Two married professors at Yale have decided to step down from their positions of leadership stemming from a free speech controversy in which they stood up for the First Amendment right.
Nicholas and Erika Christakis, the former heads of Yale's Silliman College, came under fire last fall after Erika sent out a mass email urging people to not be offended by Halloween costumes that engaged in "cultural appropriation."
The email led to a firestorm of backlash against the couple, including a well-publicized video
(note: offensive language) in which a black student screamed at Nicholas Christakis on campus and accused him of not making the Yale campus a "safe space."
Nicholas and Erika Christakis, who at the time held the headmaster and associate headmaster positions at Silliman College, respectively, ignored calls to resign from their leadership roles
but did cancel the spring classes they were scheduled to teach.
This week, however, the couple resigned from their leadership duties at the Ivy League school.
"We have great respect for every member of our community, friend and critic alike," Nicholas Christakis wrote, according to the Yale Daily News
"We remain hopeful that students at Yale can express themselves and engage complex ideas within an intellectually plural community. But we feel it is time to return full-time to our respective fields of public health and early childhood education."
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