Ted Ruger, Dean of the University of Pennsylvania Carey School of Law, said he would seek sanctions against tenured law professor Amy Wax over discriminatory remarks she made about the Asian American community.
In an interview with economist Glen Loury on Bloggingheads.tv, Wax commented about Asians immigrating to the U.S.
“If you go into medical schools, you’ll see that Indians, South Asians are now rising stars. In medicine, they’re sort of the new Jews, I guess, but this diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives are poisoning the scientific establishment and the medical establishment now.”
Wax’s comments received criticism in a form of a letter from a listener, to which she responded to “Maybe it’s just that Democrats love open borders, and Asians want more Asians here,” she wrote. “Perhaps they (and especially their distaff element) are just mesmerized by the feel-good cult of ‘diversity.’ I don’t know the answer. But as long as most Asians support Democrats and help to advance their positions, I think the United States is better off with fewer Asians and less Asian immigration.”
In a statement, Dead Ted Ruger said that he had received multiple complaints since 2017 citing Wax’s behavior as disruptive to students and the school community.
Ruger wrote, “Professor Amy Wax has repeatedly made derogatory public statements about the characteristics, attitudes, and abilities of a majority of those who study, teach, and work here. The complaints assert that it is impossible for students to take classes from her without a reasonable belief that they are being treated with discriminatory animus.”
He also released a statement on the university’s website two weeks ago condemning Wax’s comments as “thoroughly anti-intellectual and racist.”
It was not the first time Wax has made headlines for her inflammatory remarks.
In 2006, faculty members at Penn Law condemned her stance against same-sex marriage. In a 2017 interview on “The Glenn Show,” she made an offensive comment about Black students, and how she has never “seen a Black student graduate in the top quarter of the class, and rarely, rarely in the top half.”
A nonprofit organization called, The Academic Freedom Alliance (AFA) released a letter this month supporting Wax’s right to free speech. They have stated that Was should bear no formal consequences as the result of these public statements and that regardless of her political view, the only appropriate action that the University of Pennsylvania should take is to publicly reaffirm the free speech rights of the members of its faculty.
On the other hand, Penn Law students started a petition this month demanding that the school take action against Wax, citing her “offensive and obviously racist” statements; and in a letter, several Philadelphia City Council members asked university President Amy Gutmann to further investigate Wax’s position, saying her comments fuel hateful actions and beliefs against Asian Americans.