The Colorado courts have set a dangerous precedent by ruling that tenured professors investigated or fired in retaliation for exercising their First Amendment rights have no effective legal remedy. Ward Churchill’s attorneys have asked the U.S. Supreme court to decide these issues:
I. Does a bad faith investigation of all of a tenured professor’s writings and public speeches, undertaken by state university officials in retaliation for the exercise of constitutionally protected speech and with the stated purpose of finding grounds for termination, violate a clearly established right and create a free-standing First Amendment cause of action?
II. Should absolute, quasi-judicial immunity completely shield a state university and its board of regents’ termination decisions, even when a jury has determined that these officials fired a tenured professor in retaliation for speech protected by the First Amendment and would not have fired him but for his exercise of free speech?
Click here to read the petition.