A former University of Toledo vice
president who was fired after making anti-gay statements says she is
suing the university for violating her
First Amendment right to free speech.
Crystal Dixon was the associate vice
president of human resources for the university when she responded to
Toledo Free Press Editor-In-Chief Michael S. Miller's pro-gay
opinion piece Gay Rights and Wrongs,
where he opined, “It's basic Golden Rule territory: Don't judge
people for the color of their skin or their physical challenges, and
don't judge them for their sexuality.”
Her response was
published on the Toledo Free Press website.
“As a Black woman
who happens to be an alumnus of the University of Toledo's Graduate
School, an employee and business owner,” Dixon wrote, “I take
great umbrage at the notion that those choosing the homosexual
lifestyle are 'civil rights victims'. Here's why: I cannot wake up
tomorrow and not be a Black woman. I am genetically and biologically
a Black woman and very pleased to be so as my Creator intended.”
of homosexuals make a life decision to leave the gay lifestyle
evidenced by the growing population of P-FOX ... and Exodus
International.” Both P-Fox and Exodus International remain
controversial groups that claim they can “cure” gays through the
power of prayer.
Dixon goes on to
quote the Bible, and says there are consequences for violating God's
On April 30
Michelle Stecker, interim executive director of Equality Toledo, a
group that advocates for the rights of gays and lesbians in and
around the Toledo area, and a University of Toledo School of Law
alumnus, sent out an action alert urging people to demand the
university hold Dixon accountable for her “outrageous and
defamatory” opinion piece.
“For me, the
reason why it's newsworthy now is that five or ten years ago, no one
would have even cared about the homophobic rant,” she told
Cleveland's bi-weekly Gay People's Chronicle.
Dixon has now
joined The Thomas More Law Center in pursuing a lawsuit against the
“It's clear that
radical homosexuals have an inordinate amount of influence over the
University President,” Richard Thompson, president and chief
counsel of The Thomas More Law Center said in a statement announcing
the lawsuit. “He openly brags about being friendly to 'lesbian,
gay, bisexual, transgender, queer and questioning individuals'. But
he doesn't care about the constitutional free speech rights of
“Where is the
so-called free expression of ideas and tolerance that universities so
adamantly defend in other contexts? Crystal Dixon has a
constitutional right to privately express her personal opinions, and
this particular opinion represents the view of a majority of
Christian Americans. Christians believe that homosexual acts are
acts of grave depravity, contrary to natural law and under no
circumstances can they be approved. Christians also believe one must
love the sinner, but hate the sin. Crystal Dixon believed and
expressed this – essentially she was fired for being a Christian,”
The Thomas More Law
Center is the same group that promised legal protection for Oklahoma
State Representative Sally Kern after she received threats for
saying, “I honestly think it's [homosexuality] the biggest threat
our nation has, even more so than terrorism or Islam,” in March.
letter written by university president Dr. Lloyd A. Jacobs was posted
on the gay weekly Toledo Blade website.
position you have taken in the Toledo Free Press is in direct
contradiction to University policies and procedures,” Jacobs wrote.
“Your position also calls into question your continued ability to
lead a critical function within the administration as personnel
actions or decisions taken in your capacity as associate vice
president for human resources could be challenged or placed at risk.
The result is a loss of confidence in you as an administrator.”
Dixon says she
wants compensation and her six-figure job back.
“We have asserted
from the beginning that Ms. Dixon was in a position of special
sensitivity as associate vice president for human resources and this
issue is not about freedom of speech, but about her ability to
perform that job given her statements in the Toledo Free Press.
We are convinced of the correctness of our position and will bring
the facts to our defense in a court of law,” university spokesman
Larry Burns said in a statement provided to The Associated Press.
Jacobs has done the right things,” said Stecker.