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Groups Say University Stadium Not Suitable for Promise Keepers
Northwest Arkansas Times ^ | May 16, 2005 | Marsha L. Melnichak

Posted on 05/17/2005 2:01:29 PM PDT by Irontank

Promise Keepers may bring many people and dollars to Fayetteville, but they also bring intolerance, according to a consortium of groups that say Razorback Stadium should not be used to promote a religious viewpoint. "I don’t think this singleminded group should have their meeting here. It’s not an all-encompassing group and we are promoting diversity at the university," said Marian Kunetka, an archeologist at the Arkansas Archeological Survey at the University of Arkansas.

"I have to look at the rest of it as freedom of religion. I can’t get past that. We have to give them that; but, I don’t think that they should be meeting in places like the university." "We try to promote thinking and critical analysis and then we let this huge meeting come in with this one narrow viewpoint and try to promote it to everyone on campus. There’s no way that competing viewpoints could get the stadium; they wouldn’t have enough people here," added Wanda Stephens, immediate pastpresident of the Arkansas National Organization of Women.

NOW, the Washington County Green Party and the OMNI Center for Peace, Justice and Ecology joined forces to voice concerns Sunday evening about the Promise Keepers rally scheduled June 10-11 at the University of Arkansas campus.

Promise Keepers is dedicated to igniting and uniting men to be passionate followers of Jesus Christ through the effective communication of Seven Promises, according to the group’s mission statement.

According to Dick Bennett, retired professor of English and president of the OMNI center, that very mission speaks to the groups intolerance of others. "They are extremely exclusive in favor of Christianity to the exclusion of all the other religions," Bennett said. "This is a very fundamentalist, intolerant religious organization. Even though they say they are open to all denominations, ethnic and cultural backgrounds, they really mean if those different peoples will convert to Christian," he said.

Bennett repeatedly accused Promise Keepers of being deceptive in promoting its tolerance.

He went through the seven promises one-by-one to make his points.

For example, he cited the Promise Keepers’ commitment to biblical values without identifying which biblical values, even though Bennett said the Bible has many contradictory values.

Promise No. 6, which speaks to "reaching beyond any racial and denominational barriers," sounds tolerant, Bennett said. "But the rest of the sentence says ‘to demonstrate the power of biblical unity.’ Well, biblical unity is to believe in the Trinitarian doctrine of the Christian church. So, it’s very deceptive, and I assume it’s deliberate," he said.

The Seventh Promise speaks to obedience to Jesus ’ Great Commandment of loving God and one’s neighbor and to the Great Commission, which calls Christians to "go make disciples."

No one in the room, he said, would argue with the Great Commandment, "but the Great Commission takes us back into this tangled and exclusive argument," he declared. "They’re calling on all people to be disciples of Jesus. If they were in their church, we wouldn’t have any problem with that. But they are on a public athletic field, and we think that this is inappropriate for the University of Arkansas," Bennett said.

For the Green Party, the issues with the Promise Keepers are numerous, according to Carol Tarvin, who described the Promise Keepers as wolves in sheep’s clothing.

Green Party members, she said, seek to preserve religious freedom and diversity and rejects the call to create a "Christian nation."

She quoted Promise Keepers founder Bill McCartney as stating, "There’s coming a day when the strongest voice in America will be that of a Christian male." "We consider that a frightening prospect not only for women but for all people who subscribe to other forms of faith, as protected under the American Constitution," she said.

She added during the discussion, "If they want us to be submissive in the home, do they want us to be their bosses at work? Do they want us to get Ph. D. s in college? Do they want us to have financial independence? I don’t think so."

For NOW President Melanie Dietzel, the issue is the inappropriateness of a non-diverse group using the facilities of a diverse campus. "You’re inviting parents to bring their kids and you have this going on, on campus. What kind of message is that sending about their true dedication to diversity?" she asked. "My point is, our university is saying we have this diversity plan in place that we want to protect, encourage, support, be tolerant of all of this diversity. And yet, in our Razorback Stadium, we’re going to have speakers who have made these broad statements openly defying the philosophy of the university. I just think this flies in the face of what they’re promoting as the university’s real efforts at diversity."

Asked if the university might be allowing diversity by allowing the Promise Keepers to use the campus, Dietzel answered, "No. I am for freedom of speech and I am for freedom of religion, and I think it’s important to protect that, but not when it’s something designed to hurt other people. I’m not saying physically. Their rhetoric is certainly hurtful to people and I don’t think that’s something the university should encourage."

Tarvin, Bennett and Dietzel said their purpose is twofold. They want the university to bar Promise Keepers from the campus and they want to educate men who are going to these events so they have the opportunity to think beyond Promise Keepers’ rhetoric, to what they called the propaganda behind it.


TOPICS: Constitution/Conservatism; Culture/Society; Government; Miscellaneous; News/Current Events; US: Arkansas
KEYWORDS: academia; antitheist; arkansas; bible; cary; christiansnotwelcome; diversity; firstamendment; greenparty; leftismoncampus; now; promisekeepers; religion; tolerance
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I have to look at the rest of it as freedom of religion. I can’t get past that. We have to give them that; but, I don’t think that they should be meeting in places like the university.

I think these bigoted, anti-Christian multiculturalists are losing it.

1 posted on 05/17/2005 2:01:31 PM PDT by Irontank
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To: Irontank
the Washington County Green Party and the OMNI Center for Peace, Justice and Ecology

How curious. I guess they're demonstrating that "ecology" is a religion, and objecting to the appearance of a competing religion.

2 posted on 05/17/2005 2:03:47 PM PDT by Tax-chick (Every day is Mother's Day when you have James the Wonder Baby!)
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To: Irontank
"Fight intolerance by not tolerating anyone different from you!"
-- A message from NOW, the Washington County Green Party and the OMNI Center for Peace, Justice and Ecology.
3 posted on 05/17/2005 2:06:48 PM PDT by inkling
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To: Irontank
they want to educate men who are going to these events so they have the opportunity to think beyond Promise Keepers’ rhetoric, to what they called the propaganda behind it.

Then they should just rent the stadium like PK does and hold their own anti-Christian rally. Sheesh!

4 posted on 05/17/2005 2:07:12 PM PDT by mollynme (cogito, ergo freepum)
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To: Irontank

How the athiests (the Left) fear and hate Christianity.

Let us now the cowed by them. It is our country - One Nation Under God - not theirs.


5 posted on 05/17/2005 2:07:47 PM PDT by Pittsburg Phil
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To: Irontank
Tarvin, Bennett and Dietzel said their purpose is twofold. They want the university to bar Promise Keepers from the campus and they want to educate men who are going to these events so they have the opportunity to think beyond Promise Keepers’ rhetoric, to what they called the propaganda behind it.

Clearly these three believe are smarter than everyone else.

Typical arrogant liberals.

6 posted on 05/17/2005 2:07:55 PM PDT by poindexters brother
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To: Irontank
Promote diversity by barring a group from campus!

What is WRONG with me that, no matter how hard I try, I can't find one shred of logic in any liberal position?

7 posted on 05/17/2005 2:08:19 PM PDT by TheBigB ("So you're saying...there's a treasure map...on the back of...the Declaration of Independence?")
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To: Irontank

"We try to promote thinking and critical analysis and then we let this huge meeting come in with this one narrow viewpoint and try to promote it to everyone on campus."

Imagine that, a narrow viewpoint being promoted on a college campus in the US.

Whoda' thunk it...


8 posted on 05/17/2005 2:08:55 PM PDT by RobRoy (Child support and maintenence (alimony) are what we used to call indentured slavery)
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To: Pittsburg Phil
Let us now the cowed by them.

Huh?

9 posted on 05/17/2005 2:09:00 PM PDT by Tax-chick (Every day is Mother's Day when you have James the Wonder Baby!)
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To: Irontank
There’s no way that competing viewpoints could get the stadium; they wouldn’t have enough people here,"

What is there to add to that?

10 posted on 05/17/2005 2:09:38 PM PDT by johnb838 (Liberalism = Leninism.... Liberalism = Bolshevism)
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To: Irontank

I don't give a rat patootie what these bigots think. It's a public venue.


11 posted on 05/17/2005 2:09:52 PM PDT by VeniVidiVici (In God We Trust. All Others We Monitor.)
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To: Irontank
For NOW President Melanie Dietzel, the issue is the inappropriateness of a non-diverse group using the facilities of a diverse campus

In other words, diversity is A-OK, as long as it is NOW-approved diversity. That really means people with non-NOW points of view aren't allowed to express their points of view on state-owned property.

12 posted on 05/17/2005 2:09:55 PM PDT by syriacus (Weird George Felos repeatedly flicked his tongue out his gaping mouth when lying to the press 3/31)
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To: mollynme
There’s no way that competing viewpoints could get the stadium; they wouldn’t have enough people here," added Wanda Stephens, immediate pastpresident of the Arkansas National Organization of Women.

Good grief, what arrogant liberal, godless morons.

13 posted on 05/17/2005 2:10:48 PM PDT by poindexters brother
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To: johnb838
There’s no way that competing viewpoints could get the stadium; they wouldn’t have enough people here

"Liberals claim to want to give a hearing to other views, but then are shocked and offended to discover that there are other view." -- William F. Buckley

14 posted on 05/17/2005 2:12:21 PM PDT by tx_eggman (Liberalism is only possible in that moment when a man chooses Barabas over Christ.)
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To: Tax-chick

Deep Ecology IS a recognized religion and should be excluded from Public Forums.


15 posted on 05/17/2005 2:12:57 PM PDT by massgopguy (massgopguy)
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To: Irontank
I agree. They do have a narrow point of view. Who do they think they are? Imagine, a group which thinks keeping promises is something to be valued.

Which promises?

1. A Promise Keeper is committed to honoring Jesus Christ through worship, prayer and obedience to God's Word in the power of the Holy Spirit.

2. A Promise Keeper is committed to pursuing vital relationships with a few other men, understanding that he needs brothers to help him keep his promises.

3. A Promise Keeper is committed to practicing spiritual, moral, ethical, and sexual purity.

4. A Promise Keeper is committed to building strong marriages and families through love, protection and biblical values.

5. A Promise Keeper is committed to supporting the mission of his church by honoring and praying for his pastor, and by actively giving his time and resources.

6. A Promise Keeper is committed to reaching beyond any racial and denominational barriers to demonstrate the power of biblical unity.

7. A Promise Keeper is committed to influencing his world, being obedient to the Great Commandment (see Mark 12:30-31) and the Great Commission (see Matthew 28:19-20).


16 posted on 05/17/2005 2:12:59 PM PDT by Raycpa
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To: syriacus
We try to promote thinking and critical analysis and then we let this huge meeting come in with this one narrow viewpoint and try to promote it to everyone on campus.

Are the Promise Keepers forcing people to attend their gathering who aren't interested in attending?

17 posted on 05/17/2005 2:13:00 PM PDT by syriacus (Weird George Felos repeatedly flicked his tongue out his gaping mouth when lying to the press 3/31)
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To: Irontank

"... and we are promoting diversity at the university"

The irony is too much. Diversity as long as it fits their narrow view of the world... They claim to promote what they obviously don't know the meaning of.


18 posted on 05/17/2005 2:13:47 PM PDT by DB ()
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To: Irontank
For example, he cited the Promise Keepers’ commitment to biblical values without identifying which biblical values, even though Bennett said the Bible has many contradictory values.

God is not tolerant..If the 10 commandments are any example

He just will not tolerate those who believe it is their right to break them..

I guess some folks just can't tolerate God's intolerance.

Or the idea that some things are right and other things are plain wrong.

19 posted on 05/17/2005 2:14:34 PM PDT by joesnuffy (The generation that survived the depression and won WW2 proved poverty does not cause crime)
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To: Tax-chick

20 posted on 05/17/2005 2:15:04 PM PDT by evets (God bless President Bush and VP Cheney)
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