Thursday, December 14, 2006

Don't cross the Christians!

At the University of Georgia, a group of Christians are taking on an anti-discrimination policy that they feel doesn't apply to them. This Christina group, Brothers Under Christ (BYX) has fraternities on several campuses around the nation, Vanderbilt being one of them.

I have several good friends who were either founding members of this frat on Vandy's campus or were devout BYX members. Now, I'm an accepting person, so I will just say that I appreciate and understand the "need" or "want" for a Christian fraternity, but at the same time, I do not necessarily agree with everything they do.

Anyway, BYX is/was hoping to register their fraternity as a student organization, but they didn't want to comply to the non-discrimination policy which states that student organizations are not allowed to discriminate based on gender, sexual orientation, national origin, religion, veteran status, know the list. This fraternity requires its members to make a pledge that they are Christians. this is a press release from the alliance defense fund. They are representing the plaintiff, BYX. its got the basic info on the case's grounds.

There are several other religious organizations on campus, and at this time, its unclear how many of them do or do not comply with the University's non-discrimination policy. At least one religious group (Baha'i Faith) requires that officers of the group are members of a particular religion.

BYX states that their freedom to exercise religion is restricted by the University. I see this as a bunch of crap, because really, it seems like BYX is the one doing the restricting. The University has not told BYX that they cannot freely exercise their christian beliefs, but rather, has said that BYX cannot keep people out of their frat simply because they do not practice the same religion. Now, isn't excluding people rather un-Christian-like?

I would really hope that the University wins this one, but it seems that there is a bit of inconsistency which the implementation of the policy at hand. It could be that this (Baha'i's status as a student org) slipped under the radar as head of student activities have changed, but perhaps someone at the U really doesn't like BYX itself and is attempting to unfairly implement university policy. You really can't say,but it will be interesting to see the results.

I, as a Catholic, support Christianity. What I do not support is Christianity's obsession with victimization and belief that one's "Christian-ness" is reason in and of itself to bend the wonderful laws of our country which protect our freedoms, liberties, and rights.

okay, maybe that was a little strong, but give me a break! I had a bad day...

thanks to Dillon Barker and his blog for the info and the links to relevant court documents and news articles!

EDIT- the U decided to grant BYX student organization status.


At 3:13 PM, Blogger Diezba said...

Why is it unreasonable for a Christian fraternity (not the Church) to exclude people who are not willing to uphold the Fraternity's doctrinal statement (that is basically the Apostles' Creed)? Why would someone who didn't believe the things in the fraternity's doctrinal statement want to join the fraternity in the first place? Doesn't make a lot of sense, does it? Guess that's why UGA (and the University of Missouri, who tried a similar restriction) decided to relent.


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