Now nearly fifty years ago, in one of the greatest speeches any American has ever delivered, Martin Luther King, Jr. expressed his vision of how to treat people who differ from ourselves, “I have a dream that my four children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.”
It’s not the color of their skin which defines them, but the quality of their character. So too should it be with sexual orientation.
It seems, alas, that we’ve gone for the vision of a society where we evaluate each individual according to his qualities of character to one where his difference becomes paramount. Two weeks ago, I blogged about a proposal being floated in the University of California system to ask “incoming freshmen to identify their sexual orientation, a move that might cement such declarations as an emerging topic in the college admissions process.”
That story is getting more legs, with an LA Times report yesterday on the matter:
California’s state colleges and universities are laying plans to ask students about their sexual orientation next year on application or enrollment forms, becoming the largest group of schools in the country to do so. The move has raised the hopes of gay activists for recognition but the concerns of others about privacy.
“The negatives of this,” writes, Tina Korbe,
. . . vastly outweigh the potential benefits. Not only could the information be improperly used — say to either discriminate against or give preference to LGBT students — but it also suggests sexual orientation is somehow relevant to education. The college admissions process should aim to determine what students would be able to meet the rigorous academic requirements of a university experience.
Read the whole thing. Knowledge of an individual’s sexual orientation won’t help determine whether or not he has that ability. “LGBT screening,” Donald Douglas (who alerted me to the above story) fears, “will embed another layer of political correctness on campus and put pressure on instructors to satisfy the grievances of the various student constituencies.” (Via Instapundit.)
Once again, read the whole thing. He writes from experience, relating in his blog post anecdotes from his experience in higher education (here in California). He also quotes Ward Connerly a man who, when on the University of California Board of Regents, successfully spearhead the effort to grant benefits to same-sex partners of university employes, believes “schools should accept or reject students based solely on merit, and stop the practice of measuring the makeup of incoming classes by race, gender or sexual orientation.”
Indeed. Let us stay true to Dr. King’s vision and treat those factors as incidental to our essence.
FROM THE COMMENTS: davinci quips that “There is a stark contrast between liberals and conservatives. Liberals are reeeallllly into group think and group rights, whereas conservatives are concerned with individual thought and rights.”
AND MORE FROM THE COMMENTS: Mary poses some interesting questions, “What happens if you change your sexual orientation while in school? Does it become lying on your application and grounds for dismissal? It’s none of the university’s business what my sexual orientation is. What does that have to do with learning?”