Suing professor says he escaped 'cult-like' training at Penn State

Suing professor says he escaped 'cult-like' training at Penn State

Suing professor says he escaped 'cult-like' training at Penn State

A white professor who was subjected to race-based faculty training at Pennsylvania State University is suing numerous people there and alleging he is the victim of blatant racial discrimination and retaliation because he opposed it.

Zack De Piero, who taught English at Penn State Abington, says he quit in 2022 after the university punished him when he complained about workshops and training sessions that blame Caucasians for society’s problems, according to a Fox News story.

Penn State has a total enrollment of 88,100 students on 20 campuses in the state. The campus at Abington has about 4,000 students and approximately 150 faculty members.

Reached for comment for this story, Penn State told AFN the university "does not generally comment on pending litigation."

De Piero is being represented by The Foundation Against Intolerance And Racism, or FAIR, which filed a 36-page complaint June 15 in the U.S. Eastern District Court of Pennsylvania.

A struggle session over whiteness

If the professor’s allegations are true, such as being criticized and punished for defending white people, people who know world history might recall China’s "struggle sessions" that subjected millions of Chinese citizens to the murderous Red Guards. Those fanatical Communists chased down "counter-revolutionaries" in their schools and work places, and forced them to admit to anti-Mao thought crimes in a public trial. 

In the federal lawsuit, the former Penn State professor says he was lectured by Liliana Naydan, an English Department colleague, and by an equity administrator named Alina Wong. The lawsuit claims Naydan ordered fellow professors to teach students to see “white supremacy” in the English language and in writing. She also allegedly demanded English Department faculty members grade students based on equity.

De Piero says Wong, who is no longer at Penn State, bizarrely asked white faculty members to hold their breaths longer than others to experience the “pain” George Floyd endured.

The complaint names more than 40 defendants, including Wong and Naydan.

In the Fox News interview, De Piero said he was subjected to a “cult-like environment” in which “original sin” is being born white, but whites can experience a works-based salvation by attending the training sessions and admitting to their failure.

“They were waging a psychological war campaign and they're trying to break people,” De Piero told Fox News. “And they almost broke me but they didn't.”