A Christian university student organization is having to stop and have a think about journalistic standards after emotionally lashing out at a professor, calling her 'transphobic' for simply stating that she doesn't think that boys should be in the girl's bathroom.
BY TERESA YANAROS, JANUARY 29, 2021
Baylor's student organization, Baylor Lariat, attempted to cancel a professor, Dr. Christina Crenshaw, for asking a perfectly appropriate question about Biden's recent executive order.
"What if I don't want biological boys in the bathroom with my biological daughter?"
Student Organization Makes a Journalistic Mistake
The student organization published an article and tweeted, "Baylor recurring lecturer tweets transphobic message."
Truly Free Society reported on the issue, publishing the article "Executive Order Facepalm: Professor Attacked as ‘Transphobic’" on January 27, 2021.
"I pray that college students begin waking up. Especially the journalism students who are learning to brandish the same corrupt and destructive tactics that the mainstream media in this country have leveraged against its people."
- Teresa Yanaros
The article called out to the journalism students, encouraging a second look at the way the matter was mishandled in an emotional flurry of unwarranted name calling.
Baylor Students Issue a Retraction
After releasing the article calling out Dr. Crenshaw, Baylor Lariat changed the headline to "Baylor recurring lecturer tweets controversial message."
(Notice the hyperlink still remains the headline of the initial wording: https://baylorlariat.com/2021/01/25/baylor-recurring-lecturer-tweets-transphobic-message/.)
Baylor Lariat then issued a statement apologizing to the professor, Dr. Christina Crenshaw.
"In reporting on the story, we characterized the tweets as 'transphobic.' We have since updated the story to instead describe the statements as controversial. We should have simply reported on the facts of the situation, and we would like to apologize to Dr. Crenshaw for this lapse in our publication's journalistic standards and for unfairly labeling her tweets. Our characterization of the statements was inappropriate, and we fully apologize for any harm this may have caused."
- Matthew Soderberg (Editor-in-Chief) and Camille Rasor (News Editor)
Baylor Leadership to the First Amendment Rescue
Next, Dr. Nancy Brickhouse, the Baylor Provost, issued a statement about the importance of civil discourse. She highlighted the Christian mission of the school, calling it the "glue that binds us together as a diverse community." She firmly protected the free speech of the professor, and assured the public that she was not being investigated and would not be punished for "sharing her opinions" on social media.
Dr. Brickhouse explained that offense would likely be encountered in this life and that in these circumstances, people must communicate "in a spirit of Christian fellowship." She emphasized civil discourse and the exploration of ideas with which we disagree.
"Being exposed to differing views and attempting to learn from one another, face to face, leads to our own growth and individuals and an academic institution."
In an American society where censorship is rampant, we must commend the likes of Dr. Brickhouse for standing firm in the values of our constitution and using this as an opportunity to educate her college students on the importance of free speech.
Dissenting Opinion Does Not Equal Hate Speech
Since the retraction, Dr. Crenshaw has used this opportunity to strongly affirm her Christian beliefs (that the university values promise to uphold), but also to raise awareness around the decline of first amendment support and inability to view dissenting opinion as something other than 'hate speech.'
She issued a statement today, January 29, 2021, that was not only graceful and professional, but a beacon of light to a lost generation.
"A dissenting opinion does not constitute hate speech."
Dr. Crenshaw issued a call to defend personal liberty, emphasizing "matters of religious conscience." She then focused the attention of the students upon the value of rooting rhetoric in "logic, data, orthodoxy and compassion."
Dr. Crenshaw also commended the students for apologizing, stating that it "took a great deal of bravery" for them to do so.
Every One Must Make a Choice
When it comes down to it, each person in this society must choose whether the first amendment right to expression supersedes the emotional discomfort experienced when confronting a dissenting opinion or antithetical idea.
These college students have grown up in a world where people can simply be canceled and have their reputation destroyed over one statement. Cancel culture leads to entitlement of power to stamp out any opinion simply on the grounds that someone doesn't like it.
Dr. Crenshaw and Dr. Brickhouse appeal to the college students steeped in this cancel culture. It is imperative that each student makes the choice now. Will they listen to these words of wisdom?
Dr. Crenshaw concluded her statement with a call for compassion.
"For the sake of the gospel and our common good, we all have reconciliation work to do--on both sides of whatever ideological divide we're created."
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Teresa Yanaros, a degreed journalist with a passion for uncovering the truth, has dedicated her life to investigating images and messages received through media outlets. From a young age, she has researched and presented news media through print and began expanding her reach through multi-media.
After writing a book investigating the phenomenon of modern American online spiritualism, she traveled across America, giving speeches and practical workshops on how to analyze and synthesize information. From archetypal studies to advanced truth-seeking, Teresa has presented research in areas of American pop culture, conspiracism, supernatural and paranormal studies, theology, and anthropology of online sub-cultures. Due to Teresa's experience with seeing just how deep the rabbit holes of online culture go, she is devoted to understanding the media effects of online subcultures upon their communities.
Teresa is the founder of Truly Free Society.
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