*A Cypress College professor is on leave after a Zoom video of her irritable response to a student who called police “heroes” went viral.
The exchange happened during a recorded online session and began after student Braden Ellis gave a presentation on cancel culture and police for a class on verbal communications. The subject matter appeared to be a trigger for the professor, who challenged him repeatedly as he attempted to explain his support of law enforcement.
The nearly three-minute clip of the conversation, which conservative outlets and at least one police union have been brandishing as an example of liberal bias, begins after the presentation.
“I think cops are heroes and they have to have a difficult job,” Ellis said. “But we have to have …”
“All of them?” the teacher interrupted.
“I’d say a good majority of them,” he responded, noting that there are “bad people in every business.”
“A lot of police officers have committed an atrocious crime and have gotten away with it and have never been convicted of any of it,” the teacher said.
“This is not popular to say, but I do support our police and we have bad people, and the people that do bad things should be brought to justice. I agree with that…”
Ellis said he agreed with her on that.
“So what is your bottom line point? You’re saying police officers should be revered, viewed as heroes?” she asked.
“I think they are heroes, in a sense,” he answered.
The professor went on to say that she didn’t trust the police and wouldn’t call them in an emergency situation because, “My life’s more in danger in their presence.”
Watch the exchange below:
The viral footage prompted a response from the nation’s largest police union, National Fraternal Order of Police, over the weekend.
“Too many of America’s universities have become indoctrination farms where critical thinking and ingenuity are stifled by the intolerance of simple minded professors like these who are completely unwilling to accept anything but their own opinion as fact,” read a statement tweeted out by the union on Saturday.
It was a sentiment echoed by Ellis, who expressed concern that conservative students can’t express themselves properly in college.
“We need to have unity back in our country and learn to have civil debates again, left, right and center,” he told KTLA. “We have to be fair and respectful of who’s talking to us, and our authorities and our professors, and we have to be gentle and respectful with our arguments.”
The school has released a statement, which reads in part: “Cypress College takes great pride in fostering a learning environment for students where ideas and opinions are exchanged. … Any efforts to suppress free and respectful expression on our campus will not be tolerated.”
Ellis did not identify the professor so she could have privacy, but KTLA has been told that she is on leave and will not be coming back in the fall.