The Damage Activism Can Cause

Being an activist and standing up for someone’s rights is an excellent endeavor.

It’s positive, heart-warming, and can make a real difference. However, there are potential consequences of such actions, and that’s something Melissa Landa has had to face in recent times.

Melissa Landa is a clinical professor of education at the University of Maryland. She’s worked in the department of education for 10+ years, and all of it came to a screeching halt due to activist behavior.

What was the reason for her removal?

It had to do with her Pro-Israel activism in some of the academic work she’s done.

Oberlin College Chapter of Alumni

Being the president of this association, it was clear Melissa Landa would have a say in how things progressed. This was when she came face-to-face with a man named John O’Flahavan (Associate Chair).

Joy Karega at Oberlin made anti-semitic remarks that irked Melissa, and she called Joy out on it. This didn’t sit well with John O’Flahavan as he felt this got in the way of Joy’s freedom of speech in America.

There were additional allegations of Melissa Landa spending time in Israel and as a result missing classes she was assigned to.


Melissa Landa was not pleased with the decision and stated she would have the judgment appealed. During the process, she presented her point of view, and the board decided it was best to go their separate ways.

What was the reason for this?

The board at the University of Maryland stated most of the issues had to do with a personal divide between John and Melissa. However, they reported there were additional reasons why her contract would not be renewed.

While her experience of 10+ years was mentioned, the Universty of Maryland’s board stated it would hope all parties could reconcile later on.

For now, the contract has been left ignored and is not being renewed.

Melissa is looking at other options including discrimination due to religion or race. This is being investigated by The University of Maryland’s Title IX office. Nothing has come out of the investigations to this stage.

It’s important to note this has not been covered by anyone else in the media and continues to have slipped by the wayside.

Is this a battle between two department employees or is there more to it? Has activism cost Melissa Landa her job? It appears it has.

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