A student was recently suspended for one semester from Orange Coast College in Costa Mesa, California, for filming his professor who referred to the election of President Donald Trump as "an act of terrorism," and called Vice President Mike Pence "anti-gay" in December 2016 (video below).
Caleb O’Neil filmed Olga Pere Stable-Cox's comments about Trump's victory, and shared the video with Campus Reform, which put it on YouTube where it went viral.
According to Campus Reform, O’Neil received an email from the Interim Dean of Students, Victoria Lugo, on Feb. 9:
Unauthorized recording is a serious violation of the Student Code of Conduct. This is clearly stated in the instructor’s course syllabus in addition to the student code of conduct. When we spoke, you stated that you felt badly about the things that had happened to individuals as a result of this incident.
It is my hope that this experience will lead you to truly think through your actions and the consequences of those actions when making decisions in the future. As we discussed, the conduct process is part of the overall college learning process and I do believe that valuable lessons have been gained from this experience.
O’Neil will have to meet with the Dean of Students before he is allowed come back, and will be on disciplinary probation for another semester.
O’Neil also has to write an apology letter to Stable-Cox, and a three-page essay about why he filmed Stable-Cox despite "knowing that it was a violation of the course syllabus."
O’Neil must also include his "thoughts and analysis" as to why he shared the footage, what he thought the results would be for Stable-Cox, and the "ensuing damage to Orange Coast College students, faculty, and staff."
O’Neil has to also tell the college how he will "prevent this from happening again in the future."
If O’Neil fails to complete all the requirements, he could be permanently expelled from the Coast Community College District.
O'Neil and his attorney, William Becker, held a press conference at the college on Feb. 15, notes The Orange County Register.
"I pulled my phone out, because I was honestly scared that I would have repercussions with my grades because she knew I was a Trump supporter," O'Neil said. "I thought Olga was a good teacher."
Becker described the sanctions against O'Neil as "excessive and discriminatory."
Orange County Republican Chairman Fred M. Whitaker said the college's sanctions were "abhorrent" and "clearly affirms their disdain for one of our nation's most cherished freedoms: freedom of speech."