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Butler’s Trumpism course causing controversy

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. - Butler University is making national headlines after one of its special topics courses concerning President Donald Trump calls for students to, "discuss, and potentially engage in, strategies for resistance."

The class is called, "Trumpism and U.S. Democracy," and will be taught next August through December by Professor Ann Savage.

Butler Univesity released a statement Thursday stating...

Butler University has been in the news recently with regard to the Trumpism and U.S. Democracy course being offered on campus next fall. The course is a one-time, Special Topics course, not required of students in any academic program.

The faculty member has provided an updated course description that clarifies that students will be looking at the rise of President Trump as a political and social phenomenon and are not required to participate in activism. The University will review its practice of accepting preliminary course descriptions for Special Topics classes.

Like all universities, Butler University values academic freedom and the liberties this affords its faculty members. At the same time, Butler strives to be a hospitable forum for the civil exchange of ideas.

The current course description reads...

Donald J. Trump won the U.S Presidency despite perpetuating sexism, white supremacy, xenophobia, nationalism, nativism, and imperialism. This course explores why and how this happened, how Trump's rhetoric is contrary to the foundation of the U.S. democracy, and what his win means for the future. The course will also discuss, and potentially engage in, strategies for resistance.

This class offering is sparking a conversation across the nation.

Butler graduate and Trump supporter Kyle Thomas said he is not a fan of the class and believes teachers should not push on their political views onto students.

“In my eyes, it’s a major disappointment that they are offering a class like this," Thomas said. "It just makes me really have to reconsider what I give to Butler and how frequently I give to Butler at this point moving forward."

College Democrats at Butler's President Maria Rapisarda said the course provides a safe place for students to discuss the events leading up to the 2016 election and will encourage more students to become politically engaged.

“It’s doing what a college course should do, which is examining, evaluating, investigating and reflecting on an important historical event," Rapisarda said.