Ashland University, the Christian-based liberal arts school outside Cleveland, allowed student William Cochran to form Respect, an official student group to “provide a safe space for LGBTQ students, faculty, staff, and their allies, and … work to educate and raise awareness of issues relating to LGBTQ people.” For a whole semester, Ashland’s administrators and the Student Life Office let that charade go on! But now Respect has been denied an actual chartership at the school. Sound queer?
Unless Respect changes its mission from “LGBT diversity” to “human diversity,” the show won’t go on. The inevitable Facebook group informs us: “Respect has recently been denied charter-ship at Ashland University. This means that Respect cannot reserve meeting space, advertise for meetings, or receive funding. Please show the university that we have a strong base of support! If you would like to speak up, you can contact the Student Life Office. Their information is on the AU website!”
Posts Cochran: “We have yet to be informed of a specific reason. We were asked to change our mission statement to remove LGBT completely, and replace it with human diversity. We felt that this overlapped with some organizations(Black Student Union, International Club, Ashland Center for Nonviolence). When we get the official letter, I will let you know exactly what happened.”
Yeah, an official letter is required to know what happened.