These Students Are Wonderful September 8, 2010

These Students Are Wonderful

It’s a tragic story, but there’s a glimmer of hope in it.

Christine Judd was the dean of students and athletic director at Cathedral High School in Springfield, Massachusetts.

She married her female partner over the summer. So the Roman Catholic Diocese forced her to resign.

Christine Judd told the diocese this week she had married her female partner over the summer.

Church officials say that is why she was asked to step down.

“I don’t think there is any legal question. Ms. Judd, to her credit, has spoken honestly and forthcoming. She has made it very clear in her public statement she understood what the agreement was and she understands the action she took put her in violation of that agreement,” said Diocese spokesperson Mark Dupont.

On a positive note, students at that school held a protest on her behalf. It’s a welcome sign that they know when to challenge bad theology. If only their parents would follow suit and transfer them to a school that promotes real values of inclusion and tolerance of gays and lesbians.

Maybe the administration at that school can take lessons from the students.

Activist students are the best, aren’t they?

It’s the school’s right to kick Judd out. It’s hypocritical beyond belief, though. According to a student in that video, there are faculty members who have been divorced and who use contraception (how did she know that? I wonder), and students who are pregnant. They’re allowed to stay in.

But an athletic director who gets married to someone she loves?

That goes against some wacky Catholic doctrine.

(Tell me again why anyone still supports the Church…?)

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  • Claudia

    The senior is extremely eloquent. If they are allowing divorcees, unmarried pregnancy and contraceptives, it’s very hypocritical to selectively enforce doctrine only for the gay folks.

    It’s their legal right, but stop pretending you aren’t a hypocrite. Either kick out all the sinners, or admit that you use the Bible to kick out gays but ignore divorcees.

  • Steve

    The usual thing you here about this (both from Christians and gays) is that she knew the rules and what she got into.

    But that doesn’t quite work on several other levels:
    1.) She worked there for 12 years. When she signed her contract same-sex marriage wasn’t even on the horizon
    2.) Everyone from the school knew she was gay. It wasn’t a secret. So the diocese is fine with her being gay and they are fine with her living in a relationship with another woman. But they freak out about her getting married. How is that in any way defensible from a theological point of view? I’d have more respect for them for firing her just for being gay. At least it would be consistent.

    An important distinction that some might not grasp: it wasn’t the school that fired her, but the church. It’s really time for people to rise up against the tyrannical hierarchy of the RCC. The students there are already doing it. In Europe, the Church is losing members by the hundreds of thousands over various scandals and their failure to adapt.

  • Hitch

    “They are just jerks” “Why can’t they leave well enough alone” ” “you gotta pick your battles” “you cannot expect of me to take those risks”

  • Clearly the gay agenda is working. Now we’ve even got religious kids who think that love and marriage are values that should be allowed for EVERYONE. /snark

  • Ron in Houston

    In general, I have mixed feelings about anti-discrimination laws and protected classes; however, this is one of the clearest cases for making GLBT a protected class.

  • anti_supernaturalist

    The only good theology is a dead theology.

    FA: So tell me, what is, to quote you:”good theology”? Beyond being an oxymoron?


  • HP

    Harrumph! In my day, the girl’s gym teacher married the drama coach, as God and nature intended.

  • Michael Hogan

    Why is it only sexual “sins” that will get you thrown out of Catholic schools?

  • anti_supernaturalist

    . . . let’s find Big-Lie #6 in a series: god endorsed male supremacy.

    homophobia is a by-product of male supremacism

    • Other cultures worldwide, present and past, lack an aversion to homosexuality — which gives the lie to xian know-nothings about moral evil.

    Homophobia is common to the big-3 monster theisms — since they condemn any form of sex not directed to reproduction. Homosexual sexuality obviously fails to be reproductive. On this basis alone, it is forbidden.

    Heterosexual intercourse during infertile periods, anal and oral sex, and the ever dicey coitus interruptus are all forbidden. As for heterosexual sex between fertile partners: no chemical contraception, no pill, no spermicides. No barriers to conception, no IUD, no condoms. No abortions, not even in cases of rape, incest.

    • These are atavistic middle-eastern pro-birth mores, alleged dictates of an obscure desert male divinity. They are wholly androcentric, completely misogynistic demands that no impediment to births should be permitted by law.

    They belong to a cultural matrix totally incompatible with an open society in which women form an independent self-sustaining source of political power. That includes productive (economic) as well as reproductive power over their own lives.

    Here is the right-wing ideological imperative behind RC priests, fundie preachers, mormon missionaries, xian thugs harassing at Planned Parenthood, xian murderers of abortion providers, theocratic Congress members of the “C” Street Family supporting “kill gays” legislation in Uganda.

    • True believers’ knee jerk horror and disgust are produced by religious indoctrination which simultaneously grinds into the neurons another faith-based Big-Lie, the inherent “filth” of sexual organs, sexual attraction, and sexual behavior.

    Paternalism, Pro-birth fanaticism, and Prudery — An unholy trinity dictating sexual control over women. These true gods of xian polytheism are indeed one with the father imago — faith based male supremacy.

    • There is nothing moral about these mores. There is nothing moral about those who espouse them. They are immoral through and through.

    the anti-supernaturalist

  • Aaron

    @Michael: Only *consensual* sexual sins will get you kicked out.

    I wonder if the contract also forbids divorce and contraception in its “termination-worthy” offenses. If so, they are selectively enforcing the contract. In that case, would she have cause for action?

  • Ben

    She should sue. Not for the obvious reason, but because she is being dismissed for not following catholic doctrine, but other teachers (divorce, contraception) aren’t. It might become an interesting case.

  • Why is it only sexual “sins” that will get you thrown out of Catholic schools?


  • Couldn’t she just take a few laps around her rosary beads and say a few “hail Mary’s” like other Catholics do for their respective sins? Or is the “gay person getting married sin” over and beyond all others in the eyes of the Catholic church?

  • jose

    I don’t understand. Isn’t that discrimination based on sexual orientation? Isn’t discrimination illegal?

  • Hitch

    Not all sexual “sins” are created equal. Grown male on little boy, exploiting a position of authority and trust, without consent -> moved to new parish. Grown female marrying grown female with consent -> kicked out.

  • Steve

    Christian churches think that they can discriminate against anyone they want because of their “religious freedom”. The think that the roles of the wider society don’t apply to them

  • Jonas

    Apart from voluntary donations to the Catholic Church a participant goes to, does the RCC receive any other financial contributions from it’s members? — I thought I read something like that in other countries which don’t explicitly have a seperation of church and state.

    If so, how many do you suppose would have to officially deconvert before the RCC got the message? — Hit them in their pocket book.

  • I think I ranted my rant some place already about how it was okay that she’s gay but not that she gets married.

    I could never work for a Catholic school. Hard enough going into them some times.

  • TXTJ

    The RCC has levels for sexual sin:

    Using Birth Control = stern talking to
    Sex Outside of Marriage = scowls and the evil eye
    Divorce = disapproving head shake
    Oral Sex = Jealous scowls
    Gay Sex = general condemnation
    Gay Marriage = fired from job
    Child Rape = transfer to another diocese.
    hope that clears it up for everyone

  • muggle

    Bring her back already. At least, she’s teaching the kids honesty by example. And if not enforcing the other rules, they shouldn’t be enforcing this one. It’s the church making its stand against same sex marriage. I’m glad the kids are giving them some egg on their face.

  • I’m proud of the kids.

  • jose

    Still don’t get it. Can anyone explain to me how is this possible? Why are discriminatory agreements allowed? I mean I presume if this person worked in a law firm or a bakery or anything unrelated to religion, it wouldn’t have been okay to fire her just because she got married with her girlfriend. Is it okay for religion to override the law? And the state is okay with that?

    Is it even legal to ask an employee to sign a piece of paper that says “if you exercise your right to marry a person the same sex as you according with the state’s law, then you are fired”? I can’t think of a single reason supporting this that couldn’t be applied just as well to interracial marriage.

    Yeah it’s their school and it’s private and all, but even private businesses must operate by the law. You can’t open a pub and deny entrance to black people just because your beliefs tell you that blacks are cursed, even though the pub is yours, no?

  • Steve

    It’s simply freedom of religion taken way, way too far. The Constitution says that the government can’t make any law restricting the free practice of religion. Unfortunately, that has gone out of hand and is now also applied to cases that have nothing whatsoever to do with actual worship, but also to areas where religious organizations take on secular or mostly secular roles – like education or welfare.

    They used to be happy if they could worship whoever they want, however they want without being burned at the stake. That’s what religious freedom was meant to prevent. Instead it got us this mess.

  • jose

    Thank you Steve. I get it now. I don’t get it. I’ve been trying to say [to myself] that I understand how it works but I’ll never understand. I’ll never really get how such a discriminatory load of crap is allowed in the name of freedom. I don’t get it.

    Yeah. I totally don’t get it.

  • Religion never makes sense. It’s all based on fairy tales.

  • Not all Christians are anti-gay. Not all Christians are Catholic. Not all Catholics are anti-gay.

    That being said, a private school can choose to hire and fire based on their rules and bylaws whether fair or unfair to the general populace.

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