As mentioned by Utenzi, University of Kansas religious studies professor Dr. Paul Mirecki was forced off the road while driving on the morning of Monday December 5, and then beaten by the driver and passenger of the other car. This was after he made disparaging comments towards people who believe in creationism (Edit: typo fixed). It's one thing to teach a course addressing creationism as a form of religion (because it is), but when you say bad things about people, it brings out the worst in them as well.
My response to Utenzi's comment was that I felt Dr. Mirecki's words and actions were uncivil and unprofessional, and he actually deserved a written comment to be put in his record for it. That's a very drastic statement, by the way. In academia professors get tenure for life, meaning they can't be fired unless something really extreme happens, and usually that extreme event has to be preceeded by a paper trail of other offences. Putting in a written comment starts him down the road towards being fired, which is entirely unheard of in academia, and ruin's that person's career and life.
What actually happened I feel was too drastic, and yet I have little sympathy for Mirecki. Dr. Mirecki was the chair of the University's religion department. The (unnamed) Dean came to him with a pre-typed letter saying Mirecki was resigning as chair of the department and returning to being just a professor. Dr. Mirecki says he was forced to sign the letter, resigning as department chair, and says this has ruined his career.
At most schools the Dean does not have the authority to actually force a resignation of the chair position, as usually departments vote to decide who has the chair. On the other hand, the Dean does affect firing, and so could've threatened Mirecki with that. Mirecki of course would have sued, and won, but meanwhile his career really would have been ruined.
Which brings me to his claim that this ruins his career. That's absolute hogwash. If he resigned voluntarily it would've been a bit of a disgrace, but he could work his way back from it. If he was forced into it, he could (and will) fight it, and in the meantime he's still a full tenured professor. I really don't see where the hurt is. But if anything ruined his career, it was his poor choice to insult the class of all Christians who believe in creationism, and to do so publicly. If there was any ruining done, he ruined himself.