A federal judge dismissed a lawsuit filed by a former Oakland University (Michigan) student who was suspended for for writing an essay titled, “Hot for Teacher. The judge indicated that the words may be appropriate in a karaoke bar but not necessarily in a university setting.
Joseph Corlett, 57, who since moved to Florida, filed his suit in 2012 on First Amendment freedom of speech grounds when he was suspended from the university after submitting an essay declaring his sexual attraction for his writing instructor, according to Detroit CBS News-62 affiliate.
His essay referred to a teacher as “tall, blonde and stacked” in a “skirt, heels, fingernails, smile.” But it wasn’t all physical — he also said she was “smart and articulate.”
Yet another essay described a teacher who has “has dark hair and eyes and occasionally rests her hands across her pregnant belly, wiping the sweat from her brow …(She) would teach until she dropped if not for the requisite breaks.”
Corlett turned these essays in as part of a class assignment on diary-style composition.
Shortly after filing his lawsuit, he was interviewed by Charlie Langton’s morning show on Detroit local Talk Radio 1270, as CBS-62 reported.
“It’s highly complimentary,” Corlett said to Langton of one essay. “The very essence of what I’m saying is that I’m inspired by her relentless teaching style …When you’re in that woman’s class she is on and it’s inspiring. It’s a great experience. It had nothing to do with her physical appearance whatsoever.”
Ahem. “tall, blonde and stacked” is unrelated to physical appearance?
“It was never just about their bodies, that was just a small part of it,” he explained, adding, “I used nine words to describe her and of those nine words, two were ‘smart’ and ‘articulate.’”
Corlett maintained that his suspension involved such legal issues as“the constitution, freedom of speech and academic freedom.”
“If you can’t explore and write crazy things, and whatever, in an academic setting — This is supposed to be where you try out ideas, where you learn things — where can you learn?’” he said.
As of Tuesday, a federal judge disagrees.
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