Fresno State professor’s tweets and responses on Barbara Bush spark controversy

National News
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A Fresno State English professor is making national news after a series of tweets delighting in Barbara Bush’s death.

Hours after the passing of Barbara Bush was announced, Randa Jarrar went to Twitter. “Barbara Bush was a generous and smart and amazing racist, who along with her husband, raised a war criminal. F*** outta here with your nice words,” tweeted Jarrar.

That tweet sparked a lot of criticism. In one response, Jarrar said she was dancing happily on the grave of a dead person she despised. Jarrar also tagged Fresno State President Joseph Castro, saying she loves being an American professor with a right to free speech. She said she feels protected and at home at Fresno State.

Jarrar’s faculty bio says she’s an award winning novelist who grew up in Kuwait and Egypt before moving to the U.S. after the Gulf War. Jarrar also tweeted that she’s a tenured professor who makes $100,000 a year and can’t get fired.

“I think the views of a professor don’t necessarily reflect the school. I don’t think it should make the school look bad but I still think it’s wrong that the professor used social media to say that because they should be professional,” said Fresno State student Amy Lawhead.

President Joseph Castro’s statement reads in part, “Professor Jarrar’s expressed personal views and commentary are obviously contrary to the core values of our university which include respect and empathy for individuals with divergent points of view and a sincere commitment to mutual understanding and progress.”

KSEE in Fresno reached out to Jarrar via email and social media but received no response.

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