Now, under the rule of a new Governor and Attorney General, Virginia is going after GLBT people with even greater intent. Not satisfied with the status quo, the new Governor, Bob McDonnell, announced that he would not continue an executive order barring discrimination against GLBT state workers. Attorney General, Ken Cuccinelli,a known hater, next announced that the state universities in Virginia were not allowed to have anti-discrimination statutes nor benefits for GLBT partners. In the competitive world of higher education, this means that they have just shot themselves in the foot for recruiting and retaining of students and faculty.
You see, it's not just GLBT students and faculty who are affected, but anyone who believes in diversity and humane values. And that means a lot of straight students and faculty will see Virginia as a place incompatible with their beliefs. Academics are idealists. It's why, after our years of advanced training, we are willing to be paid relatively little to do what we do. THere's a reason we call it "liberal arts".
So Cuccinelli has just made it clear to academics and students that Virginia is an unwelcoming and backward state. And he has made it clear to people already there, that they are not welcome. The best faculty will be the ones with choices. Time for other universities to take a look and start cherry picking.
As the WaPo editorialized,
These schools have been havens for inclusive policies that often go hand-in-hand with academic freedom. It's sad and telling that as one of his earliest acts in office, the attorney general would actively reach out to enable discrimination.
Gov McDonnell today reversed himself, but only superficially, by issuing a relatively weightless executive directive in
Problem is, of course, he used a weightier executive ORDER to rescind the coverage. This is window dressing. As I've said before, Virginia's hate is the last gasp is a dying world view. But it is vicious and venomous none-the-less.
a bid to quell a controversy over discrimination and the state's power to prevent it.
The directive appears to counter both the governor's prior order and the legal advice of Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli, who recently sent public colleges a letter arguing the institutions lacked the authority to include sexual orientation in their anti-discrimination policies.....
He turned to the U.S. Constitution to argue that gays are already protected. The 14th Amendment's Equal Protection Clause, he wrote, prevents discrimination "based on factors such as one's sexual orientation."