In most of my articles about the campus diversity movement, I try to use humor to deal with ridiculous situations, which are often created by ridiculous people following ridiculous policies. However, a recent situation involving the UNC-Wilmington College Republicans (CRs) is no laughing matter.
The controversy began when the CRs were asked to incorporate two non-discrimination clauses into their student group constitution. One requires that organizations not discriminate on the basis of “race, color, national origin, religion, sex, age, handicap, or sexual orientation.” The other says that organizations must adhere to “all University rules, regulations, and policies, as well as to all local, state, and federal laws.” According to the “Constitutional Guidelines” for all student organizations, both clauses “must appear in all constitutions and by-laws (Emphasis theirs).” In other words, all student groups must follow them in their entirety.
Take a moment to imagine the problems that could result from making the first of those two clauses binding on all student groups. The Sigma Chi fraternity would have to admit women, the Chi Omega sorority would have to admit men, the Muslim Student Association would have to admit Jews, and the Jewish Student Association would have to admit Muslims. And there certainly could be no group espousing the importance of traditional family structure unless gays and transvestites were allowed to join.
But things get even more ridiculous when the other clause is also made binding on student groups. By making groups adhere to “all University rules, regulations, and policies” factors such as “political affiliation” enter into the mix. Because the graduate catalogue includes political affiliation and because the CRs have members who attend graduate school, they realized that the second clause posed a serious threat to the well being of their group. Put simply, they did not want to open up their group to Democrats, Greens, and Nazis (please pardon the redundancy).
So the CRs did the only reasonable thing under the circumstances. They told the university that they would not incorporate the clauses. Of course, the result was predictable.
In a letter to the CRs, the Assistant to Student Organizations in the Campus Activities and Involvement Center, Faydra Stratton wrote the following:
“…the (Student Organizations Committee, or SOC) voted to revoke the registration status of the College Republicans due to the absence of the required adherence clause (read: loyalty oath) and the required anti-discrimination clause in the College Republicans constitution…Because your registration status had (sic) been revoked, the College Republicans has (sic) lost all the rights and privileges of a registered student organization…”
Stratton did attempt to diffuse the situation by writing the following in a previous e-mail to the CRs: “(W)e’re not asking that you keep everyone who wants to be a member of your group but we are asking that initially you give them a chance by not discriminating.” In others words, the university does not want the CRs to exclude people (e.g., Democrats) from joining. Instead, it would be better to let them join and then kick them out. Is anyone following this?
What Stratton and the members of the SOC fail to understand (or perhaps pretend to fail to understand) is that numerous opponents of the CRs could join simultaneously and create an instant majority. In addition to keeping themselves from being removed, they could fundamentally change the nature of the group.
Now that they no longer have a student group, the former CRs should demonstrate the absurdity of the university’s policies by joining the Young Democrats. After they get in, they could endorse George W. Bush for President. Or maybe they could join the pro-choice group and condemn abortion. But why stop there? Wouldn’t it be fun to join the Gay Pride group and condemn homosexual sodomy. The possibilities are endless!
As ridiculous as all of this seems, it is not the end of the story. Recently, an application for another conservative student group was submitted to the SOC. That group was rejected for two reasons. First, the group failed to include the aforementioned clauses. Second, it was told that the purpose of the organization was “unclear.”
I have read the full text of the constitution of that recently rejected group. Calling themselves “Students for a Stronger UNCW” they claimed to be “steadfastly committed to defending causes of academic and intellectual honesty, patriotism of country, free speech for all students, fair and balanced classrooms and forums, and the ideals that we deem attributable to a fair and properly functioning campus community…”
Of course, no reasonable person could conclude that the purpose of the Students for a Stronger UNCW is “unclear.” Instead, I suspect that many administrators fear that the group’s purpose is not only clear but also at odds with the unstated purpose of the postmodern university. That purpose is simple: to promote “tolerance” and “inclusion” by completely eliminating all opposition to the diversity agenda, the constitution be damned.
Your papers please!
Mike S. Adams (firstname.lastname@example.org) is an associate professor at a University with No Conservatives in Wonderland (UNCW). He recently offended some of his colleagues by offering them free venison after a successful hunting trip in Ivanhoe, North Carolina. Those who rejected his venison opted for tuna salad on the mistaken theory that tuna die a quicker and less painful death than a deer killed by Dr. Adams.