A professor at the University of Connecticut made students remove their shoes and speak a phrase in Arabic before they were permitted to enter his office, which led to several complaints by students and forced the professor into retirement.
Felix Coe, the retired biology professor who is Muslim, displayed two signs on his office door.
One sign ordered students to say “Bismillah,” an Arabic phrase meaning “in the name of Allah,” before entering his office. The other sign required students to remove their shoes, Fox News reported.
Jihad Watch released a video clip of Coe yelling at a student. He said, “I’m a Muslim. You don’t come in my office with dirty shoes. That’s a curse.”
Education News – When asked by two individuals why he required students to say “Bismallah” and take their shoes off at a public universityhttps://t.co/94yUCkJpYQ
— Education News (@ednewsdaily) June 18, 2018
He told the female student to “get the hell out” and “I don’t want to see you” for wearing shoes in his office.
Coe said that he enforced the rules because he is a Muslim and doesn’t have a separate place for prayer.
Stephanie Reitz, a university spokesperson, told Fox News that Coe retired since the video was taken, and the signs were quickly removed from the satellite campus location in Hartford, Conn.
“Regarding this instance, the sign that had directed guests to precede their conversations with a specific Arabic phrase was immediately removed at the university’s direction. UConn promptly resolved the issue in a manner that respects the rights of all involved, and affirms the university’s values of civility and inclusivity,” Reitz said in a statement.
Reitz said that other rooms are available at all their locations for faculty to meet with students and other guests.