Recently, Gordon College, a Christian school near Boston, MA, has been in the news after its president signed a letter asking for exemption to a ban against discrimination. While Gordon College received much attention, it is not the only higher education institution to sign such a letter. Eastern University’s President Robert Duffett also co-signed a letter, which seeks the right for Eastern University to discriminate against LGBT individuals.1 Such an exemption would allow Eastern University to discriminate against LGBT students, faculty, and staff. While Dr. Duffett’s request for the ability to discriminate is disturbing, it is also troubling that his request has not been widely shared with the Eastern University community. Further, it is also worth noting that Gordon College is potentially jeopardizing their accreditation… something that could very easily also happen to Eastern University.
Below is a petition asking Dr. Duffett to rescind his request for the ability to discriminate against LGBT individuals. Please sign the petition, and ask your family and friends to join us!
UPDATE: (7/18, 7:31PM) Dr. Duffett has issued the following response:
To all our EU alumni, employees, students and others who are concerned about my signature on the Institutional Religious Freedom Alliance letter to President Obama,
Our position has not changed; Eastern University will not discriminate against students or employees based on sexual orientation.
One of the most significant theological tenets of the Baptist movement is the separation of Church and State. This means no government has the right to determine theological views and practices of religious institutions. I signed the petition with this Baptist theological conviction in mind.
The wall of separation that President Jefferson affirmed to the Danbury Baptists must be maintained to the benefit of society and all Christian institutions. It is precisely this wall
that has allowed Eastern University to flourish for almost 90 years.