Dr. Eddy Kirby at a 2012 faculty retreat

In a routine Department meeting on September 10, 2018 Dr. Eddy Kirby threatened everyone in the room with a sword he brought to the meeting. The events were captured on CCTV and all of the 15 attending faculty and staff members signed sworn affidavits that Kirby had threatened to kill them. Despite this, Kirby continues to teach in the department, sparking outrage from many on campus. “Although this may seem a simple case of one person threatening to kill many others with a sword,” cautioned Wendy Girling, Associate Vice President: Homicide and Workplace Trauma, “it’s actually quite a bit more complicated.” Girling noted it was important to not rush to judgement and that CCTV footage showing Kirby threatening to kill his colleagues could be interpreted in multiple ways. Rudy Makepeace, President of the Faculty Union (FU-UNS), agreed stressing the importance of academic freedom. “We have to proceed very carefully here,” noted Makepeace, “a definitive ruling against Dr. Kirby could set a chilling precedent for the future use of swordplay in the classroom or swords as a pedagogical tool more broadly.” Under Girling’s direction the University convened a 75-person taskforce to investigate the case. Phase one of the taskforce’s three-phase plan is set to conclude in early 2030.


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