Liberty University Students Protest Choice Of Romney As Commencement Speaker

It would appear that many students at Liberty Universty, the Lynchburg, Virginia school founded by the late Jerry Falwell, are not happy that Mitt Romney will be giving the school’s commencement address this year:

Liberty University students and alumni are accusing the Christian school of violating its own teachings by asking Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney, a member of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints whose adherents are called Mormons, to deliver its 2012 commencement address.

By Friday morning, more than 700 comments had been posted on the school’s Facebook page about the Thursday announcement – a majority of them decidedly against the Chancellor Jerry Falwell Jr.’s invitation, citing that the school had taught them Mormonism isn’t part of the Christian faith.

“I can’t support Romney and I am happy I decided not to walk (in the commencement) this year,” wrote student Josh Bergmann. “Liberty University should have gotten a Christian to speak not someone who practices a cult. Shame on you Liberty University.”

Janet Loeffler, a 53-year-old freshman at Liberty, expressed her anger at the decision when contacted by CNN. She also sent a copy of the page of the freshman textbook “The Popular Encyclopedia of Apologetics” which includes the passage, “Mormon doctrine stands in stark contrast to Jewish and Christian monotheism, which teaches that there is only one true God and that every other ‘God’ is a false god.

So much for tolerance I suppose.

FILED UNDER: 2012 Election, Religion, , , , , ,
Doug Mataconis
About Doug Mataconis
Doug Mataconis held a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May 2010 and contributed a staggering 16,483 posts before his retirement in January 2020. He passed far too young in July 2021.


  1. al-Ameda says:

    Evangelicals are so P.C.

  2. ernieyeball says:

    @al-Ameda: I always think of it as R.C. (Religiously Correct.)

  3. Dean Barnett says:

    Shouldn’t be much of a surprise. Santorum was the magnet for fundigelicals who will always think Obama is a Muslim and Mormonism is a cult.

    I’m waiting to see how the RNC manages this distrust of LDS during the campaign. They’ve relied on Christian conservatives quite a lot, but if a significant portion of that base shies away from supporting Romney it poses a serious GOTV challenge.

  4. Ron Beasley says:

    Cult Wars!

  5. Tsar Nicholas says:


  6. PJ says:

    This is the reason why Rubio won’t be Romney’s VP pick.

  7. michael reynolds says:

    I think Romney should pick a Scientologist as Veep. Just to broaden his base.

  8. Hey Norm says:

    It always amazes me how un-Christ-like Christians are.

  9. swearyanthony says:

    Gawd. If he can’t even get the fundamentalists in line, he’s going to have even more fun getting back all the other groups driven away by the primary campaign… will he have to pick a Santorum level crazy person to get the base in line?

  10. An Interested Party says:

    So much for tolerance I suppose.

    Surely you don’t actually expect tolerance from Christian Evangelicals, particularly towards a religion many of them consider to be a cult…it’s going to be fun to watch this further unfold through the election season…

  11. Ron Beasley says:

    @Hey Norm: It shouldn’t – that is the nature of mythology and cults. Just look at the misogynist fascist activity of the Catholic bishops.

  12. Anderson says:

    Didn’t they have Glenn Beck a while ago?

  13. mantis says:

    People do not attend schools like Liberty to expose themselves to different ideas. They go there to have their existing ideas confirmed and all other ideas condemned. Of course they aren’t open to Romney as their speaker. They believe Mormons are cultist non-Christians and their school confirms that for them. What other reaction could anyone, especially the university’s administration, expect?

  14. Scott says:

    Any religion that says, “God was a physical man, that lived a good life … so he got to be a God and physically produced all humans on his planet with his wife as spirit children…. Who if they live a good life can become a God and physically populate a new planet with his wife. Making spirit children…… Believes in multiple gods. By simple definition, they are NOT Christian.Students that pay for a private Christian education shouldn’t have to listen to a non-Christian send them out into the world. If it were a state college it would be a different story.

  15. ernieyeball says:

    @Scott: shouldn’t have to listen to a non-Christian send them out into the world.

    If one speech by Mitt Romney is that threatening to their faith then I would have to say that whatever they paid “for a private Christian education” wasn’t worth the money.

  16. I have been working on grammar, spelling, theology and precise wording of a public response to Mitt Romney’s commencement speech. Hopefully I will have it ready by the first weekend in May in the Year of Our Lord, 2012. Keep this post on file and see if any thing comes of my efforts of asking Mitt Romney three questions. Each question will have three possible answers. Yes, or No, or PCSR (Politically Correct Sidestep Response) Stay tuned. 🙂

  17. JC says:

    @Kenny Merriken: I can’t wait!