Baylor University, the largest Baptist university in the world, has agreed to adopt a set of Title IX recommendations. Some of the recommendations are troublesome, and potentially violate the religious freedom of Baylor students, faculty, and staff.

One of the recommendations agreed to by Baylor is the creation of an Equity Office. According to the Title IX recommendations, the “…impetus for creating an Equity Office is driven by the recognition of the intersectionality of issues related to all forms of discrimination and harassment….” The creation of this Equity Office signals the university’s tacit endorsement of the doctrine of intersectionality, and ensures said doctrine will infect every aspect of Baylor and its culture.

In fact, it already has.

Under the agreed to recommendations, Baylor University will continue to mandate that all students, faculty, and staff go through annual training using “…multi-disciplinary programming to address the issues of sexual and gender-based harassment and violence, gender equity, tolerance, diversity, inclusion, intersectionality, alcohol and substance abuse, consent, social media, bullying and hazing, classism, racism, and other issues….”

The Title IX recommendations boast that “…97% [of faculty and staff] have completed a second course entitled, Intersections: Preventing Harassment, Discrimination, & Sexual Violence. Participants are required to correctly answer content questions in order to complete the training.”

This university-mandated training includes directions to faculty on how to deal with transgender individuals. Directly from one of the training slides, “If you don’t know someone’s preferred pronoun, ask privately and use it when referring to them. If you slip up, apologize and move on.”

Faculty are further instructed to, “support gender neutral restrooms…. Individuals may use whichever bathroom aligns with their gender identity,” and to “identify unknown people through gender-neutral features like ‘the person in blue’ rather than ‘woman in blue.’”

This instruction stands in stark contrast to the official position of the Southern Baptist Convention, with which Baylor is affiliated. From the SBC’s website, “[G]ender identity is determined by biological sex and not by one’s self perception….” How can a university that proudly boasts its Southern Baptist affiliation simultaneously force its faculty to engage in practices that directly contradict the official positions of the Southern Baptist Convention?

Because of the adoption of these Title IX recommendations, many members of Baylor’s faculty and staff are being forced to act in ways that directly contradict their religion and the religion Baylor University is officially affiliated with. If they refuse, they face potential disciplinary action by the university.

According to a blog post in The American Conservative, Baylor University president Linda Livingstone sent a faculty-wide email stating, “Completing the course will be an important factor included in both the faculty and staff performance review processes….Those who do not complete the online training will have the incompletion noted as an area of concern on their annual performance review.” This is gravely concerning because it muddles work performance with politics. Faculty will be negatively judged at their yearly performance review based on their political beliefs, by being bullied into taking a political test. Those who don’t comply will have a sword hanging over their heads which could affect their salary and job security.

And this doesn’t end with faculty and staff.

Baylor students are similarly required to complete annual training which, according to the trigger warning that precedes the course, covers such topics as “Rape Culture and Myths” and “Victim Blaming.” Who’s to say that the aforementioned faculty course will not replace the current course required for students? 97% of Baylor faculty and staff have already been indoctrinated into an ideology that stands in stark contrast to the Baptist faith, how long before Title IX is similarly boasting about 97% of Baylor students?

This issue is much bigger than just Baylor, and should worry college students and faculty across the country. If Title IX can completely undo the traditional culture of Baylor, long considered one of the most conservative universities in the United States, there is nowhere safe from its reach.

This article, written by me, was originally published in Lone Conservative. The original piece can be found here: 

https://loneconservative.com/2018/03/23/title-ix-stifles-religious-freedom/

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