An Emory University professor is under fire for reportedly using the n-word during a civil rights lecture.
Outraged freshman students reported that the Law professor Paul Zwier used the racist term in class on August 23, the NY Post reports
“This was like the first, or second day of class for them. They were thrown off,” says student Randy Williams to the Post. “While there may be an explanation on the professor’s side, it was still inappropriate.”
The university said in a statement that the “offensive language was not part of the case law cited. The use of this — or any racial slur — in our community is unacceptable.”
Zweir has since apologized, the student newspaper, The Emory Wheel reported.
Zwier sent the following statement to CBS46 Wednesday night but refused to address his comment head-on or apologize:
“In today’s environment, with race-baiting language used by politicians both nationally and in Georgia and Florida, now is not the time for me to comment on what went on at Emory in my class. It would only be seen as doubling down or trying to create alternative facts, neither of which I want to do. Now is the time to condemn words that divide us rather than unite us, and in the words of John McCain, build walls rather than break them down. I fervently condemn racism and all of it ugliness, and join in on the calls at the rally today for us to be a better community, one that is accepting and respects the dignity of all.”
In light of the campus outrage, the university’s Office of Equity and Inclusion is investigating the matter so they can recommend of what repercussions to levy against the teacher.
James B. Hughes Jr., interim dean of the law school, said he met with the professor and he met with students from the law class which included representatives from Emory’s Black Law Students Association.
“It has been our shared goal to understand what happened and to get some context for how students are feeling and responding and what impact this may have on our broader community,” Hughes said.
“We can — and will — do better,” he said. “We — the university leadership and greater community — are committed to upholding the principles of equity, inclusion, and respect that we all embrace and value at Emory.”