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OU President David Boren, university leaders denounce regent's comments on homosexuality

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Kirk Humphreys

OU President David Boren released an updated statement Dec. 11 in response to comments from OU regent Kirk Humphreys comparing homosexuality to pedophilia.

Humphreys, in a Dec. 10 appearance on KFOR's Flashpoint, said "if (homosexuality) is OK, then it’s OK for everybody and quite frankly it’s OK for men to sleep with little boys if it’s OK.” Boren's response distanced his own views and those of the university from those Humphreys expressed.

“Regent Humphreys was speaking as an individual and not on behalf of the university or me," Boren said in the statement. "I do not share his views on this matter.

"The university strongly reaffirms and takes great pride in its commitment to a welcoming, diverse and inclusive community which respects people of all backgrounds. We value and respect all members of our university family.”

Jabar Shumate, Vice President for the University Community, also shared Boren's statement via Twitter. 

Other leaders in the OU community have taken to social media to support OU's LGBTQ community while condemning Humphreys' comments. College of International Studies Dean Suzette Grillot called Humphreys' remarks "entirely unacceptable" in a Dec. 10 tweet.

OU Student Government Association president J.D. Baker also responded to Humphreys' statements Dec. 10, calling the regent's remarks "ignorant" and asking if OU will "be able to 'Live On' with a leader who possesses such insolent ideas?"

OU's Gender and Equality Center director Kathy Fahl released a statement reaffirming its commitment to creating a university atmosphere where all students can thrive. 

"To a community who consistently faces dehumanizing, marginalizing, and condemning viewpoints and actions, let us assure you, you are valued, wanted and advocated for here," Fahl said in the statement. "The untenable comments of one are not representative of the values of the larger OU community." 

The OU LGBTQ alumni society president and founder, Joe Sangirardi, has issued a statement on behalf of the organization calling for Humphreys' resignation at the Board of Regents meeting scheduled for 3:30 p.m. Dec. 12. 

"(Humphreys) demeaned OU staff, students, faculty, and alumni in the most un-Oklahoman way possible," Sangirardi said in the statement. "These ignorant comments are unacceptable from a member of the Board of Regents. Mr. Humphreys serves on the board to support OU's students, not attack them." 

Update: This article has been updated throughout the day to include statements from individuals and organizations as they are released. 

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