ROCHESTER (WWJ/AP) – A 57-year-old man suspended from Oakland University for writing about his attraction to teachers has filed a lawsuit seeking more than $2 million and four credits for the class.
Joseph Corlett says his First Amendment rights were violated by university officials. The school suspended him for three semesters last year after saying he violated a policy against intimidating people on campus. He said he was also warned that he’d be arrested for criminal trespass if he entered the campus during his suspension.
Corlett, a then 56-year-old student enrolled in an advanced critical writing class, titled his journal entries “Hot For Teacher,” after a song by the rock band Van Halen, as part of assignment on diary-style composition.
“My first battle with the hot for teacher thing, aside from second grade, was fought in Composition I at Oakland Community College. She was blonde and attractive in the Meg Ryan kind of way which I usually don’t go for… I shouldn’t have taken her for Comp 2 but I couldn’t resist smart and pretty… Her skirt came unzipped in Comp 2 one day and her polka-dotted panties were exposed. I was a perfect gentleman and discretely told her to pull her sweater over. She smiled and thanked me. It is our delicious little secret,” the essay read.
Corlett then wrote about another instructor, comparing her to Ginger, an attractive woman on the 1960s TV show “Gilligan’s Island.”
“Holy s*** I should drop right now, there is no way I’ll concentrate in class especially with that sexy little mole on her upper lip beckoning with every accented word. And that smile,” Corlett’s essay read.
The essay goes on to describe another teacher who is “tall, blonde and stacked” in a “skirt, heels, fingernails, smile,” that is “smart and articulate.” He basically said, in the essay he turned in to her, that her looks were distracting.
In a continuation of the essay, Corlett describes two of his other female teachers, saying: “I’m not a maniac for every female although I try to find something attractive about everyone… However, my history professor sets off my gaydar and [teacher] does not. I could not have sex with either of these women even if you offered me a million dollars cash. I couldn’t get the necessary cooperation, if you get my drift.”
In other journal entries, Corlett described sleeping in the nude with his gun and making a fellow female student uncomfortable when he looked up her number and called her home.
“I’ve had a few worries lately, the first that Lynn Anne, my wife, would read this. But now I don’t care. I suppose my fear is a good sign that I’m writing honestly,” Corlett wrote.
Corlett’s lawsuit, filed Friday, calls the writings “whimsical exaggeration.”
“It’s highly complimentary,” Corlett said of the essays after his suspension. “The very essence of what I’m saying is that I’m inspired by her relentless teaching style …When you’re in that woman’s class she is on and it’s inspiring. It’s a great experience. It had nothing to do with her physical appearance whatsoever.”
A message seeking comment was left for an Oakland University spokesman.
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