Current Affairs

Diversity Day cancelled … again

Katherine Knowles March 22, 2006
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Every couple of years Viroqua High School in Virginia spend a day celebrating diversity and tolerance in the community, promoting the values of acceptance non-judgement and charity.

But not this year.

Florida based law firm Liberty Counsel, representing Pastor Don Greven of Bad Axe Lutheran Church and grandfather of a pupil Charles Lind, threatened legal action if the day went ahead.

Liberty Council argues that since members of the “ex-gay” movement of Christians opposed to homosexuality were not invited to share their views along side speakers from the African American, Latino, Jewish, Muslim, native American and gay communities, their constitutional rights were being infringed.

“By excluding the Christian and ex-gay viewpoints, the District violates the Establishment Clause and the Fourteenth Amendment guarantee of equal protection,” said a spokesperson from Liberty Council. If Diversity Day continued, Liberty Council threatened to take the school to court. Absurd seeming, perhaps, but not hollow threat.

In a similar row over a Diversity Day at Ann Arbor Public School in Michigan, the federal court ruled that the rights of “ex-gay” protestors had been infringed.

Disappointed organisers cancelled the event at Viroqua High School, with an air of familiarity.

2004’s Diversity Day had to be cancelled after several hundred people signed a petition in protest to a speaker being given the platform to debate LGBT issues.

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