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Catholic College OKs Gay Straight Club


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Catholic College OKs Gay Straight Club

by 365Gay.com Newscenter Staff


(Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania) In a move that has angered some Catholics the President of Duquesne University has given the go-head for LGBT students to for a straight alliance.

"Such an organization, under the right circumstances, is consistent with our Catholic identity," university President Charles Dougherty told the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review.

"I think it's widely known that the Catholic position on homosexual conduct is that it is not acceptable," he said. "Less widely known is that the church stands by all people, regardless of sexual orientation."

A committee formed by Dougherty, that included the gay student trying to form the club, met nearly a dozen times this fall to examine church teachings on homosexuality and tolerance.

"The school really has a focus on humanity and human dignity and human rights and the recognition of this issue as that," said sophomore Matthew Pratter, 22, after Dougherty made his decision known on Friday.

The need for a GS society became clear earlier this fall when a sophomore called gays "subhuman" in a Web posting.

Ryan Miner, 19, made the posting on an online forum not related to the university. A number of students who saw the posting complained to the Catholic school. After a hearing, the office of judicial affairs found Miner guilty of violating the University Code which prohibits harassment or discrimination based on, among other groups, sexual orientation.

Miner was ordered to write a 10-page essay on the pros and cons of homosexuality as punishment. He refused, saying the posting was an issue of free speech.

He has appealed but if the ruling is upheld Miner could be expelled.

"What's become plain ... is that there's a great deal of confusion about what the church teaches on [homosexuality] Dougherty told the Tribune-Review. "This group will help us identify the roots of that and combat it."

©365Gay.com 2005

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