A professor at the University of Missouri lost her job Tuesday for seeking to block a photojournalist from taking pictures of a student protest on the campus.
Assistant professor Melissa Click from the MU Department of Communication got into a confrontation with photojournalist Tim Tai, 20, who is a student of the program. Tai was working on a freelance assignment for ESPN covering the event.
The Columbian Missourian reported:
Faculty in the Missouri School of Journalism were voting Tuesday to revoke a courtesy appointment for Melissa Click, an assistant professor in MU’s Department of Communication.
The journalism school’s Executive Committee, including Dean David Kurpius, met Tuesday morning to discuss the vote and prepare a statement on Click’s actions Monday as seen in footage of a confrontation between freelance photographer Tim Tai and protesters near the Concerned Student 1950 camp on the Mel Carnahan Quadrangle.
Click was seen at the end of the video asking for assistance and for “muscle” to remove Mark Schierbecker, who filmed the interaction and uploaded his footage to YouTube.
Mizzou journalism faculty voting to remove Click’s status, call her acts ‘clear violation of 1st Amendment rights’ https://t.co/q0icVJ3aMQ
— Ted Bridis (@tbridis) November 10, 2015
In the video, Click tells Tai, “You need to get out, you need to get out,’ as she tried to grab the camera out his hands. “I actually don’t,” Tai responds. “Hey, who wants to help me get this reporter out of here,” Click asks. “I need some muscle over here!” “The Missouri School of Journalism is proud of photojournalism senior Tim Tai for how he handled himself during a protest on Carnahan Quad on the University of Missouri campus,” Dean David Kurpius said in a statement on Tuesday. “The news media have First Amendment rights to cover public events,” he added. “Tai handled himself professionally and with poise.”
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