A professor at a state-funded college has come under criticism for giving her class an assignment that required students to wear a gay pride ribbon all over campus. In response a group of Christian students who felt their rights were violated by the assignment have sought legal counsel to counter the professor’s pro-homosexual agenda.
This spring, Linda Brunton, the lead faculty member in CSCC’s Psychology Department, required her students to wear Rainbow Coalition ribbons in support of homosexual behavior for at least one day. Students then had to observe public reaction and write a paper about how they were allegedly “discriminated against” while wearing the ribbons.
When several students objected to being forced to support conduct that violates their faith convictions, Brunton brushed aside their concerns, described their views as “ignorant and uneducated,” and explained that she hoped this assignment would cause them to change their beliefs. Regardless of their convictions, students had to express the views she mandated in order to receive class credit. (source).
Brunton told students they were barred from offering any reasoning in their assignment or in class as to why they disagree with homosexuality and specifically forbade any student from “throwing Bible verses at her.” In addition to the assignment, it was alleged that Brunton regularly attacked the Christian viewpoint on homosexuality as “hatred” and said that it was her job to “educate the ignorant and uneducated elements of society”, a reference to those who hold to the Biblical view of sexuality and marriage.
The offended students contacted the Alliance Defending Freedom, a legal advocacy group that defends the religious freedom of Christians, for legal assistance in this matter. The attorneys sent a letter to the school, informing the administrators that the assignment, by forcing students to adopt a particular viewpoint, even outside of the classroom, was a violation of their First Amendment rights to free speech and free exercise of their religion. The letter requested that the assignment be removed from the school curriculum and that Professor Brunton be punished for such a flagrant violation of the free speech of the school’s students.
State Sen. Joey Hensley is an alumni of the college and is chairman of the senate higher education committee. He told Fox News such lessons are inappropriate in Tennessee universities and colleges:
“It’s highly inappropriate for a professor to require students to advocate for something they do not believe is morally right,” he said.
Hensley said he’s planning on discussing the matter with the college’s president.
“If the teacher really did this – she needs to be reprimanded at the minimum and terminated the maximum,” he said. (source).
Columbia State College has since issued a press release to Fox News which stated:
“When the allegations were brought to the attention of college officials, Columbia State Community College began an investigation, which is currently ongoing and congruent with Board policy and applicable laws,” the statement read. (source).
Prophesied Anti-Christian Sentiment
If the world hate you, ye know that it hated me before it hated you. If ye were of the world, the world would love his own: but because ye are not of the world, but I have chosen you out of the world, therefore the world hateth you. Remember the word that I said unto you, The servant is not greater than his lord. If they have persecuted me, they will also persecute you; if they have kept my saying, they will keep yours also. But all these things will they do unto you for my name’s sake, because they know not him that sent me. If I had not come and spoken unto them, they had not had sin: but now they have no cloak for their sin. – Jesus Christ, John 15:18-22.
Jesus Christ prophesied that the unbelieving world would hate Christians who believe in Biblical Christianity. Why? For the same reason the world during the time of His earthly ministry hated Him – because the Word of God puts a light on the sins of humanity. The unsaved world does not want to be told that they are in sinful rebellion against God or will one day stand judgment before Him. And thus the response to the Word is to lash out just as Professor Brunton did – not even tolerating a Bible verse to be mentioned in a college class room, a place that is supposed to be the “marketplace of ideas.”
This assignment is similar to one given by a Professor at Florida Atlantic University who told students to write the name of Jesus Christ on a piece of paper, throw it on the floor and stomp on it. Disrespect of the Christian faith was present in both situations.
Pray for the students who took a stand against this assignment to stand strong in their faith in what is clearly a controversy at the campus. And for the college to respond to the letter from the Alliance Defending Freedom by rightly punishing Professor Brunton for such egregious behavior. As the tide in society moves more and more against the Bible, it becomes that much more critical for true, Bible-believing Christians to stand up for their faith and proclaim it in love and truth.
“For I am not ashamed of the gospel of Christ: for it is the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth…” – Romans 1:16.