Equity vs. Freedom: Anti-Discrimination Policies and Conservative Christian Student Organizations
Over the last two decades, many colleges and universities strived to make their campuses more inclusive to the LGBTQ+ community. Many institutions incorporated sexual orientation into their anti-discrimination statements and policies, placing sexual identity in the same category as racial or gender identity as a protected class. Additionally, some institutions adopted all comers’ policies under which all students are eligible for membership in registered student organizations and all members in good standing within those organizations are eligible to compete for leadership positions. As these policies became more robust, some colleges and universities scuffled with student organizations who, on the basis of their ideology, excluded some students from becoming members or serving in leadership roles. The most prevalent instances included public universities and evangelical Christian student organizations. In these cases, the institution moved to derecognize the evangelical group on the basis of their anti-discrimination or all comer’s policy. Some of the barred groups pursued litigation, arguing that their First Amendment rights to free speech, religion, or association were violated. This paper will examine the policies prompting the derecognition of evangelical Christian student organizations, and the arguments used by these groups to defend themselves. In addition to investigating what these policies have in common, arguments for and against these policies will be presented. Finally, implications for policy, practice, and future research will be presented.
For Interfaith Engagement to Succeed, White Religiosity Must Seek Solidarity with People of Color
Despite renewed efforts to engage religious diversity in higher education over the last two decades, interfaith engagement remains a relatively fringe interest on many campuses. The reason could be that these renewed interfaith efforts are running up against a powerful current of White religiosity that maintains a historical legacy of privilege in much of American higher education. For interfaith engagement to become a norm in American higher education, historical systems and structures that privilege White religiosity must be exposed, dismantled, and replaced with new systems and structures that are developed in solidarity with People of Color.
Hindu Chaplains as Translators
on College Campuses
To help mitigate the unique struggles of worldview minority students, some colleges and universities have hired campus chaplains who are able to empathize with, advocate for, and represent them. In the past ten years, Hindu chaplains in particular have been increasingly vocal about their work in scholarship and online forums, and a common thread in their testimonies has been their function as “translators” between Hindus and non-Hindus on campus. This work has enabled Hindu chaplains to remain visible on campus while ensuring that their students are seen and heard.
Muslims Inspiring Evangelicals
Excerpt: "A small but growing segment of white Evangelical voices have indeed expressed appreciation for Muslims’ commitment to prayer, in particular. The appreciation is typically framed as a good reminder of how Christians have been taught to pray to the triune God in the Bible and in their communities. This appreciation is not an endorsement of Muslim theology, but is rather an acknowledgment of the endurance, humility, and the theocentric spirit that informs Muslim religious practice."