July 6, 2006
MSU not above the law, pro-family activist says
by Jody Brown
No state institution is above the law, says a pro-family activist in Michigan — and that’s why his organization and a legal group in Ann Arbor have filed a lawsuit against Michigan State University (MSU).
Voters in the Wolverine State overwhelmingly approved a marriage protection amendment to the state constitution in 2004.
But Gary Glenn, president of the American Family Association of Michigan, alleges that MSU’s policy providing spousal-type benefits to school employees’ homosexual partners violates the now-amended constitution because it uses taxpayer monies to subsidize those same-sex relationships as if they are equal or similar to marriage.
MSU and other state universities, says Glenn, “cannot constitutionally single out government employees involved in homosexual relationships for special treatment, or force Michigan taxpayers to subsidize and incentivize such relationships in violation of our constitution and state law.” But that is exactly what the school is doing, he states.
The AFA-Michigan leader asks: “If MSU doesn’t allow an employee to put her elderly grandmother or little sister on the university’s health insurance, how do they justify singling out employees involved in a homosexual relationship for special treatment?”
Glenn believes he knows how school officials justify the policy. He says despite what Michigan voters decided and what the constitution now says, “… university officials believe that … homosexual relationships should be recognized as equal or similar to a marriage.”
Therefore the lawsuit, filed by the Thomas More Law Center, asks the state Supreme Court to inform all government employers, including Michigan State University, that they are not above the law and not exempt from abiding with the state constitution.