Ron Brown, football coach for the
University of Nebraska, said Sunday he won't testify against a gay
protections ordinance up for debate in Lincoln.
The measure would outlaw discrimination
based on sexual orientation and gender identity.
“Everything inside of me said, 'I
don't want the media to stop me from going,'” Brown, who lives in
Lincoln, told the Lincoln
Journal-Star. “Then I realized it was going to be a
circus, and everybody already knows how I think. My views stand the
“As I prayed about it, I thought it
was not the Lord's will for me to testify.” He added that “Nobody
has told me at the university that I couldn't go.”
Brown testified earlier this year
against a similar proposal in Omaha City.
In his 3-minute testimony, Brown told
council members that each would be held to “great accountability
for the decision you are making.”
“The question I have for you all is,
like Pontius Pilate, what are you going to do with Jesus?” Brown
rhetorically asked. “Ultimately, if you don't have a relationship
with him, and you don't really have a Bible-believing mentality,
really, anything goes. … At the end of the day it matters what God
Brown's testimony prompted Barbara
Baier, a member of the Lincoln Board of Education, to call for his
AP reported. She noted the University of Nebraska's policy
banning discrimination on the basis of sexual orientation in a letter
to university administrators.
Brown has said he was born again in
1979. He heads the Christian ministry FreedMen Nebraska and
evangelizes on his radio show and during appearances on a
cable-access channel in Lincoln. He also writes a column for the
Fellowship of Christian Athletes' magazine and has authored several
Christian-based self-help books.
Brown has been an assistant football
coach at the University of Nebraska for 21 years. He was replaced in
2004 and rehired in 2008.
Gay rights groups called for Brown's
firing in 1999 after he condemned being gay on a Christian radio
Last month, Brown told the AP that he
wasn't concerned about the possibility of being fired.
“To be fired for my faith would be a
greater honor than to be fired because we didn't win enough games,”
Brown told the AP. “I haven't lost any sleep over it. I realize
at some point, we live in a politically correct enough culture where
that very well could happen.”
“I have simply said that based on the
Bible, homosexuality, the lifestyle of homosexuality, is a sin,” he
added. “That has created a flame within itself. But I've decided
I'm not going to be afraid of people calling me a bigot or a
homophobic or narrow-minded out of a simple, gentle, compassionate
expression of the truth of God's word. I'm not going to be bought
off by that.”