When former First Lady Barbra Bush passed away Tuesday, one university professor penned some shocking tweets. The messages were full of hatred for the Bush family, and celebrated Barbara Bush’s death. They immediately went viral, and the professor claimed there wasn’t anything anyone could do about her tweets becasue she is a tenured professor. Now, though, her university is looking into the matter.
When backlash poured in, Randa Jarrar–a professor at Fresno State University–used her tenure as a shield. “LOL! Let me help you,” she tweeted. “You should tag my president @JosephICastro. What I love about being an American professor is my right to free speech, and what I love about Fresno State is that I always feel protected and at home here. GO BULLDOGS!”
Joseph Castro got the messages, apparently. On Tuesday, Castro seemed to stand behind Jarrar’s right to say whatever she wanted, and even noted that her words had nothing to do with her role as a professor. Then he held a news conference Wednesday to discuss the school’s role in the growing public relations nightmare.
“A professor with tenure does not have blanket protection to say and do what they wish,” Castro said Wednesday. “We are all held accountable for our actions.”
“This was beyond free speech. This was disrespectful,” he added.
So what will be done? He’s looking into that. It seems unlikely that Jarrar will be fired.”One set of tweets, as horrible as they were, do not define us,” Castro said.
Professor Randa Jarrar started her rant against the Bushes on Twitter when she was apparently tired of reading all the tweets honoring Bush.
Jarrar wrote that she was “happy the witch is dead.”
Jarrar added she was glad that George W. Bush was sad.
When other tweets admonished Jarrar and called for her resignation, Jarrar replied: “sweetie i work as a tenured professor. I make 100K a year doing that. i will never be fired. i will always have people wanting to hear what i have to say. even you are one of them! <3.”
According to Fox News, thousands of proud Americans flocked to Fresno State’s Twitter account with the hopes of putting an end to Jarrar’s hateful rant.
Since her Twitter rant, Jarrar has made her Twitter private to prevent others from commenting on her social media account.
Jarrar may have even left the country. “I’m still fabulous, thanks for checking in,” she posted. “Love to all of you who have sent support,” she wrote.