Nathan Barbieri, a sophomore at Michigan State University College of Business, filed a lawsuit against his former business professor, asserting that his Christian beliefs inspired him to take action. Barbieri found it unsettling that his tuition money was being funneled towards organizations he fundamentally disagreed with, such as Planned Parenthood. “For me, as a Christian, it’s our calling. We’re supposed to expose the bad things that happen and not just sit back and… be abused. That’s our job,” he said during an interview with Fox News Digital.
The defendant in this case is Amy Wisner, a former business marketing professor at Michigan State who identifies as an “intersectional feminist.” The University confirmed that Wisner is no longer an employee there, a fact that is also reflected on her Instagram page. Wisner and Barbieri are the parties involved in a lawsuit filed by the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), a legal organization committed to protecting religious freedom and First Amendment rights.
The crux of the lawsuit revolves around Wisner’s insistence that each of her 600 students pay a $99 membership fee for ‘The Rebellion Community.’ This mandatory payment, as per the lawsuit, could have collectively raised up to $59,400 for the entity. According to Wisner, ‘The Rebellion Community’ was a platform designed for organizing efforts to challenge oppressive systems. A post on her Facebook page confirmed that all membership fees went to Planned Parenthood and similar organizations.
Although the University’s business school refunded students for their contributions to ‘The Rebellion Community,’ Barbieri insisted that it wasn’t enough. “I funded that. And until that money is brought back, until it is out of [the professor’s] hands, it’s still with Planned Parenthood, or it’s still being going towards an unethical organization,” he said. In addition to monetary compensation, the lawsuit also seeks to implement a policy change at the university, preventing such incidents in the future.
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