There is a lot of controversy recently about President Obama giving the commencement exercise at Notre Dame. Catholic Church officials, including the editor of the Catholic Herald, the official newspaper of the Milwaukee Archdiocese, have criticized this event. Here is a letter to the editor that my friend Joe had published last week in the Catholic Herald
Be Consistently Pro Life
A Letter to the Editor of the Catholic Herald. www.chnonline.org.
Your editorial criticizing Notre Dame’s decision allowing President Obama to speak at commencement is rife with hypocrisy. Your opposition is based on President Obama’s stand on abortion which is based on the law of the land.
However, Notre Dame, like Marquette University which, on its campus, host 14 schools in the region, is a major officer military training base. The curricula of schools of military science, are not subject to oversight by the university so the teaching of war and military values are often at odds or contrary to the teachings of the Catholic Church.
As our Holy Father has reminded us, respect for the dignity of human life does not end merely before or at birth. Jesus taught us to love our enemies not to kill them. As the US Catholic Bishops Conference states, we should not be one issue people but look at the whole moral spectrum of issues.
Why is it moral to allow the military to teach in our schools values contrary to the Catholic Faith but wrong for the President of the United States to speak at a commencement exercise?
Jesus had some strong words for hypocrites who say one thing but practice another. So if the Catholic Herald really respects life, why does it fail to take a position on teaching immoral values at our schools? Before you criticize Notre Dame or the President, look at yourself. Taking of human life outside of self- or other’s defense and teaching how to kill in our schools is wrong— be it aborting a fetus or killing others indiscriminately.
This response is not an anti-ROTC position. Rather the issue simply is that if we are truly pro-life we must be pro-life on a consistent basis … not just picking and choosing which Catholic moral teachings to believe and which to criticize.