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College Criticized For Banning Movie

January 23, 2005

FORT PIERCE - A community college is drawing criticism for banning a Christian student organization from showing the controversial Mel Gibson movie ``The Passion of the Christ.''


Indian River Community College officials defended the decision, saying they were following a long-standing practice banning student groups from airing R-rated films.


The rule aims to protect underage students attending the college under its dual-enrollment program with local high schools, said Johnny Moore, IRCC vice president of student affairs.

``The decision ... had nothing to do with the movie's religious context,'' Moore said.

The Foundation for Individual Rights in Education, or FIRE, has accused the school of a double standard because it allowed other R-rated films, such as the documentary ``Welcome to Sarajevo.''

FIRE President David French said the college was trampling on the ``legal and moral rights to free speech and freedom of conscience.'' He said the ban is part of a national problem of higher-learning institutions limiting religious activities on campuses... Download file "College Criticized For Banning Movie"

Schools: Indian River State College Cases: Indian River Community College: Ban on ‘The Passion of the Christ’ and Repression of Free Speech