Sunday, February 19, 2006

Chock Full O' Nuts

the offending cupApparently, last year, Baylor University banned a Starbucks cup from its campus, saying the quotation it featured promoted gayness. Not to be outdone, and due to the same quote, Bob Jones University recently banned Starbucks from the campus all together.

The offending quote? Armistead Maupin:
"My only regret about being gay is that I repressed it for so long. I surrendered my youth to the people I feared when I could have been out there loving someone. Don't make that mistake yourself. Life's too damn short."
A BJU student blogging about the quote details how the University's President Dr. Stephen Jones contacted Starbucks to complain about it and didn't get much of a response. So Jones announced the ban in chapel on January 31st. The student concludes, "Does Starbucks have an agenda? I don't know, but this makes them suspect."

Suspect of what? Compassion? Tolerance? Acceptance?

In the university's defense, they have every right to ban Starbucks if they like, and I know that that "damn" the quote ends with is considered salty language for them. They could've just thrown the offending cups out though.* Besides, if you start disassociating yourself from every company that recognizes gay people, where does it end? For example, I know many modern corporations grant benefits normally provided to heterosexual couples to gay people with same-sex partners. Would the university seriously consider not doing business with those companies?

Elswhere we learn that Starbucks also included quotes from evangelical Christian Rick Warren and conservative pundit Jonah Goldberg:
Everywhere, unthinking mobs of “independent thinkers” wield tired clichés like cudgels, pummeling those who dare question “enlightened” dogma. If “violence never solved anything,” cops wouldn’t have guns and slaves may never have been freed. If it’s better that 10 guilty men go free to spare one innocent, why not free 100 or 1,000,000? Clichés begin arguments, they don’t settle them.
Here Ed Driscoll complains about the dearth of quotes from conservatives, and so does one young Republican, who says, "I'm not surprised. I'm used to being under-represented."

I guess, for some, holding the majority in the House and Senate and having a Republican President in office ain't enough representation.

Update: The Greenville News has also covered this story. In their article, the school's spokesman says of Starbucks, "They were supportive of homosexual events and causes. That would be a problem for our constituency."

Supportive of homosexual events and causes? Here's just one list of companies, which explicitly support gay rights. It includes American Airlines, Chase, Citigroup, Deloitte, IBM, Nike, Prudential, Merrill Lynch, Shell, and Volvo.

*In the comments, zacfoo tells us that the quote cups were never actually used at BJU, which only seems to make the rationale behind the ban even more unusual.

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