Tuesday, March 30, 2010

And Tarleton Drops the Ball

The background information you need to know:

Tarleton is the college my dad teaches at, located in Stephenville, Texas. A guesstimation shows that 85% of the faculty are fairly liberal, while only 15% of students would fall under "liberal." It is safe to say, considering the bible belt location and a church almost LITERALLY on every corner, the town itself is quite conservative.

The Story as far as I know it:

For a project, a group of students were assigned to perform a play of "questionable moral standing," in which Jesus Christ and the apostles are portrayed as homosexual. This was NOT a public production. It was an assignment to be performed, viewed by invitation only (i.e. family members and close friends). Let me repeat, it was not open to the public.

The Complication:

Someone got wind of this, and the media promptly went berserk. Fanatical people (the crazy religious ones that may or may not burn crosses on people's lawns) began death threats, bomb threats, etc. The professor did not bend. Townspeople debated, the subject dominated headlines, and I was excited to see the campus flash its liberal side (which every university should do at least once in a blue moon).

The Immense Failure:

The night before the plays were set to be performed, officials notified everyone that they had been cancelled. Cancelled?!?!?


In my opinion, this is a huge disappointment. Really? Really? The worst thing to do is give in to threats from the crazy people. Now, instead of being known for pushing the bar, Tarleton is the weak conservative university that lets the town tell it what to do. I feel like this was Tarleton's chance, and the ball was dropped faster than a hot potato.

Maybe next time, Tarleton.

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