Six women who are deans at the University of Michigan released a letter to a member of the Board of Regents, Ron Weiser, this weekend, criticizing his remarks about the state's leaders, The Detroit Free Press reported. Weiser, who is head of the state Republican Party, last week called the three female leaders -- including the governor -- of the state "witches" who should be "ready for the burning at the stake." He apologized for the remarks in a statement Saturday, saying, "I apologize to those I offended for the flippant analogy about three women who are elected officials and for the off-hand comments about two other leaders. I have never advocated for violence and never will."
But the six deans were not satisfied. They wrote, "We find your comments about elected leaders in the state of Michigan to be insulting, demeaning to women, and contrary to the democratic values of our state and country. While your remarks may have been motivated by your personal views, they are damaging to the community of the University of Michigan and the schools and colleges that we lead given your role as a regent. Your words do damage and disrespect not only to women in leadership positions, whether elected or appointed, but also to young women who will lead in the future. We must speak out in protest when women are threatened with violence because of the decisions they have made. We believe that sexist name calling and threats of violence, especially from those in positions of power, simply are not acceptable. This is not a context-dependent question: they are not acceptable."