A professor at Wilfrid Laurier University in Canada will return to the classroom after he accused a teaching assistant of violating the law for showing a television clip featuring Jordan Peterson.
Wilfrid Laurier Professor Nathan Rambukkana came under a torrent of criticism after audio leaked of him berating a teaching assistant over her decision to play a public television debate clip that featured Jordan Peterson speaking on the topic of transgender pronouns. Now, Rambukkana is returning to the classroom.
In the original meeting between the two parties, Rambukkana accused Shepherd of violating Canadian law, simply for playing a public television debate clip.
Rambukkana: — Gendered and Sexual Violence Policy. Do you understand how —
Shepherd: Sorry, what did I violate in that policy?
Joel: Um, so, gender-based violence, transphobia, in that policy. Causing harm, um, to trans students by, uh, bringing their identity as invalid. Their pronouns as invalid — potentially invalid.
Shepherd: So I caused harm?
Joel: — which is, under the Ontario Human Rights Code a protected thing so something that Laurier holds as a value.
Shepherd: Ok, so by proxy me showing a YouTube video I’m transphobic and I caused harm and violence? So be it. I can’t do anything to control that.
Rambukkana: Ok, so that’s not something that you have an issue with? The fact that that happened? Are you sorry that it happened?
Shepherd: I know in my heart, and I expressed to the class, that I’m not transphobic and if any of them — again, I don’t know what they said — but I don’t think I gave away any kind of political position of mine. I remained very neutral, and uh—
Rambukkana: —that’s kind of the problem.
Lindsay Shepherd, the teaching assistant, tweeted on Thursday that she had learned that Prof. Nathan Rambukkana would return to the classroom in the spring.
Ok everyone, I have an important update. Do you remember Prof. Nathan Rambukkana of @Laurier University? He is the one who hauled me into a disciplinary meeting because I played a clip from @TVO (public televsion) in the class I was TAing. He was my supervisor.
— Lindsay Shepherd (@NewWorldHominin) December 20, 2018
Rambukkana specifically accused Shepherd of violating the Canadian Human Rights Code, specifically C-16, which makes it illegal to target someone based on their gender identity.
“So the thing about this is, if you’re presenting something like this, you have to think about the kind of teaching climate that you’re creating,” Rambukkana said on the recording. “And this is actually, these arguments are counter to the Canadian Human Rights Code. Even since … C-16, ever since this passed, it is discriminatory to be targeting someone due to their gender identity or gender expression.”
You can watch the original television debate clip below.