Monday, October 17, 2016

BYU is not invited into the Big Twelve. And it's all because of Gays

BYU is not invited into the Big Twelve. It's official

Before anyone bursts a blood vessel, no team was invited to join the Big Twelve.

Publicity stunt?  Pressure from the "bigs" in broadcasting?  Who knows.

On paper, BYU looked good - huge market, travel well, competitive in football and basketball, national attendance records at home and most impressively, away -- all on the cougars side. 

The one minus was the honor code. Yes, the honor code - that thing that for years made BYU stand out from the party universities. That badge of honor that kept blue chippers from signing at a stone cold and dry program -- may have been what stood in the way of BYU being invited to the Big Twelve. BIG SURPRISE!
Looks a little gay ...

So not a surprise. The honor code was reported by SB Nation as being discriminatory "against LGBT students and victims of sexual assault, which makes the issues all the more difficult to fix because they run more deeply than merely with the school itself."

Quotes by SB Nation are in italics:

"Hell, student-athletes can't even wear a beard at BYU" the article continued. "Are beard-wearers discriminated against, then? Can a school have any kind of behavioral code, anymore, without claims being brought against it?"

Again, this is SB Nation: "The answer is that, yes, in fact, beard-wearers are being discriminated against and while that type of discrimination may seem benign, it’s not, because it’s only one small example of larger and much more dangerous discrimination happening at BYU."

"So the larger answer is that, yes, a school can have whatever type of behavioral code it wants, as long as it doesn’t discriminate against students, especially students in communities that already suffer from an incredible amount of discrimination from other elements of society."

Just for the fact checkers, BYU Honor Code decries premarital sex - opposite gender or same gender. This is the homosexual behavior that the code speaks of. One can be gay and attend the university. However, the same standard applies for all students. There is no premarital sex allowed.  Frankly, I don't know if a person married to one of his same gender would be allowed to attend the university. In the honor code there is a qualification that a student must be active in their church and attend regularly. I suppose that if that criteria is met then such a student would be allowed into the school.  And the law would be the same for him or her -- no sex outside of marriage.

I am not blindly supporting the honor code. It does mention that handholding and kissing is not permitted by those of the same sex -- hand holding and kissing not necessary being precluders to premarital sex.  However, any straight couple sitting on a bench at the Marriott center who is snogging would be asked to stop or leave the premises. So it would be interesting to hear from someone with actual same-sex-snogging experience here. 

Moving on...

"And if the behavioral code serves as a reporting barrier for sexual assaults, then it is not acceptable and needs to change to follow federal guidelines. That’s not an opinion, that’s the law." SB continues.  I don't understand what is going on with sexual assaults, so I will comment on this later.

um, hum
Is it the law?  Has the SB Nation not heard of religious freedom?  BYU is not an open school. It is not subsidized by tax dollars in any way. It is a private institution, and private institutions run by churches invoke religious freedom. They have the right to set standards. They have the right to say no beards, no short-shorts, no drinking, no sex outside of marriage for anyone gay or straight. And go to church.

"The Big 12 should avoid the potential for future scandals and decline to invite BYU into the league until such a point at which the school can reform the Honor Code to be inclusive of LGBT students and properly follow Title IX guidelines in dealing with victims of sexual assault" says the article.

Let me add another suggestion.  BYU should find a way to thrive in the world of college football without lowering it's standards. If that can eventually be done in the Big 12, then congratulations.  If not, then move on.  BYU has the freedom to set honor code standards.  They have the right to deny us entrance into their club.

Does BYU Sports need their club?


  1. If BYU's honor code was really the only issue, the B12 would've added other teams if they really wanted to expand.

  2. I think BYU was the team they wanted to add, and to do so they needed to add another but the other wasn't clear. Wishful thinking? Probably.

  3. Let me just fact check your fact check there:

    1. I think I did right by the code. THanks for your comment

  4. "However, the same standard applies for all students. There is no premarital sex allowed. Frankly, I don't know if a person married to one of his same gender would be allowed to attend the university."

    NO, the Honor Code standards are NOT the same for gay and straight students. The Honor Code says:
    "Homosexual behavior is inappropriate and violates the Honor Code. Homosexual behavior includes not only sexual relations between members of the same sex, but all forms of physical intimacy that give expression to homosexual feelings."

    Straight students are NOT required to live by such a strict standard. They are allowed, and even encouraged, to date, hold hands, hug, cuddle, & kiss each other.

    Also, absolutely no, same-sex married couples are not allowed to attend. If someone snuck through, they would immediately be in violation of the above-quoted portion of the Honor Code.

    1. ..."Also, absolutely no, same-sex married couples are not allowed to attend. If someone snuck through, they would immediately be in violation of the above-quoted portion of the Honor Code." Where is this information from? Is there a published source you can name? That would be helpful.

    2. ..."but all forms of physical intimacy that give expression to homosexual feelings." Kissing is allowed in other countries between those of the same sex and in not considered intimate. Holding hands is an intimacy issue? WOW! Katie is a little off base, me thinks.

    3. Cal, it is in the honor code, published by BYU. I quoted the relevant portion above. Homosexual marriage is included in "homosexual behavior." You are being intentionally obtuse if you're trying to argue that it's not. Furthermore, homosexual marriage is automatic grounds for a disciplinary council in the LDS church. It is taken even more seriously than attempted murder or rape. Attempted murder and rape are NOT automatic grounds for a disciplinary council (published source: Handbook 1).

      Anonymous - In the United States, holding hands, hugging, cuddling, and kissing are all considered to be very intimate. Perhaps you are thinking that "intimate" means "sex." I assure you it does not, especially not in this context. I 100% guarantee you that I am not off base, and you can call the Honor Code office yourself for official clarification if you still think I am wrong.

      Did you read David's blog post that he linked to above? He covers it all very well: ""All forms of physical intimacy" means, literally, all forms of physical intimacy. Current definitions of physical intimacy encompass everything from prolonged eye contact to touch in every form, including hugs, handshakes, hand-holding, all the way up to sexual activity."

    4. I did read the above posting. Your logic fails. You state that if it is not mentioned in the code then it is not in the code, yet the description you make is not in the code and is clearly anothers interpretation.

    5. There's no logic required, Anonymous - it's just a definition. If you're in the U.S., physical intimacy includes any form of physical touching in a relationship.

      Perhaps a direct quote from will help you understand what the LDS church's and BYU's understanding of this definition is:

      "When the term “physical intimacy” is used, it will refer to those relationships that usually include some form of physical contact between the persons involved. It does not always refer to a sexual relationship. The clasping of hands or the tender touching of a parent and child can convey an understanding of a deeply intimate nature that transfers a feeling of genuine love and commitment between the two."

    6. You answered half of the question. Your criteria does not match. Outside definitions are allowed in one of your scenarios but not the other. Just keeping it real...

    7. Anonymous,

      The only question you asked was "Holding hands is an intimacy issue?" I answered that (the answer was "yes"). Perhaps I should have questioned you further before answering, as your question was very vague.

      I also responded to all non-questions addressed to me. You said above "You state that if it is not mentioned in the code then it is not in the code." I did not say that, nor anything even remotely close to it, so I assume you must be addressing another poster with this comment. I have reviewed my comments and still have no idea what you mean by this, who you are addressing, or what you are referring to.

      What criteria doesn't match what? I haven't provided any criteria. I am telling you the LDS church's definition of physical intimacy. This is not an outside definition. The LDS church defines "physical intimacy" to include all forms of physical touching in a relationship, explicitly including holding hands. The LDS church defines "homosexual behavior" to include homosexual marriage.

      You can keep coming back and saying stuff that has no bearing on what I have said, but the BYU Honor Code is clear that married same-sex students are in violation of the Honor Code, and that any form of physical touching (physical intimacy) between same sex students is in violation of the Honor Code.

    8. Obtuse? Ye hardly know me, lady. You may not have caught my drift. BYU is not only for the LDS. It is open to members of all faiths. If a member of another faith that was practicing his religion was to apply to BYU stating that he or she was married, would he be allowed into the Y? And are you really implying that murder and rape are not in the honor code? Following the law of the land is required for any student.

    9. You don't know me either, man.

      It doesn't matter what religion they are. All BYU students have to follow the Honor Code.

      I implied nothing about murder and rape not being in the honor code.

  5. BYU is not discriminating! The Bit 12 is discriminating against moral people! It is Christians who hold their faith in honesty and really live by it's standards that are being discriminated against! I wish BYU held to it's standards in ALL ways instead of just some, the honor code. What about refusing to teach lies that are contradictory to the Religion??? What about refusing government standards that contradict God's standard? What is the point of holding on to one's virginity if it then means going to classes where they are taught scientific fiction, because it is a government standard?

    1. Actually the pac 12 is a private org that doesn't even have to adhere to government regulations regarding discrimination. They are not allowing BYU in because of their own moral code to not endorse a school that would purposely treat gay people and victims of rape as BYU does.

      It's their right to reject BYU as much as it's BYU to deny gay students rights.

    2. Pac 12 would have to follow on discriminatory standards as they accept funding from state sources funded by tax dollars. They may choose to accept anyone they wish into their club. If BYU doesn't wish to be a part of their club more than their desire to uphold their code, then they find another club or make their own. Thanks for your comment.

  6. *Sorry for the long comment*
    Just a forewarning, I'm a current BYU student (Microbio major, Premed) and I am very knowledgeable about the honor code and about the intricacies of being gay on campus. So I mean, you can choose not to believe anything I say, but I’m a verifiable person; I can backup what I say.

    First off, to fact check your fact check, the honor code (or more specifically, the honor code office) completely bars any homosexual couple from dating, inside or out of BYU campus, not just premarital sex. The example you presented, of a heterosexual couple "snogging" in front of the Marriott vs. a homosexual couple doing the same, is slightly misleading. The heterosexual couple would be asked to stop. The homosexual couple would be kicked out of school completely, removing them from any BYU-approved housing (which students are required to live in) and on-campus job they may have. Actually, the homosexual couple would be kicked out whether they were "snogging" in the middle of Brigham Square or holding hands in the privacy of a room on the other side of the country. I personally know a friend who nearly got kicked out of BYU for holding hands with another guy, and they were in a completely different state.

    Secondly, though BYU doesn’t receive funds for it’s daily operations (à la public schools), it still gets funding in the form of Pell Grants and government subsidized loans for students from the federal government; therefore, they must follow the laws set by them (Including nondiscrimination and Title IX laws). The sexual assault issue (and that part of their letter) deals directly with Title IX and not necessarily with the homosexual issue. BYU has to follow Title IX because it receives federal funds. And, though you are correct that BYU invokes religious freedom and choose these rules, its unwise to say that it isn’t discrimination because it is. They are just legally allowed to discriminate.

    Don’t think that BYU didn’t get in because of the homosexual issue. I know who people who were included in the talks; BYU was on the shortlist of getting in, even with the gay issue. There were even talks of removing the homosexual behavior section completely from the honor code and then doing it on a case by case basis. They voted not to expand at ALL. That doesn’t mean that they won’t in the future, but it just means that they voted not to expand right now.

  7. I get it. Thanks for your comments.