As a member of the Fox News church of the perpetually outraged Christian, there is nothing that outrages Gretchen Carlson more than atheists who are trying to ruin everything for Gretch and her fellow Jesus BFF's. Gretch is always en garde against those evil atheists who, according to Gretch and her fellow Jesus BFF's on Fox & Friends are trying to take over religious groups at Vanderbilt U.The reality is that "Vandy" has a non-discrimination policy that was put in place after a gay student was expelled from a religious fraternity because he was gay. But Fox & Friends, last fall, spun this as an atheist plot to take over these Christian groups despite no evidence of this. The "fair & balanced" (according to Gretch) Fox & Friends ran four segments including one in which Fox house priest, Fr. Jonathan Morris said that the leadership at Vanderbilt is "slimey." Today, Christian warrior Gretchen Carlson was back for yet another atheist hating fact free attack on Vanderbilt based on testimony from yet more persecuted Christians.
After the graphic of "PC Police" (complete with siren sound effect) was shown, Gretchen Carlson introduced the piece as a continuation of a "story that we've been telling you about for some time, the PC Police out in full force at Vanderbilt university trying to let atheists run prayer groups and other things." WRONG - the policy has NOTHING to do with atheists. It requires "that all organizations' membership and leadership positions be open to every student on campus regardless of "race, sex, religion, color, national or ethnic origin, age, disability, military service, or genetic information." The chyron read "Losing Our Religion.Vanderbilt Under Fire for New Policy." She played video of college Republicans, with ominous background music, whining about how the Vanderbilt non-discrimination policy discriminates against their Christianity.
She introduced her guests, the right wing professor Carol Swain (who spoke against this policy on one of the aforementioned Fox & Friends segments) and the student who created the video for, as Gretch put it, "religious freedom." They were both present at last night's Vanderbilt "town hall" regarding this issue. The chyron framed the Fox message: "Fighting for Religion, Student, Professor Against Vanderbilt Policy." Swain claimed that the Vanderbilt policy will affect all the campus organizations including the fraternities and sororities. (Under Title IX they are exempt) She complained that no religious spokespersons were allowed to speak at a town hall meeting that addressed this policy. The student, Stephen Saio, claimed that the majority of the students, who attended the meeting, opposed the policy. As he spoke, the video of the meeting showed that not all the students were hating on this policy as a number of students were wearing the rainbow flag which is a symbol for tolerance and acceptance of gays.
The chyron was classic Fox misinformation: Vanderbilt Religious Policies, School Bans Groups from Choosing Their Own Leaders". But this was the "money quote" and official Fox message: "Failing to Keep the Faith, School Hostile to Religion at Vanderbilt."
Saio asserted that the policy destroys the integrity of religious organizations Gretch, disdainfully, read a statement from Vanderbilt. Looking very intense, Gretch asked the professor why an atheist would want to lead a prayer group. She said "I don't get it." Swain said that there are people on campus who believe there's no place for religious organization and this is an opportunity for those who oppose religious groups to go in and create havoc. More agitprop chyrons: "University Groups Policy Under Fire, Leaders Don't Have To Share Group's Views" and "Religious Freedom Under Attack.Vanderbilt Non Discrimination Rule Controversy." After Swain suggested that a well funded conspiracy might be behind the policy, Gretch did her standard trope about the lone complainant who ruins things for Jesus' pals with her question about whether it's "fear of one lawsuit because of one person." Of course the reality is that the discrimination already occurred but don't let facts get in the way.
While groups connected to the Tea Party are attacking this policy, the Vanderbilt newspaper has endorsed it. They say that "diversity means continually engaging with those who look, act and think differently than oneself. Different ways of life do not undermine the integrity of student organizations; rather, they enhance it." They get it. Too bad Gretch doesn't.