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South Carolina legislators cut university funding over gay-themed books

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Members of the South Carolina House of Representatives on Wednesday voted to cut $70,000 in funding from two public colleges that assigned two books about same-sex relationships to freshmen students.


The legislators voted to cut $17,000 in funding from the University of South Carolina Upstate for assigning “Out Loud: The Best of Rainbow Radio,” a collection of stories first broadcast on a state radio program. The panel cut $52,000 from the College of Charleston’s budget for assigning “Fun Home,” a graphic autobiography about a young woman growing up in rural Pennsylvania. The amounts reflect the money the two universities spent purchasing the two books.


“One of the things I learned over the years is that if you want to make a point, you have to make it hurt,” state Rep. Garry Smith (R), who pushed for the cuts, told The State newspaper. “I understand academic freedom, but this is not academic freedom. … This was about promoting one side with no academic debate involved.”

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