Every single person interviewed for a story about a secret gay club at Biola University, a private California evangelical school, said they wanted to open a dialogue about the university's relationship with its gay students, but nobody can figure out how to get that conversation started.
According to MSNBC.com's John Boxley and Ashley Bornancin, the students in the Biola Queer Underground say if they reveal their identities they'll be expelled, and college administrators say they can't talk to the students because they don't know who they are. The college's handbook calls for "disciplinary action" against those who violate its policies on sexuality, including a ban on same-sex relations.
Administrator Chris Grace said the college would "love and welcome a conversation with them" but it doesn't know who to talk to. Meanwhile, members of BQU "are looking to have an open discussion about what it means to be Christian and gay," wrote MSNBC.com's Boxley and Bornancin. Grace said "you'd almost call that a myth that students would get expelled" for being gay. But he also said they would expel someone who came out and was "unwilling to uphold our community standards," which basically means trying to change their sexuality.
So why would these students even go here in the first place? Well, they have faith in the university's philosophy overall, and they think they can change minds. "Biola needs to take a close look at its fundamental values, first to question whether they are carried out, and second to discuss if identifying as LGBTQ is in fact contrary to these values," the group's website says. But now that they've gotten the university talking about its gay students, nobody can figure out how to transition to talking with them.
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.
We want to hear what you think about this article. Submit a letter to the editor or write to email@example.com.