Angry responses flood Ohio State in wake of president’s remarks on Catholics
Dozens of people wrote angry letters and emails to Ohio State University
Ohio State University received dozens of complaints over comments made by former President Gordon Gee criticizing Catholics, earlier this year.
This week Ohio State University announced a $5.8 million retirement package for the former president, after he retired in July, following the gaffe.
According to AP, many people contacted the University in the wake of his controversey, demanded his firing or immediate resignation.
"The Board should be asking, what would they have done if any other employee of the university made similar remarks about Jews, gays, impaired persons, obese persons, same sex couples or a racially insensitive remark?" Dennis Lyons wrote in a May 31 email.
Records show that on December 5, Gee made comments to the university Athletic Council, where he criticized the negotiating tactics of Notre Dame administrators, claiming they were not good partners.
He said the school's priests were "holy on Sunday and they're holy hell on the rest of the week," and said, to laughter, "you just can't trust those damn Catholics."
Gee later described the gaffes as a “misguided attempt at humor.”
Before his remarks became public on March 11, university trustees ordered Gee to begin apologizing. He later emailed a formal apology to the entire university community on May 31.
In June the 69-year-old announced his retirement days after the his comments were made public, but insisted it wasn’t related .
"This isn't about those statements," Gee said, according to The Columbus Dispatch. "I have apologized for those remarks and feel incredibly sorry, but I have moved on."
Rev. Thomas Shuler, a Catholic priest in Lookout Mountain wrote to the University to demand something be done.
"I cannot recall in my lifetime (68 years old) such a blatant public display of ignorance and bigotry by an official — academic and otherwise — the rank and stature of your president,"
Alumnus Jon Spiers said in a May 31 email: "My youngest son dreams of attending OSU. I won't permit that until there are major reforms in the University's direction ... that starts with changing leadership."
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