IHE has the story, and here is the quite unbelievable letter from the Marquette Dean, which shows he understands neither academic freedom nor tenure despite citing the AAUP principles. (See the useful discussion by John K. Wilson.) The Dean's disgraceful letter does include a transcript of the exchange between the philosophy instructor attacked by McAdams and her student, and as far as I can see, McAdams is correct to assert that the transcript supports a number of the original allegations he made. But the accuracy of his blog post isn't the issue; the issue is whether it's really the case that a tenured faculty member in one department can not blog about the professional conduct of instructors in other departments. Is it really a detenuring and firing offense at Marquette to do so unless it is 100% accurate and is based on due diligence in telling the complete story and from all angles? Apparently.
(The last time I blogged about this sorry episode, a junior philosopher elsewhere took to cyberspace to denounce my "cognitive dissonance"; when I asked him to explain the dissonance, he pointed to the fact that I had sided with a student and against a faculty member in a sexual harassment case. As I pointed out, sexual harassment in the workplace is, in fact, unlawful, even when carried out with speech. Criticism of someone's pedagogy is not unlawful, or at least not yet! This simple distinction was apparently lost on this PhD in philosophy, alas, who, I infer, subscribes to the New Infantilism principle: "Any criticism by a tenured person of a student is an offense against decency." Alarmingly, this now appears to be Marquette's "official" position.)
UPDATE: I suppose I shouldn't be surprised that Justin Weinberg (South Carolina), the leading cyber-cheerleader of the New Infantilism, should be on the wrong side of this issue, but his comment in response to someone pointing out, correctly, that Marquette's action is a "chilling attack on academic freedom" is unbelievable:
It is nothing of the kind. McAdams is not being disciplined because of his research, his teaching, his academic views, nor his political views. He is being disciplined because he recklessly, libelously, and obnoxiously used students and colleagues at Marquette in an attempt to advance his own agenda.
Remarkably, over 100 readers "liked" this nonsensical comment. The AAUP statement on academic freedom includes freedom to make extramural statements among the components of academic freedom, and I would be surprised if Marquette did not endorse the AAUP statement and incorporate it, contractually, with its faculty. (One might make a stronger claim: namely, that academic freedom ought to protect the right of faculty to criticize institutional practices, including pedagogical ones.) Although there has been a lot of bluster by Weinberg and others about "falsehoolds" and "libel," it simply isn't clear, even from the Dean's letter, that McAdams actually said anything false, let alone libelous. (In any case, there are remedies for libel that do not include revocation of tenure.) One can agree that McAdams behaved obnoxiously, but that is not a firing offense, at least not consistent with tenure. What the difference is between "us[ing] students and colleagues...in an attempt to advance his own agenda" and "criticizing the pedagogical practices of a colleague" I do not know. Is Weinberg's criticism of McAdams "an attempt to advance his own agenda" (promoting the New Infantilism) at the expense of McAdams? If not, why not? (Faculty are not, in any case, under a generalized Kantian obligation to treat everyone as an end, never as a means!)
Even worse, in the same thread, someone who supports Marquette's actions writes:
[W]hen I see comments such as the ones from the first commenter “This is an absolutely chilling attack on academic freedom, and I hope the philosophy community will condemn it as such” (and the 17 “likes it has at this point), it makes me truly appalled to know that I am part of a profession whose members are willing to prioritize a tenured male’s freedom of speech over the safety of women graduate students and their reputation.
But McAdams, in his speech, did not threaten anyone's safety; others did, but McAdams is not legally responsible for that, nor should he be, at least if one thinks freedom of speech deserves some protection, even for men. One may hope this comment was posted by a benighted undergraduate who might yet revise his/her view with the benefit of more education and experience.