On March 4th, 2013, Ryan Rotela, an active Mormon who is a junior at Florida Atlantic University, was in a class on Intercultural Communications when the professor, Dr. Deandre Poole, told the students to take out a piece of paper, write the word JESUS on it in bold letters, and then put the paper on the floor and stomp on it. According to WorldNetDaily, the exercise was from the textbook “Intercultural Communication: A Contextual Approach, 5th Edition", and here's the synopsis:
“Have the students write the name JESUS in big letters on a piece of paper Ask the students to stand up and put the paper on the floor in front of them with the name facing up. Ask the students to think about it for a moment. After a brief period of silence instruct them to step on the paper. Most will hesitate. Ask why they can’t step on the paper. Discuss the importance of symbols in culture.”
Rotela told Dr. Poole that he was offended and refused to participate. Two days later, Rotela went to Dr. Poole's supervisor, an associate professor at FAU, to discuss his concerns; the school responded by suspending Rotela from the class after a hearing officer accused Rotela of "threatening" Dr. Poole.
After Rotela went public, FAU initially responded with this statement to the media: "Faculty and students at academic institutions pursue knowledge and engage in open discourse. While at times the topics discussed may be sensitive, a university environment is a venue for such dialogue and debate." Nevertheless, the story went viral, with The Blaze and WorldNetDaily picking it up. On March 22nd, FAU finally issued a more detailed statement saying that no student was expelled, suspended, or disciplined for refusing to participate in the exercise, adding that the exercise will not be used again, and apologizing for any offense caused. Rotela accepts FAU's apology, but still insists he was told he was suspended.
A commenter to The Blaze provided more information on Dr. Deandre Poole. Dr. Poole teaches courses in intercultural communication, ethnicity and communication, leadership and communication, and organizational communication. His research focuses on the role mediated messages play in shaping individual attitudes and beliefs concerning issues of justice and inequality, and examines how leaders, organizations, and other influential authorities dominate and oppress marginalized groups of people. Currently, he is authoring the book, Obamamania: The Rise of a Mythical Hero, to be published by the Edwin Mellen Press.
However, FrontPageMag reveals that Dr. Poole is also the Vice Chair of the Palm Beach County Democratic Party, serving as as a precinct captain for Precinct 7021 in West Palm Beach, as a club officer for the Together We Stand Democratic Club, and a member of the West Palm Beach Democratic Club. His political activities involve community empowerment, and working with community leaders and elected officials to insure the needs of all people. This should be no surprise, since the Democratic Party tends to be hospitable towards anti-Christian and anti-White bigots. His party boss, Palm Beach County Democratic Chairwoman Terrie Rizzo, said Poole was merely following an exercise in a textbook used in the course.
This is why Mormons are better off attending college in the BYU system or at Southern Virginia University where LDS standards prevail. Viable alternatives would include solid Christian schools like Liberty University, or perhaps the secular universities in Utah such as the U of Utah, UVU, Weber State, SUU, or Dixie State. No self-respecting member of our Church should attend a secular university unless absolutely unavoidable; professors are almost overwhelming liberal or progressive, and are incredibly bigoted against people of faith and White males. Some campuses refuse to pursue rape allegations vigorously and blame women for causing rape. Our secular universities are cultural cesspools.