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Texas A&M opt-out bill faces obstacles - The Eagle: News

Texas A&M opt-out bill faces obstacles

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Posted: Friday, April 5, 2013 12:00 am

Texas A&M students who want more religious freedoms, or who don't support a Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgendered Resource Center, have many hurdles to clear before they can pocket their dollars.

The Texas A&M student senate late Wednesday voted 35-28 to pass a bill aimed at letting students opt out of funding the center, or other university services, based on religious grounds. Instead, students could keep the money that would traditionally go to organizations to which they object.

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  • mythoughts posted at 2:44 pm on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    mythoughts Posts: 9

    If this vote by the student senate in any way reflects the attitudes of the students at Texas A&M (which the senate is SUPPOSED to do), the University is in very serious trouble if it continues to claim to be a Class 1 university.

  • BryanTX posted at 12:20 pm on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    BryanTX Posts: 66

    Nothing justifies tax exemptions for religious organizations except the 1st amendment to the constitution. If it can be (wrongly) interpreted to try and keep all aspects of religion out of publicly funded activities, then it can be (correctly) used to keep government out of religious activities.

  • obasfirst posted at 11:06 am on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    obasfirst Posts: 660

    the vote might be insignificant, the impact however is not. It puts A&M once again in the spot light for the wrong reason. The correct thing was to react immediately in public. Then again, we all know the prez is always missing in action when it matters.

  • Aggieprof posted at 10:53 am on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    Aggieprof Posts: 137

    Nevertheless, the fact that our administration is hiding instead of speaking up does not reflect well on A&M.

  • obasfirst posted at 10:38 am on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    obasfirst Posts: 660

    did I hear that correctly; A good chunk comes from student fees?

    Where is Sabio to dispel that fact?

  • obasfirst posted at 10:36 am on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    obasfirst Posts: 660

    According to McNutt (copied from the Batt): “Texas A&M already allows [students to opt-out for religious reasons],”

    Here A&M administrators say that no such option exists. Does that mean McNutt was telling a blatant lie (9th commandment anyone)?

  • agnerd posted at 10:26 am on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    agnerd Posts: 768

    Since you brought up discrimination:

    "The center, opened in 2007, is a resource and referral center dedicated to providing a safe and affirming location on campus for ALL students"

    Then why is it even called the GLBT Service Center? If they provide resources for all students, they should rename it the Sexual Orientation Awareness Resource Center and all problems are solved. If they change Coming Out Week to Sexual Orientation Awareness week, and address all sexual preferences, all their problems will be solved. All their other programs are already non-discriminatory in that they do not single out a specific group. GLBT makes it sound like they only cater to the GLBT population while their mission statement says they serve everyone. One small change to one event and an organization name change would remove all the controversy and change this organization from discriminatory to non-discriminatory.

    If we agree that the vote doesn't change anything, should the changes mentioned above be made anyway? Please give a reason for your opinion.

  • agnerd posted at 10:11 am on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    agnerd Posts: 768

    Just goes to show how insignificant this vote is. They both know this will not change anything. The media seems to be the only ones that think this is a done deal.

  • agnerd posted at 10:09 am on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    agnerd Posts: 768

    Athletics pays for the Hullabaloo Band (basketball and volleyball). Season ticket holders contribute to Aggie Band travel, but a good chunk of their funding comes from student fees.

  • obasfirst posted at 9:50 am on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    obasfirst Posts: 660

    The Letter to the editor on page 4 of the Batt suggest that Claybrook will veto the bill. Luckily, there is a sane person in a senate full of self serving, agenda driven ideologues

  • FromAfar posted at 9:47 am on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    FromAfar Posts: 479

    Just one of many ways that athletics is subsidized by funds not in the athletic budget.

  • because posted at 9:33 am on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    because Posts: 349

    Of course the bill is dead on arrival. Everybody knows that, even the McNutcases who authored it. The only purpose of this bill is for a small group of people to demonstrate their hate. That's all....

    A couple of decades something similar happened: When A&M finally opened their doors to female students, a group of students, one of them was Rick Perry,
    demonstratively brushed off their new female coeds.

  • obasfirst posted at 9:28 am on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    obasfirst Posts: 660

    I thought Aggie band (most of it at least) was part of Athletics since they perform at the football games and the self funded Athletics department would pay for it?

  • obasfirst posted at 9:24 am on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    obasfirst Posts: 660

    You're shocked that IT gets 1.5 million for providing you access to computers, assistance with computer related problems, email, storage, discounted software, wireless all over campus, network security, etc, etc, etc but no mention of MSC getting 2.5 million? Or Aggie band getting 314K?

  • Jennifer posted at 9:08 am on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    Jennifer Posts: 8

    "There's a lot of encouragement that I've gotten today, but I go on Facebook and everyone wants to put their two cents in," Woolsey said. "The people who are the desk activists, they're all up in arms wanting my head on a pike, but there's no substance to their arguments at all."

    This quote presents Woolsey in all his arrogant jerk glory. There are plenty of people who want his head on a pike and aren't sitting at a desk.

  • Aggieprof posted at 8:42 am on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    Aggieprof Posts: 137

    "....Both Loftin and Vice President for Student Affairs Joe Weber were out of the office
    on Thursday and could not be reached for comment...."

    What a shameful and cowardly behavior!!

  • Keith Maggert posted at 8:19 am on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    Keith Maggert Posts: 2

  • Truthseeker posted at 7:38 am on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    Truthseeker Posts: 2

    Can the tax exemption for churches be revoked? There's nothing to justify that at all.

  • AlamoComplainer posted at 7:29 am on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    AlamoComplainer Posts: 1

    I have a deeply held belief that my money should not go to organizations that spend their lives following the words in a fairy tale book written by men. Does this mean I can opt out of my money going to Christian organizations too?

  • Sabio posted at 6:58 am on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    Sabio Posts: 1700

    What?!? This is really much ado about nothing?!? The Eagle didn't report this in the original pieces on the issue, despite knowing this was DOA?!? I"m SHOCKED.

    ANYONE who continues to believe that the media is about anything other than making money and shaping public opinion is truly deluded. They are NOT keepers of truth, justice, and the American way. The role of the media today, and always, is to shape the news, and make money.

    Hence, there is NO such thing as "objective" journalism.

  • Jennifer posted at 6:43 am on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    Jennifer Posts: 8

    "I would encourage people to read the bill because a lot of people are just going after this for discrimination," Woolsey said. "If they look at the bill, they'll see what it is, and they'll see what we're advocating."

    Apparently someone doesn't know the definition of discrimination. Let me help. One of four definitions on says:
    2. treatment or consideration of, or making a distinction in favor of or against, a person or thing based on the group, class, or category to which that person or thing belongs rather than on individual merit: racial and religious intolerance and discrimination.

    So, yeah, this actually is discrimination.

    I think the best way to keep your fees from going to groups that A&M supports is to go to a different school entirely. Are you not aware when you apply that the fees you pay might go some direction you don't like? How about if you don't like one of your professors? Maybe they should make a bill that allows you to determine whether your professor should receive salary from your tuition. What if you don't like the corps? Maybe you should make sure none of your money goes there too. This bill is as narrowly focused as it is small- minded, but I guess small minds and narrow focus often go hand in hand.

  • Truthseeker posted at 6:26 am on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    Truthseeker Posts: 2

    Can we have the names of the Senators who voted in favor of this? Future employers may want to know.

  • bryanag90 posted at 4:41 am on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    bryanag90 Posts: 8

    Division IT gets over 1.5 million? Can students claim religious exemptions from being gouged there?

  • Marki posted at 1:10 am on Fri, Apr 5, 2013.

    Marki Posts: 1

    It was actually passed 33-30, just an FYI.