a group of student journalists who were covering the anti-racism protest on campus by the Concerned Students 1950 movement. She could be seen telling one student journalist that he “needs to get out” while calling for “muscle” to block student journalists/videographers from being able to cover the protest on the Columbia campus.
“I need some muscle over here,” the communications professor, who ironically was teaching in the journalism department at the time, yelled to her cohorts in the viral video.
The Mizzou professor’s apparent disregard for the student journalists’ First Amendment rights sparked outrage across the country and attracted a mountain of attention on social media, as the Inquisitr previously reported.
— The Daily Caller (@DailyCaller) February 25, 2016
She was subsequently charged with misdemeanor assault over the incident and was suspended by the school (with pay) two days later pending an investigation by higher-ups.
An apologetic Click recently told local media that the “muscle” incident was an anomaly and that “[she’d] never been involved in anything like this before.”
However, another video that recently emerged suggested otherwise.
The video purports to show Click in a confrontation with law enforcement during the school’s Homecoming Parade on October 10, 2015, in which protesters tried to block a vehicle carrying then-Mizzou President Tom Wolfe.
“Get your f*****g hands off me,” she appears to scold a cop in the police body camera video.
— The College Fix (@CollegeFix) February 15, 2016
In a statement on the Mizzou website, Pam Hendrickson, the chair of the Mizzou board of curators, who reportedly voted against the firing, explained how officials reached their decision to terminate the employment of Professor Melissa Click following an investigation that commented on January 27.
“…The board believes that Dr. Click’s conduct was not compatible with university policies and did not meet expectations for a university faculty member. The circumstances surrounding Dr. Click’s behavior, both at a protest in October when she tried to interfere with police officers who were carrying out their duties, and at a rally in November, when she interfered with members of the media and students who were exercising their rights in a public space and called for intimidation against one of our students, we believe demands serious action.
“The board respects Dr. Click’s right to express her views and does not base this decision on her support for students engaged in protest or their views. However, Dr. Click was not entitled to interfere with the rights of others, to confront members of law enforcement or to encourage potential physical intimidation against a student..”
Click can appeal her termination, a process that could take a good deal of time in the public sector environment, in which separations of this nature are anything but the norm.
In an accompanying statement, Interim Chancellor Hank Foley expressed complete agreement that Melissa Click’s termination “is in the best interest of our university.” Upon the released of the second video earlier this month, Foley deemed the professor’s behavior appalling and that it suggested a pattern of misconduct.
About 100 Missouri elected officials previously called for Melissa Click to be fired.
Critics have charged that Mizzou and many other universities across America have become politically correct bastions whose inclusion efforts don’t extend to diversity of opinion.
Wolfe stepped down as Mizzou president on November 9 under pressure from the protests in part because of a hunger strike by graduate student Jonathan Butler.
As to her Mizzou termination which was voted on yesterday, “Dr. Click had no immediate response, according to Status Labs, a public-relations firm that has been working for her,” the New York Times reported.
[Photo by Mark Schierbecker/AP]