Tag: Notre Dame

Sanctimony Incarnate: Glendon Declines Notre Dame’s Laetare Medal

The University of Notre Dame’s Observer has the news:

Mary Ann Glendon declined acceptance of the University’s Laetare Medal in a letter to University President Fr. John Jenkins Monday, saying she was “dismayed” upon hearing Notre Dame is conferring an honorary degree upon President Barack Obama.

Her decision marks the first time the award has been accepted and then declined, according to Julie Flory, a University spokesperson.

In the letter, which was printed on “First Things,” an online journal about religion, culture and public life, Glendon said she was “profoundly moved” when she was selected to receive the Laetare Medal.

This is sanctimony incarnate.  Where were all of these pious Catholics when Torturer-in-Chief George W. Bush was awarded an honorary degree from the University of Notre Dame,  George W. Bush who started a war for oil, George W. Bush who is responsible for the deaths of hundreds of thousands of innocent Iraqis?

I’ll tell you where they were: these “Drill-Baby-Drill” Catholics were cheering when Bush came to Notre Dame.

As a Catholic and an alumnus of the University of Notre Dame, I offer three cheers again for Fr. Dan Jenky.  The Faculty Senate at Notre Dame supports Jenkins. The Notre Dame faculty has traditionally stood on the side of common sense, long ago expressing support for ND’s gay and lesbian students.

The Observer editors also blew it in the lead headline for this story: “Former U.S. Ambassador to Vatican ‘dismayed’ that Notre Dame will honor pro-abortion Obama.”

Nowhere does the story reference Glendon referring to President Obama as “pro-abortion.”  She may have said so in her letter to Jenky, but this is not a part of the story.

Here’s a wake-up call to the right wing: President Obama is not pro-abortion.  He’s pro-choice, a political position many believe is the best avenue to bring down the abortion numbers.  I have yet to meet the politician, pro-life, pro-choice, or moderate, who is pro-abortion.  No one wants to see more abortions.  No one wants to see a woman in the position where she even considers abortion, or feels compelled to get an abortion.

I’ll pray for Ms. Glendon, but make no mistake: this is pure, old-fashioned political grandstanding, a ploy of movement conservatives.

Maybe Glendon just wants to run for office.

Media Whores Randall Terry, Fred Phelps Coming to Notre Dame

Cheer, cheer for old Notre Dame!

Notre Dame President Fr. Dan Jenky will not rescind the university’s invitation to invite President Barack Obama to give the 2009 Commencement address at Notre Dame and receive an honorary Doctor of Laws degree.  Jenky is right to stand by his invitation.

The invitation has drawn the attention of two media whores: radical pro-life activist Randall Terry and radical closeted anti-gay activist Fred Phelps.

Randall Terry respects life so much that he once arranged to have a dead fetus sent to Bill Clinton at the 1992 Democratic National Convention.  No word on where or how he procured the fetus.

Terry tells The Observer that his movement had, regretfully, fallen out of the spotlight, and needed a boost.  He said he first heard the news that Obama was going to Notre Dame last month:

“And when we came back, and I followed the news of President Obama’s invitation, a light went off in my head, that, that’s the line,” Terry said. It was the “golden opportunity,” as he called it, for the pro-life movement.

So Terry packed his bags and moved himself and his family – his wife and four children – to South Bend just a week after the announcement was made. And he’s staying, he said, until the Commencement ceremonies on May 17.

“We’ve already got over 20 local volunteers, within the next 10 days we will have six full time staff on the ground. Many local alumni are bending over backward to help us because of their outrage at this,” Terry said.

Terry has already held press conferences at ND.

Members of Fred Phelps’ Westboro Baptist Church have also announced their intention to picket the Notre Dame Commencement.  The group was in Pittsburgh today picketing the funerals of the three police officers shot and killed last week.

I won’t link to Phelps’ Web site — don’t care to contribute to his Google page rank.  But the site does indicate that Fred and his group will picket at ND.  Their rationale?

Obama Hates you, take U 2 Hell! E Angela Blvd & N Notre Dame Ave How appropriate that the biggest pedophile mill in the whole entire world would have Beast Obama speaking at their 2009 Commencement.

And it goes on from there.

Terry has pledged to “make a circus” of the Commencement.  Well, the stage is set.  Phelps and Terry will have to compete for the spotlight.

Who will win?

Time to call out the angels.

Three Cheers as Old Notre Dame Invites Obama

As an alumnus of the University of Notre Dame, I was very pleased to hear that the University has invited President Barack Obama to deliver the 2009 Commencement Address.  I was in the room in 1985 when then-Gov. Mario Cuomo spoke at Washington Hall, presenting his views on abortion.   I still have my copy of his embargoed talk.

I applauded the University then, and I applaud them now as they invite the President to address the graduates.

Some Catholic groups are not so happy.  From The Observer online:

Several religious and pro-life groups nationwide are expressing outrage and threatening to protest in South Bend after the University announced President Barack Obama will deliver the 2009 Commencement address at Notre Dame’s graduation ceremony May 17.

Assistant Vice President for News and Information Dennis Brown told The Observer a rumor that University switchboards were overwhelmed with callers and had to be shut down Friday night is false – a claim made by a March 20 article on pewsitter.com.

Although many outside groups are protesting University President Fr. John Jenkins’ decision, The Observer reported in an Oct. 8, 2008 article that Obama led the student body with 52.6 percent of the vote in a mock election held by student government, in which 2,692 undergraduates and graduate students voted.

Further along in the article, we read, “A representative in the office of Cardinal Francis George, president of the USCCB, said Cardinal George declined to comment on the issue because Notre Dame is out of the organization’s jurisdiction.”

I’m sure the Bishop John D’Arcy of the Fort Wayne-South Bend diocese will weigh in.  He’s a frequent critic of the University.  But the University is doing the right thing.

I first met President Obama when he was running for the United States Senate, and was immediately convinced that he is a man of outstanding character and intellect.  I consider him a man of tremendous compassion.

I’m very proud of my Alma Mater today.  Three Cheers for Old Notre Dame!