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June 8, 2011
College board asks for 'alternative' to national anthem
These people are so besotted with notions of "diversity" that they forget where they live and who they are.
The Goshen College Board of Directors is asking the president to seek an alternative to playing the national anthem before sporting events:
The Board took the action during its regular meeting, June 3-4, and today released a Decision Statement, which is available at www.goshen.edu/anthem.
The Board expressed a strong commitment to advancing with President Brenneman the vision for Goshen College to be an influential leader in liberal arts education with a growing capacity to serve a theologically, politically, racially and ethnically diverse constituency both within and beyond the Mennonite church. The Board concluded that continuing to play the national anthem compromised the ability of college constituents to advance the vision together.
"The Board has a diversity of views on this issue as reflected throughout the process of considering the anthem," said Rick Stiffney of Goshen, the chair of the Board. "The Board itself struggled with significant differences and conflicting perspectives, so this decision was not easy and took many hours of discernment and prayer. Our resolution represents our best effort to find a path of wisdom that we could endorse together.
"We recognize that some people may not be satisfied with this decision, but we believe it is the right one for Goshen College. We also believe this decision will enable the college and the board to move forward and prepare with joy for the 2011-2012 academic year."
Responding to the decision, President Brenneman said, "I am convinced that Goshen College is on a challenging and rewarding journey toward becoming a more diverse institution that serves an increasingly diverse community. I am hopeful that this resolution will help Goshen College move forward together, and focus on finding new ways to welcome students from our local and regional community."
Carlos Romero, executive director of the Mennonite Education Agency and an ex-officio member of the Board, affirmed the decision and the message he said it will communicate to the college's constituents, Mennonite Church USA members and other people of faith.
"Goshen College has been and remains a ministry of Mennonite Church USA with an enduring peace tradition," Romero said. "The Board's decision reflects a belief that faith and honoring country can co-exist without disturbing higher allegiances to God and that Goshen College will become increasingly diverse and will welcome diverse viewpoints."
Can you love American and not play the national anthem before sporting events? Of course you can. If they have a religious objection to playing the anthem, that's fine too.
But the reason they want an "alternative" is because they obviously think playing the anthem offends some of the "diverse" elements in their community. Must be because they used the word "diverse" and "diversity" so often in explaining their curious decision.
The statement also implies that the anthem conflicts with the Mennonite Church's "enduring peace tradition." Someone should remind them that the reason they have the freedom to worship the way they do is because occassionally, some of their fellow citizens died to protect that freedom. If that conflicts with their "enduring peace tradition" then perhaps they should consider singing a rousing chorus of The Internationale.
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