It has become a familiar scenario. A self-righteous UNC System faculty squirrel enforces his version of “spiritual martial law” over his hapless students. “Thou shalt NOT mention God…..” Holy Bart Ehrman, Batman! Just another sad chapter in the ongoing UNC System “Inquisition”? This one on the ECU campus in Greenville. Right? ….. Maybe, Maybe NOT.
When I first read this story on May 5, something didn’t ring true. It was a collection of details that did not quite fit. Has there been a Rush To Judgment regardling Asst Chemistry Professor Eli Hvastkovs. …… Is a Witch to be burned in Greenville?
Because I am not a self-righteous faux-intellectual liberal snoot…. I can easily acknowledge the possibility that I may indeed be mistaken in my own rush to a more charitable judgment. Eli Hvastkovs could well be just another “one of them”. But I don’t think so.
Here’s the LINK to the original story of “what Asst Prof Eli did”.
I read this the first time with the time-honored enragement we have all experienced so often over the past decade or so. Rabid liberal academics adamantly declaring that, if God is not dead, He will certainly be treated as both “dead” and unmentioned in their sacred classroom.
Be damned that the vast majority of alumni and benevolent contributors to his employing institution might be convinced otherwise and thereby quite offended. “Offending” the non-intellectual rabble being the favored parlor game of the faux-intellectual snoots of high academe. …… OR
….. was Eli simply requiring his students to be more secularly creative in answering the question of the day? Had students in prior years fallen prey to giving trite “thank God” answers to similar questions, as athletes often seem to do in rote fashion upon scoring?
Was Eli Hvastkovs not so much disavowing God at all, as he was simply seeking a different thought process from his students?
IF Eli Hvastkovs is just another God-hating UNC System faculty squirrel….. why does his Facebook page feature his wife and son with Tim Tebow ??? Short of The Pope or Billy Graham, what public figure more personifies “wearing his Christian faith on his sleeve” as does Tim Tebow?
A God-hating academic nutjob with Tim Tebow ?? HOLY COW!! Would Dracula wear a garlic necklace to take communion? I mean REALLY!
And Eli is from Wyoming. Wyoming !!! Not exactly a hotbed of rabid atheism. Dick Cheney lives in Wyoming as does Joe Pickett. UNC-CH’s Eeeevil Gene Nichol, on the other hand, came of age in the godless commune of Boulder, Colorado. Enough said.
Eli doesn’t have that beady-eyed weasel look that is so typical of the UNC faculty nutjob bunch. Eli actually looks like a regular guy.
Eli Hvastkovs is an Asst Chemistry Professor. Chemistry! Not philosophy…. political science….. or Hate All Things Conservative Studies.
And at East Carolina for Heavens sake (pun intended). Sure there may be a few goggle-eyed looney-toon types around Greenville, but not to the cup overfloweth levels one finds when one swings a dead cat on the Chapel Hill, Wilmington or Asheville campuses.
Lets put it this way. At UNCCH, UNC-W and UNC-A the faculty council meetings most definitely do not begin with prayer. At least not a Christian prayer. They may not at ECU either, but its not as certainly so.
ECU officials reacted quickly when word of Eli’s fateful email leaked to a shocked ECU community. Eli was publicly and loudly admonished. A high ECU official immediately reassured outraged alumni and parents that “The Harvard of Down East” most assuredly is on friendly terms with The Father, The Son and The Holy Ghost.
No crazed jackass of a Gene Nichol ilk will be removing crosses or burning bibles in Pitt County by golly. No one will be confusing ECU with Liberty, Bob Jones or Wheaton for sure; but nor will Christmas trees be outlawed in dorm rooms.
Unlike those other UNC System campuses…… the most insane of the inmates are not in charge at “Leo Jenkins U”.
The pitchforks and torches that had been grabbed when Asst Professor Eli’s incredibly poorly worded email went public might should be put back in their closets.
I currently have “boots on the ground” in Greenville seeking proof positive of my gut feel that Eli Hvastkovs need not be burned at the stake…. but rather sentenced to merely drawing snarly glances when presenting his ID ‘round town for the next year or so…… “Hvastkovs? Hey aren’t you that jackass that hates God?”
Alas, the reach and influence of this website cannot spare the young Asst Professor and his family that woeful plight. Maybe Eli should consider changing his name to Stasavich, Logan or Minges; at least for a year or so? His inadvertant remarks “lit a flare” and they are impossible to blow out….. sigh.
Lets give it a few days before we strike the torch to his funeral pyre… if such is even necessary.
As of 7:45 PM Wed…. I have received Confirmation that my instincts ARE correct re: Eli. Eli never intended his instructions to be controversial at all. He admits it was poorly worded and consequences not considered. He and his family regularly attend church in Greenville and he has no atheist ax to grind AT ALL. He sincerely regrets the furor that has resulted.