University of Missouri Professor Fired After Students Complain About Mask Comment (UPDATE)

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University of Missouri associate marketing professor Joel Poor was “relieved of teaching duties” Monday after students complained about a comment he made to one of his students during a Zoom lecture meet & greet where Poor asked if he had any international students to which one student responded he was from Wuhan, China.

“Let me get my mask on,” Poor said back.

And that was that. Students went nuts calling Poor a racist and saying the comment was xenophobic. Poor called it a joke and said in an apology email that he has “nothing but respect and love for the Chinese people and especially my students from China.”

But it was too late. The school has fired him.

As for Poor’s history with students, from a quick scan of, it appears Poor is known to drop jokes and sometimes they don’t hit the mark. This time the students had their Zoom footage ready to go and went straight to the school to have Joel fired. The school, clearly knowing they have bigger issues to worry about than going to battle for an associate professor, axed him with hopes that this all just goes away.

Update: here’s the full interaction where Poor offers the student a place to stay if things get tough.

Written by Joe Kinsey

Joe Kinsey is the Senior Director of Content of OutKick and the editor of the Morning Screencaps column that examines a variety of stories taking place in real America.

Kinsey is also the founder of OutKick’s Thursday Night Mowing League, America’s largest virtual mowing league.

Kinsey graduated from University of Toledo.


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  1. This from the university that brought you fake hunger strikes, fake white activist invading campus, random racial slurs from random idiots, and a poop swastika. Come on Man! It was a joke, maybe not in the best taste, but not racist. Facts matter this “stuff” started in Wuhan, China. OWN IT. Its not personal. It is the reputation of the area you are from. Just as a Texan we are stereotyped in other ways. Some good some not.

  2. I’m Chinese and I thought the joke was funny. He was on a Zoom call!! It was OBVIOUSLY a joke for crying out loud and the kid didn’t even feel offended.

    There needs to be a new rule where, unless you’re part of the demographic, you can’t be outraged on behalf of other people when someone is telling a joke.

  3. It was obviously a playful response i would think the university could see that what happened to free thought and exchange of ideas. If he lost his job that should send a chill over the entire university staff way over reaction for a little harmless fun very sad place we are in.

  4. I thought masking was responsible. Well, Mizzou clearly has not learned a thing from their PC wokism of a few years ago. Can some leftist snowflake please explain how his comment was racist given that Wuhan was the center of origin of the Covid?

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