The law and the case law on this issue is as clear as clear can be. Student groups at public universities may not be discriminated against on the basis of viewpoint.
There are no exceptions to this rule within the law, yet over and over censor happy leftists at public universities break the law and do just that. They discriminate against Christian clubs, Jewish clubs, conservative and libertarian clubs. They often get away with it because either the students involved do not know their rights, or they are unwilling to take the fight to the courts.
But make no mistake, plenty of these cases go to the courts even when the university knows it has no chance of victory. The administrators are spending taxpayer dollars and will spend taxpayer dollars when they lose. It is no skin off their shoes. YOU pay.
Such is the case at Texas A&M University. Universities and clubs on campus bring in leftist speakers to talk to the students every year, and when a club attempts to bring in a conservative speaker the university administrators dig in their heals to try and stop or censor the event.
The Texas Aggie Conservatives needed $6,800 to host a February speaking engagement featuring black social conservative Star Parker. The group’s leaders requested $2,500 from Student Organization Funding to offset the cost. Officially recognized student organizations have access to the account for special events and general budget funding.
But according to Texas Aggie Conservatives and their attorneys, the school limits access to the money based on indefensible restrictions. All recognized organizations are eligible for the funds as long as they’re not formed for religious, social or political purposes. Sports clubs and groups tied to the student center and health science center also are barred from requesting funds.
David Hacker, an attorney with the Alliance Defense Fund (ADF), which represents the Texas Aggie Conservatives, questioned the limitations of the funding, saying the school “has to provide those funds on a viewpoint-natural basis.”
The ADF filed a lawsuit June 19 against Texas A & M University (TAMU), challenging the funding restrictions as a violation of the students’ First Amendment rights.
TAMU spokesman Lane Stevenson could not discuss the issue, saying only that the university refrains from commenting on pending legal matters. Texas Aggie Conservative leaders referred all questions to their attorney.
Hacker said the university’s policy was not only unconstitutional but inconsistently applied. Other student organizations, including the NAACP, the Muslim Student Association, the Black Student Alliance, and TAMU V-Day, which hosts “The Vagina Monologues,” a racy stage play, all received money from the fund.
Hacker said the students with Texas Aggie Conservatives discovered the discrepancies. They also discovered the school had denied funding to Christian fraternity Beta Upsilon Chi.