13 Feb 2009

Outrage at Boston College: Crucifixes in Classrooms

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How dare Boston College allow its committee on religious art to hang crucifixes in its class rooms. Why, you’d think the place was a Catholic school or something! indignantly huffed a number of secularly-minded faculty.

Iranian-born Chemistry Professor Amir Hoyveda expressed characteristic views.

Not only can such symbols be insulting to those who do not consider themselves Christians, it can be offensive to Christians as well. Taking umbrage by such symbols has nothing to do with the identity of one’s faith. It is about whether symbols that represent a specific branch of beliefs have a place in the scared (sic) space of a classroom where we are to teach the students to think independently and do all we can to be unbiased. …

In any respectable university, it is the faculty who are responsible for the level and the quality of the education of our students; this does not pertain to administrators, particularly those who are either not scholars or are have never in their lives been highly respected serious scholars. How can such a significant symbol be placed in a classroom and the very people who are responsible for teaching, not be consulted? To me, such an approach by a university administration is irresponsible and anti-intellectual; it is not how a progressive and enlightened university thinks and operates. I can hardly imagine a more effective way to denigrate the faculty of an educational institution.

Such symbols will have a negative effect on many visitors and prospective students and faculty, many of whom will likely be Christians. It represents a bias towards one way of thinking, elevates one set of ideals above others, honors one group of people in preference to the rest without any meaningful discussion or elaboration.

Hoyveda’s propositions are amusing.

Public expressions of religiosity by a religious school can constitute a sacrilegious assault on the (patently more sacred than someone else’s religion) animosity toward that religion of someone like Professor Hoyveda.

Moreover, the classroom is the turf of faculty employees, and mere administrators, lacking advanced degrees in things like chemistry, ought to confine themselves to signing pay checks, and leave all the big decisions to members of the faculty.

Enlightenment consists of pursuing an active policy of rejecting any open expression of affirmation of the superiority of any viewpoint, philosophy, or religious faith, except of course, for secular liberal political correctness which must not only be affirmed, but forcibly imposed, at every opportunity.

And so on.

Boston Herald

One Feedback on "Outrage at Boston College: Crucifixes in Classrooms"


Boston College is a private Catholic school run by Jesuit priests. Students and faculty know this when they’re admitted or hired. If anyone if offended by Catholic or Christian symbols, no one is forcing them to stay.


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