11 Responses

  1. Gene says:

    I feel that if she has the qualifications for a certain position, regardless of her beliefs, she should get the position.
    What is so wrong with someone believing in God or not? I personally do not believe in the daddy god in the sky thing.
    The daddy god in the sky says that he had made us all in his own image. We are his children and he loves all of us. If that’s the case, then how come he hates homosexuals? One of many contradictions in the book of fairy tales.

    • Xtranombre says:

       “I feel that if she has the qualifications for a certain position, regardless of her beliefs, she should get the position.”

      Her beliefs aren’t the problem. I have no doubt that there are plenty of religious counselors.

      The problem is that her religious beliefs prevent her from doing her job. If she honestly plans on being a school counselor, she does not have the option of referring the students to someone who won’t discriminate against them, and some students could, conceivably, come to her with issues dealing with sexual identity or possibly pregnancy. (She also views non-marital sexuality as immoral.)

      Would her position be any more valid if her faith told her that the consumption of alcohol or use of tobacco was a ‘sin,’ or being left-handed, or (pick a skin color)? Would we accept that she could just dismiss or refer a client because she smells smoke on him or her, or because he or she mentioned going out for drinks with co-workers?

      Any mental health professional who cannot get past his or her own biases in order to treat a client should find a different job.

    • fabkate says:

      One of the qualifications of the position is the lack of prejudice.  She doesn’t meet the qualifications, then. 

    • She wasn’t being discriminated because of her belief in God.  She was unable to set aside her own beliefs to provide the service of her profession.  It is a skill that she was unable or unwilling to commit to, one that is absolutely necessary for the profession.  Counselors of all stripes have their own sets of beliefs which their clients are certain to conflict with, its not a matter of belief in God.

    • W_martin05 says:

      You are correct that her beliefs should not matter if she is qualified, but she has shown that she not qualify, because her beliefs prevent her from being an ethical counselor. In any mental behavioral profession, being ethical is important. If she wants to be in a public school institution, but refuses to provide counseling to a LGBT student who is being bullied/suicide risk, then how is she doing her job to say “you will burn in hell, you are a sinful demon, etc.” she isn’t helping she is only adding fuel to the fire. It’s not the fact that she is a Christian, but that she uses Christianity as an excuse to avoid working outside of her condor zone.

  2. mdhome says:

    She DOES need to not cross the line of letting HER beliefs affect how she counsels students, IF she cannot do the job fairly, she does not get the job, no question!

  3. chilehead says:

    She’s completely unwilling to stop practicing religious discrimination against others when she steps into the workplace, and is thus incapable of successfully performing the job.  Counseling isn’t supposed to be about the counselor, it’s supposed to be about the patient/client.  But here we have a prospective counselor who wants to make the interaction about herself and her prejudices.  Counselors are also not there to offer religious advice – that’s well outside what’s legally allowed when working for government institutions such as schools.

    She’s not being asked to participate in premarital or homosexual acts, all she’d need to do in order to be effective on the job is to mentally change the pronouns being used by her clients: he/she, his/her, and the advice should stay the same.

    I notice that in the picture she’s wearing garments of mixed fibers (cotton polyester blend) – something expressly prohibited in the same book of the bible used as the basis for hating/discriminating against gays.  If she’s willing to pick and choose which rules she’s going to follow, can anyone take her religious commitment seriously?  I’ll bet the little heathen eats shellfish, and associates with men when it’s her time of the month, too.

  4. Mr. Hobbes says:

    Keeping the Jesus freaks off our backs is a never-ending, tedious job. Thanks to the American Humanist Association and American Atheists, the fight goes on.

  5. Tao Perea says:

    The proof of both pedophilia and homosexuality being beyond the control of their bearers is about equal. In fact, in expert testimony before the Canadian Parliament pedophilia was stated to be a sexual orientation by Dr. Hubert Van Gijseghem, a psychologist and retired professor of the University of Montreal.

    Given that, would it not be as misguided for one to refuse to affirm that particular sexual orientation or lifestyle? The logic certainly seems to indicate that pedophilia would need to be respected as a lifestyle and affirmed even by those disgusted with the behavior.

  6. Tao Perea says:

    Another question this article raises for me is how effective can it be to essentially take no position when attempting to help someone work through personal problems? It seems likely that in many instances personal issues may spring from a lack of direction. Therefore giving direction is the most helpful thing to do. If opinion equates to judgement there is a problem. If someone has homicidal or suicidal impulses is it not best to try to dissuade them from following those impulses? Would it not be an utter failure of the counselor not to do so, regardless of whether it is a judgemental or opinioned position?

  7. partiZancritic says:

    “The truth is that EMU had tolerated Ward’s fundamentalist
    Christian biases from the outset but objected to her unwillingness to
    validate any client whose sexual orientation or beliefs were
    theologically distasteful or abhorrent to her”. Well, why did they allow her to continue to the point where she went into practicum? Your analysis lacks credibility, and is biased. It assumes that individuals like this student are not capable of being sufficiently objective and professional to provide appropriate services to their clients. In fact, she did exactly the opposite of what you are arguing, where she demonstrated her capacity to behave professionally by calling her fieldwork supervisor when she became aware she was to be put in a situation where she will have to ‘affirm’ a homosexual lifestyle. I would rather have professionals with this kind of integrity, than have someone who hates Christians counsel people. I am aware of many, many such professionals – psychologists and social workers, who have discriminated against clients simply because of their religion.