Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Georgetown University’s Newspaper of Record since 1920

The Hoya

Catholicism Shouldn’t Impede Opportunity

TO THE EDITOR:

Contrary to what Stephen Kenny argued in “Law Students Not Entitled To Funding for Abortion Internships” (THE HOYA, Oct. 16, 2007, A3), I must disagree that Georgetown’s Catholic identity obligates it to deny funding for internships at Planned Parenthood. Although Georgetown has a “commitment to human rights,” as Kenny correctly points out, it also prides itself on “contemplation in action,” one of Georgetown’s Jesuit values. Georgetown, obviously, has not “sought, found and defended” the truth of “protection of the unborn,” as evidenced by the Law Center’s decision to provide funding for internships at places that support abortion rights such as Planned Parenthood. It is true that as a Catholic university Georgetown has ties to the Catholic Church, but in no way does that mean Georgetown should shove the opinion of the Church down its students’ throats.

This practice of respecting different beliefs is what allows the university to be a diverse place, religiously and otherwise. If a law student chooses to work at Planned Parenthood, is Georgetown really in a position to deny his wishes because the Catholic Church as an institution disapproves of abortion? I know many Catholics who attend church every Sunday but still support abortion rights. uch in the same way, Georgetown allowing students to choose where to intern does not compromise its commitment to its Catholic identity, but rather upholds the value of “contemplation in action.”

If a student wants to work – and learn – at Planned Parenthood, why not? Regardless of whether or not Georgetown is a Catholic university, it is first and foremost a university committed to learning and to education of the whole person. If some students do not share in all of the values of the Catholic Church, as many non-Catholic students – or even students who partake in pre-marital sex, same-sex relationships and drunken weekends – do not, then Georgetown should be prepared to allow them to explore learning options in the way they see fit.

Anna Gallo (COL ’11)

Oct. 17, 2007

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