PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The dean of the University of Pennsylvania Law School called professor Amy Wax’s comments “racist” after she said the United States “will be better off with more whites and fewer non-whites” during a panel on immigration at a “National Conservatism” conference. Dean Ted Ruger says Wax’s comments do not speak for the institution, but he doesn’t say if she will be suspended or fired.
“At best, the reported remarks espouse a bigoted theory of white cultural and ethnic supremacy; at worst, they are racist. Under any framing, such views are repugnant to the core values and institutional practices of both Penn Law and the University of Pennsylvania,” Ruger said.
This isn’t the first time Wax made controversial comments about race. Last year, Wax said she has never seen a black student graduate in the top quarter of the class while discussing the “downside of affirmative action.” She was then removed from from teaching a mandatory course.
“Past episodes have made clear that when Professor Wax speaks about race and culture, she does not speak for this institution or those who work and study here. For many years, our institutional efforts have been, and will remain with increased vigor, to build an academic community whose ethos and composition stands in direct opposition to these exclusionary views,” Ruger said.
Ruger added that Wax’s latest comments have “caused pain and outrage to many in the Penn community.”
“My colleagues and I pledge to work with you so that together we can heal, and learn from this experience and each other. That students from traditionally underrepresented backgrounds are flourishing at this school and in their subsequent careers is an unassailable rebuke to those who question their full participation in our academic enterprise and our nation,” the dean said.
Wax has tenure at the university.