Tennessee lawmakers recently voted to defund the Office of Diversity and Inclusion at the University of Tennessee. Last December, we asked them to commence an investigation of this office.
On December 4, Bill Donohue wrote to all members of the Tennessee legislature who oversee education at state institutions. He asked that they establish a committee that would critically assess policies initiated by the Office of Diversity and Inclusion at the University of Tennessee. His plea was prompted by an outburst of anti-Christian policies.
Donohue objected to policies that sought to censor Christmas celebrations on the campus. Students were explicitly warned to make sure that “your holiday party is not a Christmas party in disguise.” Moreover, students were told not to “play games with religious and cultural themes, such as ‘Dreidel’ or ‘Secret Santa.'”
Since that time, this same office sponsored “Sex Week,” a celebration of debauchery. It also issued a vocabulary list of acceptable gender-neutral pronouns. The Orwellian directors obviously pushed the envelope too far: The lawmakers voted to strip this office of $337,000 in state funds, using the money instead to fund minority scholarships.
Donohue pointed out in his letter that if the University of Tennessee can sponsor cultural events such as Black History Month, it should be allowed to sponsor cultural events such as Christmas parties and the like. Not to do so would violate religious liberty and freedom of speech.
We commend the Tennessee lawmakers for their decision.