As a proud Gordon College Alumni (one of my sons has Adoniram as a middle name), I'm watching this whole thing unfold, wincing and cringing as the reactions and blog posts roll out. If you live in a deeper hole than I do: D. Michael Lindsey - the fairly new president of the college signed a petition to be granted exemption from certain non-discrimination practices. This has blown up into an opportunity to attack Mr. Lindsey, Gordon College, Christianity, and promote the theology of human sexuality and LGBT issues. (here for one take)
But what about the overlooked conversations we're not having?
D. Michael Lindsey was touted as the best thing since sliced toast/A.J. Gordon himself, and Gordon was proud to have won him in the bidding for the up and coming academic leader. Lindsey is said to be improving the image of Gordon, being more professional and credible: "His leadership... is part of a longer-term strategy to position the institution as the liberal arts college of choice worldwide for the development of thoughtful Christian leaders." That’s some big aspirations for the "Boston Missionary Training School." His Bio on the college site drops the names of "Presidents Carter and Bush, and hundreds of CEOs at the nation’s largest corporations and nonprofit... The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, USA Today, CNN and Fox News Channel," and "Pulitzer nominated" books (as well as a million degrees and accolades).
But I've met D. Michael Lindsey, he's about my age. I've met his wife and kids, and do you know, they put their pants on the exact same way as I do? All the BS aside, nobody is a "professional" and if we honestly believed we were, our self worth would be tied to our accomplishments, and we would have lost the intrinsic value of humanity. So Michael Lindsey made a judgment call, maybe a mistake, but is he a human being or a professional? And why is it that nobody is talking about this "Hobby Lobby" case (the supposed reason for the petition) in light of the fact that the courts seem to be cementing the person-hood of corporations, while stripping it from actual PERSONS.
See the conversation nobody is having is a conversation we won't be able to have if we strip funding to the humanities and especially the oft maligned "Philosophy major;" Does a human life have intrinsic value? If it does, Mr. Lindsey deserves a break, but we also can't celebrate the Supreme Court's decision to say it doesn't. If it does, you can't evaluate people based on titles, resumes, politics or the wealth of their success - no you actually have to meet them, and know them. If it doesn't, then we are all just merely means to an end, to be discarded when we step out of line: and we should be fearful of what that end might be.