The Northwestern University professor at the center of a controversy over a sex-toy demonstration for students issued what the Chicago Tribune calls "a tepid, slightly defensive apology" Saturday.
Psychology professor J. Michael Bailey (pictured), who has previously been the target of criticism by LGBT people, said he will never allow anything like the demonstration, in which a man penetrated a woman with a phallic object attached to a device resembling a power saw, to happen again, and he regretted the uproar it had caused, but he thought critics had not made reasoned arguments.
"Saying that the demonstration 'crossed the line,' 'went too far,' 'was inappropriate,' or 'was troubling' convey disapproval but do not illuminate reasoning," Bailey wrote in a statement. Morton Schapiro, president of the suburban Chicago university, last week called for an investigation of the incident, which took place the previous week during an optional lecture on fetishism and other sex practices, attending by about 100 students.
Bailey also pointed out that the students were over 18 and said the demonstration was relevant to the topics at hand, the Tribune reported.
In the past Bailey has aroused controversy with a book he wrote on transgender people, which some observers thought offered a stereotypical portrait of that population; also, some trans people who had shared their stories with Bailey said they had not given permission to publish them. He also has come under fire for his claims that bisexuality does not exist and that it would be morally permissible for prospective parents to choose heterosexuality over homosexuality in their children if science made it possible to do so.