After the University of Texas at Austin’s faculty Senate passed a pro-critical race theory resolution, Lt. Gov Dan Patrick is demanding an end to tenure for all new hires.
“They’ve gone too far,” Patrick said in a press conference on Friday.
Under the tenure system, professors cannot be fired until their name is reviewed, which occurs every six years.
Patrick proposes ending the tenure system for new hires and altering it for existing tenured professors by adding a language amendment to the good cause section of their contract.
This language clause would revoke tenure from professors who adhere to CRT, which Patrick defines as teaching “that we are inherently racist as a nation.”
According to Patrick, the faculty have brought this upon themselves by refusing to acknowledge say from parents or the taxpayers who fund their universities.
“Work contracts can be broken for good cause,” Patrick said, adding that there is no reason that these tenured professors’ contracts cannot also be broken for good cause.
Citing support from UT donors, members of the board of regents, and parents of UT students, Patrick said the response to his denunciation of the faculty Senate’s decision has been overwhelmingly positive.
“We’re not gonna pay for this [indoctrination],” said Patrick.
Even the idea that a small group of professors believes they can cite academic freedom as an excuse for requiring students to adhere to the CRT ideology is absurd, according to Patrick. He suggested those professors raise their own funds and teach at a private school instead.
Patrick says that the purpose of anti-CRT legislation is not to hide the history of racism in America. In fact, Patrick called slavery and racism one of America’s biggest sins, alongside abortion. He reflected on his own memories of separate facilities for those of different races, but added that he does not believe that separating people into the categories of oppressor and oppressed is the answer to dealing with the past.
“Critical race theory people are trying to take us back to a divided country,” said Patrick.
Patrick also said his proposal had the support of State Sen. Brandon Creighton (R–Conroe), who currently chairs the Senate’s Higher Education Committee.