An act of intolerance is defined as any conduct that serves no scholarly purpose appropriate to the educational experience and demonstrates bias against others because of, but not limited to, their actual or perceived race, color, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, disability, age, religion, veteran status or any other characteristic or status protected by applicable local, state, or federal law. An act of intolerance can be targeted toward a specific person or group. The conduct must actually cause or reasonably be intended to cause intimidation, alienation, or other harm to individuals in the Furman community based on actual or perceived characteristics.
In determining if conduct rises to an Act of Intolerance, circumstances like the following may prompt additional investigation:
- Vandalism or defacement of personal or university property (e.g. drawing swastikas, hanging nooses, erecting burning crosses, etc.);
- Display or use of epithets or slurs;
- Culturally offensive gestures;
- Theme parties that encourage people to wear costumes or act in ways that reinforce stereotypes or are otherwise demeaning; or
- Electronic, physical, verbal, or graphic threats or intimidation.
When an Act of Intolerance is targeted toward a specific person, it may rise to the level of discriminatory harassment. It may also constitute a hate crime for the purposes of local, state, or federal law.