Discrimination Through Non-Discrimination?

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At Purdue University, a Christian group had to use legal services to avoid being thrown off campus because it’s Christian.

The fuss started when Purdue issued a new, “nondiscrimination” statement insisting that no campus group could discriminate on the basis of a long list of characteristics, including religious belief.

The Stewart Cooperative, a Christian Women’s group on campus, was told that they faced eviction from their on-campus house because they restricted membership to Christians. The group petitioned Purdue officials, asking if they could be excused from the new nondiscrimination dictates. But they were told there would be no exceptions.

The group then contacted a legal advocacy group that wrote to Purdue’s President, pointing out that the new campus rules were a violation of the First Amendment and guarantees of free association. “A Christian group has a right to be Christian,” the defending organization reminded Purdue’s president. Facing potential legal action, Purdue granted the Christian group an exemption from the new dictates, leading one of the group’s supporters to note: “We are gratified that Purdue has realized that a ‘non-discrimination’ clause can sometimes be used as a tool of discrimination.”

And that's the Observer.

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