Okay, I’m sorry that this post is late (again). It’s been an absolutely exhausting month. So, recently a group of students (according to some reports associated with the Black Lives Matter Movement) at Ohio State staged a protest at Bricker Hall. The students sang and chanted, reportedly ‘rushed’ the doors (though claims are conflicted), and several employees working in the building reportedly felt threatened by the protest. Lastly, the group refused to leave when the building closed at 5:30, and this act prompted this confrontation. The protest itself was demanding greater transparency from the university concerning the allocation of funds in the budget. I’m honestly not entirely sure why the students wanted this information or why they felt the need to protest about it. However, my interest here isn’t actually in the intention of the protest itself.
If you watch the video above you will note that the administrators warn the students that if they do not vacate the building the police will be called and students still in the building after 5:30 will be subject to both arrest and expulsion. However, the phrasing here is important. One administrator claims that students will be ‘given the privilege of being arrested for their beliefs’. When I watched the video, and the student’s reactions to the warning, I was struck by this phrasing. 1 Peter 3:14 (NASB) tells us that “even if you should suffer for the sake of righteousness, you are blessed.” Further, many throughout history have seen it as an honor to suffer and die for beliefs to which they strongly held.
So, this is my question for you today: is it a privilege to suffer for strongly held beliefs? Or is it a burden that should be avoided? Something in between?