Was a college student suspended for refusing to stomp on Jesus?

Last week, TheBlaze reported the story of a Florida Atlantic University (FAU) junior, Ryan Rotela, who issued a complaint about a professor, Dr. Deandre Poole, who had forced students to write “Jesus” on a piece of paper, drop the paper on the floor, and stomp on it. Rotela refused to participate in the act and went on to voice a complaint about the exercise with Poole’s supervisor. The student was then suspended from the intercultural communications class.

TheBlaze went on to report that Fox News’ Todd Starnes added additional context to the story explaining that Rotela was initially accused of violating the student code of conduct after the official complaint was made.

The University reportedly told the Florida CBS affiliate WPEC-TV:

“Faculty and students at academic institutions pursue knowledge and engage in open discourse. While at times the topics discussed may be sensitive, a university environment is a venue for such dialogue and debate.”

Well it didn’t take long for this story to gain national attention and with that attention came a formal apology from FAU and an expunging of Rotela’s record. “One for the good guys,” Glenn said on radio this morning. “Florida Atlantic University has now issued a formal apology to a student that was facing academic charges that he complained about a professor who ordered the class to write the name ‘Jesus’ on pieces of paper and then stomp on the paper.”

Rotela, who was removed from class, ordered not to contact fellow students, and faced possible suspension or expulsion pending a student hearing, has now received an apology from the FAU Dean of Students Cory King and will be able to return to another section of the course not taught by Poole. Additionally, Rotela’s attorney stated that “there will be no punishment” and the school is “wiping the record clean” for Rotela.

While justice has certainly prevailed for Rotela, it is unclear what repercussions, if any, the professor will face. “What happens to the professor,” Glenn asked. “Does the professor just go on? You can say just make pieces of paper?”

According to the lesson plan, the objective of the assignment was to: Have students write the name Jesus in letters on a big piece of paper. Ask the students to stand up and put the paper on the floor in front of them with the name facing up. Ask the students to think about it for a moment; after a brief period of silence, instruct them to step on the paper. Most will hesitate. Ask why they can't step on the paper. Discuss the importance of symbols in culture.

“That is not a symbol. [Jesus] is not a symbol,” Glenn said. “[Dean] King says it was ‘obvious the lesson caused hurt and pain within the community and within the university's population. As a result, we feel it necessary to no longer offer this assignment or activity.’”

“Ya think,” Glenn asked.

In response to the overwhelming public support Rotela received, his attorney said, “When we stand together, we win.”

If you consider the outcry that would have surrounded this story if students were asked to stomp on, say, a piece of paper that said ‘Mohammed’, the apology issued to Rotela seems like a non-apology apology.

“Well, we better stand pretty darn soon,” Glenn concluded.

On Monday's episode of "The Glenn Beck Radio Program," Glenn opened up about the tragic death of his brother-in-law, Vincent Colonna Jr., who passed away unexpectedly on April 5. He also shared some of the important thoughts and insights he's learned through the grieving process.

"Last Monday, I was sitting in this chair ... the two-minute warning comes and Stu said to me, 'You ready for the show?'' ... And that's when my wife [Tania] came to the door of the studio here at our house and said, 'I...' and she held the phone up. And then she collapsed on the floor in tears," Glenn began. "Tania's brother had passed. To say this was a shock, is an understatement."

Glenn described his brother-in-law as having "a servant's spirit."

"He was always the guy who lit up the room. He was always the guy helping others. He would never stop, because he was always helping others," Glenn said of Vincent. "He was on the school board. He was a little league coach. He was the soccer coach. He helped build the church. He took care of the lawn of the church. He was constantly doing things, raising money for charity, working over here, helping to organize this. But he was never the guy in the spotlight. He was just the guy doing it, and you had no idea how much he had done because he never talked about it.

"We also didn't know how much mental anguish he was in because he never talked about it. And last Monday morning, after spending Easter with the family ... he killed himself. This is now the third family member of mine that has gone through this. And I keep seeing it play out over and over and over again, in exactly the same way."

Glenn described his thoughts as he, Tania, and her family struggled to come to grips with the devastating loss.

"I learned some really important things as I was watching this wake. I'm seeing these people from all walks of life ... the people that were there, were there because [Vince] made a difference in their life. He was a true servant. As I'm watching this, all that kept going through my mind was, 'by their fruits, ye shall know them.' The fruits of his labor were on display. He was a servant all the time. All the time ... he found a way to love everybody.

"There are two great commandments: Love God with all your heart and mind and soul. And love your neighbor. So those two great commandments boil down to: Love truth. Because that's what God is," Glenn said.

"Love thy neighbor. That's where joy comes from. The opposite of joy is despair, and that is the complete absence of hope ... and how do you find joy? You find joy by rooting yourself in the truth. Even if that's a truth you don't want to accept. Accept the truth," he added. "But we have to stop saying that there's nothing we can do. What are we going to do? Well, here's the first thing: stop living a lie."

Watch the video clip below to hear more from Glenn:


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After imprisoning a pastor for refusing to follow COVID-19 restrictions, Canadian officials barricaded his church. And when some church members retaliated by tearing down part of the fence, Canadian Mounties arrived in riot gear.

Rebel News Founder Ezra Levant joined Glenn Beck on the radio program to give his insight on the crazy situation. He described the new, armed police presence surrounding GraceLife Church in Edmonton, Alberta, and how it not only encouraged hundreds of protesters to stand with the church in support but forced congregation members underground to worship as well.

What's happening is eerily similar to what occurs everyday in China, Levant says, and it must stop. Who would have thought this type of tyranny would be so close to home?

Watch the video below to hear Ezra describe the religious persecution taking place in Canada.


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To enjoy more of Glenn's masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multi-platform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution and live the American dream.

Enough prayers? Why is supposed Catholic Joe Biden suggesting that Congress ought to stop praying for after someone commits acts of gun violence?

On Friday, Stu Burguiere and Pat Gray filled in for Glenn and discussed President Joe Biden's remarks during his speech on gun control. "Enough prayers. Time for some action," Biden said. Stu and Pat were surprised how dismissive Biden appeared to be on the idea of prayer.

Watch the clip to hear more. Can't watch? Download the podcast here.

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Just days after Canadian pastor James Coates was released from prison for refusing to bow to COVID-19 lockdown restrictions, several police officers showed up at another church to ensure restrictions were being followed. But Polish pastor Artur Pawlowski of the Cave of Adullam Church in Alberta, Canada, knew his rights, telling the cops not to come back until they had a warrant in hand.

Filling in for Glenn Beck on the radio program this week, Pat Gray and Stu Burguiere played a video of the interaction.

"Please get out. Please get out of this property immediately. Get out!" Pawlowski can be heard yelling at the six officers who entered his church.

"Out! Out! Out! Get out of this property immediately until you come back with a warrant," he continued. "Go out and don't come back. I don't want to talk to you. You Nazis, Gestapo is not allowed here! ... Nazis are not welcome here! Do not come back you Nazi psychopaths. Unbelievable sick, evil people. Intimidating people in a church during the Passover! You Gestapo, Nazi, communist fascists! Don't you dare come back here!"

Watch this clip to see the heated exchange:

Want more from Glenn Beck?

To enjoy more of Glenn's masterful storytelling, thought-provoking analysis and uncanny ability to make sense of the chaos, subscribe to BlazeTV — the largest multi-platform network of voices who love America, defend the Constitution and live the American dream.