Falwell to take an indefinite leave of absence
by Kyle Ziemnick
Posted 8/07/20, 06:48 pm
After drawing criticism over numerous public statements and scandals, Liberty University President Jerry Falwell Jr. apologized this week for posting a racy photo on Instagram. On Friday, the executive committee of the university’s Board of Trustees announced it had requested Falwell take an indefinite leave of absence from his positions as president and chancellor effective immediately, and Falwell agreed. The image, which he later deleted, showed him with his arm around his wife’s pregnant assistant, both of them with their midsections exposed and their pants partially unzipped. Falwell said they were posing just for fun but admitted he should not have posted it.
Hasn’t Falwell been in the news a lot lately? Last year, the son of the school’s late founder, the Rev. Jerry Falwell Sr., settled a lawsuit with a pool attendant he and his wife were friends with over the ownership of a hostel in Miami Beach, Fla. At the beginning of the coronavirus pandemic, experts and Liberty faculty members and students criticized Falwell and the school’s administration for continuing to have classes on campus—though no cases were reported there through the end of the school year. In May, he tweeted an image of a mask with a racially offensive photo, causing some faculty members and students to leave Liberty over concerns about racial insensitivity at the school.
Dig deeper: From the WORLD archives, read a report on Falwell’s battle with Liberty’s student newspaper over administrative censorship.
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