If you don’t know who Michael Farris is, you should. He’s one of the most powerful people in the Christian right. He’s also the chancellor of Patrick Henry College, a charm school for wingnuts. And he got so upset about a group of students anonymously starting a pro-gay blog about the school that he threatened to sue them:
Since July, three anonymous bloggers at the Über-conservative Patrick Henry College in Purcellville, Virginia, have been running Queer Patrick Henry College, a blog about sexuality and identity on campus. You might expect such a website to elicit some concern at a school with a policy forbidding students from “advocat[ing] non-Biblical sexual practices,” according to the student handbook. But chancellor (and constitutional lawyer) Michael Farris went much further: He threatened to take the bloggers to court.
In a private message to the blog’s Facebook page on Saturday, Farris claimed that QueerPHC infringes on the school’s copyright of the name “Patrick Henry College,” and admonished them to talk about LGBT students at Patrick Henry College “without using the term ‘Patrick Henry College’ in any manner.” Farris further warned that if the blog wasn’t taken down, the school would pursue legal action, reveal the bloggers’ identities, and “seek damages from you as permitted by the law.” QueerPHC promptly posted the message.
Farris later backed off the threat, which was empty from the start. They would have lost in court and they know it. Remember that the next time you hear Farris talking about the free speech rights of Christians.