While he was head of Virginia Wesleyan University’s business school, Paul Ewell made comments on his personal Facebook page about the presidential election
The dean of a Virginia university who called Democrat-voting Facebook contacts ‘ignorant, anti-American and anti-Christian’ and asked them to unfriend him has resigned.
Paul Ewell, who was the head of Virginia Wesleyan University’s business school and dean of the university’s Global Campus, quit after his Facebook post went viral and sparked outrage.
‘Last week, Dr. Paul Ewell resigned as Dean of Virginia Wesleyan University Global Campus. Today, the University accepted his resignation as Professor of Management, Business and Economics,’ read a brief statement posted to the University’s website Monday.
Although Ewell’s post was originally posted just to his own page on November 6, the entire text was then screen-grabbed and spread around.
‘Please, please help me with something. If you voted for Joe Biden, please unfriend me. Or, reply that you are a Democrat and I will unfriend you,’ the abrasive post began.
‘If you were ignorant, anti-American, and anti-Christian enough to vote for Biden, I really don’t want to be your social friend on social media. I wouldn’t hang out with you in real life, I don’t want to hang out with you virtually either.’
Ewell said Democrat voters were ‘ignorant, anti-American and anti-Christian’ and asked for anyone who voted for Biden to unfriend him on Facebook
‘You have corrupted the election. You have corrupted our youth, you have corrupted our country. I have standards and you don’t meet them. Please remove yourself.’
The post left university bosses red-faced as they first scrambled to distance themselves from the professor’s remarks.
‘The University is aware of a recent comment made on social media by a member of the campus community,’ the university posted November 6.
‘These views and opinions are expressly the individual’s own. Civic engagement and religious freedom are at the core of the University’s values, and we remain an inclusive and caring community that empowers meaningful relationships through listening, understanding, and communication.’
Virginia Wesleyan University first attempted to distance itself from Ewell’s post, but that only served to increase outrage
The campus of Virginia Wesleyan University in Virginia Beach, Virginia
Ewell joined the full-time staff of the university in 2008 and was a professor of management, business and economics, director of the school’s MBA program, and dean of the VWU Global Campus
But the response by the school, a private liberal arts and sciences school in Virginia Beach, did not appear to go down well with commenters who demanded Ewell’s resignation.
‘How is Professor Ewell supposed to gain the trust of his students when they now know he considers most of them anti-American and anti-Christian?’ asked Ben Abrahamse.
‘Simply put, if this is your staff, then inclusiveness is not what you practice. This was not a political statement. It was a statement based in hate and it is hatred for the students,’ added Hayden Christopher Jones.
‘He leads your business school for God’s sake! He needs to go,’ wrote Scott Nassl.
Almost a thousand similar comments peppered the University’s Facebook page by Sunday night, with the majority questioning how such a ‘high-ranking, high-profile member’ of the university’s administration could remain on the job, calling his original post ‘unacceptable’ and ’embarrassing.’
President Trump seemed to agree with Ewell’s post bashing Biden, retweeted the story Sunday, and calling it ‘Progress!’
President Trump seemed to agree with the sentiments of the posting and retweeted the story, calling it ‘Progress!’
Ewell resigned from his post as dean last week, and Virginia Wesleyan University accepted his resignation from his professorship Monday, the school said in a statement
Ewell’s post has since been taken down from his personal Facebook page, and he apologized in a statement published Sunday in the Marlin Chronicle, a student newspaper at VWU.
‘I spoke out of anger which I should not have done. Second, I don’t believe what I said. I have friends and family who are Democrats and I love them dearly. I have apologized on both accounts profusely. I set a poor example in that post of what a Christian should be. I know that God has forgiven me and already died for my sins. I hope others will forgive me as well.’
Ewell also made an apology on his Facebook account, which went private after the original post sparked controversy, the Marlin Chronicle reported.
Amid the backlash, Stephanie Smaglo, a VWU spokeswoman, said that ‘while the university cannot speak to personnel matters, this incident is being addressed through our internal processes and policies.’
It’s unclear whether the university asked Ewell to resign.
Ewell joined the full-time staff of the university in 2008 and was a professor of management, business and economics, director of the school’s MBA program, and dean of the VWU Global Campus.
VWU’s social media policy reminds staff to be aware of what they post, even on personal sites.
‘Keep in mind nothing is truly private in social media. Consider your comments, photos or shared content carefully before posting. If it’s something you wouldn’t want shared or re-posted for a broad audience, it is best not to share it in the first place,’ the handbook warns.