Good Epoch Times article about my case

Unfortunately it’s behind a paywall. Here are some excerpts:

Having a dissenting view within the prevailing orthodoxies of many universities today can lead to “a death by a thousand cuts,” according to a lawyer who specializes in constitutional law. Samantha Harris, with Allen Harris Law in Connecticut, represents Stephen Porter, a professor at North Carolina State University (NCSU). Porter filed a lawsuit on Sept. 14, alleging that faculty members in his department were discriminating against him, violating both his First and Fourteenth Amendment rights by retaliating against his free speech. “In some ways, it’s nothing new,” Harris told The Epoch Times, “but what I’ve observed in recent years is these institutions have gotten smarter in knowing that they can’t just fire someone.” Over the last 20 years, Harris said she’s seen multiple strategies on how universities censor unpopular speech of faculty and students.

Rather than termination or direct punishment, Harris said the latest is the adoption of an incremental strategy, in which the institution subjects the dissenter to investigations, removal from committees, and accusations of professionalism violations. This subtle death by a thousand cuts can complicate the livelihood for someone who expresses an unpopular belief, Harris said, and blur the line between First Amendment rights and the institution’s overreach. “It can make it difficult for people to advance their careers, as well as to get justice for what’s happening to them,” Harris said.

On the predominant social justice ideologies being debated—such as what Porter said he was contesting at NCSU—Harris said she avoids using phrases like Critical Race Theory (CRT), the Marxist philosophy that suggests society is a class struggle between oppressors and the oppressed, labeling white people as the oppressors and all other races as the oppressed. “That’s become shorthand for what I would call this very race-focused view looking at how we should as a country deal with issues of race and identity,” Harris said. “As a result, people who ascribe to what I would call a more traditional civil rights view of treating people equally and viewing each person as an individual has fallen out of favor on many campuses and is often the accused of being racist itself.” Color blindness, which used to be the standard for not being racist, is now considered in many circles to be racist, she said. 


As Porter experienced his own “death by a thousand cuts,” he said he slipped into depression, concerned that he was going to lose his job and the means to provide for his family. After meeting with Harris and filing the lawsuit, he said he’s in “a much better place, particularly since we filed. I feel like I’m fighting back for my rights, and quite honestly, I’m doing this to restore my job to what it was a few years ago,” he said. Another reason he filed the lawsuit was to give others the courage to take a stand. “This is happening in universities around the country,” Porter said. “People are afraid to speak up, and I’d like to provide an example that says, ‘It’s possible to stand up for yourself and fight for your rights. It’s OK to be a conservative in academia, although my colleagues would obviously disagree.’”

By Stephen

About me

Professor and quant guy. Libertarian turned populist Republican. Trying to learn Japanese and play Spanish Baroque music on the ukulele.

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