NOM BLOG

Controversy in Utah: Debate About Marriage is No Longer Permissible

 

The “controversy” being orchestrated in Utah against those who signed onto a brief by scholars supporting marriage is indicative of the new direction of same-sex marriage activists: they are attempting to shut down debate altogether.

Voiceless

It’s no longer acceptable in their eyes to have a civil debate about the importance of marriage, or about the beauty of men and women coming together to have and raise children. Instead, they treat these positions as bigoted and discriminatory, akin to racism, claiming there is no room in civil discourse for them to be expressed, and certainly not anywhere near a university.

Two professors and a university president at two Utah universities are facing intense scrutiny from colleagues and students after signing a legal brief provided to the Supreme Court that defends traditional marriage.

Utah State University professors Richard Sherlock and Kay Bradford, along with Utah Valley University president Matthew Holland, were three of 100 scholars nationwide that signed an amicus curiae, or friend of the court brief, in support of traditional marriage.

Opponents of the brief allege the three, by signing the document, are perpetuating discrimination in the name of their respective universities.

The “100 scholars of marriage” brief is one of more than 140 briefs provided to the Supreme Court as it decides whether state bans on gay marriage are constitutionally legal.

Arguing in favor of gay marriage bans, the “100 scholars of marriage” brief states that “forcing a state to redefine marriage in genderless terms will seriously disserve the vast majority of the state’s children.”

The brief further argues redefining marriage will bring an increase in poverty, the number of children with emotional problems, and teenage pregnancies and abortions, among other things.

. . .

Because of the brief’s staunch defense of traditional marriage, some professors and students at Utah State and Utah Valley have gone on the offense toward the two professors and president. A contingent of students and employees at each university penned letters that express their disapproval.

In a letter sent to the Herald Journal, 250 students and professors at Utah State wrote the signatures of Sherlock and Bradford “send a clear message of intolerance to those LGBTQ students, faculty, and allies” at the university.

“Ultimately, they used their university title to perpetuate discrimination — that’s not OK, and that’s why we wrote this letter,” said Senior Bret Nielsen, who drafted the letter.

In response, Sherlock said his opposition to gay marriage is not equivalent to discrimination, especially when related to gay students.

“We all have views,” Sherlock told the Herald Journal. “Our task as teachers is not to keep those views hidden but insure that we are being fair to students who disagree.

Bradford has not commented on the controversy.

You may remember when former GOP Gubernatorial candidate Tom Emmer in Minnesota was stripped of a university professor post that had been awarded to him when activists complained that he supported traditional marriage. And there is the case of a tenured professor at Marquette who was terminated because he publicly objected to another teacher refusing to allow a student to express a position in support of traditional marriage in a classroom discussion. They follow the 2012 case of a high-ranking official at Gallaudet University who was suspended from her position because she signed a petition giving Maryland voters the right to vote on marriage.

We sincerely hope that the members of the US Supreme Court are watching developments like this, because if they rule (illegitimately) that defining marriage as the union of one man and one woman violates the US Constitution, the recriminations against supporters of marriage will be fast and furious.

You can read the full article at The College Fix.