Biting the hand that feeds you: The Way of Academia
by Roger Hines
September 29, 2013 02:10 AM | 6582 views | 46 46 comments | 53 53 recommendations | email to a friend | print
The action of Kennesaw State University in promoting Gay Pride Month is a slap in the face of the citizens of Cobb, Cherokee, Bartow, and all other counties in the region KSU serves.

For that matter, KSU’s celebration of Gay Pride is an affront to the entire state since the university, the state’s third largest, receives tax money generated by citizens across Georgia. No one who has lived in Georgia for six months could be in doubt about the state’s predominant culture. We aren’t Washington State, and Atlanta isn’t San Francisco either, or not yet.

At issue is a great university that was made great by supportive, local community leaders, the general citizenry, and thousands of tuition-paying students, many of whom will just have to endure the month of October. That university, instead of honoring the hand that has fed it, has taken a cultural stand that is anathema to those who foot its bills. October, you see, is Gay Pride Month, and the KSU administration assures us they will host a party.

Let’s take a look at what that month-long party portends: parades, forums where “sexual equality” is touted, exhibits teaching gay history, coming-out testimonies, probably some well-known speakers who will tell KSU students how backward Georgia is, and most certainly a trek to Piedmont Park for something or another.

Around the nation Gay Pride Month is held under the auspices of L-G-B-T-I-Q. If we’re going to understand what our beloved, local, grown-up university is promoting, we should get a handle on these letters.

Of course “L” is for lesbian. We know what that one means. “G” is gay. We understand that one as well, although there is overlap of “L” and “G.” Gay is the broader term because all lesbians are gay but not all gays are lesbian (female). Some, of course, are male. “B” is for bisexual. OK, Georgians, with this one we are really, really moving away from our traditional community values. But bisexual doesn’t need an explanation either, except to say that nobody can claim it squares with the Judeo-Christian ethic.

“T” is for transgender. This one makes me sad, because any way you cut it, it argues that God made a mistake. We should never be unkind to anyone who grapples with this issue, but neither should we allow a tax-supported university to tout or defend it.

“I” is for intersex. Don’t ask me about this one, and if you know, don’t tell. I don’t want to know. If KSU’s goal is “to increase awareness,” they failed to reach me on this one, but there’s enough in the mix already to get the picture.

“Q” is the most disturbing, not because it stands for queer, which it does, but because it also stands for “questioning.” In other words, if a 17 or 18 year-old freshman thinks his or her parents are so yesterday and has questions about his or her sexuality, KSU has answers. Or at least aid and comfort. KSU, that’s not why we have given you all these decades of support. Please get on with mathematics, history, your nursing program, etc.

I have had a long, pleasant association with KSU as it has moved from a small, two-year college to university status. I have taught English there, tutored in their Writing Center, served as founding co-director of its Kennesaw Mountain Writing Project, worked as supervising teacher for several of its student teachers, and served on an accreditation commission that found it very easy to recommend KSU for continued accreditation. KSU is a vibrant, exciting place.

Furthermore, the Presidents I’ve known, Dr. Horace Sturgis and Dr. Betty Siegel were intellectual and community giants. The current President, Dr. Dan Papp, I haven’t met, but I have heard him speak numerous times. His mind is incredible; his person is a delight.

Even so, I will never believe that most Georgians approve of KSU or any of their other universities pressing or encouraging the gay agenda. But universities do it anyhow. It is the way of academia. They ply state legislators for funds and then foster such things as gay politics that neither state legislators nor their constituents approve of. This should cease.

According to newspaper reports, Dr. Papp will participate in the Gay Pride Month kick-off event on October 3. His goal and that of KSU’s Office of Diversity and Inclusion (what does that office do eight hours a day?) is to “open doors” and “make gays feel safe.”

Let’s hope that KSU is inclusive of conservative Christian students somewhere in all of their diversity. There are legions of them amongst KSU’s 23,000 students. I’ll be thinking about them come October.

Roger Hines of Kennesaw is a retired high school teacher and former state legislator.
Comments
(46)
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Lib in Cobb
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October 02, 2013
@Hines: You are the last generation of Repubes who will feel that we should turn our backs on diversity. No one should be surprised why the GOP is in the trouble which it has been in for some time. It will take the GOP at least a generation to repair the damage that people like you have done. If the GOP does not change, it will be the first political party of any consequence to legislate their way into obscurity, and people like you will be leading the way. I don't expect you to change, but there is always hope.

You have stated that you don't hate. I will say, "Your pants are on fire". This entire article is about hate. The basis of your thoughts is hate. Are you one of those christians who walks out of church on Sunday then tells or laughs at a "queer" joke? Sir, you do hate and that is very clear.

At this point I will suggest than an apology from you is needed.
Lib in Cobb
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October 02, 2013
@Hines: You should never again refer to yourself as christian. You, like many in the bible belt have twisted the words of Jesus. The only people who Jesus was ever angry with were the money changers.
Dorothy R
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October 02, 2013
It is incredible to think that there are still narrow minded bigots so prevalent in the USA. I guess the south just has more of them, stupidity breeds in this idiot!
Regular reader
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October 02, 2013
I believe this editorial was probably sent to some gay rights blog and people were asked to comment. I totally agree with Mr. Hines. I don't want my tax dollars wasted on a program like this. And a whole month's worth of tax waste at that. I think the goal of programs or events like what is planned at KSU is to encourage everyone to accept the gay lifestyle. If someone is gay, that's fine but I, like others, will never accept it. Get on with teaching.
anonymous
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October 01, 2013
If this comment is read and checked--moderated--for hate speech, why wasn't this article?
Former Student
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October 01, 2013
Mr. Hines You are a sad, sad, sad, little minded man. Get over yourself. The world does not operate on just your christian beliefs. Oh wait, you are not a journalist, you are just an angry man with a computer spitting your narrow minded opinion on the world. I am so proud you took a moment to exercise your civil liberties, which you seem quick to want to deny others. I am sure you are aware but decided not to publish the Office of Diversity and Inclusion is far more than just for LGBTQ individuals. You choose to only share what information you feel pushes your own personal agenda. I see your political experience working overtime here.
KSU Alumna & Staff
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October 01, 2013
Rest assured, Mr. Hines, Kennesaw State has student groups representing all religions and various political affiliation. Diversity such as this is vital to student retention. It is one of the many things that make me proud to have graduated from and to work for the university.

Perhaps it is a bitter pill to swallow for some, but diversity is not exclusive to which denomination of Christianity you belong or how far to the conservative right you happen to lean. Certainly there are those who are content to call this "diversity", but in truth these are all simply different shades of the same color. At a public university which represents more than 130 nationalities and educates students from all walks of life, that definition of the word is not broad enough.

I find this article in its entirety to be quite repugnant. Yet, it is not unique in its blatant bigotry and ignorance. It is the same tired rambling we have seen repeated a thousand times.

However, what is actually worrisome is that an educator would beg of his readers "...if you know, don't tell" because you "don't want to know." Statements such as "I will never believe" are quite troubling, as well. Never? That is a very long time.

Though you have clearly stated that you are opposed to new information- an alarming stance for someone charged with teaching-, I feel it only right to share with you a recent poll conducted by the AJC that found that the majority of Georgians are in favor of equality. Here is the link: http://www.georgiaequality.org/

You are well within your rights to shield your eyes from inconsequential things such as facts. But to do so as an educator? Is this the "way of academia", Mr. Hines?

V Phillips
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October 01, 2013
I find it interesting that as a former teacher there's something you don't want to know, such as what Intersex is.

I find it interesting that despite having worked at an institution of higher learning, you're surprised it dares to question the "State culture" and promote equality for all students, not just conservative Christians.

Your slander of trans* students is not an argument about the ways of a public university, but a Christian school.

From reading your opinions, it seems you have forgotten the difference between a PUBLIC institution of higher learning and a CHRISTIAN college. They are not the same and you would do well to recall that.
Dana Bevan, Ph.D.
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October 01, 2013
Our culture is based on love, not hate. Whether you believe that we are all God's children and are perfect in his sight or that diversity is an evolutionary advantage, our culture believes in love for one another. We should revel in our diversity. Love is certainly worth our tax dollars.

And love has its practical value. For all we know, one of those

GLBTDQQA will make a scientific discovery or conduct significant

diplomacy that will improve our world.

BTW, intersex or differences in sexual development (DSD) are not

that uncommon. 1% of live births have DSD.

BTW, Dan Papp is one of the best men I know. You should get to know him.
KSU Student
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September 30, 2013
Mr. Hines,

As a current senior at KSU, I applaud this article. I hate that as a Christian and a conservative, my fees money goes to support things like this. I am not in opposition to homosexuals, but I do not agree with them or their beliefs, so why do I have to fund them?

Acceptance?
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September 30, 2013
It's funny how you use words to define yourself that mean nothing in the grand scheme of who you are. Your actions speak louder than any label you could give.

And your money goes to many other clubs and organizations on campus, why discriminate against one group and not all the others you don't agree with? Or do you just assume that since this particular event supports and encourages the acceptance of ALL kinds of human beings that they are wrong?
anotherKSUstudent
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October 01, 2013
For the same reason that people who are not Christian or conservative pay fees that go to Christian school clubs and politically conservative school clubs. Before you complain you should learn how the system works.
ereber
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October 01, 2013
Well, those very same tax dollars you claim are funding this are also funding Baptist Collegiate Ministries (BCM), Campus Crusade for Christ (Cru), Canterbury Club (Canterbury), Impact Movement, Latter-Day Saint Student Association (LDSSA), Ratio Christi, and the Wesley Foundation (Wesley), to name a few. So if we were to be fair, let's defund all of the above organizations. After all not everyone "agrees with them or their beliefs." Also you might want to check you egocentrism at the door.
Lib in Cobb
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October 02, 2013
The LGBT community is also funding you. You are not in "opposition to homosexuals". Your pants are on fire!
Tony Maddox
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September 30, 2013
WOW! All the HATE from such a varied group that has redefined LOVE for the rest of us. I attended KSU(and before that KJC.) In better times the the reputation of the school (THIS school) was determined by how studied and well rounded its student turned out. In this age I guess that's not enough; it is of utmost importance that you be hooked into and identified with some aspect of college life that has NOTHING to do with how well you perform in the corporate world. I suppose the more liberal, disparate or bizarre your cause, the better. KSU is becoming a clearing house for liberal, agnostic, whiny humanoids that make no real contributions to the betterment of mankind. It's ALL about the 'self' now. Roger, you're not alone!!
anonymous
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September 30, 2013
Ignorant..... That's all I've got to say.....
Roger Hines
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October 01, 2013
Anonymous (and others),ask anybody who knows me if I hate anybody. I don't hate you, but I do believe that what you defend is unnatural, illogical, and indefensible. I also must resist when you attempt to make it public policy. Adultery is wrong too, of course, but I know of no one who is lobbying to make adultery acceptable. Believe this or not, I am more interested in convincing you that I don't hate you than I am in winning any argument on anything. I wish you well and actually would enjoy meeting you, but I could never, ever agree with your views on human sexuality.
Too funny
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October 03, 2013
Nothing says "I love you brother," like "you disgust me" or "based on my notions of morality, you have no right to the same happiness I enjoy with my spouse."

Roger, you don't get to be a morally self-righteous bigot and compassionate person at the same time. This letter affirms where your heart truly is.

NativeCobbCountian
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September 30, 2013
I can't stop smiling as I read all these comments. Mr. Hines does not speak for all of us.
Current KSU Student
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September 30, 2013
The uncaring and disgusted tone of this article leaves a terrible taste in my mouth. I am proud to be part of a university that supports multiple kinds of diverse. As a member of the community and someone who is going to bring religion into the topic, you should have your arms open and welcome all walks of life even if it is different from your own. We are all people.
Current KSU Student
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September 30, 2013
diversity* not diverse
Plodits
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September 30, 2013
1. This article is disgusting

2. The world, even Georgia, is changing and no matter what all the conservative people out there do it is still gonna change.

3. You are probably really old and have a inadequent vision of today. It isn't the 60's anymore! Wake up!

4. I grew up in the heart of Cobb and from what I seen my generation (college age) is more accepting than you think.

5. I'm straight and I fully support KSU!
Dakin
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September 30, 2013
Mr. Hines, with all due respect, I think that you are missing the point.

The purpose of a Gay Pride Month, wherever it is based, is not meant to appease or seek the approval of the heterosexual majority. It's to welcome the homosexual community into a safe and judgement free environment to celebrate who they are in a nation that still cannot recognize their right to love whomever they please.

The logic of this article is backwards; saying that KSU shouldn't celebrate Gay Pride because of the communities it is situated in. It's GAY Pride. Not Cobb, Cherokee, and Bartow Pride. It's for the LGBTIQ community.

All that aside, my God--yes, as a heterosexual, Christian male who supports gay rights--is not a God of prejudices or hate towards any people. As Barb said below, God hates the sin, not the sinner. Hating anyone, gay or straight, completely undermines who God is and the grace that He has given us through the sacrifice of His son. Yes, because Jesus died for everyone. Not just straight people.

Hope you get some clarity from these comments.

Best regards,

D
Former Student
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September 30, 2013
As one of Mr. Hines' former NCHS students, I'm happy to report that his bigotry did not rub off on all of us.

What a load of embarrassing, pathetic, anti-gay, drivel. Mr. Hines should be ashamed to so freely profess his homophobia.

missopenminded
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September 30, 2013
"Even so, I will never believe that most Georgians approve of KSU or any of their other universities pressing or encouraging the gay agenda."

What a sad and bigoted life you must lead Roger. I am so very happy you're retired, you're agenda of spreading backward and hate-filled thinking will continue to diminish.

Thank you KSU for being the example of true diversity and tolerance!
freerogerfrombigotry
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September 30, 2013
It appears Roger, that you have no one to support your bigoted rhetoric. ):

This to me is good news!
Susanna C.
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September 29, 2013
What a stunning piece of backwards-thinking hatred masquerading as legitimate opinion. A bold--although unsuccessful--attempt to mask bigotry as the "will of the people," forgetting that representative republics serve to balance the will of the majority with the rights of minorities. Civil rights will progress with or without the author's approval, while other straight people in my generation are left to continually wonder just what it is about equal rights for our LGBTIQ brothers and sisters that frightens these people so much.

I am especially amused by the fact that this author claims to be an educator, then brags about ignorance regarding the term "intersex" as if it's a badge of moral honor. Not only does he (allegedly) not know what it means, he couldn't even be bothered to look it up before writing an article. (Hint: it's nothing gay, buddy, so your precious "straightness" won't be tarnished if you dare to pick up a dictionary.) Such gross anti-intellectualism is precisely what institutions of higher learning are here to combat. Many (ironic) thanks for claiming that not only are you right to be a bigot, the rest of us are as backwards as you.
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