Kelley School of Business professor Eric Rasmusen sent an email from his personal account to some of his former students Tuesday asking if they had any comments regarding accusations of misconduct against him, calling the allegations “numerous but trivial.” Rasmusen is being investigated by the university, IU Spokesperson Chuck Carney told the IDS in August.
A former student posted a screenshot of Rasmusen’s email to Twitter on Wednesday along with an attached paragraph written by Rasmusen listing the accusations.
“The university has been investigating me and hopes to punish me for what I think are trivial or nonexistent offenses,” Rasmusen said in the email. “If you have any comments that you think would be relevant, please email me.”
Rasmusen, professor of business economics and public policy, is on unpaid leave for the academic year, Carney told the IDS in August. Carney could not go into detail about the reason for leave, but said the university has been investigating Rasmusen since fall 2019. He said in an email Wednesday he is unable to comment on the investigation at this time.
Rasmusen has been accused of racism, sexism and homophobia and has used his social media to post these views, according to a statement from Provost Lauren Robel in November 2019.
In the email, Rasmusen said he received the investigative report, which outlined allegations against him, from IU on Jan. 25 and has until 5 p.m. Friday to send a response to the Office of Institutional Equity.
Rasmusen confirmed in an email that he emailed former students asking if they had any comment on allegations made against him for discrimination on the basis of sex, race and national origin. He said the investigation process has not concluded, which is why student input is relevant.
Rasmusen was criticized in November 2019 for tweeting a quote from an article called “Are Women Destroying Academia?” that stated “Geniuses are overwhelmingly male because they combine outlier high IQ with moderately low Agreeableness and moderately low Conscientiousness.”
Rasmusen tweeted Aug. 22 about female Purdue students, writing “Those girls are really showing off their legs!”
He tweeted again Aug. 23, “If a boy sits alone, it’s not going to get him any girls, though in some places it would attract homosexual men.”
On Aug. 26, he tweeted that George Floyd, a Black man killed by police officers in May, had actually overdosed on the drug fentanyl.