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Pepperdine Student Newspaper Asks University to Give It To Them Straight: Is an LGBT Group on Campus OK?

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Photo by S.C. Asher via the LAist Featured Photos pool on Flickr
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Malibu's Pepperdine University isn't on anyone's list of LGBT-friendly schools. In fact, the Princeton Review put it at #17 on the list of most LGBT-unfriendly campuses in the nation.

But students on the school's newspaper The Graphic are calling on the university's administration to make a decision about whether or not a gay-straight alliance Reach OUT is appropriate for the campus.

The university, which is affiliated with the conservative Church of Christ, faces strong pressure from its board not to approve a group that could conflict with the church's moral stance against homosexuality. But the editorial notes that the campus faces some pressure from the broader higher education community — taking a stand against an LGBT group could hurt the university's reputation in the academic world.

The students say the administration has hemmed and hawed about whether or not the group is appropriate for a decade, and it's time to come out with a stance one way or another. The paper says the school's non-stance makes it hard for current and prospective LGBT students to know what the campus considers accpetable:

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An ambiguous position doesn’t help LGBT students either. Current students are caught in limbo, unsure of where the University draws a line on activities that may or may not violate policy. Gay prospective students cannot assess whether they will be satisfied with the level of freedom granted to them at Pepperdine.

The Graphic does not take a stance on what the administration should decide — just that it should make a decision so everyone can move forward.

A student in the unofficial gay-straight alliance came up with a well-sourced timeline of the school's take on LGBT issues on Facebook.