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R.Wreck
SFN Regular

USA
1191 Posts

Posted - 01/02/2005 :  16:05:40  Show Profile Send R.Wreck a Private Message
A christian law student group (supported by these knuckleheads) is suing Arizona State University because the University will not recognize their group (entitling it to funding) because non-christians and gays are not allowed to join (article).

quote:
Arizona State University strives for a campus free of prejudice, requiring its organized student groups to sign a statement pledging not to discriminate.

But now an unregistered student group is suing ASU, alleging that its inability to ban homosexuals and non-Christians from the group infringes on the members' religious freedom.

The Christian Legal Society, which has seven members, filed a federal lawsuit Nov. 17 demanding recognition as a registered group, which would give it access to organizational and financial support from ASU. This has been denied to the group because of its refusal to sign the non-discrimination pledge.


I fully support their right to have a christian only no-homo club if that's what they want. However there is no way they should be eligible for funding from a public university. And claiming this refusal of funding impinges on their religious freedom is complete bullshit. They are free to practice whatever they want, they just have to do it on their own dime.

Of course the Christian Broadcasting Network puts its own spin on this:

quote:
And both the students and Baylor say they are fighting because this is about far more than one club.

He said, "The application of religion and sexual orientation non-discrimination rules is the most significant threat to religious freedom in America right now."



Hmmmmm. Non-discrimination rules are the most serious threat to religious freedom? Maybe you need to rethink your religion (oh, wait, you never really thought about to begin with). Do these boneheads even think before opening their mouths? What is the threat in not funding homophobic fundy lawyer wannabe's? They have all the freedom they need. Just don't ask the rest of us to pay for it.

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Dr. Mabuse
Septic Fiend

Sweden
9675 Posts

Posted - 01/02/2005 :  16:48:35   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Send Dr. Mabuse an ICQ Message Send Dr. Mabuse a Private Message
Hmm... "All men created equal" versus "religious freedom". Which take precidence?

That's how I see it. Banning gay people is discriminating. My understanding of the Constitution, as little as I know it, is that regulation of discrimination is built into it.
Please enlighten me.

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R.Wreck
SFN Regular

USA
1191 Posts

Posted - 01/02/2005 :  19:28:09   [Permalink]  Show Profile Send R.Wreck a Private Message
quote:
Dr. Mabuse wrote:

Hmm... "All men created equal" versus "religious freedom". Which take precidence?

That's how I see it. Banning gay people is discriminating. My understanding of the Constitution, as little as I know it, is that regulation of discrimination is built into it.
Please enlighten me.


I don't really think that there is a conflict between equality and religious freedom unless your religion holds inequality as one of its tenets (explicitly or implicitly). But when there is that conflict, I would stand on the side of freedom of religion (and from religion) provided that the religion in question does is not in any way subsidised by the public nor is it breaking any laws. If you want to be exclusionary, you should have that right, as long as you are a private organization and fund your own activities. (Besides, who the hell else would want to spend time with these people?)

In this case, the student organization suing the university seem to be confusing their right to assemble and exclude those with whom they disagree with my right not to pay for it. Nobody said they couldn't have their little club. What they were told was that if they wanted the University's sanction and financial assistance, that they would have to abide by the same rules as every other campus organization, one of which is to not discriminate based on religion or sexual preference. Since they couldn't reconcile their religion with inclusion (not very christian if you ask me), they refused to abide by the conditions, therefore were denied sanction. I don't see how the University in impinging on their freedom.

This of course is just a layman's opinion. Any lawyers out there?


The foundation of morality is to . . . give up pretending to believe that for which there is no evidence, and repeating unintelligible propositions about things beyond the possibliities of knowledge.
T. H. Huxley

The Cattle Prod of Enlightened Compassion
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Dave W.
Info Junkie

USA
26004 Posts

Posted - 01/02/2005 :  20:19:03   [Permalink]  Show Profile  Visit Dave W.'s Homepage Send Dave W. a Private Message
The Constitution, Mab, denies the government the ability to discriminate, on several bases, including sex, religion and skin color. Because it's Arizona State University, the school itself is bound by the Constitution at some high level (legally, they exist as an "arm" of the state government, supported by tax dollars, just like other public schools here).

What's really terrifying about this article is that other schools have given the CLS waivers from non-discrimination policies. And, they won one from Ohio State in an out-of-court settlement of a similar lawsuit.

One of these days, this issue will actually be decided by the courts (some University or other will stand up for itself all the way). If the unthinkable happens, and waivers are found to be acceptable, then we should expect to see demands of waivers from the campus KKK group, allowing them to discriminate as they are wont to do.

With a little sense, though, the courts will decide that were the schools to waive their non-discrimination policies at all, then they, as representatives of the government, will be saying, in effect, "we get to choose who can discriminate and who cannot." That is clearly (to me) unconstitutional, as it defies "equal protection." If this decision is made at the SCOTUS level, all previous waivers in all state schools will go "poof," and many groups will either have to agree to not discriminate or quit taking state funding.

Just as a reminder for everyone, that is what's at issue here. Right now, the CLS has this choice: (A) take ASU's money and not discriminate, or (B) don't take ASU's money and discriminate (and otherwise do whatever they feel like doing). What they want is (C) to take ASU's money and discriminate. And according to ASU, no other group - religious or otherwise - has asked for (C).

R.Wreck wrote:
quote:
I don't see how the University in impinging on their freedom.
Obviously, the CLS feels entitled to aid from the state school. They feel they have a right to be sanctioned by the University. Despite being a group of seven (7!!!) lawyers, they apparantely don't understand the difference between rights and privileges.

- Dave W. (Private Msg, EMail)
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