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Notre Dame student paper rejects professor's column on immorality of homosexual acts

March 03, 2010

The Observer, the student newspaper at the University of Notre Dame, has declined to print a column that defends Church teachings on homosexuality activity. The Observer turned down a column by Charles Rice, a longtime Notre Dame law professor who has provided the paper with a regular column since 1992. Editor Matt Gamber explained that the column was too long (although Rice's last three columns, all of which had appeared in print, were longer), and that the subject matter could best by handled by printing opposing views. Responding to the latter point, Rice pointed out that his column had merely restated the teachings of the Church. He added:

In a university that claims to be Catholic, I am not willing to restrict my presentation of Catholic teaching to a format that treats the authoritative teaching of the Church as merely one viewpoint or 'side' among many. If you require that future columns of mine on homosexuality comply with a format such as you propose, it will be inappropriate for me to continue writing the column for the Observer.

The coverage of the story on the Pewsitter site includes the full text of the column that Rice submitted to the Observer.


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  • Posted by: rpp - Mar. 03, 2010 10:21 PM ET USA

    Based on observed actions, Notre Dam University appears to be about as Catholic as Richard Dawkins.

  • Posted by: unum - Mar. 03, 2010 7:16 PM ET USA

    Are we to believe that Editor Matt Gamber is autonomous and that the Administration has no say in the matter? I know that Notre Dame isn't Catholic, but I didn't know it had last control of the school's activities.

  • Posted by: - Mar. 03, 2010 6:38 PM ET USA

    There was already an issue over some clearly offensive cartoons that the paper published. I saw them. They were extremely bad. Give that, I understand the sensitivity they show on anything homosexual related, even if the editor handled it unprofessionally. I am not saying he handled it correctly, but perhaps the online sensationalism and dog-piling is a bit overblown. Question for Catholic Culture - did you do the background on the cartoon before you published this?

  • Posted by: - Mar. 03, 2010 6:34 PM ET USA

    Defenders of Notre Dame will often point to Charles Rice and Ralph McInerny as examples of good men there. Well, with McInerny dead and Rice being treated like a poor relative, that's the end of that.

  • Posted by: williiam ronner - Mar. 03, 2010 5:43 PM ET USA

    You reap what you sow. Good job, Father Jenkins. If allowing the most pro abortion president to be honored at Notre Dame is not wrong, then nothing is wrong.

  • Posted by: Gil125 - Mar. 03, 2010 5:05 PM ET USA

    Just as a matter of curiosity, why do you cover news of Notre Dame University? I thought you covered only Catholic institutions.