Image via Soulforce
Image via Soulforce

On Tuesday, students at Biola University in La Mirada, Calif., and Oklahoma Baptist University in Shawnee, Okla., protested those schools’ requests to be exempted from Title IX protections for LGBT students. The National Day of Action was developed by students and coordinated by Soulforce, a group that combats spiritual violence targeted at LGBT people.

As The Column reported in December, dozens of Christian schools have petitioned the federal government asking to be exempt from certain provisions of Title IX that protect LGBT students from discrimination. The Department of Education granted most of those exemptions due to a loophole in Title IX passed by Congress in the late 1970s that gives religious schools that receive federal funding the option to discriminate.

The students at Biola and Oklahoma Baptist hosted #TakeBackIX protests on Tuesday, asking the schools to rescind their Title IX requests.

“[We are] asking Christian schools with Title IX exemptions, or currently in the process of applying for Title IX exemptions, to give their exemptions back or at least hear the queer and transgender students out on their campuses,” Jordyn Sun, national campus organizer for Soulforce, told the Chimes, Biola’s student newspaper.

Here are some images from the Biola protest:

We #havethecourage to stand up for LGBTQ minorities at Biola University #biolagivebackIX

Posted by Biolans' Equal Ground – BQU on Tuesday, February 9, 2016

we #havethecourage to stand up for LGBTQ students at Biola #givebackIX #convictionandcourage

Posted by Biolans' Equal Ground – BQU on Tuesday, February 9, 2016

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Andy Birkey

Andy Birkey has written for a number of Minnesota and national publications. He founded Eleventh Avenue South which ran from 2002-2011, wrote for the Minnesota Independent from 2006-2011, the American Independent from 2010-2013. His writing has appeared in The Advocate, The Star Tribune, The Huffington Post, Salon, Cagle News Service, Twin Cities Daily Planet, TheUptake, and much more. His writing on LGBT issues, the religious right and social justice has won awards including Best Beat Reporting by the Online News Association, Best Series by the Minnesota chapter of the Society of Professional Journalists, and an honorable mention by the Sex-Positive Journalism awards.


  1. It’s interesting how “tolerance” only goes one way – there is no tolerance for Christian Institutions. Hypocrisy in action.