Leftist activists at the University of North Alabama are demanding Student Government Association President Jake Statom resign for a post on Instagram suggesting that LGBT people should be “born again.”
Statom, an engineering major who was elected as President of the SGA at North Alabama in February, used Instagram to repost an image of a t-shirt from Reformed Theology Hub, a Christian conservative account, which included a rainbow with the caption, “Born this way? You must be born again,” generally interpreted as a message to call those who identify as LGBT back to Christ. The post drew immediate backlash from leftists on campus, with a petition created calling for him to resign.
“While people are entitled to their own personal beliefs, as the SGA President of a university with an active LGBTQIA+ Community, Jake Statom needs to show that he is capable of protecting the interests of all students,” the petition reads, calling him to step down or be forced out by the university. “As long as our SGA President is openly homophobic, it will be impossible for UNA to truly be a safe space for the LGBTQIA+ Community.”
In a statement, Statom profusely apologized, despite seemingly holding a belief shared by many Americans, saying he was “deeply sorry” for the Instagram Story post. “I now see the story from a different perspective and apologize,” he said. “My role as SGA President is to honorably represent all UNA students, and I fell short of this ideal. I thank all of the students who have reached out to provide me feedback. You have shown me I have much work to do, and I ask for your forgiveness and grace as I strive to be a better leader and servant to students,” he continued, adding that he would educate himself on the topic.
However, despite the university refusing to take action against Statom, citing his First Amendment rights, a number of Senators and Executive Members of the North Alabama SGA called for Statom to resign by 5 p.m. on June 30, the last day of LGBT Pride Month, “in an effort to promote a welcoming, inclusive and politically active campus environment,” otherwise they would begin a formal impeachment process against him regardless of his apology.
National File reported earlier this year that the prominent gay conservative icon, Milo Yiannopoulos, had renounced his homosexuality, crediting his Christian faith as a reason for rejecting his same-sex attraction.