Purdue University, which once defended the right of a private speaker to blaspheme Jesus, has banned an alumni donor from using the word “God” on a plaque because it might offend someone.
Dr. Michael McCracken and his wife made a $12,500 pledge to the university’s school of mechanical engineering. In return, Purdue, a large public university in Indiana, offered the McCrackens the opportunity to name a small conference room in a lab building. They were also invited to supply language for a plaque that would be installed in the room.
McCracken chose to name the room after his father, Dr. William McCracken, who graduated from Purdue with a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering, and his mother Glenda, who died recently.
The plaque was inscribed with the following message:
“To those who seek to better the world through the understanding of God’s physical laws and innovation of practical solutions. In honor of Dr. William ‘Ed’ and Glenda McCracken.”
McCracken says the university had rejected the message because it amounted to an “impermissible government endorsement of religion.” He was stunned.