Over 10,000 Christians Petition Boston College to Reject Grant From the Koch Foundation

In this Saturday, June 29, 2019, file photograph, Charles Koch, chief executive officer of Koch Industries, is shown at The Broadmoor Resort in Colorado Springs, Colo. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)

More than 10,080 Christians have signed a petition urging officials at Boston College to reject a potential donation from the Koch Foundation toward the Jesuit university’s political science department.

The online Christian social justice organization Faithful America submitted the signatures to school administrators Thursday (Dec. 12), arguing that accepting money from the libertarian multibillionaire Koch family is “completely antithetical to BC’s Jesuit ideals.”

“Koch Industries is among the country’s biggest climate polluters,” the petition argues. “Its leaders, billionaires Charles Koch and his late brother David, have spent their fortune electing climate deniers, fighting labor unions, and pushing America towards the right — not the values a Christian school should stand for.”

The political science department’s proposal, which has not yet been finalized and submitted to the Koch Foundation, did not indicate how much funding is being requested.

The new donation would fund research for the political science department’s “New Perspectives on U.S. Grand Strategy and Great Power Politics” initiative.

“As a former BC department head and Jesuit educated alum, I regret that you would take money from a company that has spent billions to raise doubt on the impact of fossil fuel on climate,” said Donald Mikes of Scituate, Massachusetts, who signed the petition and has formerly served as the school’s director of University Audio-Visual Services. “Would you take tobacco money, too? What happened to your ethics?”

The Faithful American petition was also signed by John McDargh, who currently teaches at the Boston College School of Theology and Ministry.

“I have been proud and grateful for the opportunity to teach in the theology (department) of BC for 40 years,” McDargh said. “To take money from the Koch enterprise feels antithetical to the values that have informed generations of students who have been challenged to be women and men ‘for others’ and ‘with others’ — not the political agenda of the Koch Foundation.”

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Source: Religion News Service

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