Tags: LGBT | Activists | Protest | BYU | Consideration | Big 12

LGBT Activists Protest BYU's Consideration for Big 12

Image: LGBT Activists Protest BYU's Consideration for Big 12

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By    |   Tuesday, 09 Aug 2016 03:19 PM

LGBT activists are protesting the possible inclusion of Brigham Young University in the Big 12 athletic conference because of the Utah school's religion-based honor code and its treatment of lesbian, gays, bisexuals and transgender people.

According to a letter sent to the conference and signed by over a dozen organizations, the university "actively and openly discriminates against its LGBT students and staff. It provides no protections for LGBT students. In fact, through its policies, BYU is very clear about its intent to discriminate against openly LGBT students, with sanctions that can include suspension or dismissal for being openly LGBT or in a same-sex relationship."

But the school's official honor code explicitly states that sexuality isn't a concern, only associated behavior: "One's stated same-gender attraction is not an Honor Code issue. However… Homosexual behavior is inappropriate and violates the Honor Code.

"Homosexual behavior includes not only sexual relations between members of the same sex, but all forms of physical intimacy that give expression to homosexual feelings."

The code applies to heterosexual relationships as well. All students at BYU are expected to "live a chaste and virtuous life." The school notably dismissed star basketball player Brandon Davies in 2011 after he informed officials that he had a sexual relationship with his girlfriend.

The LGBT activists worry that students, coaches and fans who attend games at BYU "would be subject to discrimination since BYU remains exempt from Utah's LGBT nondiscrimination law," and that a student-athlete could choose the school for its inclusion in the Big 12, and "would be subjected to BYU's unabashed discrimination. This would endanger the student-athlete's NCAA eligibility and mental health."

BYU's strict Honor Code has caused students who have been victims of sexual assault to remain silent, out of fear of being blamed and expelled.

One student, Margot Crandall, who was raised in the Mormon tradition, said she was scared to approach the police to report her rape because she didn't want university officials to know.

"I was afraid that it would be seen as my fault and that I would get kicked out of school," she told ABC News in May.

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LGBT activists are protesting the possible inclusion of Brigham Young University in the Big 12 athletic conference because of the Utah school's religion-based honor code and its treatment of lesbian, gays, bisexuals and transgender people.
LGBT, Activists, Protest, BYU, Consideration, Big 12
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2016-19-09
Tuesday, 09 Aug 2016 03:19 PM
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