Fox News| by Gabriel Hays| August 24, 2023
Article Takeaways by DP News Staff:
- Dr. Jordan Peterson, a renowned psychologist and professor emeritus at the University of Toronto, has been ordered by an Ontario court to undergo “social media training” due to his controversial posts.
- The College of Psychologists of Ontario previously alleged that some of Peterson’s posts could be viewed as professional misconduct.
- Peterson challenged the order, but the Ontario court upheld the academic institution’s decision, emphasizing the responsibility of professionals in the public domain.
An order for famous Canadian psychologist and author Dr. Jordan Peterson to undergo “social media training” for controversial posts he has shared in the last few years was upheld by an Ontario court.
Peterson, a popular media personality and professor emeritus of the University of Toronto psychology department, was forced to comply with the order Wednesday after three Ontario Divisional Court judges dismissed his legal complaint against the College of Psychologists of Ontario.
The academic body had claimed earlier this year that several of Peterson’s social media posts could be viewed as professional misconduct and asked that he take a social media training course.
Peterson has generated controversy in recent years with several posts calling out transgender ideology, politicians, and other topics. Last year, the psychologist was suspended from Twitter, now X, for rebuking transgender actor Elliot Page.
Peterson posted, “Remember when pride was a sin? And Ellen Page just had her breasts removed by a criminal physician.” Peterson was let back onto the platform following Elon Musk’s takeover of the social media company.
That same year, Peterson also trashed Sports Illustrated for featuring a plus-sized model on its May cover, posting, “Sorry. Not beautiful. And no amount of authoritarian tolerance is going to change that.”
For those posts and similar ones, the College of Psychologists ordered Peterson to undergo the training. It stated that if he refused, he could lose his psychology license in Ontario.
Peterson responded on social media in January, “To clarify: it’s been decided: I either submit to social media communication retraining or face a disciplinary hearing and possible suspension of my clinical license and the right to represent myself as a psychologist.”
Peterson then filed a judicial review of the College of Psychologists of Ontario’s order, arguing that the body does not have control over his political commentary on social media.
However, the Ontario court, which came to a unanimous decision among the three judges, dismissed Peterson’s complaint, stating that the academic body’s order falls under its responsibility to guard the profession of psychology in the public arena.
Peterson maintained that his posts were “off-duty opinions” and not made in his capacity as a psychologist. However, one of the judges, Justice Paul Schabas wrote, “Dr. Peterson sees himself functioning as a clinical psychologist ‘in the broad public space’ where he claims to be helping ‘millions of people.’”
The judge added, “Peterson cannot have it both ways: he cannot speak as a member of a regulated profession without taking responsibility for the risk of harm that flows from him speaking in that trusted capacity.”
In an interview with Canadian outlet CBC News, Peterson struck a defiant tone over having to take the social media training. He declared, “”I’ll comply with their regulations, but I’m not going to do it in secret… And the reason I’m not going to do it in secret is because I don’t believe I’ve done anything wrong.”
In a post on X, formerly Twitter, from Wednesday, Peterson summed up the situation for his 4.6 million followers, stating, “So the Ontario Court of Appral ruled that @CPOntario can pursue their prosecution. If you think that you have a right to free speech in Canada. You’re delusional.”
He added, “I will make every aspect of this public. And we will see what happens when utter transparency is the rule. Bring it on.”
Peterson did not immediately respond to Fox News Digital’s request for comment.