An openly gay student at Florida Atlantic University believes a campus librarian denied him the use of a laptop due to his sexuality.
Abdul Asquith attempted on Oct. 23 to check out a laptop at the Wimberly Library on the Boca Raton, Fla. campus. The laptop checkout requires valid university-issued identification, but when Asquith showed his FAU ID, the librarian refused him.
Asquith said the librarian looked at the ID and remarked, “You sound, look and act like a girl and in this ID is a man, therefore I’m not giving you a laptop.”
Asquith was “appalled,” “embarrassed” and “distraught,” he said. He was finally able to obtain a laptop after speaking with several librarians.
“Because he acts a certain way, he can’t possibly be this? It shouldn’t even be like that,” Samantha Lemessy, who witnessed the incident, told WPTV.
“People need to start speaking out and addressing this every time this happens,” Asquit added.
FAU spokesperson Lisa Metcalf confirmed in a statement to The Huffington Post Monday that the student was initially denied his request.
“The situation was quickly corrected and an FAU administrator issued an immediate in-person apology,” Metcalf said. “The University takes allegations of discrimination seriously and continues to investigate the incident.”
For FAU, a public university in Florida, it adds to a growing pile of controversies over the past year.
Another FAU employee with unpopular views, tenured professor James Tracy, claimed the Sandy Hook Elementary massacre and the Boston Marathon bombings were likely staged.
An FAU professor also began receiving threats after a student took offense to a classexercise in the spring where pupils were asked to write “Jesus” on a piece of paper and step on it. And early in 2013, the university received heated backlash after agreeing to name their stadium after a controversial for-profit prison group. One student protester said the university’s president clipped them with her car at one demonstration in March. The deal was eventually scrapped and the president resigned.
Read: FAU Student Says He Was Denied A Laptop Because He’s Gay | HuffPost Books