TX Professor Reprimanded for Refusing to Watch Vulgar Gay Pride Play at Lamar University | Texas GOP Vote

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TX Professor Reprimanded for Refusing to Watch Vulgar Gay Pride Play at Lamar University

Wow, this happened right here in southeast Texas.

A theater arts department professor, Linda Ozmun, at Lamar University in Beaumont, TX had no problem doing her job. She was teaching kids about theater arts. That was her job and she was doing it just fine. The school wanted more than that though. According to a lawsuit that the terminated professor filed, the school chairwoman Judith Sebesta, and eventually the Dean, told her that she had to attend a vulgar gay pride play, by Tim Miller, or else she would be terminated. The professor is a Christian who did not want to go to a vulgar gay pride play. It was not part of her job, and she would not be working at the play. The school just wanted her to personally go see the play. This play had been planned once before at the college, but it was cancelled after the community complained that it would be too offensive and vulgar. The play was brought back though and the professor requested a reasonable accommodation to be excused from attending this offensive production. The dean of her college refused this simple accommodation and threatened plaintiff with disciplinary action if she failed to attend the performance. Because of her religious beliefs, plaintiff failed to attend the performance and as a result she was disciplined for her religious beliefs. Lamar University has discriminated against this professor on the basis of her religious beliefs in violation of the Texas anti-discrimination laws.

As Americans, we should tolerate other lifestyles. On the other hand, Americans should never be forced to accept an alternate lifestyle as normal or be forced to go to a gay pride play in violation of that person's Christian beliefs. That is the homosexual agenda though. They claim they just want to be tolerated, but in reality, they will not be happy until they have forced Americans to accept their lifestyle as normal and right. They will not be happy until they force Christian organizations to provide health coverage that includes sex changes. They will not be happy until they have indoctrinated our children that they are bad if they do not agree with homosexuality, like this Fort Worth, TX kid who got suspended for simply BELIEVING that homosexuality is wrong. They will not be happy until they have forced states to recognize their relationships as a marriage even though the people have voted that marriage is only between a man and a woman.

From Courthouse News Service:
Gay Dances Were Too Much, Professor Says
By CAMERON LANGFORD

BEAUMONT, Texas (CN) - A former tenure-track theater and dance professor claims in court that Lamar University administrators unfairly reprimanded her for refusing, for religious reasons, not to attend a gay performance artist's show on campus.

Linda Ozmun sued Lamar University and its Theater and Dance Department Chairwoman Judith Sebesta, in Jefferson County Court.

"In the fall of 2010, the Department of Theatre and Dance wanted to bring to campus an 'artist' named Tim Miller," Ozmun says in her complaint. "Mr. Miller is an openly homosexual man who advocates for normalizing sexuality and for homosexual marriage.

"His one-man show is about his homosexual lifestyle using obscene language and sexual gestures. As a result of complaints from the community, his visit along with his performance was canceled.

"In response to the cancellation, several theatre students organized a show called 'Coming Out Collective.' It was billed as a celebration of homosexuality.

"Because of her religious beliefs, plaintiff did not attend the show. After the show in December 2010, defendant Judith Sebesta, chair of the department questioned plaintiff as to why she failed to attend the event.

"Plaintiff explained to Mrs. Sebesta that her religious beliefs prevented her from attending the event."

Ozmun, who was in her fourth year teaching at the university, says that in her annual review, Sebesta "included plaintiff's failure to attend the event as part of her evaluation, and gave her a grade of 'unacceptable.'"

Ozmun claims she then "followed university policies and filed a grievance, which was returned and noted 'unheard.'"

When the university decided to bring Tim Miller back to perform his show, Ozmun says, the college dean "threatened plaintiff with disciplinary action if she failed to attend the performance."

"In the fall of 2011 semester, the University did bring Tim Miller ... to Lamar," the complaint states. "The purpose was two-fold: Perform his show 'Glory Box,' and conduct a workshop and student performance with students of Lamar 'to help them find their voice.' Plaintiff contacted defendant and requested a reasonable accommodation to be excused from attending this offensive production. The dean of her college refused this simple accommodation and threatened plaintiff with disciplinary action if she failed to attend the performance.

"Because of her religious beliefs, plaintiff failed to attend the performance and as a result she was disciplined for her religious beliefs.

"Defendants have discriminated against plaintiff on the basis of her religious beliefs in violation of the Texas anti-discrimination laws."

Ozmun says the university also retaliated against her for filing a discrimination claim against it. Ozmun no longer teaches at Lamar University.

She seeks, lost wages, actual damages, punitive damages and "reinstatement of her position with any adverse evaluations expunged from her record."

Ozmun is represented by Barry Bennett with Eddins & Bennett and Michael McGown with Benckenstein, Norvell & Nathan, both of Beaumont.

at Mar 31, 2012 3:27 PM
       

Comments

I am sure that everything listed in the news article and lawsuit are facts. Ms. Ozmun probably refused to attend this performance for religious reasons. And Ms. Ozmun probably lost her job shortly after refusing to attend said performance. However, are they ALL the facts? I find it very difficult to believe that a state university would fire any employee over failure to attend one event, opening themselves up to a certain lawsuit. Is it possible that perhaps Ms. Ozmun wasn't "doing her job"? It seems to me that a tenure track professor would have to make several grievous errors over time to incur the wrath of termination. I understand that Lamar University will not comment during litigation, and that Ms. Ozmun's review file is not public record, but before declaring the university "discriminatory based on religious beliefs," maybe we should know all the circumstances? And before arguing that Ms. Ozmun should be reinstated, I would like to know that she is a good professor and that all issues resulting in her grade of "unacceptable" during her annual review were discriminatory and unfounded. I think that might be a difficult argument to make.

Ms. Ozmun's still working at her position at Lamar and people don't bother to read all of the suit.

Thank you for mentioning the facts. The fact is homosexual shows is not why Ozmun did not receive her tenure track. Coming from a students stand point, it is her lack of skills that cost her loss of tenure. When multiple students leave a department because of the education they are not receiving from this certain faculty member, the dean and chair of the department need to make sure this is taken care of. This is a desperate woman who can not educate so is trying to project her problems on anything besides herself. Also, Tim Miller is not a vulgar performer. Although some of his performances are for a more mature audience, he speaks about social issues and things like love. Not once does he push his "gayness" on the audience. The shows at Lamar were not about homosexuality, although one was inspired by gay artist (Tony Kushner, Cole Porter, Christopher Durang, etc.) and One mentioned a gay relationship, they were not in anyway shoving homosexuality in the audience face. I know the area I live in and know that being gay is an issue with many people, but I am a gay woman and this professor has worked with me on her own free will. No one forced her to work with gay students but she has on multiple occasions so why is it now a problem? The bottom line is she did not lose tenure because of being forced to "mingle with gays", she lost it because of her attitude toward faculty and students and her lack of skills as an educator. 

have you seen this prof's file? Obviously not becuase she did not get reprimanded for the things you accuse her of.

her record (a factual document) shows that she was disciplined for not going to the vulgar gay play. That is NOT acceptable for a government entity to do!

there is no excuse for the actions of Lamar.

liberal profs wanting to push their gay agenda!