The Tempest

Not Exactly Shooting For \”Miss Congeniality\”

Update – Jason Johnson vs. University of the Cumberlands

Posted by Daniel on Thursday, April 20, 2006

Rally Held for Gay Student Expelled from the University of the Cumberlands

Jason Johnson

A rally was held in support of former University of the Cumberlands student Jason Johnson at a Williamsburg, Kentucky, park yesterday. Johnson was expelled after officials at the Baptist-affiliated school discovered that he was gay be reading his MySpace.Com profile which discussed his dating life with boyfriend Zac Dreyer. While Johnson did not attend the rally himself, Dreyer did.

Also in attendance was openly gay Kentucky Senator Ernesto Scorsone (D-Lexington). In his speech, Scorsone criticized the Republican state senate president David Williams. Williams paid Cumberlands a visit on Tuesday to support the university’s anti-gay policies and to present a novelty check for the Cumberlands’ proposed pharmacy school. The $10 million funding from the state has came under fire after Johnson’s expulsion. While the bill granting the funds passed, it still needs Governor Ernie Fletcher’s signature before it is a done deal. Fletcher has line-item veto power to eliminate the funding without killing the entire bill but is adopting a wait-and-see approach with staff members citing accreditation concerns as well as church/state ones for which he has sought a legal opinion from his general council.

In related news, Johnson and his lawyer reached an agreement with the University of the Cumberlands involving the fate of his semester credits. Johnson will be allowed to complete his coursework for this semester and avoid getting a failing grade as Cumberlands wanted. In exchange for this, Johnson must surrender his right to sue the university. Johnson can still file complaints with the University of the Cumberlands’ accrediting organization as well as the US Department of Education. Unless his lawyer told him that he really had no grounds for a lawsuit against Cumberlands, I personally think this was a bad move on his part. The credits can be made up and I seriously doubt that admissions staff at Eastern Kentucky University, the school Johnson is hoping to transfer to and where his boyfriend attends, would be oblivious to the reasons why Johnson received failing grades his final semester given the amount of publicity that this case has generated. And a financial settlement with Cumberlands would have more than made up for the tuition money lost.

One thing that strikes me as a little fishy about this whole thing is how the University of the Cumberlands seems to be playing this whole thing out as a case of Johnson violating their rules on having sex before marriage. In a statement released yesterday, University of the Cumberlands president James Taylor said the following:

“Our policy with respect to sex outside of marriage is entirely lawful. No federal, state or local law has been violated. Not everyone likes the university’s policy. But the university does not establish policy on the basis of popularity or political correctness; our policies are rooted in the values of the institution.”

Taylor is correct, as a private religious school it does have the right to set such a policy and enforce it. And he is also correct in stating that But my question is how does James Taylor and the rest of the University of Cumberlands administration certain that Jason Johnson and Zac Dreyer were having sex? I browsed through both of their MySpace.Com profiles and could not find anything mentioning sex. We can assume they have been having sex but we do not know whether or not they have been celibate or fucking like rabbits. So unless they actually witnessed Johnson and Dreyer actually having sex, it is all supposition on their part so in essence they were not enforcing their policy.


2 Responses to “Update – Jason Johnson vs. University of the Cumberlands”

  1. gary said

    Can I add a link? It is hard to draw attention to this with so much else going on.

    Gay in PA?

    Have friends who are Gay in PA?

    Hope to someday be Gay in PA?

    Care about marriage equality?

    Then you need to be on my blog…And right now!

    ***ACTION ALERT***

    Monday, April 24th, the PA State Legislature will be voting on the “Marriage Protection Amendment.”

    Today is the last big push to defeat this hate-based measure.

  2. Kathy said

    How many hetero students did they expell for having sex????

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