BLOOMINGTON — Videos that show the aftermath of an alleged verbally abusive incident involving an Indiana University professor at an off-campus McDonald's has rapidly circulated social media since Saturday. By Monday evening, nearly 1,000 people had signed a petition created by IU's Neurodiversity Coalition asking for the IU Board of Trustees to investigate the incident, while hundreds called for the professor's dismissal from the institution altogether.
The two videos posted on Facebook shows what happened directly after a McDonald's customer confronted the professor for her alleged use of 'stupid retard' in conversation about a mentally disabled cashier.
In the first video, a person recording the IU professor says, "IU professor, right? Yeah." and the professor reaches out and tries to grab the phone. In the second video, the professor becomes even more confrontational, steps toward the person recording and the McDonald's patron, who initially confronted her.
A petition was started on Monday by IU's Neurodiversity Coalition for an investigation into the incident, and for the university to take action against the professor.
Read, in part, the call to action posted by the group and what they learned of the alleged incident here:
"She reportedly called the neurodiverse cashier a "stupid retard" and then used the word "retard" again to describe another neurodiverse individual that was in line behind her. She also allegedly said that, "people like that shouldn't be allowed in public, much less operating a cash register." She then apparently physically assaulted one of the witnesses who was videotaping her and demanded that she delete her video... easily ID'ed from the IU website afterwards because she had told onlookers at the McDonald's that she was an 'IU Professor' when they suggested she needs to educate herself better about these issues."
Hundreds have commented on the petition, requesting for the professor to either retire, or for the institution to fire her.
According to the Neurdiversity Coaltion, the Board of Trustees is taking the situation seriously.
Indiana University released a statement to RTV6 on Monday referring to the incident:
"Indiana University is aware of the off-campus incident involving an IU employee and the associated social media response. University leaders have heard from individuals engaged in or concerned about the matter and are taking steps to learn more."