11 March 2010

Dominionism rising in the Old Dominion

The new Republican administration in Virginia has already begun to make changes. Attorney general Ken Cuccinelli has sent a letter to all the public colleges and universities in the state urging them to rescind any anti-gay discrimination policy they may have in place (link sent by Mendip, who lives in Virginia).

Note carefully what's being said here. Cuccinelli is not just saying it should be legal for these public institutes to discriminate; he's saying that they shouldn't have a policy against discrimination -- that they should not be permitted to not discriminate.

The move has triggered protests by Virginia students. As college board members observe (see first link), such a reactionary action will make it harder for their institutions to attract top faculty and students, who tend to be repelled by displays of backwardness and prejudice. The state could ultimately be left with no one who can spell "Cuccinelli".

Mendip, by the way, points out that there is a sharp difference between "NoVa" (the "north of Virginia"), mostly the suburban sprawl around DC, and "RoVa" (the "rest of Virginia"), which votes Republican and produces people like the attorney general.

Update: Governor McDonnell backtracks.


Blogger tnlib said...

I had read about this - all the while my jaw dropping to my feet. I don't see how he can legally get away with it? I don't see how he can make such a unilateral decision?

11 March, 2010 08:17  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

It does seem dubious, but these guys are not real big on knowing what the Constitution actually means. And as long as the attorney general takes this position, it may well be treated as valid until it's tested in court -- or may at least have a chilling effect.

11 March, 2010 08:34  
Blogger tnlib said...

Yup, all these stupidos who run around complaining about taxes and overspending think nothing of creating scenarios for court cases that do nothing more than cost tax payers money.

I hope it doesn't have a "chilling effect."

11 March, 2010 09:50  
Blogger B.J. said...

I had read the WaPo article, then checking CNN.com, I noted an article about an Itawamba County, Miss., high school cancelling its prom because two 18-year-old lesbian students planned to attend together. (I recall that after integration, proms were canceled to prevent black and white students from attending together – gasp!) The ACLU has boots on the ground there.

I suppose I’m naïve but I thought we had moved beyond such blantant discrimination. I thought federal laws were in place to prevent it.

Please, please be aware that not all Christians (which I noted The Atlantic article lumped together as “Christianists”) are anti-gay. Please don’t allow right-wing religious fanatics to drag good people down with them!

Always when the pendulum swings too far left or right, it moves back toward center – the gravitational pull of sanity. Even some conservative voices are catching on.


11 March, 2010 13:05  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

TNLib: The same thing happened in Dover PA with the Kitzmiller trial -- it was creationists there, but the principle is the same. In this case, I have a suspicion the AG will back down if he thinks he's going to run into an expensive legal challenge.

BJ: I just saw an article about the Mississippi case in a paper in the break room here (I'm on lunch break at work). Unfortunately I don't think federal law includes sexual orientation as a protected class. Yet.

11 March, 2010 13:19  
Blogger B.J. said...

"Unfortunately I don't think federal law includes sexual orientation as a protected class. Yet."

Well, your blog was successful today, because I learned something new. I truly believed “sexual orientation” was included in protection laws. First, I’ll google for more info, then it’s back to Sir Walter Scott. Ah, escapism.

11 March, 2010 13:33  
Blogger tnlib said...

A cursory look indicates it's more of a states' rights kind of thing.

11 March, 2010 13:48  
Blogger Infidel753 said...

BJ: In some states and municipalities it is -- just not on the federal level.

TNLib: Yep. We all know what "states' rights" meant in the old days. Same principle.

11 March, 2010 14:15  
Blogger B.J. said...

Thanks, guys! I know states determine the right to same-sex marriage, but I thought laws were in place against job discrimination. I sent the WaPo article to my grandnephew who teaches opera at a university in Texas and is gay. He is stunned by the AG’s actions.

I know in some less enlightened places “discrimination” is self-imposed for fear of being outed. How horrible to feel one must live life that way.

11 March, 2010 15:17  

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