US University Gains The Right To BAN Gay Students

Holly Smith·28 April 2016·3 min read
US University Gains The Right To BAN Gay Students

It might sound like something out of the dark ages, but this story comes to you from the so-called modern times. For any forward-thinking individual, the very idea that a university could (or would want to) ban gay students from attending is downright repulsive. Over the years, the LGBT community has come so far in their fight for equality around the globe. Yet, it’s ridiculous stories like this one that show just how far we still have to go before we abolish unfounded hatred and discrimination like this.

The Carson-Newman University, a private Southern Baptist college in Tennessee, has recently ‘won’ the legal right to discriminate students based on their lifestyle and sexual choices. According to reports, the institute has been granted “religious exemption” from Title IX by the Federal Government. The title prohibits educational programs and activities from discriminating on the basis of sex. I’m sure you’ll agree that it’s a solid law right there, so why on earth has this university been made exempt?

Dr. Randall O'Brien, Carson-Newman University
Dr. Randall O’Brien, Carson-Newman University

Dr. Randall O’Brien, the president of the university, requested the exemption way back in May 2015. So, what was his reason for wanting to stop gay students from getting an education at his institute? Well, he said that it won’t affect the admission policies but will “further establish our identity as a religious school.” Umm, okay.

“This is who we are as a Christian university. These are our religious principles, and in a changing world, we would like to reaffirm that this is who we are and who we intend to be,” he recently told WVLT.

As you might expect, some alumni of the university have spoken out against this move, with one saying that he is ‘absolutely humiliated’ by it. The exemption comes into play immediately, and while O’Brien claims that it will no mean that the institute discriminates against students applying to the university, it at least gives them the legal right to do so.