A&M and Homosexuality
27 years on
Published: Tuesday, November 1, 2011
Updated: Wednesday, July 25, 2012 23:07
And then there's the CATO Institute, a libertarian think tank oft cited by the right. They unequivocally support homosexuals' right to marry.
But in signing a pledge to seek a federal ban on gay marriage should he become president, Texas Governor Rick Perry, a son of A&M, remains entrenched in mainstream Republicanism. If given the opportunity he must also stack the Supreme and federal courts with judges who support this view. Still worse, in 2003, while Mr. Perry was governor, Texas defended its anti-sodomy law when its legality was challenged in the courts. It was later found to be unconstitutional.
Barry Goldwater — both "Mr. Conservative" and a supporter of gay rights— would be displeased. William F. Buckley Jr., the harbinger of modern day conservatism, joined many in voicing his disapproval of the law.
So conservatism itself doesn't explain our predicament.
In its place, many have cited religion. That has some basis: A&M, while not ranked as a religious school, has 60 registered religious organizations, and is home to Breakaway Ministries, one of the largest collegiate Christian groups in the nation.
But this explanation runs into the same problems.
PRRI reports that, "Strong majorities of every major religious group except white evangelicals and black Protestants support civil unions." (Only three percent of A&M students are African-American.) Seventy-eight percent of unaffiliated Americans, 80 percent of non-Christians, 71 percent of white mainline Protestants and 69 percent of Catholics support civil unions.
Numbers are lower for those that support right to marry, but most denominations post percentages higher than the general public (that figure being 47 percent).
Instead A&M inhabits that gray area created when conservatism and religion mix — only then do ideas on homosexuality appear to become "unfriendly."
According to TPR, twelve of the LGBT-Unfriendly colleges are also highly conservative; eleven are among the most religious.
Clarification: An earlier version of the column indicated that the Princeton Review did not rank A&M as the most homophobic public university in the nation. A&M was ranked 10th among all universities, public and private, and first among public universities.