Wednesday, December 13, 2006

FRAUD AND COVER-UP AT CALVIN SEMINARY

This site focuses on three flagrant falsehoods perpetrated by seminary officials. For the full story of how I was unjustly removed from tenure track and given a terminal appointment see My Calvin Seminary Story.

NOT HEARSAY

None of the charges on this site are based on hearsay. I was recently emailed accusations against CTS officials that I had heard before--accusations that if true and if published are explosive. Such charges are not cited here for various reasons, including lack of documentary proof.

EXPOSING WRONG-DOING

But even with documentory proof, exposing wrong-doing is controversial in any context, though often more so within the Christian community.

Should Christians expose or or should they cover up wrong-doing of fellow Christians? Should the hierarchy of the Catholic church expose or cover up sexual abuse? Should an Evangelical organization expose or cover up evidence of embezzlement by its popular leader? Should a professor expose or cover up fraud at a seminary?

There are arguments to be made on both sides, but it is worth noting that Moses and the Prophets and Jesus and Paul and John Calvin and countless other individuals throughout the Bible and the course of Christian history exposed wrong-doing.

WAS THE PUNISHMENT DESERVED?

The proof of my charges against CTS officials comes in the form of documents that I have in my possession and are available for interested parties to review.

But what about the claim from seminary officials that I alone among my colleagues deserved to be removed from tenure track and given a terminal appointment? That was investigated by a review committee and mediators, both of which called for "redress" for me, the latter calling for "retroactive pay to 2003," among other things. My qualifications are summarized in my curriculum vitae.

THE THREE BIG LIES

What has not been adequately investigated is the process--a process that included flagrant falsehoods. I identify them as follows:

1. VP Academic Affairs, Henry DeMoor: The Smoking Gun
2. President, Cornelius Plantinga, Jr.: The Fabricated Notes
3. Board President, Sid Jansma, Jr.: The Bogus Cover-up

1. HENRY DEMOOR: THE SMOKING GUN

Most of you who are reading this have submitted a major project in your college or graduate education. Imagine turning in a project that you think is very well done, especially in comparison to the efforts of other students. The professor has been following your progress and has given no indication of any problems. When the paper is returned, however, you are stunned to see a failing grade that means you will not graduate.

When you collect your thoughts and read the professor's comments you realize that something is terribly wrong. You have been accused of not meeting requirements that you have, in fact, clearly met; little mistakes are magnified beyond proportion; and you are informed that other readers of your project graded you so poorly that a failure was warranted.

Your initial reaction is one of shame and silence. But word leaks out and you learn that the other professors actually evaluated you very well. When you ask to see their written evaluations, you receive them along with a re-written--and much improved--evaluation of your project. But to your dismay, your failing grade is unchanged. You go to a level above your professor hoping for support but you discover that this administrator has from the beginning been involved in the decision to fail you. He acknowledges the teacher's much improved evaluation, but he supports the decision to let the failing grade stand.

By now others are becoming aware of your situation and are calling for a review. You appeal, but the doors are slammed in your face. You alone are not permitted to graduate.

The above story is cast in a slightly different light than my own for the purpose of pulling the reader into the story. My actual case is related in Henry's Reappointment Evaluations. The dishonest evaluation by Henry DeMoor (in collusion with Neal Plantinga and Duane Kelderman) must be thoroughly investigated.


2. Cornelius Plantinga, Jr.: The Fabricated Notes

I have charged Neal Plantinga with fabricating two sets of notes. This is a most serious change and no one has challenged me.

On May 31, 2005, I wrote a letter to a board committee that was eventually appointed to review my case. The letter states that a "critical document" that I must have is Neal's explanation of his charging me with "two incidents" of ungodly conduct.

In response to that letter, the committee asked Neal for a written response. He gave the committee two sets of notes, purporting to be written at the time of the "incidents." These notes had not previously been mentioned or referenced.

On my site Charges of Ungodliness, I clearly show these notes to be fabricated.

I have stated elsewhere that I believe that fabricating notes in an effort to derail someone's teaching career is as serious as the allegations against the individual who was forced to step aside in 2005 from taking the highest administrative post of the Christian Reformed Church. The case against him was investigated by the church. My case against Neal Plantinga has not been.

It is also important to note that the independent mediators who spent 8 weeks reviewing all the documents from both me and the administration called for the following: "The allegations of 'ungodly' behavior will be deleted and acknowledged by administration to be inflammatory."


3. Sid Jansma, Jr.: The Bogus Cover-up


When seminary board president Sid Jansma, Jr. agreed to have my case reviewed in the Spring of 2005, I believed him to be a straight shooter. He promised that the process would be fair. But it soon became evident that his close friendship with Neal Plantinga would get in the way of fairness. Yet, I was convinced he would not be able to control the review itself and that justice would in the end prevail. I was naive.

When the mediators issued a report that was decidely in my favor, he deemed it unsatisfactory because the email version was not official and the FAX version apparently had some smudges. Thus the report was buried and not even passed on to the board for consideration. It is beyond imagination to think that if the report had come down in favor of the administrators that it would have been deep-sixed.

The most recent bogus cover-up that Sid has engineered relates to claims he made in a Christian Reformed Church BANNER. Here he states among other things that I was "awarded back wages." I have never been offered or awarded back wages (or "retroactive pay to 2003" as the mediators called for), and Sid clearly knows that.

Why would he tell such a blatant lie? Is it because he believes he can get by with it? The truth of this matter is easily proven by my salary history.

January 23, 2007

Today I posted the following on my site River-Rat Reflections.

BANNER Apologizes for Errors

The most recent online edition of the BANNER carries a letter to the editor from me and an apology for errors here

Yesterday I received a letter from the seminary board president, Sid Jansma, Jr., stating he did not tell Gayla Postma that I was awarded back wages. I wrote to Gayla today, in reference to Sid: "Did he say the following, as it was reported?"

"When allegations were made that discrimination was happening, it didn't take the board officers 10 seconds to get a group together to find out, because if there was, we would put an end to it right there," said Sid Jansma Jr., president of the board. "We made a point that this was not swept under the rug, that this was aired in front of everyone."

The reason I enquired is because it is false in both its parts. Gayla wrote back: "I stand behind my story as written, with the exception of the correction we have already printed."

So some of the falsehoods are still on the books.


POSTSCRIPT


If what I have written above is not true I should be exposed for falsehoods. If what I have written is true, the seminary officials should be removed from their posts.