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Old 03-21-2006, 09:22 PM   #1
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As usual...

...Christians stick their nose in where they're not wanted.

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School Cancels Diversity Day Over 'Ex-Gay' Demands

March 21, 2006 - 9:00 pm ET

(Viroqua, Wisconsin) For the second time Viroqua High School has cancelled Diversity Day after conservative Christians balked at the inclusion of gay speakers.

The day, held every two years for juniors and seniors, was to have been held on Thursday as a opportunity to promote diversity in the community.

Speakers were to have included representatives of the African American, Latino, Jewish, Muslim, native American and gay communities.

But, Liberty Counsel, a Florida-based public interest law firm that regularly fights LGBT civil rights issues notified the school that it represented Pastor Don Greven of Bad Axe Lutheran Church and Charles Lind, grandfather of a Viroqua High senior who were concerned that representatives of the so-called ex-gay movement or other Christians opposed to homosexuality were not invited to speak.

Liberty Counsel, in a fax to the school, obtained by the La Crosse Tribune, warned that if Diversity Day went on the school could face legal action.

“By excluding the Christian and ex-gay viewpoints, the District violates the Establishment Clause and the Fourteenth Amendment guarantee of equal protection,” the fax said.

It also said that a federal court in Michigan had ruled unconstitutional a similar exclusion at Ann Arbor Public Schools event.

Following receipt of the threat the school cancelled diversity activities.

The last Diversity Day, in 2004, was cancelled after several hundred people signed a petition opposing a speaker on LGBT issues.
So, by their logic, should we cancel public celebrations of Martin Luther King Day, because the KKK isn't invited to speak?

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Old 03-21-2006, 10:54 PM   #2
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Bad Axe Lutheran Church??

This is ridiculous.

I hope that ruling in Michigan gets overturned.
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Old 03-22-2006, 04:18 AM   #3
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I suppose whether there's any potential unfairness to Christians in a *general* sense (14th Amendment approaches aside) depends on how similar the sort of information Pastor Greven's people would provide is to the sort of information that the Jewish and Muslim speakers would provide. If the latter planned to talk about theology and ethics rather than communal identity and lifestyle, that could be a problem. "Ex-gay" speakers are another matter entirely, and obviously didn't belong there; it can't very well be a question of diversity and a question of mental illness at the same time. It's not supposed to be Oppositionality Day, anyway, and that should apply to all parties involved.

I tend, though, to dislike these sorts of functions in general because they wind up effectively being "Otherness Day," and the taken-for-grantedness of the "We" implicitly being invoked there kind of undercuts the whole enterprise, IMO. Unless there's a compelling case to be made that this approach better serves the greater social good than others, I guess.
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Old 03-22-2006, 11:42 AM   #4
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This is tricky. It does look like someone is being left out when you tell anyone they can't come.
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Old 03-22-2006, 11:50 AM   #5
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Why did the school cancel? Potential for too much inclusion?
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Old 03-22-2006, 12:22 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally posted by nbcrusader
Why did the school cancel? Potential for too much inclusion?


it must be difficult being a straight, white, married, male, Christian lawyer.
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Old 03-22-2006, 12:37 PM   #7
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Only here
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Old 03-22-2006, 12:40 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally posted by nbcrusader
Only here

aw, there, there. we include you in *every* discussion
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Old 03-22-2006, 12:44 PM   #9
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Let's stick to the subject instead of turning this into a personalized "who gets to have an opinion" thread.
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Old 03-22-2006, 01:50 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally posted by nbcrusader
Let's stick to the subject instead of turning this into a personalized "who gets to have an opinion" thread.


there's that victim mentality again ...
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Old 03-22-2006, 01:59 PM   #11
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Originally posted by Irvine511
there's that victim mentality again ...
Which is actually what was displayed by the school when, faced with the prospects of having to permit some to speak, decided to cancel the event.

How hypocritical to trumpet a "Diversity Day" but close it down when you lose control of the message. I thought speech was the best counter to speech.
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Old 03-22-2006, 02:10 PM   #12
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Quote:
Originally posted by nbcrusader
Why did the school cancel? Potential for too much inclusion?
How can you promote inclusion, when one group is there to denounce another?

Up to this point, these groups never had a speaker who's agenda was to tell another group they were wrong.
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Old 03-22-2006, 02:12 PM   #13
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Quote:
Originally posted by nbcrusader


How hypocritical to trumpet a "Diversity Day" but close it down when you lose control of the message.
Yes the message has been lost. The message of DIVERSITY.
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Old 03-22-2006, 02:15 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally posted by BonoVoxSupastar
How can you promote inclusion, when one group is there to denounce another?

Up to this point, these groups never had a speaker who's agenda was to tell another group they were wrong.
Now, we won't know what they planned on saying, so the characterization of what they were going to say is your own.

And doesn't that violate the core belief of the First Amendment - that we do not evaluate the substance of speech?
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Old 03-22-2006, 02:28 PM   #15
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Quote:
Originally posted by nbcrusader


Now, we won't know what they planned on saying, so the characterization of what they were going to say is your own.

And doesn't that violate the core belief of the First Amendment - that we do not evaluate the substance of speech?
Well I think we can assume with confidence what an "ex-gay" group will say.

Yes it violates the first amendment, but this wasn't the issue of the "Diversity Day". Just like Melon said, you wouldn't have the KKK speak on MLK day.

If this was an open forum of ideas I would agree with you, but this a day to celebrate the differences we have, not to tell any of these different groups that they are wrong.
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