Sunday, February 08, 2009

Keep those goons out of the building!

Section 803 of the bill grants funds "for the purpose of modernizing, renovating, and repairing institution of higher education facilities that are primarily used for instruction and research." The same section, however, prohibits these funds to go to the "modernization, renovation, or repair of facilities--(i) used for sectarian instruction, religious worship, or a school or department of divinity; or (ii) in which a substantial portion of the functions of the facilities are subsumed in a religious mission."

"This provision would, in fact, prohibit universities that allow student groups to use facilities for Bible studies or worship services from receiving federal funds under the stimulus package," wrote Jay Sekulow, an attorney with the American Center for Law and Justice.

Wow depending on how you interpret that, it could pretty much prevent religious groups who don't have their own off campus buildings from doing anything on a given campus. At Columbia I often scheduled Catholic events in classroom buildings at night. If they took any federal money, I guess that would mean it would be illegal.

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