Gordon Klein, a lecturer in accounting at the Anderson School of Management at UCLA, who has been at UCLA for 40 years, filed a lawsuit against the Dean of his school for damages after he was suspended for what he alleges as refusing to mark the work of black and white students by different criteria.
He was suspended briefly by UCLA in the summer of 2020, amidst the protests about George Floyd’s death. Klein said he was suing for unspecified damages “not only to redress the wrongful conduct he has endured, but also to protect academic freedom.” He said in the court documents that he “suffered severe emotional distress, trauma, and physical ailments for which he has been treated by his primary care physician, a gastrointestinal physician, and a psychiatrist.”
The documents state: “Plaintiff also has suffered substantial loss of income,” and explained that while Klein, who is tenured, was reinstated to his job, he has lost out on corporate work and expert witness which comprised the majority of his income.
Klein, writing on Weiss’ Substack on Thursday, said he found the request “deeply patronizing and offensive to the same black students he claimed to care so much about.” He replied to the student: “Are there any students that may be of mixed parentage, such as half black half-Asian? What do you suggest I do with respect to them? A full concession or just half?”
“Also, do you have any idea if any students are from Minneapolis? I assume that they are probably especially devastated as well. I am thinking that a white student from there might possibly be even more devastated by this, especially because some might think that they’re racist even if they are not.” He concluded that he would not mark students’ work differently based on the color of their skin.
“I have a law degree, and I’m pretty sure the university’s EDI agenda violates Proposition 209, the California Constitution’s prohibition against race-based preferences in public education,” he wrote. “Voters enacted this decades ago and reaffirmed it, last year, at the ballot box. So, I opted to follow the state Constitution and my conscience.”