Liberty University President Jerry Falwell Jr.’s bad press continued on Thursday as emails uncovered by Reuters revealed that he has mocked and disparaged his students and staff for years.
Talking Points Memo reported that the emails revealed “the evangelical leader’s disdain for several Liberty students ever since he became the school’s president in 2008, even going as far as describing one of them as ‘emotionally imbalanced and physically retarded.’”
Referring in one email to students who wanted to use a gym owned by the school, Falwell called them “social misfits.” Reuters reported that the school’s president was upset because he desired exclusive access to the gym for himself and university executives.
Regarding university students who parked their vehicles off-campus rather than pay to use those at Liberty, TPM said Falwell wrote that they “need to learn to play by the rules or they can go to another college.”
As for university staff, Falwell said in one email that a dean of the engineering school was a “bag of hot air” who “couldn’t spell the word ‘profit.'” He also called campus police chief a “half-wit” who was “easy to manipulate.”
Reuters’ report comes on the heels of a damning story by Politico in which current and former university officials claimed Falwell presides over “a culture of fear and self-dealing” at the school.
They also detailed the president’s apparent hypocrisy, whereby he presents a godly and pious version of himself to the public but behind the scenes engages in corrupt behavior and brags about his sex life.
In response, Falwell reportedly threatened lawsuits and suggested the FBI should investigate.