A federal judge has ruled in favor of a public university that removed a Christian student from its graduate program in school counseling over her belief that homosexuality is morally wrong. Monday’s ruling, according to Julea Ward’s attorneys, could result in Christian students across the country being expelled from public university for similar views. [source]
Basically, from what I understand, a counseling grad student (at Eastern Michigan University) didn’t want to have to affirm a patient’s homosexual lifestyle and pretend that it was healthy for them - so she recused herself from counseling them. So the university kicked her out of the program. The judge sided with the university. The judge said this in defense of his decision:
“The university had a rational basis for requiring students to counsel clients without imposing their personal values.”
So whose values are we supposed to “impose?” This is the ridiculous point at the heart of any argument dealing with the mixing of our values and any kind of public policy. It’s the same lame excuse made by pro-choice Catholic politicians who hide behind it in order to “not impose” their own supposedly pro-life beliefs on everyone else.
Well if you aren’t imposing your own beliefs or your own values….whose values are you imposing? And why are you allowed to impose those? But not your own?
See, in this case, the leaders at Eastern Michigan were allowed to impose their own personal values. And the judge seemed to be alright imposing his own personal values as well. The only person that couldn’t impose their own personal values in all of this was the Christian who listened to her more correctly formed conscience. Pretty whack if you ask me.
It’s all a ruse. People who make such arguments are playing tricks where they make an imaginary distinction between values that are okay to impose (like abortions and homosexual activity are healthy choices) and those that are not okay to impose (like anything that disagrees with them). And they try to portray the things that disagree with their agenda as just your “personal values” that simply can not be imposed on others in a pluralistic society. And on the flip side they implicitly portray their own agenda (their own personal values) as objective, reasonable rules to the playground - not their own personal values of course.
I wrote something on this years ago concerning Supreme Court judges using their own personal judgment to decide cases. It still applies today.
In the end, all judgments we make are personal judgments informed by our personal values. There is no escaping it. Anyone who pretends otherwise is a fraud. We’re really in sad shape now that we have federal judges making these kinds of arguments. Particularly while overlooking the individual rights of the student in question and her freedom to respect her own conscience.
This is what happens as a society shifts from respecting the dignity of each individual person as primary, and instead worships the “collective”, the planet or their own agenda of values (not their personal ones, of course) first. Unfortunately, this is but a taste of what is to come if we don’t start recognizing these types of rulings and arguments for what they truly are: An imposition of somebody else’s personal values.
We have become so obsessed with respecting the plurality of misguided “personal values” that we often do so at the expense of one often overlooked, not totally unimportant, detail: The Truth.