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Enthusiastic censorship and blacklisting at St. Philip’s College in Texas

St. Philip's College, home to blacklisting and censorship
St. Philip’s College, the poster child of academic
blacklisting and censorship

They’re coming for you next: The university was conceived as a place of where young minds would be exposed to new ideas in order to challenge their youthful assumptions and unbridled certainty, with the determined goal to teach critical thinking. (For those who no longer know what critical thinking is, it is the concept that you question everything rigorously, including most importantly your own assumptions.)

It seems most American colleges no longer practice this. In fact, many now teach the exact opposite. Faced with ideas you don’t like, students are encouraged to complain, and hide in “safe spaces” so they don’t have to question anything.

It also appears that St. Philip’s College in Texas is the poster child of this new “teaching” concept. This semester it fired two different teachers when several anonymous students complained because those professors expressed some basic facts in their classrooms that conflict with the modern queer agenda and the leftist hostility to open debate.

First, Dr. Johnson Varkey was fired in January 2023 because he had the audacity during a November 2022 human anatomy and physiology class to state that human sex is determined by the X and Y chromosomes, a basic fact of biology.

Four students walked out of that class in protest, and then complained to the administration. Within weeks it terminated Varkey, with no due process. In its termination letter [pdf] (part of the response by Varkey’s attorney’s at the non-profit legal firm First Liberty), it claimed

…that the school “received numerous complaints” about his “religious preaching, discriminatory comments about homosexuals and transgender individuals, anti-abortion rhetoric, and misogynistic banter” and that his teaching “pushed beyond the bounds of academic freedom with [his] personal opinions that were offensive to many individuals in the classroom.”

According to First Liberty’s letter, the school’s actions not only violated numerous Texas and federal laws as well as the First Amendment to the Constitution, it fired Varkey for the same classroom statements and coursework he has been teaching there for twenty years, with no complaints at all.

Then St. Philip’s decided that open debate was also a firing offense. The fired professor, Will Moravits, had insisted on allowing open and civil debate in his classrooms, a fact that one anonymous student did not like. This student complained to the administration, stating

that Moravits taught “the LGBTQIA+ community is riddled with pedophilia, the ‘p’ in the LGBTQIA+ community stands for pedophilia and gay pride activists organize parades ‘with 12-year-olds jerking off in them.'” according to a letter sent by Moravits legal team.

This accusation however was not supported in any way by the evidence. Moravits lawyers, provided through funds from the Academic Freedom Alliance, were quickly able to obtain affidavits from two former students, stating exactly the opposing. From one:

A former black student of Moravits submitted an affidavit which stated “when we discussed LGBTQ issues, as usual, Dr. Moravits discussed things fair and square. I don’t recall Dr. Moravits talking about kids ‘jerking off’ at LGBTQ Parades. If he had said something crude like that, I believe I would remember it clearly.”

These disputed facts made no difference to St. Philip’s administration.

After receipt of the complaint, the college escorted Moravits off campus with police and informed him he would be placed on paid leave while the college investigated. During this time Moravits was not allowed to contact any of his colleagues or students to ask them to defend his character and teaching style.

As a result, Moravits was fired on March 27 before he had the chance to defend himself. The college called it “non-renewal,” but when Moravits went to collect his things, the college had four police officers escort him off campus again.

That both professors are suing is encouraging, because it appears both have strong cases. Neither was provided basic due process. The college made no effort in determining the facts, even though the charges against them were blatantly absurd. The firing of Varkey was especially unjust, considering he had been teaching at the college for two decades with no complaints.

St. Philip’s is a public community college with extensive funding from federal and state sources. It seems that the Texas legislature should take a look at that funding, and considering eliminating it. This college might think it is free to censor and bully whoever it wants to, but there is no reason the tax payer should fund such thuggery.

I also wonder why any parent or student would want to go to such a college, unless their goal is to become a close-minded individual with no ability to think. If so, St. Philip’s is for you! I certainly wouldn’t recommend hiring anyone with a degree from this place.

Genesis cover

On Christmas Eve 1968 three Americans became the first humans to visit another world. What they did to celebrate was unexpected and profound, and will be remembered throughout all human history. Genesis: the Story of Apollo 8, Robert Zimmerman's classic history of humanity's first journey to another world, tells that story, and it is now available as both an ebook and an audiobook, both with a foreword by Valerie Anders and a new introduction by Robert Zimmerman.


The print edition can be purchased at Amazon. Or you can buy it directly from the author and get an autographed copy.

The ebook is available everywhere for $5.99 (before discount) at amazon, or direct from my ebook publisher, ebookit. If you buy it from ebookit you don't support the big tech companies and the author gets a bigger cut much sooner.

The audiobook is also available at all these vendors, and is also free with a 30-day trial membership to Audible.

"Not simply about one mission, [Genesis] is also the history of America's quest for the moon... Zimmerman has done a masterful job of tying disparate events together into a solid account of one of America's greatest human triumphs."--San Antonio Express-News


  • Jeff Wright

    In Texas no less…

  • pzatchok

    Soft minded students being backed and encouraged by outside sources.
    Their goal in to disrupt the establishment anyway they can. Even though its the very establishment that gives them the ability to do what they want.

    The university will lose this one.

  • Catch Thirty-Thr33

    I find this embarrassing as I have an A.A. from an Alamo Colleges community college (San Antonio College).

    Maoism is here.

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