A Letter to Walla Walla University Admin Raises Influence Questions

I recently learned that the administration at my alma mater, Walla Walla University (WWU), responded to criticism aimed at freshman orientation material that addressed inclusivity and gender. This criticism initially arose from an opinion article attributed to “NewsHound.” The post attacks WWU for allowing incoming freshmen to view a video on inclusivity and gender and for employing a gay Adventist. It goes on to identify the staff member and even provides his Facebook page. 

This is a companion discussion topic for the original entry at https://spectrummagazine.org/views/2023/letter-walla-walla-university-admin-raises-influence-questions

Amen…so many questions, so few answers!!

Which is what? I find it comical that this person thinks his “view of sexuality” is represented in the bible, which in fact doesn’t have a “view of sexuality”, or maybe even a concept of “sexuality” in the way he suggests. It does have lots of examples of relationships that we find objectionable, sometimes illegal, sometimes perverse. Marrying your sister, for example.


Not exactly an accurate report of the issue, But you can read the article for yourselves, really something any conscientious writer should have linked to so the reader can verify the accuracy of the opinions. Anyway, here it is. Walla Walla University Issues Statement Regarding The Gender Inclusive Module — Fulcrum7

Sooo…just what exactly do you find inaccurate about the Spectrum article?

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It is pretty simple if one actually reads the Fulcrom 7 post. For example the article stateed above the staff member was “outed” when you read the original article it is a screenshot of the employee with the highlighted words from his social media post where he says he is “a gay cisgendered man”. The term outed means: "to publish the fact that a famous person is gay, especially when that person does not want it to be known:

I think the article pays very little attention to the 5 paragraph statement of John McVay. But the main thing that is inaccurate is where the author says:

That statement which is the concluding lines of the article was addressed to people like the author, but that was cut out of the quote and instead, it is pretended that those words are the “framing” upon what the original article was made. What the article actually said:
“We also hope that McVay does not get cancelled by a social justice outrage mob for doing this. The world of critical theory and social Marxism does not look fondly upon straight white guys who fail to support their LGBTQ+ agenda. We know this because we are straight white guys who support the biblical view of sexuality.” (I am pretty sure that one should begin a quote where they start the quote after another sentence or sentences in the paragraph, the quoted material should be preceded with ellipsis).

I have had Fulcrum 7, and read about the incident before seeing it talked about on SPECTRUM…by the way, F7’s journalism standards…not sure they have any in my opinion, but I look at it for humorous reasons, not reality.

You are picking at fine hairs, looking for something to disparage a persons opinion rather than any inaccuracy, in my opinion!


You asked. It is not fine hairs to note that the article above takes quotes out of context and then asserts that the out-of-context quote frames the whole article or to not even give the link to the article you are criticizing. I did not even mention that it is not very relevant to complain about what someone did not say in a letter, as if the above article writer’s views had to be placed in John McVay’s letter. The problem really is that if someone agrees with an article’s agenda they ignore all the problems the writer created. If people can’t read objectively they produce articles like the above and they then ask what is wrong with inaccurate articles like you did. F7 news standards are not the subject of my comment or the article, obviously, if that had been the above author’s concern they would have at least mentioned the source but they didn’t.

I should add this if you are not from WA state and seen what they have put out for the diversity and inclusion education module for workers it is bad. One part was about characteristics of females or women I can’t remember which it was. But they did not mention anything actually biologically relevant but said that they often wear makeup. So it is at least good that John McVay is not using that garbage that the state of WA has produced. I have seen it for 2 years and unlike the work modules that my company produces the WA state version asks us to rate it at the end. 2 years of a poor rating from me.

Ironically, Fulcrum7 has advanced and promoted LGBT+ interests in the SDA Church by functioning as the perfect foil, the inept sparring partner, the weak blundering opponent. Most SDAs, even those who hold traditional and biblical perspectives about human sexuality, are repulsed by Fulcrum7 and are correspondingly more sympathetic to LGBT+ individuals as a result of encountering the rage bloggers and commentators on that website.

Fulcrum7 traffics in bigotry toward LGBT+ persons, blacks, Jews, Muslims, Hispanics, Native Americans, Catholics, women, immigrants, refugees, scholars, and scientists. The website is also anti-Trinitarian, in that it advocates the neo-Arian heresy of Eternal Functional Subordination. The website regularly disseminates disinformation and loony conspiracy theories, such as Great Replacement Theory (“Jews will not replace us”), anti-vax disinformation and conspiracy theories, QAnon nonsense, science denial, and the Big Lie (election denial). The lord and savior for bloggers and commentators appears to be Donald Trump, not Jesus. (Compare the passion in which Trump is talked about and celebrated to the relatively few mentions of Jesus). Fulcrum7 appears to target a demographic that JD Vance has written about in the larger context of our society in his book Hillbilly Elegy. I think we have a pretty good idea who these people are.

Fulcrum7’s rage bloggers may think that they have won a victory by forcing Walla Walla University to apologize for a 44 second blurb in an orientation video that alerts incoming students to a perspective in the social sciences that gender is a social construct. (We should all be alerted to this perspective, so that we can avoid thoughtlessly offending some people we might encounter who hold that perspective). But this victory, so small and insignificant as it most surely is, pales in comparison to the crushing losses that Fulcrum7’s rage bloggers are sustaining every day. Rage bloggers rarely think about long-term consequences of what they are doing but instead live for the moment as they revel in inciting rage. Again, this counterproductive approach will continue to strengthen LGBT+ individuals and interests in our faith community.


What I would love to see is WWU offer a course like this one that touches on sexual behavior and does a nice job of explaining what we know scientifically about such things, including gender identity:

But since this is science based, it of course could never be taught in an Adventist setting. Instead, we have individuals with their “informed” views on the subject coming from mutterings in ancient writings, what could possible be wrong with this?


Woe. If that was what was in the video it is worse than I thought (that is even worse than the WA state Video on diversity and inclusion). The idea that gender is a social construct is pretty much wrong most any way you look at it. See this article in Psychology Today. Time to Move Beyond "Gender Is Socially Constructed" | Psychology Today

You are missing the point. You don’t seem to understand the purpose of an orientation video or the fundamental purpose of a university. The purpose of an orientation video is to introduce students to new perspectives that might be held by others so that everyone can relate to each other in an amicable, friendly, and collegiate manner. The purpose of a university in a nutshell is to explore new ideas and test those ideas in study and conversation.

I realize that not everyone is college material. Not everyone understands that censorship, bullying, and violence are inappropriate responses to expression that might offend one’s religious sensibilities. But SDA Christians should understand this. SDA Christians should reject Fulcrum7’s demand that an orientation video be censored. SDA Christians should reject Fulcrum7’s urging that all of our colleges and universities be closed down. With respect to gender, of which I have no subject matter expertise, the ideal place to discuss the relevant studies and debate the issues is an SDA institution of higher learning. But those who are filled with rage are not able to do that.


Ah of course I just don’t get it, it is all just priming them for college. There are 20 genders, and it is all about power dynamic and oppression. We only think there are two genders because of the power dynamic that created two labeled restroom divisions. Leaving the other 18 to go back behind the woodshed if they can find one. I am so glad you set me straight. Why how could I ever forget that part of my college orientation…oh that is right they did not offer such nonsense.

Why are you so sure there are only two genders? Because that is what was believed 2,000 years ago?


Please describe those other genders. It is up to those who say there are more than the two; male female, masculine feminine, man woman. Feminism has been trying to separate biological sex from gender. As gender for much of our history was just a linguistic tool to describe the sex of someone. As it is defined: “A grammatical category, often designated as male, female, or neuter, used in the classification of nouns, pronouns, adjectives, and, in some languages, verbs that may be arbitrary or based on characteristics such as sex or animacy and that determines agreement with or selection of modifiers, referents, or grammatical forms.” It is only that linguistic application that gender is a social construct, as is in fact all language. It does not make it to a language when only one person uses it, so it is socially that language develops.

Perhaps a lesson in Biology/genetics will help…(not holding my breath)

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Excellent, you do seem to understand that gender, like all language is a social construct. In an earlier post you seemed to claim you didn’t think that. But you seem to think it must change all at once. Change always starts with one or a few and eventually becomes commonplace. So what is your point?

We are in the process of slowly (some much more slowly than others) coming to understand that gender is far more complex than male and female. Its no different than the fact that 2000 years ago almost everyone would have said the Heavens revolve around the earth. I mean, isn’t it obvious to anyone with basic intelligence that this is the case? Same with gender, its obvious there are only two! Oops, well not if you have a little curiosity and avail yourself of what is already known!

Plenty of very intelligent people 2000 years ago thought the heavens revolved around the Earth. They can be forgiven since it took a lot of observation and clever thinking to arrive at what we know today. The same is true for gender. Even a hundred years ago, most people could be forgiven for thinking it was binary. Today, not so much, it takes willing ignorance to think so now. Just like many of the people who held fast to geocentric universe because they were sure their scriptures told them too, so now today many will hold fast to binary gender well past its expiration date for the same reason: Their God told them so!

The world changes. It always has and always will, and so will societies.

It is only that linguistic application that gender is a social construct, as is in fact all language. It does not make it to a language when only one person uses it, so it is socially that language develops.


So you say gender is a social construct and then tell us we a in mid change of the social constrct. Sounds like comple confusion. One says there are 20 genders another says it is a spectrum with infinite genders. Maybe give us the definition of gender that creates this confusion

We have to figure everything in life out, nobody handed us the answers. Why is this so strange to you. How on earth do you think anything gets figured out?


So that is your definition of gender. Sort of like Barbie saying math is hard. Why is it strange for people to use words that they don’t even know the meaning of? Very strange it is, even more strange when they demand that others use the word but be sure not to give it any meaning other than the secret or unknown meaning. Amazing!

Ok, lets ask you an even simpler question. You referred to

OK. So in that instance the meaning of earth and the meanings of heavens did not change, what changed? The scientific discovery changed with Galileo’s advocacy of a heliocentric universe What scientific discovery prompted the change in gender.

You mean that thing you don’t even know what it is, that is more complex than a reference to male and female? Males and females are pretty complex on their own being human beings with a multitude and likes and dislikes and thoughts and biases. I think you have showed us pretty well that there is no logic behind the gender is a social construct and there are more than male and female genders. So you have the last chance to show the science for the 20 genders of the multitudes of gender (though if one says there are infinite genders that works pretty well with the gender has no meaning and no definition). If one can’t define gender they will have no chance to define gender identity, gender traits, or even transgender (which if one subscribes to the gender is a spectrum philosophy than transgender makes absolutely no sense.