the protector

Michigan AG Bill Schuette Won’t Let Devout Students Get Kicked Out For Thinking Gays Are Immoral

Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette thinks it’s totally unfairzies that Eastern Michigan University was allowed to kick out Julea Ward from its graduate counseling program all because she refused to treat homosexual patients. Having already lost one round in a federal court, Ward is backed by the Alliance Defense Fund. And now the state’s AG.

Eastern Michigan University discriminated against former student Julea Ward when it dismissed her from its counseling program after she said her Christian beliefs prohibited her from counseling a gay client, Michigan Attorney General Bill Schuette said in a court filing. That’s not the case at all, EMU said. Ward was dismissed because her refusal to counsel the patient didn’t follow the assigned curriculum and professional ethics guidelines set up the American Counseling Association, the school said. EMU’s position has been upheld by a federal judge. Now Ward, with briefs of support from Schuette and a number of religious rights organizations, has appealed that ruling. Oral arguments are expected to begin later this year.

[…] Ward sued the university after it dismissed her from its graduate counseling program in 2009 after she refused to work on a gay client’s relationship issues in a clinical program. She said she believes homosexuality is immoral and being gay or lesbian is a choice and thus she could not in good conscience counsel the client. EMU said it dismissed her because she didn’t follow a code of ethics that requires counselors to set aside their own personal beliefs in order to work with clients.

Because I’m no legal theorist, I always have to boil down inane arguments into something I can understand. Which is that Ward and Schuette believe mental health guidelines, put in place to help those in need, should be brushed aside when it comes to religious fundamentalism. Which makes me wonder if Schuette would get behind a fanatical Muslim counseling student who refused to treat women because really, they’re worthless!

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  • asa1973

    You know. I bet this woman would put aside her personal beliefs and – in good conscience – counsel a murderer, or a pedaphile, or an adulterer, or a rapist. But “gay” is where shut must reach inside herself and draw the line??????

  • Dallas David

    If she really wants to counsel only “godly heterosexuals” then she should consider going to a seminary. Religious credentials will allow all sorts of bizarre options.
    But if she wants to practice a scientific discipline, she’s gotta go with knowledge that the Scientific Method generates. She’s always welcome to conduct studies the improve the services available to both heterosexuals and gays, but a change in practice has to originate from scientific data, and not from the rumblings of someone’s bizarre religious text of lunatic mysticism.

    Regardless, she should have known before signing up for that school that she was going to have to provide services to everyone. It’s too late to complain about that now . . .

  • rickster

    remember folks, this is the same office who took forever to get rid of andrew shirvell. this man is owned by the ameican family association of michigan. new attorney general, same owners.

  • Sandra Hitt

    In reference to ASA 1973’s comment. As a Christian she probably could counsel a gay, murderer, pedophile, adulterer, and rapist, if it were to counsel them to change their life style. The gay person that she refused to counsel was wanting counsel regarding a gay relationship in progress. A persons beliefs are a part of them and affects their counsel just like a persons lack of religious beliefs affects their counsel. Why can’t a Christian’s beliefs be respected just like a Muslin’s or a Gay’s. Why should a Christian be expelled for their beliefs. Would a Muslin or Gay want to be expelled for their belief’s.

  • iDavid

    She can have the Pope and the Pres for backing, she will lose regardless of the props.

  • Jeffree

    @iDavid: Yes! She will ultimately lose her case because she’s incapable of abiding by the standards of her profession: to respect her clients’ worldview & work within professional, evidence-based methods of counseling.

    If she wants to promote a religious belief system, all she needs to do is pursue a cerification in pastoral counseling. She’s in the wrong program unless she’s willing to keep her own views to herself.

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