LINCOLN, Neb. -- Ratio Christi has once again secured a First Amendment victory against another anti-Christian decision from a university administration who discriminated against the Ratio Christi chapter on the campus of University of Nebraska-Lincoln.
In 2021, the university denied Ratio Christi's request for $1,500 in student activity funding to bring in a former, decades-long UNL philosophy professor, Robert Audi. Audi was to speak on "Is Belief in God Rational Given the Evils of This World? A Christian Philosopher Responds to the Most Popular Argument Against God." This funding request was denied by UNL on the basis that it could not promote "speakers of a political and ideological nature." The institution told Ratio Christi that the student chapter would have to "provide another spokesperson with a different ideological perspective" to counterbalance Dr. Robert Audi's Christian views if the group were to receive funding.
Alliance Defending Freedom attorneys representing Ratio Christi filed a lawsuit in October 2021 with a strong First Amendment defense, demonstrating both the vague and unclear language of UNL's policy and its inconsistent enforcement when they had provided funding for a variety of "speakers of a political and ideological nature" including Bill Nye and Jim Obergefell.
UNL university officials accepted a court judgement against them in the amount of $1,500 for the club's request and, as part of a settlement, the university paid $25,000 in attorneys' fees. The university has now also changed its policy to avoid possible future discrimination against Ratio Christi.
Dr. Corey Miller, President and CEO of Ratio Christi has stated, "We hope not to litigate but to debate ideas. May the truth prevail in the context of the free market of debated ideas." He recognized the important legal efforts that went in to protecting Ratio Christi's campus ministry efforts. "We're grateful for the opportunity provided by ADF to remind universities that their fundamental purpose is the pursuit of truth and that the U.S. Constitution provides the freedom necessary for that end," he said.
Ratio Christi is a recognized student organization that equips students and faculty with historical, philosophical, and scientific reasons for following Jesus to reclaim the university for Christ.
Media representatives interested in interviewing Dr. Miller about Ratio Christi at the University of Nebraska-Lincoln v. The Members of the Board of Regents of the University of Nebraska can contact ADF Media Relations at (480) 444–0020 or www.adfmedia.org/home/connect.