Christian College Group Bans Gays and People Who Have Premarital Sex -- Is it a Set Up?
This post originally appeared on Hullabaloo.
The whole purpose of this case, the only reason the Christian Legal Society of Hastings College of the Law chose to discriminate proactively against certain people and not others, was to bring a case to the Supreme Court in order to get opinions from Scalia, Roberts, and Alito which would further establish, at the SCOTUS level, the notion that the US is a Christian Nation. They don't necessarily expect to win - as a layperson, I can't believe anyone with half a brain would buy their reasoning. They just want to get Supreme Court opinions, even in dissent, on record.
In other words, it's a setup:
The Christian Legal Society has long had a Hastings chapter that was recognized as a registered student organization, but in 2004, the group affiliated with the national Christian Legal Society and changed its policy to exclude from membership homosexuals and those who advocate or participate in pre-marital sex.
"When we did that, the director of student services said that the statement of faith in our bylaws violated their rules against discrimination on the basis of religion and sexual orientation," says Isaac Fong, a former chairman of the campus Christian Legal Society.
"In practice, this meant that CLS was rendered invisible on campus," Fong adds. "CLS was denied the ability to communicate with students or to have a physical presence on campus, and that caused the members of CLS to diminish to the point that there are only a few students left now."
And that is what's technically called a fucking lie:
The law school counters that the Christian Legal Society's membership actually doubled in the year after it was denied official status , that the group held meetings on campus, organized a lecture and held banquets. [Emphasis added]
Indeed, CLS did stipulate in court that the school does have an all-comers policy. So, the core of Monday's case is whether religious beliefs can trump a neutral school policy that applies equally to everyone.
In other words, this case is about whether the CLS's peculiar profession of Christian belief - and very peculiar it is - deserves special status in the United States. That is, whether CLS's kind of Christianity - or any specific kind of religious belief, for that matter - is established as a state religion.
Totenberg's article implies that the only people who can't join CLS are those who fall in love with someone of the same gender (or fuck without official government approval). You can be an atheist and still join the CLS. You can be Jewish and join the CLS. Hell, you can even be someone, like Ben Domenech who enjoys being powdered and diapered by hookers - well, at least that's what I heard, if you know what I mean - and join CLS, provided - WARNING!!! Gruesome Image Alert! - Ben doesn't masturbate while they're singing him to sleep.
Despicable as it is, CLS is entitled to do this. And, as a card-carrying member of ACLU, I defend CLS's right to be despicable. What they are not entitled to is official approval from a school with an all-comers policy. Nor are they entitled to lie in court about how they are victims of discrimination, rather than advocates for it.
This is a set-up and only a set-up. No, I take that back. I'm wrong. It's not only a set-up, it is also gratuitously cruel. It's what genuine Christians used to call, somewhat chauvinistically, un-Christian behavior.