Education

IN-DEPTH: Baylor administration refuses to run advertisement for women’s reproductive march

WACO, Texas — Controversy at Baylor University sparked and students are calling it censorship, while the university said it’s an issue over policy.

On Saturday, a march for women’s rights will take place, and students paid for an advertisement in the Lariat. The ad was approved, paid for, and then pulled from running.

Veronica Penales, a Baylor junior, said she’s confused.

“We were transparent about what the ad is going to look like, etc.,” Penales said. “Our Instagram caption was detailed about what the event was.”

Later on, the ad was approved and paid for by Penales. That night, Penales received a text message from a student at the Lariat who said the ad would not run. The message said the ad violated the university’s stance on religious beliefs.

Lori Fogleman, a spokesperson for the university, sent a statement validating the text. Fogleman directed 25News to Bruce Gietzen, director of student media at Baylor who said, in the beginning, the ad didn’t reflect the final product.

“Once we learned the intent of the march, we decided it was not adhering to our guidelines and policies and we immediately refunded the money,” Penales said.

“I sent in a graphic and that same graphic has been used multiple times just different sizing,” Penales said.

Gietzen said it also comes down to advertising policies set by the Lariat.

“Every media entity in the county has the right, and exercises that right, to decide was adverting they accept and turn down,” Gietzen said. “I’m sure KXXV is the same way.”

Since Baylor is a private institution rather a public university, it is allowed to make this decision.

“They get to set their own values and policies based on the Christian mission, and they have been very consistent on that,” Gietzen said.

While the ad violates the policy, Penales said it raised the question of right versus wrong.

“They haven’t really given us an opportunity to bring about this issue that literally affects so much on this campus,” Penales said.

Written by Austin Walker

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