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Pepperdine Clarifies Role in Prop 8 Ad

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When a Yes on Prop 8 TV ad advocating for the elimination gay marriage was launched on Monday, eyebrows raised and surely some alumni and student emotions flared when they saw a law professor identified as someone from Pepperdine University in Malibu. In the ad, professor Richard Peterson said that people could be sued over personal beliefs, churches could lose their tax exemption and gay marriage would be taught in public schools.

But the school, who asked Prop 8 proponents to delete the Pepperdine attribution, stressed that Peterson's comments were of his own and not University's. An e-mail addressed to alumni from the school's public relations department is below:

From the Department of Public Relations Dear Pepperdine Alumnus:

Many members of the Pepperdine community have voiced opinions over a TV ad regarding Proposition 8. The ad features a Pepperdine professor and currently includes reference to his affiliation with the University.

We'd like to stress that the professor does not represent a Pepperdine University-endorsed position, as the University does not advocate for/against political candidates or ballot propositions.

The professor in the ad was not advocating a Pepperdine position, but his own personal position.

We have received confirmation that our request to have the reference to Pepperdine University deleted from the ad will be honored. We have been assured that the ad will be revised, perhaps by today.

Jerry Derloshon
Executive Director
Public Relations
Pepperdine University