[Marxism] Scandal Rocks Baylor University, Home U for the Bush Gang

Robin Maisel robinmaisel at earthlink.net
Mon Nov 24 12:47:48 MST 2003


    Living in Waco, I have followed the Baylor stories and it is too 
soon to tell exactly what will play out on the sports program scandal 
and the Dennehy murder.  I have been following both in the Waco Tribune 
Herald and the Dallas Morning News.
    For some background, Baylor is a Baptist school with an enrollment 
of about 14,000-15,000.  This school and the particular branch of 
Baptist churches are very much in favor of the strict separation of 
Church and State.  For example, there are some Federal and State 
holidays which the university does not acknowledge based on that 
position.  They are opposed to school prayer, putting "God" into the 
pledge of allegiance, prayer in the courts and legislative bodies (what 
might be called "institutional theism" like Christmas religious displays 
or putting the Ten Commandments in public buildings), government funding 
of churches involved in "charitable" activities because money, being  
fungible, simply frees up money for religious use and therefore is an 
impermissible mixing of state and religion.  I think their position 
stems from the persecution of Baptists in France.  They are really quite 
good and consistent on that issue.
    The Church State Institute at Baylor hosts the Center for American 
and Jewish Studies, run by Dr. Marc Ellis.  Dr. Ellis is an opponent of 
Zionism, calls for a Democratic Secular Palestine and has defended the 
rights of the Palestinian people consistently for the last few decades.  
His specialty is "Liberation Theology."  His views have gotten him in 
deep trouble with major sections of the Jewish establishment.  He is, of 
course, Jewish and therefore in a particularly small minority within the 
Jewish Community.  If you Google him you will find he has written 
extensively on the question of Zionism and the rights of the Palestinians.
       It also so happens that my companion, Rabbi Paula Reimers, a 
member of the Conservative branch of Judaism, is now in a Doctoral 
program at the Church State Institute and fully agrees with and supports 
Dr. Ellis' views on Israel and the Palestinians and writes a weekly 
Torah Commentary for the AJS web site. It can be found at 
http://www.baylor.edu/American_Jewish
       As to the question of how the scandal(s) play out, your guess is 
as good as mine.  There is a dispute between the Baylor President Sloan 
and some of the faculty and trustees over questions which I have no 
knowledge, but appear to be both theological and concerned with academic 
and tenure issues as well as issues of an administrative nature. My 
guess is that the present dispute Sloan has with the trustees and 
faculty has nothing to do with the scandals Tony writes of.  What is 
clear however is that big money  goes into Baylor from diverse sources, 
some of whom have different and sometimes conflicting interests.
Robin Maisel
Waco, TX
11/24/2003






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