Tuesday, July 10, 2007

Center Sues University of Florida for Excluding Christian Fraternity

UPDATE 5:00 p.m. EDT: Read the AP story on the lawsuit, Christian frat sues University of Florida claiming exclusion by Mitch Stacy.

The Center filed suit today against University of Florida officials on behalf of Brothers Under Christ/Beta Upsilon Chi (BYX), a Christian fraternity. University officials refuse to recognize BYX as a registered student organization because the fraternity limits membership to men, and refuses to allow the fraternity to go under the Greek system because it requires members to share the group's Christian beliefs.

BYX is caught in a conundrum. To be recognized by the University, it either needs to give up its identity as a men's organization or abandon its religious criteria for members. Obviously, neither option is acceptable to a Christian fraternity.

Interestingly, during the 2005-2006 and the 2006-2007 school years, the University of Florida actually recognized a Christian fraternity and a Christian sorority as registered student organizations. The University now claims it will no longer recognize any Christian fraternities and sororities as registered student organizations since they "discriminate" on the basis of sex. This despite the fact that the University recognizes a host of other single-sex organizations, such as the Women's Chorale and the Men's Roller Hockey Club.

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