ICC Note: As college campuses across the nation are implementing more non-discrimination policies, many are doing more harm than good. Multiple universities have begun to deny official recognition to student organizations with particular religious beliefs. InterVarsity has reported that multiple schools have restricted Christian groups’ freedom to elect their own leaders due to these paradoxical anti-discrimination policies.
By Alex Murashko
06/12/2014 United States (The Christian Post) – College and university policies that stipulate that Christian student groups on campus must follow non-discrimination policies in the selection of the groups’ leaders could squelch student conversation about faith in the future, says a leader from InterVarsity.
Greg Jao, national field director for the Northeast InterVarsity Christian Fellowship, told The Christian Post that college institutions such as California State University (Cal State), the largest university system in the U.S., that are prepared to withdraw recognition from certain evangelical clubs this summer, are an example of a nation at a crossroads.
“There’s just enough of them that it’s not just Vanderbilt, for example, that have taken this to an illogical extreme, it’s an increasing number of schools that actually believe that the best way to avoid discrimination is to prevent religious groups from becoming authentically religious. There is enough of them that it is actually a trend,” Jao explains. “The United States is in the middle of reassessing what it thinks the role of religion should be in our society. Health and Human Service questions, denial of service questions, marriage equality, they are all different questions about religion and its role in society, but they are all being asked right now and the U.S. is coming to a very different answer than it used to come up with.”
InterVarsity and Jao are no strangers to defending Christian clubs on campuses. As The New York Times recently reported, universities have been “emboldened” to regulate religious groups after a Supreme Court ruling in 2010 that determined it was constitutional for a public law school in California to deny recognition to a Christian student group that apparently excluded gays.
“You can no longer ignore the fact that multiple universities are doing this and it’s a sustained trend rather than one administrator acting oddly,” Jao told CP.