A transgender student and MTV reality show star lost most the lawsuit filed against a Christian college. The student was expelled after revealing his true biological identity on MTV’s True Life: I’m Passing as Someone I’m Not series.
Domaine Javier, 27, had filed a lawsuit against California Baptist University for an alleged violation of the state’s civil rights law. The Christian college maintains that Javier committed fraud when completing the student application process. Javier marked female on the form even though he was a biological male. Javier said that since the age of 13, he had been dressing, acting, and thinking like a girl. Javier felt no wrong-doing had occurred because he had selected the appropriate “self-perceived identity.”
Superior Court Judge Gloria Connor Trask ruled in favor of California Baptist University on four of the five claims made by Domaine Javier. The judge did decide that the Christian college was wrong to exclude Javier from off campus services which are also open to the public, according to the Riverside County Press-Enterprise. The Christian college lawsuit claims made by Javier included breach of implied covenant of good faith and fair dealing, breach of contract, and violation of the Unruh Civil Rights Act. The act is a state law which prevents discrimination. Judge Trask ruled that the college offers an education which is deeply rooted in the Christian tradition and a religious education, therefore it is not a business establishment in violation of the Unruh Act.
Excerpt from the Domaine Javier lawsuit against the Christian college ruling:
“Every secular subject is expressly intertwined with a values-based Christian religious component, taught by a Christian. Whatever economic benefit the student hopes to gain from the CBU educational experience, CBU clearly intends to send forth an engineer, nurse, businessperson, or teacher who will be able to apply its religious values in the secular world.”
“For me, transgender is a person born in the wrong body. Like me, I think of myself as female, but I was born in the wrong body – physically incorrect,” Javier said. The transgender student was her high school’s valedictorian and was the homecoming queen at Riverside City College.
California Baptist University reportedly found out about the MTV True Life: I’m Passing As Someone I’m Not reality show revelation during a routine background check.
The university’s code of student conduct says:
“Refraining from sexual conduct outside of marriage, as defined in the Baptist Faith and Message, June 2000, Article XVIII: ‘The Family: Marriage is the uniting of one man and one woman in covenant commitment for a lifetime. It is God’s unique gift to reveal the union between Christ and His church and to provide for the man and the woman in marriage the framework for intimate companionship, the channel of sexual expression according to biblical standards, and the means for procreation of the human race.”
The judge did order California Baptist University to pay $4,000 in damages and Javier’s attorney fees over the claim of exclusion from public services. The transgender student will also be allowed to take online classes from the Christian college. Both Domaine Javier and the university are appealing the verdict.