When you envision a classroom full of more than 30 students, common sense tells you that at least one of them is from the queer community; whether they are proud or still accept their sexuality. Add to the fact that many creators are gay and use art as a means of self-expression, it stands to reason that bringing in a gay speaker could inspire this student. That’s the point of teaching, right? Use your knowledge to improve the life of a single young person. Well, of course Oklahoma Christian University at Edmond didn’t think so; as the college fired a longtime professor for bringing in a guest lecturer who “goes against the will of God”.
According to sources, Oklahoma Christian University has fired its 41-year-old graphic design professor over her choice to invite a queer guest speaker to lecture her class on overcoming obstacles as an artist. After university officials became aware of the incident, Professor Michael O’Keefe was fired on March 7, 2022. Students have been questioned about the decision and they side with their former professor. This has raised several free speech arguments that are currently flaring up online. You can read an in-depth analysis here.
O’Keefe hired an attorney, named Kevin Jacobs, and they released this statement to WGNO: “Michael O’Keefe was terminated by Oklahoma Christian University, allegedly for his ‘gross misconduct, conduct contrary to mission and values of Oklahoma Christian University and its contempt. university policies and values. We believe Mr. O’Keefe was fired for inviting a guest speaker for his senior class… This guest speaker is also gay. Letting students expect a world where you could be different is the message Mr. O’Keefe wanted his students to hear. That’s the message this speaker delivered, not a defense of gay rights. Unfortunately, this is not allowed at Oklahoma Christian University today. It cost Mr. O’Keefe his job.
Oklahoma Christian University responded to the events by saying his dismissal was made after an extensive review process in which they felt he was jeopardizing the welfare of its students.
O’Keefe and Jacobs decide how they want to handle this case from a legal standpoint.
I know some of you reading this may scoff at the whole event, thinking he should have known better than to bring a member of the queer community to a religious college. And that’s part of the problem. Christians should no longer regard homosexuals as the guardians of hell, just as we should not regard Christians as our greatest enemy. What happened to loving your neighbour? What happened to… something about not throwing stones? More so, what does this message send to young gay men if they feel they need to suppress their true feelings in order to receive a proper education, and vice versa?
Also, if Oklahoma Christian University hates dick so much, then explain to me that big penis statue on campus.
Sources: WGNO, The Fire