Saturday, February 26, 2011

Belmont University Recognizes Gay Student Group

     Things just keep getting better for the LGBT students at Belmont University in Nashville, Tennessee. After last years debacle regarding the firing of softball coach Lisa Howe for being in a relationship with another woman, the University - bowing to public outrage - added sexual orientation to its non-discrimination policy. Though the former Southern Baptist school added this much needed policy, there was still complaints coming out of the University that it was marginalizing LGBT students by not allowing them to form a LGBT club on campus. 

    But this all changed today, when Belmont Provost Thomas Burns and the LGBT organizations President Robbie Maris announced that the university would formally recognize the Bridge Builders club. They stated,
“Belmont University has accepted and approved the application from Bridge Builders as an official student organization. This outcome represents many months of conversation, collaboration and cooperation between Belmont students, faculty and staff. We are pleased that our ongoing campus dialog about Christian faith and human sexuality has helped us to establish Bridge Builders as an official student organization at Belmont University. What we have accomplished working together represents our community well and is better than what we ever could have accomplished working separately. Our commitment to work together in developing this meaningful and important group on our campus reflects our community’s spirit of collaboration and dialog as we strengthen our diverse Christian community of learning and service through disciplined intelligence and compassion.”
     I am pleased that Belmont has taken this step, for as Christianity - and religion in general - learn more about such issues as human sexuality, most fair-minded individuals will recognize that the prohibitions in their scriptures are not applicable to todays world. Though much work needs to be done for Christianity to mend fences with the LGBT community, Belmont has taken a step in the right direction, and for that I applaud them.

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