A slowed down image of preacher Pat Robertson on YouTube transformed an innocent movement into an obscene gesture.
Regent University law student Adam Key thought the image was hilarious, and posted it on his Facebook page.
“Honestly, it was just an attempt at humor,” said Key. “I thought it was a funny picture. I thought other people would get a laugh out of it.”
But administrators weren’t amused. Key says they told him to take down the photo and either publicly apologize for what they call a profane image of the university president or write a brief defending his actions.
He chose the brief.
“A university is a place of academic freedom in the academic market place,” said Key. “It’s a place where people should be able to freely express ideas. That’s how we learn that’s house we grow as a society”
A spokeswoman for the university says she can’t comment on the case because of privacy laws.
In an email to key, the dean of the law school says Key violated the university standard of personal conduct and the photo was “highly inappropriate,” but Key says he’s the one being violated.
“It really seems they like free speech rights as long as it’s free speech favorable to them,” said Key. “But, anything else they’re trying to crush.”
He says school officials rejected his arguments defending his actions, so now he’s waiting to learn his punishment and perhaps his fate at regent university.
“It comes down to free expression, the university shouldn’t be able to silence ideas they don’t agree with,” said Key. “If that costs me the ability to graduate from Regent University School of Law, then so be it.”