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MustardSeed

What is being protested at BYU?

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Posted (edited)

The Honor Code- what exactly is the problem? I’ve read several articles but none are giving enough info.?

Edited by MustardSeed

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9 minutes ago, MustardSeed said:

The Honor Code- what exactly is the problem? I’ve read several articles but none are giving enough info.?

I think it will be explained in their instagrams and thoughts on the HC. Doesn't paint a very pretty picture. 

https://www.instagram.com/honorcodestories/

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Posted (edited)

After reading a couple dozen stories from that link, I'm now as confused as MustardSeed.  This vague compilation of stories, many without any discernable point, reminds me, well, of the 'rate your professor' stuff from my college days.  Nobody is as good at passionate zeal about complaining in vague terms about something, like college kids. 

(The sexual assault stories are, of course, horrible, and I hope those folks find help.  Being afraid to report is found everywere, it's nothing unique to BYU or an honor code office.)

Edited by LoudmouthMormon
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Oh my, pretty rough stories. 

I went to Ricks and had a pretty traumatic run in with the honor code myself.  Of course being a rule follower I was very upstanding , straight As, scholarship, no boys in my room, no drinking etc- 

My roommates were a different story.  I never squealed but someone did....we were all called in to testify and I said nothing because I knew very few details anyway.   But I got blamed for ratting out the roomies.   A dad called me and totally chewed me out for telling on his daughter who got kicked out.  And I got locked out of my apartment! It was ugly.  They hated me for YEARS. 

Turns out one of the 5 roommates fiancé was the rat.  He let me take the fall.  

  I followed the rules, didn’t tell on anyone, and one of them is married to a bishop and all her kids are righteous. Perfect Prodigal Son story.  She’s never apologized for locking me out.  

Not sure how I feel about the Honor Code.  You can’t have BYU be what it is and not require students to live standards.  

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From what I read, one of the complaints is the encouragement by leadership to report violations of others.

An Instagram account sharing anonymous stories has renewed conversation about BYU’s Honor Code

Quote

Many want to end pressure to report on their peers, a culture that has been largely encouraged up to now, they say, by school and faith leaders.

The organizers want to do away with anonymous reporting of student misconduct, allowing it only when a student has been the victim of assault or abuse. They want students to be able to bring in peer and faculty witnesses during the disciplinary process, and they want the Honor Code Office to operate with the understanding that students will make mistakes.

“We think that it's a privilege [to attend BYU], but we think we can do better," he said.

At her student ward’s first worship service last fall, a congregation leader "started talking about how it's really important to follow the Honor Code, which, I agree with the Honor Code as a set of rules," the student said.

But the ward leader didn't stop there, she said. "He went into specifics on how to report students who aren't following the Honor Code, how we need to watch our roommates, and if they mess up we need to report them," she said.

The student said she was reported to her bishop, by her roommate, for "passionate kissing" and for returning to her room after the school's midnight curfew.

BYU-Idaho, the very first item on the school's online reporting form offers anonymity to informers. At BYU-Hawaii, the online form for Honor Code violation reports asks for informers' names and contact information, but notes that informers don’t have to identify themselves.

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Posted (edited)
26 minutes ago, MustardSeed said:

one of them is married to a bishop and all her kids are righteous.

Heh.  I surprised myself with how strongly I reacted against this statement, and everything inherent that went along with it.   I don't mean to pick on you MS, and I'm sorry you had to go through all that in your story.  But these thoughts all went through my mind:

- Being married to a bishop doesn't make you a good person.
- You don't know if someone's kids are righteous, you just know when they appear righteous.
- Taking stock of all the skeletons I've learned about from various bishops and their families.  On top of the plain old breaking the law of chastity stuff, I have second- or third-hand accounts of all the following: Suicide attempts, substance abuse, child abuse, divorce, and felony convictions.

Yeah.  A phrase like "married to a bishop and all her kids appear righteous" tells me absolutely nothing about a person.  

Edited by LoudmouthMormon
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2 minutes ago, BlueDreams said:

Especially ones about having others report you. It always felt like a rule that could easily promote gossip, spying, and retaliations among students. 

 

And don’t forget the fostering of paranoia! 

 

5 minutes ago, LoudmouthMormon said:

Heh.  I surprised myself with how strongly I reacted against this statement, and everything inherent that went along with it.   I don't mean to pick on you MS, and I'm sorry you had to go through all that in your story.  But these thoughts all went through my mind:

- Being married to a bishop doesn't make you a good person.
- You don't know if someone's kids are righteous, you just know when they appear righteous.
- Taking stock of all the skeletons I've learned about from various bishops and their families.  On top of the plain old breaking the law of chastity stuff, I have second- or third-hand accounts of all the following: Suicide attempts, substance abuse, child abuse, divorce, and felony convictions.

Yeah.  A phrase like "married to a bishop and all her kids appear righteous" tells me absolutely nothing about a person.  

Absolutely. ❤️

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39 minutes ago, LoudmouthMormon said:

After reading a couple dozen stories from that link, I'm now as confused as MustardSeed.  This vague compilation of stories, many without any discernable point, reminds me, well, of the 'rate your professor' stuff from my college days.  Nobody is as good at passionate zeal about complaining in vague terms about something, like college kids. 

(The sexual assault stories are, of course, horrible, and I hope those folks find help.  Being afraid to report is found everywere, it's nothing unique to BYU or an honor code office.)

Checking to see if they're wearing their garments? Checking their attendance in church, even when they go to another ward's services, even if it's their families ward? Not believing a rape victim? Having students report their roommate? So many wrongs in this picture. 

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Oh, a ways in their instagram page, it describes what they're wanting to have reformed....note, reform....not removal of it. I think their basic message and desires seem like potential positive reforms/ideas for changing the HC. 

 

With luv,

BD

 

 

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6 minutes ago, Tacenda said:

Checking to see if they're wearing their garments? Checking their attendance in church, even when they go to another ward's services, even if it's their families ward? Not believing a rape victim? Having students report their roommate? So many wrongs in this picture. 

BlueDreams points out that I'm just reading the introductory paragraph, and missing many details.  I'll go back and look more deeply.

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23 minutes ago, The Nehor said:

BYU needs to expand the Honor Code to include the wise proviso: “Snitches get Stitches”

Maybe include a drawing of some brass knuckles next to that proviso.

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Posted (edited)
46 minutes ago, BlueDreams said:

That included little security patrol at byu apartment style dorms of cars, where they'd knock on your car doors to talk to you and check what you were doing.

The police do that too. I asked why and they said that they stop a surprising number of date rape situations like that. I live right near the Slate Canyon parking lot and before they put up really bright lights there that was a problem. A police car would go up every hour to check on the cars. They still do, despite the new parking lot and other things. Again there have been several rapes and attempted rapes. So I can understand knocking on the windows of loitering cars. Not just for date rape issues but also to ensure no stalkers or other issues such as drugs or vandals/thieves.

Overall that seems like a good thing not a bad thing, although it can also turn ugly. (Again I have a few stories)

36 minutes ago, BlueDreams said:

Oh, a ways in their instagram page, it describes what they're wanting to have reformed....note, reform....not removal of it. I think their basic message and desires seem like potential positive reforms/ideas for changing the HC. 

To clarify I'm not necessarily just referring to the authors of the Instagram page - which I've not read. However a lot of people have chimed in on social media who may not have views that match the Instragram page. Again though many of those who say they just want reforms effectively want to neuter the honor code enforcement itself even if they say they don't want to remove the honor code. 

I have my own views which include punishing those who make intentional false reports. (Although I recognize the problem of establishing something as intentionally false even if the person reported claims it's false and there's no other evidence)  There shouldn't be automatic expulsion for violation, except perhaps for violent acts that threaten safety. While the whole police/BYU issue is one most have focused on, I can think of a case I knew of where we did a background check on someone and found he had a long extensive sheet of lewd conduct. Should he not have been reported? Is that fair to say the person he was dating (who knew nothing about that?) Was it fair when he was teaching at the MTC? Those saying that people reporting others are the problem need to think through that very carefully. 

Some things are of course silly and need reform like the bathroom rule. Even the curfews are a bit silly at times. I remember a large group of ward members watching Disney films together past midnight in girls apartments. That seems ridiculous to be against the honor code and was one of those rules everyone ignored when I was at BYU.

Edited by clarkgoble
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1 hour ago, BlueDreams said:

That included little security patrol at byu apartment style dorms of cars, where they'd knock on your car doors to talk to you and check what you were doing.

I live in a area that's very liberal (not remotely Christian dominated), and local secular security will do this particularly around teenage hang-out spots.  And they find things that mandate them to keep doing these patrols.

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2 hours ago, CA Steve said:

The student said she was reported to her bishop, by her roommate, for "passionate kissing" and for returning to her room after the school's midnight curfew.

Is "passionate kissing" really a violation of the honor code?  

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1 hour ago, clarkgoble said:

The police do that too. I asked why and they said that they stop a surprising number of date rape situations like that. I live right near the Slate Canyon parking lot and before they put up really bright lights there that was a problem. A police car would go up every hour to check on the cars. They still do, despite the new parking lot and other things. Again there have been several rapes and attempted rapes. So I can understand knocking on the windows of loitering cars. Not just for date rape issues but also to ensure no stalkers or other issues such as drugs or vandals/thieves.

This made me think about articles I've read in recent years about whether or not increased public lighting actually has a positive impact on lowering crime rates.  In case you're interested, I think the jury is still out on this question. 

https://www.citylab.com/equity/2014/02/street-lights-and-crime-seemingly-endless-debate/8359/

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Posted (edited)
2 hours ago, clarkgoble said:

The police do that too. I asked why and they said that they stop a surprising number of date rape situations like that. I live right near the Slate Canyon parking lot and before they put up really bright lights there that was a problem. A police car would go up every hour to check on the cars. They still do, despite the new parking lot and other things. Again there have been several rapes and attempted rapes. So I can understand knocking on the windows of loitering cars. Not just for date rape issues but also to ensure no stalkers or other issues such as drugs or vandals/thieves.

Overall that seems like a good thing not a bad thing, although it can also turn ugly. (Again I have a few stories)

1 hour ago, Jane_Doe said:

I live in a area that's very liberal (not remotely Christian dominated), and local secular security will do this particularly around teenage hang-out spots.  And they find things that mandate them to keep doing these patrols.

A couple of problems with the parallels. For one, these were not police that I mentioned....they weren't even BYU police. And the questions asked were largely not to check for potential safety violations, but really to remind us of apartment curfews and to check in on sexual hanky-panky. It was fairly obvious from the questions....and one kid's surprise when he realized a car that he thought had a couple in it about to get warm and cozy was actually a well hidden trio (ie. me) crouched by my friends knees. :P I get that there are areas and times where it would be good for safety concerns....but that's not what was happening from what I experienced. And they didn't have any legal authority to do much of anything if there was anyways. 

Jane, the biggest problem I have with the parallel given is the age. These aren't teens. The area I was in was specifically generally non-freshmen and married folks. I'm sure they felt they had their reasons....but that balance between protection and intrusion/over-stepping seemed to have been crossed IMO. 
 

Quote

 

To clarify I'm not necessarily just referring to the authors of the Instagram page - which I've not read. However a lot of people have chimed in on social media who may not have views that match the Instragram page. Again though many of those who say they just want reforms effectively want to neuter the honor code enforcement itself even if they say they don't want to remove the honor code. 

I have my own views which include punishing those who make intentional false reports. (Although I recognize the problem of establishing something as intentionally false even if the person reported claims it's false and there's no other evidence)  There shouldn't be automatic expulsion for violation, except perhaps for violent acts that threaten safety. While the whole police/BYU issue is one most have focused on, I can think of a case I knew of where we did a background check on someone and found he had a long extensive sheet of lewd conduct. Should he not have been reported? Is that fair to say the person he was dating (who knew nothing about that?) Was it fair when he was teaching at the MTC? Those saying that people reporting others are the problem need to think through that very carefully. 

Some things are of course silly and need reform like the bathroom rule. Even the curfews are a bit silly at times. I remember a large group of ward members watching Disney films together past midnight in girls apartments. That seems ridiculous to be against the honor code and was one of those rules everyone ignored when I was at BYU.

 

THanks for the clarification. I would assume that there would be a number of varying views or desires of reform. Taking out some of the teeth with the HCU wouldn't necessarily be a bad thing to me personally. Taking in reports of behavior should be done with a little more caution at the very least by the HCO....and at least a recognition of severity in concerns and answering reports based off of danger to self or others moreso than minor concerns. There's a big difference between your roommate keeps bringing illegal drugs home v. your roommate smelled of coffee and had a starbucks cup. 

On the bold, same. After a certain age people generally cared far less about these minor things that seemed asinine. My general rule was I didn't care unless I genuinely felt unsafe...especially once I was living in BYU approved housing but not necessarily with BYU students all the time.

 

With luv,

BD

 

Edited by BlueDreams

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Having joined the Church in college and accustomed (and preferring) to stay in a co-ed dorm -- by the way my living situation never came up as an issue after I joined -- I served a mission after graduating and then went to BYU for grad school. I signed the Honor Code, and evidently forgot the details because I thought my new roommate was nuts when he said I couldn't have my fiance visit with me alone in the apartment, and especially in the bedroom (which I pushed back with, "It's my study!"). Anyway I read it again and lo and behold, he was right. So I changed my views after understanding it all better and realizing what I had committed to.

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I posted the below quote on another thread but it belongs here. This affects students for the rest of their lives no matter if they repent or not. That is wrong, and BYU should be held accountable and rectify these and future actions. 

"As a student, feeling extremely guilty, I self-reported my “crime” of looking at pornography and “going too far” with my girlfriend at the time. They asked probing questions and decided I needed counseling and were “lenient” because I reported myself. I received a registration block for a semester. It’s clear now that the mark on my record will follow me forever. I attended grad school and am in a professional occupation, so every time I’ve had to apply to a school or licensure, I’ve needed to explain this gap in my transcript and honor code violation. The discussion is extremely embarrassing and the person I’ve talked to seems embarrassed for me every time I explain that the mark on my record was due to normal, legal behavior for most normal 20 year olds in college.

How is this forgiveness? Where is the mercy here? This “mistake” is supposed to follow me forever? The “repentance” process is clearly not applicable to the HCO. I’m glad that the Instagram account is bringing this to light. I hope more people share their stories- I know my case isn’t nearly as severe as others. If you’ve been shamed or been made to feel like less of a person by the HCO, just know you’re not alone out there and that the truth about their practices is coming to light hopefully."

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2 hours ago, clarkgoble said:

The police do that too. I asked why and they said that they stop a surprising number of date rape situations like that. I live right near the Slate Canyon parking lot and before they put up really bright lights there that was a problem. A police car would go up every hour to check on the cars. They still do, despite the new parking lot and other things. Again there have been several rapes and attempted rapes. So I can understand knocking on the windows of loitering cars. Not just for date rape issues but also to ensure no stalkers or other issues such as drugs or vandals/thieves.

Overall that seems like a good thing not a bad thing, although it can also turn ugly. (Again I have a few stories)

To clarify I'm not necessarily just referring to the authors of the Instagram page - which I've not read. However a lot of people have chimed in on social media who may not have views that match the Instragram page. Again though many of those who say they just want reforms effectively want to neuter the honor code enforcement itself even if they say they don't want to remove the honor code. 

I have my own views which include punishing those who make intentional false reports. (Although I recognize the problem of establishing something as intentionally false even if the person reported claims it's false and there's no other evidence)  There shouldn't be automatic expulsion for violation, except perhaps for violent acts that threaten safety. While the whole police/BYU issue is one most have focused on, I can think of a case I knew of where we did a background check on someone and found he had a long extensive sheet of lewd conduct. Should he not have been reported? Is that fair to say the person he was dating (who knew nothing about that?) Was it fair when he was teaching at the MTC? Those saying that people reporting others are the problem need to think through that very carefully. 

Some things are of course silly and need reform like the bathroom rule. Even the curfews are a bit silly at times. I remember a large group of ward members watching Disney films together past midnight in girls apartments. That seems ridiculous to be against the honor code and was one of those rules everyone ignored when I was at BYU.

Bathroom rule?

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9 minutes ago, cinepro said:

There is no clear-cut right answer, and strong arguments can be made for either case.  Yes, they're adults and have agency, but is it wrong for the Church schools to have codes of conduct that are voluntarily entrered into by those same agency-having adults (who have the agency to attend other schools)?  But BYU is so much cheaper that maybe they don't really have that choice if they want a good education at a reasonable cost?  But the reason it's cheaper is that tithing funds are being used to subsidize it, and those funds are implicitly donated under the assumption that they are helping to "build the kingdom", so if they're used to subsidize the education of someone who doesn't want to walk the straight-and-narrow, it's a mismanagement of sacred funds....ad infinitum.

For me, the argument that says tithing funds justify an aggressive honor code enforcement could also apply to using the same methods within the church itself.  IOW membership benefits, like sending our kids to BYU, or attending a building paid for by tithing would carry the same assumption of helping building the kingdom. So if it is okay to have anonymous complaint lines at Church supported schools would it be okay to have them for wards and stakes in general? Why is it just at the Church schools such a system is used? I am certainly not in favor of that, but I don't see how those who might make such an argument could only have it apply to the schools.

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7 minutes ago, CA Steve said:

For me, the argument that says tithing funds justify an aggressive honor code enforcement could also apply to using the same methods within the church itself.  IOW membership benefits, like sending our kids to BYU, or attending a building paid for by tithing would carry the same assumption of helping building the kingdom. So if it is okay to have anonymous complaint lines at Church supported schools would it be okay to have them for wards and stakes in general? Why is it just at the Church schools such a system is used? I am certainly not in favor of that, but I don't see how those who might make such an argument could only have it apply to the schools.

Some wards and stakes do have tattlers. My bishop is sick of one in particular who reports her suspicions to the stake President and then the Bishop is asked to investigate.

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