Why Liberty University Stripped the Democratic Club of Their “Official” Status

Last week, Jerry Falwell‘s Liberty University stripped the Democratic Party club of their status as an official campus group.

Over the weekend, Chancellor and President Jerry Falwell, Jr. issued a public statement explaining the school’s decision.

Let’s analyze…

The University has not banned Democrats from campus. Nor has the Democrat club been banned from meeting. And, never has the University or its’ officials said that a person cannot be a Christian and a Democrat. Sorry for those who want to run with these titillating soundbites, but these are the facts.

The students who formed the Democrat club last October are good students. They are pro-life and believe in traditional marriage. They can continue to meet on campus. The only thing that has changed came about as part of a University-wide review of all student organizations for official recognition status. Official recognition carries with it the benefit of using the University name and funds. While this group will not be an officially recognized club, it may still meet on campus.

In other words, the student Democrats can meet… we’re just not going to give them a room to meet in, or funding to hold events, or the opportunity to advertise their group’s meetings on campus.

Oh… and you’re all horrible, evil people for thinking women should be allowed to decide what happens to their own bodies and for supporting the Gays.

Liberty University is the world’s largest and fastest growing evangelical university. While many schools have faced budget short falls and declining enrollment, Liberty is debt free and continues to grow at a rapid rate. We now have 11,500 students on campus and nearly 38,000 students online. This fall Liberty University will exceed 50,000 total students.

This has nothing to do with the issue at hand… we just wanted to promote the fact that our school has a nearly 95% acceptance rate of students, making us one of the least selective colleges in the country.

Liberty brings many diverse speakers to campus… Last year Senator John McCain’s brother spoke to the students along with Virginia Democratic Governor, Tim Kaine. Dr. Bernice King, daughter of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., spoke to our students this Spring about how her opposition to same sex marriage put her at odds with her family and her political allies. Ted Kennedy also spoke at Liberty in 1983.

When we were in the midst of a major election, we dared to bring representatives from both major parties to our campus! Look at how open-minded we are!

Oh. And liberal Ted Kennedy came to our school more than 25 years ago.

(Did they really include that last line? Really?)

  • http://brielle.sosdg.org brielle

    I love how we (atheists/gays/lesbians/democrats/liberals) are so evil, disgusting, lame, whatever, but yet we’re still important enough in his eyes that he has to justify his position. :)

  • Simon

    Academic Freedom: Sometime, it’s convenient. Sometime, it’s not…

  • Beth B.

    Wait, wasn’t a major point made in some of the earlier articles on this that the Democratic club *couldn’t* meet on campus under threat of receiving official “reprimands”? Has the university changed its position or was there an error?

  • Thilina

    Who’s in favor of filling a lawsuit against them for false advertising. “Liberty” University?

  • http://newref.blogspot.com James

    A question that was overlooked: is there an officially sanctioned Republican Club on campus? I assume there is, but I don’t know for sure. If there is, then that speaks volumes about how they put politics on, in, and over religion.

  • Epistaxis

    It might be nice if they told us why they did what they did, not why they didn’t do what they didn’t do.

  • Sarah Langford

    There’s a misused apostrophe in their press release.

    Is it just me or is there a high correlation between bigotry and poor grammar?

  • sav

    Debt free? Yeah, maybe after that financial reorganization in 1985 that changed their name and gave them university status.

    I seem to remember Liberty going through a few financial crises in the past. But like any slick marketing machine, they’ve made a comeback.

    James, the leader of Liberty’s Democratic Club was on Rachel Maddow, and he said that there is a Republican group on campus that did not get the same letter the Democratic Club got, so I assume they allow the Republican group to continue functioning on university property.

  • Richard Wade

    There’s a misused apostrophe in their press release.
    Is it just me or is there a high correlation between bigotry and poor grammar?

    I noticed the errant apostrophe too. There’s certainly a high correlation between bigotry and general ignorance, but poor grammar is ubiquitous, even here among some of the least bigoted folks I know:
    “People that”, instead of “people who”.
    “Than” mixed up with “then.”
    “There, their” and “they’re” used in every wrong way possible.
    “Should of” instead of “should have.”

    I try to ignore them and concentrate on what the person is meaning to say, but it is a distraction and a slight loss of credibility, like a gob of spinach on the teeth of an otherwise attractive professional speaker.

    Sorry if I sound like a grammar snob, and my grammar is not perfect, but I think that good craftsmanship in our language adds to the credibility of what we are trying to say.

  • http://zackfordblogs.wordpress.com ZackFord

    I took a look at Liberty University’s actions through the lens of the ethical standards set for college personnel. Check it out over at ZackFord Blogs: http://is.gd/IhfO