FACT Report: May 2, 2012

Vandy Has a Choice (May 2, 2012)

The Tennessee legislature just passed a bill to protect the religious liberty of student organizations at Tennessee’s publicly funded colleges. But the real controversy was over a provision applying the law to Vanderbilt University.

Vanderbilt created a policy requiring student organizations to accept any student who wants to be a member and to allow any student to run for a student office, meaning an atheist could wind up being an officer of a Christian organization.  But fraternities and sororities didn’t want this kind of “all-comers” policy applied to them, so Vanderbilt exempted them. This unequal treatment didn’t escape the notice of the legislators.

Essentially the bill lets Vanderbilt choose between allowing Christian organizations to require that their members and officers be Christians or requiring Greek organizations to accept any interested student too. Now the question is, “Which option will Vanderbilt choose?”

[fancy_header1]More On This Issue[/fancy_header1]

Details about SB 3597 on FACT’s legislation page.
National Review Online “The Corner” Blog: The Battle of Vanderbilt by David French
Video: Students respond to Vanderbilt’s policy. 
VUReligiousFreedom Facebook page: Restore Religious Freedom at Vanderbilt