University of Toronto Professor Jordan Peterson has launched a $1.5-million defamation suit against Wilfrid Laurier University, two of its professors and a former gender and equity manager for suggesting he was “analogous to Adolf Hitler.”
The statement of claim, prepared by lawyer Howard Levitt and filed Monday, says Peterson was falsely labelled as incompetent, sexist, misogynist, dangerous and racist in a now infamous disciplinary meeting with Wilfrid Laurier University teaching assistant Lindsay Shepherd.
Shepherd was disciplined during the meeting for showing students a TV clip of Peterson discussing gender-neutral pronouns, something the university later apologized for, but Peterson told the Toronto Sun Wednesday he believes the university failed to properly respond to the incident.
“So I think this is a warning, let’s say, to other careless administrators and professors who allow their ideological presuppositions to get the best of them to be a bit more careful with what they say and do,” he said.
Peterson’s lawyer said the U of T professor cannot allow a university to viciously slander him, let alone compare his comments to a speech by Hitler, when he has spent his life and career teaching against the evils of the Holocaust and despots.
“The politically correct on campus should not think that they can defame people, slander people and bully people implicitly and explicitly with impunity,” Levitt said. “This isn’t just some internet troll mouthing off in a way that no one pays attention to and doesn’t give any credence to. These are professors and head of gender equity studies making comments that are atrocious about Dr. Peterson who is one of, if not Canada’s most prominent, intellectuals.”