At National Review Online, constitutional lawyer David French describes Vanderbilt University’s “strange war on ‘discrimination.'”
Like many universities before it, Vanderbilt is trying to open Christian student groups to leadership by non-Christians, and they’re doing so in the name of “nondiscrimination” and even “civil rights” — explicitly comparing Christian groups to segregationists.
The reality, of course, is that Vanderbilt is trying to force the orthodox Christian viewpoint off campus. The “nondiscrimination” rhetoric is mere subterfuge. How can we know this? Because even as it works mightily to make sure that atheists can run Christian organizations, it is working just as mightily to protect the place and prerogatives of Vanderbilt’s powerful fraternities and sororities — organizations that explicitly discriminate, have never been open to “all comers,” and cause more real heartache each semester for rejected students than any religious organization has ever inflicted in its entire history on campus. Vanderbilt’s embattled religious organizations welcome all students with open arms; Vanderbilt’s fraternities and sororities routinely reject their fellow students based on little more than appearance, family heritage, or personality quirks.
But where are the brave warriors for inclusiveness in the face of the annual Greek-dominated festival of exclusion called “rushing” and “pledging”? Nowhere to be found, of course…