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INSIDE JOB: Mizzou’s New Interim President Made ‘Race-Relations’ Video With Activist Leader

Mike Middleton, the man just named as the interim president of the University of Missouri, worked as a political activist with the protestors who forced out his predecessor.

As NBC reports:

“The University of Missouri’s governing board on Thursday appointed a recently retired administrator to be the university system’s interim president.

The Board of Curators announced that Michael Middleton, 68, will lead the four-campus system until it finds a permanent replacement for Tim Wolfe, who resigned Monday under pressure from students who criticized his administration’s response to a series of racial incidents.”

Middleton retired in August after teaching at the law school for 17 years. But he subsequently worked with the black protestors who created racial tensions by staging a series of direct actions designed to antagonize other students.

Middleton is featured prominently in a video released three weeks ago called  “Response To Skeptics,” which was produced by a video team at the university’s Academic Support Center.

The video opens with Jonathan Butler — the lead activist — leveling political charge at people who don’t accept the black activists’ claim of “racial problems” at the campus, which is located only 120 miles from Ferguson, where the current protests and political campaign began in August 2014.

Then Middleton appears, to insist there is a race-relations problem because race-activists say there is a race-relations problem.

“How can anyone deny there’s a race relations issue on this campus? Are they not listening to the people who are saying their is? Are they calling all these people liars? That’s as bad as calling all of them racist? This is a problem because a huge part of our community agrees that it’s a problem.”

Middleton is a longtime lawyer and political activist in the race-relations sector. His UM biography says:

Professor Middleton joined the law faculty in 1985 after an illustrious career with the federal government in Washington. He was a trial attorney in the Civil Rights Division of the Department of Justice and in 1977 was appointed Assistant Deputy Director of the Office for Civil Rights at the Department of [Health, Education, and Welfare].

After serving as Director of the Office of Systemic Programs for the [Equal Employment Opportunity Commission] and as Principal Deputy Assistant Secretary for Civil Rights at the Department of Education, he was appointed Associate General Counsel of the EEOC’s trial division. He returned to his alma mater from St. Louis, where he was director of the St. Louis district office of the EEOC.

Beginning in 1997 he served as the Interim Vice Provost for Minority Affairs and Faculty Development for the University of Missouri. In 1998 he accepted the position of Deputy Chancellor.

Follow investigative reporter and Citizen Journalism Boot Camp founder Lee Stranahan on Twitter at @Stranahan.

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