Over 100 university members have called for the University of Toronto to remove Jordan Peterson from the institution in an open letter addressed to the university’s vice president and vice president and provost Cheryl Regehr last week.

The letter alleged that Peterson’s recent discourse is in violation with the University’s Code of Behavior, as Peterson stated intent to design a website that would highlight courses with “postmodern” and “neo-Marxist” content.

The most recent letter by students and university members is a similar letter to the previous letter from U of T faculty of the Women and Gender Studies Institute, requesting that action be taken by the university against Peterson resulting in his dismissal.

“The mere fact that such an aggressive and damaging initiative was proposed by a tenured University of Toronto professor is unacceptable. Prof. Peterson’s intended project would specifically target the academic integrity of and student enrolment in Women and Gender Studies, ‘racial and ethnic groups studies,’ and the humanities in its broadest sense, contravening the University’s Code of Behaviour on Academic Matters, which states the University’s responsibility to ensure that ‘malevolent or even mischievous disruption’ is not permitted to threaten the educational process,” read the members’ letter.

Peterson has been a long-time advocate for free speech on university campuses and announced the launch of a website designed to highlight the ideologies of course instructors before enrolling in a class.

“All these actions emphasize that such a database would constitute a serious threat to the mental and physical safety of students, faculty, and staff at the University as well as to the broader academic and general communities. Prof. Peterson’s ongoing misconduct is damaging not only to the University’s educative function, but also to its civic role in the broader community,” the open letter also read.

The letter claims that Peterson is “trying to disadvantage others” through the use of his website and recent discourse against the humanities, alleging that those actions are against the interests of the university.

Recently, the Women and Gender Studies Institute of U of T wrote to the vice-provost requesting a meeting regarding Peterson. WGSI alleged that Peterson’s intent to launch his website would jeopardize the safety of faculty and students within the department, and would allow individuals to target professors and courses through the use of the site.

“Some members of our community have expressed concerns regarding Prof. Peterson’s recent statements. We are listening to these concerns, and considering them carefully,” stated Althea Blackburn-Evans, the director for U of T Media Relations, in an email to The Medium. The email also stated that the university had only become aware of the letter by students on November 29th.

The university’s media team did not specify if the university has been in contact with Peterson regarding the announcement of his website or either of the open letters sent to Regehr.

“Any allegations of behaviour that might contravene the University’s policies and guidelines are carefully considered on a case-by-case basis, with all respect for due process,” the email continued.

While the UTSU was one of the organizations attributed to the letter, UTSU president Mathias Memmel did not respond on their involvement in the letter.

Other university students and members across North America have signed the open letter.

UTMSU was not among the members that signed the letter.

The union’s president Salma Fakhry also did not respond to The Medium’s request for comment if the UTMSU had any involvement in the letter.

  • Although Peterson’s proposed website would have been a great tool for students who wish to avoid courses with “postmodern” and “neo-Marxist” content, he publically acknowledged the possibility that it could be misused and shelved the idea about a week before this letter appeared. Other articles regarding the letter acknowledge this well-known fact, but Boatto has chosen to overlook this, thus revealing her own bias.

    The real story is this: a tenured UofT professor became a free speech advocate / zeitgeist after millions of people started watching his YouTube videos regarding Bill C-16. He then warned us that university campuses all throughout the Western world have become intolerant of free expression of ideas. He further identified certain departments that tend to have certain ideological motives as the main source of the threat. Those very same departments, rather than challenging Peterson’s ideas, are seeking to have him removed from his university a.k.a censored.

    Draw your own conclusions.

    • Hendrik Vanderstijn

      This pretty much. They are not interested in dialogue. Only in power. So they seek to censor him rather than take responsibility and hide behind a veneer of feeling unsafe. If hearing ideas makes you feel unsafe, you do not belong in a university. They have become daycare facilities for young adults rather than places of learning, or so it seems from a distance.

      Removing Peterson would be a nail in the coffin rather than the healthy reform that he’s trying to bring to universities.

      Marxists don’t teach. They indoctrinate. Their goal isn’t to educate, but to crank out activists.

      • I agree with everything you’ve expressed, although I feel that you have declared a lot of value judgements in your comment. Perhaps I try to be too fair, but I prefer to give all parties the benefit of the doubt and stick to facts in such debates.

        That being said, I feel that the “unsafe” card is quickly being recognized as a (mostly) insincere move, and is loosing all credibility.

        There is an actual cultural war happening right now. It is no small event. Although, if humanity survives another 200 years this will all have been long forgotten and common sense will have prevailed. So take some comfort in the obvious outcome.

        • Hendrik Vanderstijn

          Again, I agree. I do make judgements. I do think there’s a cultural war taking place. And I make no secret of having taken a side. I am not a person who typically takes a side and frequently reconsider if I’m still fighting for the right side, but you’ll have to either take that on my word or discount it, as you please.

          There’s more than one cultural war taking place. The demographic replacement that’s taking place in every single western country is nothing short of alarming. It’s something I know Jordan Peterson does not seem to be alarmed by, instead prescribing to individualism. It’s funny, in finding cooperation of people that want to protect free speech I’m frequently in groups of christians, atheists, feminists and anti-feminists, left and right wing people…. united by the single idea that we want to fight for the freedom of speech and ideas and that we’ll debate about all these topics with each other more when those who are in favour of removing them do not wield so much political power and influence (as well as academic power and influence).

          Though I have to say, the group of feminists standing up for free speech is quite small and those who are against it quite large. I think few feminists can remain feminists when seeing the documentary the red pill, so it needs to be censored and suppressed, lest the information and ideas therein make too many feminists question why such a mild film is being slandered and censored by their fellow feminists.

  • AtheistRight

    Peterson is a true hero and will one day have statues and movies made about his courage. https://uploads.disquscdn.com/images/08d7cd34a17c784d913a6e4ff7170f258ad5f9290fe44992e0814b98e2cc26a6.jpg

    • Hendrik Vanderstijn

      He’s the kinda person who deserves it, but won’t get it. Like Andrew Breitbart.

  • UnsinkingTheTitanic

    Over 100 university members…

    Over 100! Zoinks! Golly, that sounds like a lot. Is it?

    The student body is almost 61,000 undergrad and graduate students, 2500 academics, and about 4600 admins.

    In other words, 0.00147 the uni community is upset; we usually call this statistically insignificant. Uni presidents call that ‘a great day’. More people were displeased by the lunch options at the student dining hall.

    • Victor

      Its only insignificant depending on the field. When measuring the speed of particles near the theoretical maximum and/or time dilation, an accuracy of 0.00147 would be very significant. ;)

  • Robin of Hood

    The website is absurd, just do not sign up for any course that has the word ‘studies’ in its title.