It had to happen at some point: the New York Times has discovered the policies against homosexual conduct at Christian colleges and universities. The story is predictable . . . courageous gay and lesbian students struggling for the right to simply be who they are on campuses where administrators have stubbornly refused to recognize that there really is no conflict between Christianity (properly understood, of course) and 21st-century sexual mores.
My alma mater is one of the schools scrutinized in the article, and the university where I now teach has policies similar to those that the students interviewed for the article complain about. I’m basically in agreement with those rules in that they attempt to reflect Biblical teaching in the area of sexual behavior. Students who chafe at these rules have the option to attend other institutions of higher learning.
I’m sure, however, that the people who are always talking about “diversity” will not rest until these policies are overturned by whatever means necessary. In their view, homosexual students and student groups must receive, as the article says, “the moral validation that would come with formal status” on campus, whether or not that validation is in direct conflict with the colleges’ founding principles.
The so-called advocates of diversity really want conformity. They want every institution in society to strike exactly the same posture towards every social and economic issue they consider important. They will use the power of the State to get what they want if their social relations efforts fail to convert pockets of society to their view. The “tolerant” will not tolerate any institutions that prefer to chart a different course.
Now that this issue is on the elites’ radar, I would not be surprised to see calls for the federal government to withhold financial aid from students who attend Christian colleges and universities with rules against homosexual behavior. Diversity advocates know that the feds are so deeply intertwined with the market in higher education that a removal of this subsidy to students could devastate these schools financially. Or the government could threaten to revoke the tax-exempt status of these schools to bring about the same effect. This was the strategy used several years ago against Bob Jones University to force the school to overturn its policy on interracial dating, and it worked.
If Christian colleges are wise, they’ll begin making plans to implement Grove City College’s strategy of weaning themselves off federal funds through the raising of endowment for operating costs. They may not have much longer before events force them into decisions that could compromise their identity.