A University chancellor has hit back at the claims of a Republican politician who claimed that the institution was promoting ‘a glorification of same-sex orientation’.

In February $17,000 (£10,000) of funding was cut from the University of South Carolina Upstate, after claims they stocked ‘gay-themed’ books, and Representative Mike Freer last week claimed that the university was ‘recruiting’ lesbians through a comedy show.

Freer said on Monday: “It seems to me that the promotion at USC is a glorification of same-sex orientation.”

According to TV news station WYFF, chancellor Dr. Tom Moore today issued a statement attacking the claims.

He said: “Recently, harsh attention has been focused on the University of South Carolina Upstate because of books and activities that deal with LGBTQ issues.”

“Some have connected these happenings and allege an agenda to promote LGBTQ lifestyles at USC Upstate and a lack of balance in what we do on our campuses.

“Wherever we stand on issues of gay rights and same-sex marriage, denying the presence and importance of these issues in contemporary American culture is tantamount to burying our heads in the sand.

“As a public university, we must engage important issues in our culture, even when doing so makes some uncomfortable.

“LGBTQ issues are part of any campus life. As a public university, it’s our charge to equip and empower students to live engaged, authentic lives and be responsible citizens.

“We can’t do that if we exclude some part of the population. We must be a safe place for those who come to us.”