Finally, if Professor Rice decides to write another column opposing abortion, will the Observer withhold its publication until someone submits a pro-abortion column?
The answers to my four hypothetical questions follow: No, no, no, and no.
And the reason for the pattern is simple: The Observer carves out a special “opposing viewpoint” exception for homosexuality because the Observer is intensely homophobic.
And the reason for the intense homophobia manifested by Matt Gamber and the Observer is also simple: Homosexuals are less tolerant of criticism than any other portion of the American population, including feminists and Muslims.
But the consequences of homosexual intolerance are not as simple. They are twofold: 1) Homosexual intolerance tends to result in the suppression of contrary views, and 2) Such intolerance tends to make others fearful of talking to homosexuals. In other words, homosexual intolerance actually promotes homophobia.
The present situation at Notre Dame is damaging to both sides of the debate. The Observer should allow Professor Rice to present his views (as unthinkable as it may seem to present the views of the Catholic Church at a Catholic university). Then, they may decide whether the views of the opposition warrant publication.
I believe the other side should be presented after Professor Rice’s column is printed if someone at Notre Dame actually thinks the Holy Bible is unclear on the issue. If they do, the Notre Dame community will wind up with a greater appreciation of the truth via its juxtaposition with falsity.
But the prior restraint of the views of Professor Rice is not defensible. While not a technical violation of the First Amendment – Notre Dame is a private school - it is an assault on both Catholicism and common sense. And it leaves many Catholics wondering whether there is any safe haven in this land that once placed religious liberty above political correctness.
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