A recent article in the Chronicle of Higher Education tells of Dr. Mike S. Adams, an associate professor of criminology at the University of North Carolina at Wilmington, who recently applied for promotion to full professor.
He had been at the university for 13 years. In that time, he had published 10 peer-reviewed papers and won three teaching awards. Not that there weren’t bumps along the way, but his record, he believed, was better than most.
So when he was turned down, Mr. Adams started asking questions. The official word was that he hadn’t measured up in any of the three crucial categories — teaching, publishing, or service. He didn’t believe that for a minute. The real reason he wasn’t promoted, according to Mr. Adams, is that he’s a Christian.
The article goes on to explore whether it is religion or politics that is sometimes the source of discrimination. It quotes Randall Balmer, a professor of American religious history at Barnard College, an ordained Episcopal minister and a self-described liberal evangelical. Balmer acknowledges that there is a liberal bias in the academe, and is thankful for it. But no religious bias, says Balmer.
I tend to agree with Dr. Albert Mohler on this one. Mohler notes:
The more openly a professor’s worldview is tied to Christian commitments, the larger the problem becomes. When the professor’s worldview and political commitments are those shared by his or her secular colleagues the social and professional cost of Christian identification is likely to be low. When those commitments and worldviews diverge the cost is likely to be far higher.