No BrainLiberty University, Jerry Fallwell’s monument to anti-intellectualism, is about 2 hours and 120 years from Richmond, the capital of an increasingly progressive state.  LibU recently denied official recognition to the student Democrat Club because by their very existence they support the Democratic Party’s platform that includes support for gay marriage and a woman’s right to choose, plus a few less egregious issues. Perhaps their most worst offense was their support for candidate Obama, seen by many as the antithesis of Christian conservatism.

Now the club and the university are negotiating what the club can do to receive official recognition, which would guarantee access to meeting space, space that the Republican club needs not worry about having. Reportedly, the club must refrain from endorsing any candidate, which largely neutralizes the point of having a club associated with a political party. Chancellor Jerry, Jr. has said, “If the candidate happened to be in favor of abortion and same-sex marriage, then we would like to see some kind of disclaimer,” Falwell said. “There’s some debate back and forth on how that disclaimer would be worded.”

How would that disclaimer read? “The Student Democratic Club of Liberty University seeks the re-election of Candidate Jones except for her support for gay marriage, a woman’s right to choose, her rejection of the Defense of Marriage Act and her endorsement of socialist values. If that’s OK with the LU Administration. We guess.”

Compared to LibU’s 11,000 students, the 30-member club could hardly be considered a threat to the university’s mission of promoting conservative social and religious values.  I had mistakenly assumed that an institution that sought to further the education of its students would not be threatened by the existence of a tiny cadre of students with slightly divergent opinions, but from tiny acorns…

We should hardly be surprised at LU’s approach to this situation. This is a school that prohibits students from watching R-rated movies, cursing, using tobacco and of course alcohol, associating with those who use alcohol, attending dances, visiting a student of the opposite sex alone in their off-campus home, visiting the bedroom of a member of the opposite sex on or off-campus, you get the picture; these rules make the 195os seem positively bacchanalian. No mention of the back seats of cars in the rules, but you can be sure that Campus Security keeps a sharp eye for steamy windows.

As a private institution they are entitled to impose these rules and students presumably know what they’re signing up for when they enroll. However, LibU’s concern about the thought-crimes of adolescent Democrats makes me wonder just what their students will be prepared for when they leave their tiny Virginia paradise. Remember that this is a university that teaches that evolution is a secular fiction.

So for what world will these students be prepared when they exit the bubble? They will lack the capacity for critical thinking, they will fear rather than explore the full spectrum of life, they will relinquish the joy of learning for the dull certainty of Biblically revealed truth.  And they will consider themselves to have experienced “higher education.” It’s always helpful to know that you’re handicapped.

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