Alex Green, editor of the student newspaper at Bryan College in Dayton, Tenn., heard over the summer that his Biblical Studies professor was leaving the school. He emailed the teacher, David Morgan, and got a confirmation — and, somewhat oddly, an attached statement from the Christian liberal arts school’s president that said the prof was off “to pursue other opportunities.”
The student editor later learned there was more to the story: Morgan had been arrested in June and faced charges after “after having attempted to meet with a minor child” at a gas station. Green wrote a story based on public records and was prepared to run it in last Friday’s Bryan College Triangle. Then school president Dr. Stephen Livesay ordered it killed.
Still, Green was determined to get the word out. He printed his story and a sidebar and distributed them on Monday. (They’re both posted after the jump.)
“I placed them around campus and at the doors of dorm rooms and at public areas around the school,” he tells Romenesko readers. “They were primarily in the main administration building, the library and the student center. … [A PDF] was emailed and entrusted to a select few current students and alumni in the case that fake papers began to surface.”
Green knows he could be expelled for distributing the story, but “the school has not made any comment or remark about me or my future at the school at this point,” he says. “The president has planned a campus-wide announcement at 4:30 p.m. As of now, that is all I’m aware of in terms of their response.”
Here’s an excerpt from his sidebar about the decision to publish the piece on his own:
I am aware that on the heels of the Penn State football tragedy, the minds of many people will jump without much thought to similarities between us and them.
Bryan College is not Penn State.
Had one individual in the Penn State program stepped up and revealed the truth about the actions of Jerry Sandusky, there would have been no fallout 14 years later.
Joe Paterno could have died a hero. Instead, he died a goat. Penn State could have been praised. Instead, they are broken.
Bryan College is not Penn State because there are people here that will not attempt to save face by dusting over the arrest of Dr. David Morgan.
Printing this story will not cause a Penn State situation for Bryan. I believe it will prevent one.
That’s why I’m dispensing it.
“We are Penn State” was their approach. “Christ above all” is ours.