Monday, December 20, 2004


The issues of gun control and free speech dominate a lawsuit filed by an Oklahoma University geology professor who used a blunt sexual comparison to criticize a pro-gun control newspaper column and later was demoted for that and other perceived transgressions. The letter that geology professor David Deming wrote to the editor of the Oklahoma Daily newspaper in February 2000 argued that the owner of an unregistered gun was no more likely to become a murderer than a woman who had not registered her sex organ was to becoming a prostitute.

The letter prompted 25 charges of sexual harassment against Deming, filed "by people I had never met," he stated in a subsequent column. And while those charges were eventually dropped, Deming believes the letter remained a sore spot for university officials, contributing to their decision to oust him from the Oklahoma University (OU) School of Geology and Geophysics, strip Deming of most of his classes and relocate his office to a basement lab.

Deming's federal lawsuit, filed in July of this year, argues that he was denied academic freedom and it seeks to restore his university position and privileges. The university is seeking to dismiss Deming's complaint and a ruling on that motion is expected soon, according to a press release from the Foundation for Individual Rights in Education (FIRE), the non-profit group assisting Deming.

FIRE states that when Deming originally threatened a First Amendment lawsuit against Oklahoma University, the sexual harassment charges were dropped, but that Deming's letters to the campus newspaper were used against him anyway, in the form of several negative job evaluations.

More here

Texas: Armed homeowner, neighbor fend off intruders: News "Shots fired inside a home in The Heights during a violent home invasion. Moments later, the victim's neighbor tried to help and he started shooting, too. ... Police say it all began with a home invasion. Three people were home when two suspects broke through a glass window to gain entry into the house. Once inside, that's when police say the gun battle began. 'Inside the house they exchanged gunfire with the owner,' explained Officer Lovelace. The tenant fought off the intruders for several minutes. That's when police say others got involved. Shortly after the break in, a neighbor who lives just one door away came running over to this house. That's when he exchanged fire with the suspects."

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