Star Parker

In a letter to the 2009 graduating class of Notre Dame, Father John Jenkins, the university's president, explains why he is "proud" to have President Barack Obama speak and be honored at his university.

Let's put aside momentarily the appropriateness of a Catholic university honoring a man who aggressively supports legal abortion, including partial birth abortion, and has supported a procedure that permits the destruction of a living child after birth.

Someone who says that the question regarding the rights of the unborn is "above my pay grade."

And consider that Father Jenkins says that, aside from honoring the nation's president, the university must be "a crossroads through which pass people of many different perspectives, backgrounds, faiths, and cultures." In other words, it must entertain diversity of opinion.

I maintain an active speaking tour at universities across this country. Over the years, I have spoken at over 180 universities of all kinds. And one thing I can report is that American universities are uniformly liberal.

The faculties are liberal and the student bodies are liberal. Diversity and dialogue at American universities means inviting a conservative to speak.

When Barack Obama speaks at an American university, he does not provide a different perspective. He preaches to the liberal choir. And I am afraid that most of today's Catholic universities are no exception.

Last year Students for Human Life invited me to speak at their Catholic school, the University of St Thomas in St Paul, Minn. The group's request for permission for me to speak on campus was rejected. When pressed for an explanation, university staff said they were unhappy with a talk that Ann Coulter had given the year before.

But earlier in the year, this same Catholic university hosted liberal Al Franken and a transgender activist named Debra Davis.

Barack Obama's strongest support is among voters ages 18-29. He beat John McCain by 34 points in this group, 66 percent to 32 percent.

Father Jenkins' argument that Obama brings a different perspective to the Notre Dame student body is dubious. Far more likely, the majority of the audience voted for him.

Catholic views on abortion and the appropriateness of Obama speaking at Notre Dame correlate with whether we are talking about committed church going Catholics or not.


Star Parker

Star Parker is founder and president of CURE, the Center for Urban Renewal and Education, a 501c3 think tank which explores and promotes market based public policy to fight poverty, as well as author of the newly revised Uncle Sam's Plantation: How Big Government Enslaves America's Poor and What We Can do About It.