Louisiana State University confirmed on Thursday that a graduate student lecturer has been relieved of his teaching duties. This action came after he left a threatening voicemail filled with profanity for a Republican state senator.
Marcus Venable, who will continue as a graduate student in the Sociology department at LSU, allegedly left an angry message on state Sen. Mike Fesi’s (R-LA) cellphone after he voted in favor of House Bill 648, also known as the “Stop Harming Our Kids Act.”
House Bill 648 prohibits individuals under the age of 18 from receiving hormone treatments, puberty-blocking drugs, gender surgeries, and other related procedures.
During the veto override session of Louisiana’s legislature on Tuesday, Fesi delivered a floor speech sharing stories of individuals who had undergone irreversible procedures and later expressed regret for their actions.
Venable said in his voicemail, “I just wanted to say ‘congratulations’ to our state Senator, ‘Big Mike’ Fesi. And that f—king moron voted to make things worse for people who are already suffering. You fat f—king piece of sh—. I can’t wait to read your name in the f—ing obituary.”
Venable continued, threatening to make a “martini made from the tears of your butthurt conservatives when we put your fking a— in the ground, you fat f***king useless piece of sh**t. F— you. I hope you have a terrible day.”
After Fesi’s speech, conservative influencer Greg Price posted the threatening voicemail on Twitter.
After Fesi reported the message, local law enforcement was able to identify Venable. Greg Price’s tweet gained traction when the conservative Twitter account Libs of TikTok amplified it.
UPDATE: LSU grad student Marcus Venable finally gave WAFB a statement after his alleged voicemail to the state senator.
Venable said this: "The duty of the strong is to protect the weak."-Joseph Venable (1918-1980)
— Lester Duhé (@LesterDuhe) July 24, 2023
Subsequently, Republicans in the Louisiana Legislature shared the tweet, calling on LSU to dismiss Venable.
LSU spokesperson Abbi Rocha Laymoun made a statement, saying, “As a university, we foster open and respectful dialogue. Like everyone, graduate students with teaching assignments have the right to express their opinions, but this profanity-filled, threatening call crossed the line. This does not exhibit the character we expect of someone given the privilege of teaching as part of their graduate assistantship. The student will be allowed to continue their studies but will not be extended the opportunity to teach in the future.”