Mormon-owned Brigham Young University has come under fire for the way the school discriminates against LGBT students, staff, and faculty.
Stu Mandel breaks the story of a letter written by 24 pro-LGBT rights organizations to Commissioner Bob Bowlsby as well as the ADs and Presidents of every Big XII school. The pull quote:
BYU … actively and openly discriminates against its LGBT students and staff. It provides no protections for LGBT students … Given BYU’s homophobic, biphobic and transphobic policies and practices, BYU should not be rewarded with Big 12 membership.
The BYU Honor Code bans “all forms of physical intimacy that give expression to homosexual feelings,” and doesn’t allow housing or other privileges for same-sex couples amongst other policies.
The letter in full:
Here is a copy of the letter the LGBT advocacy group "Athlete Ally" sent to Big 12 commissioner Bob Bowlsby: pic.twitter.com/boMtENkfYN— Jake Trotter (@Jake_Trotter) August 9, 2016
SB Nation’s College Blog Manager is Matt Brown, and besides being our de facto boss, he’s a Mormon who’s married to a BYU grad (though he went to Ohio State). He’s also one of the most thoughtful people about his faith you’ll ever read. His take on this is excellent. Go read it.
We normally hate breaking out the Jump to Conclusions Mat, but how the heck could the Big XII expand to accept a school under such circumstances? Groups that have signed the letter include the National Organization for Women and GLAAD, who certainly aren’t afraid to organize boycotts and protests.
Can you imagine the image of a conference many people think is on the brink anyway having protesters outside the introduction of their new partners? Or the added stigma of being branded a league that accepts intolerance in the current social climate? This seems reallllllllyyyy doubtful. BYU might be cooked here.
And as Matt points out, if you think BYU is going to change the rules just for Big XII admission, that’s not happening. The LDS Church didn’t allow black priests until 1978, and still frowns upon interracial marriage. So... yeah.
Keep this in mind too:
Why might the B12 be especially sensitive to concerns about honor codes? Remember the @JimVertuno story on Baylor's? https://t.co/jKow0xiq54— Mike Finger (@mikefinger) August 9, 2016
Following Mandel’s story, The University of Houston appeared to drop an Uber-Troll...
GREAT NEWS! #LGBTQ history is now lovingly persevered at @UHoustionLib. https://t.co/tjI2M5QmBF pic.twitter.com/5Qaduclorm— UniversityofHouston (@UHouston) August 9, 2016
But then denied it:
UH, on the timing of that LGBT tweet… https://t.co/YqQzKIdi1n— Jake Trotter (@Jake_Trotter) August 9, 2016
Again: we HATE going overboard here, and very much dislike broad assumptions. It’s why we don’t link to a lot of the stupid chatter about expansion that just seems to happen.
But show us a scenario where the Big XII could admit BYU (barring some massive institutional change that’s clearly not coming) in the current climate with these circumstances?
Seriously, if you’ve got a reasonable one, put it in the comments. But this looks pretty bad for the Cougars. And with BYU considered one of the most desirable candidates on the market, the others in the mix might feel a bit better about their chances today.
But not you, New Mexico. Seriously. Stop. You’re embarrassing yourselves.