Thursday, September 19, 2013

Seattle University To Host Angela Davis

A Catholic university in Washington has invited communist and abortion supporter Angela Davis to speak on campus, raising concerns among those who say her views are anathema to Catholic teaching. Davis will give a lecture on October 17th at Seattle University, a Jesuit institution. Her talk is sponsored by the Center for the Study of Justice in Society, and will ostensibly be about prison reform.
Davis is a controversial choice for a Catholic university, however. She is a former leader of the U.S. Communist Party, and ran for vice president twice in the 1980s on the Communist ticket. She holds socially liberal views at odds with Catholic teaching, including the view that abortion rights are a “fundamental prerequisite for the emancipation of women.”
These views should disqualify her from a speaking slot at a Catholic university, wrote James Bascom of TFP Student Action, a conservative education group. “It would be difficult to find a speaker who contradicts the teaching of the Catholic Church on more levels than Angela Davis,” he wrote in a blog post for TFP Action. “Stalin maybe?” Catholic institutions should recognize the death and destruction wrought by communism in the 20th century and decline to honor one of the ideology’s devotees with a guest lecture, wrote The College Fix. Seattle University did not respond to a request for comment.
Link (here) to The Daily Caller


Katy Anders said...

That's an interesting story.

I went to Catholic schools, and we had people with diverse philosophies and background speak. It's good for students to get that sort of variety in a setting where they can discuss ideas.

I never understand folks who believe we can live in a bubble.

Qualis Rex said...

To the poster above, given we currently live in the "information age" where anyone with access to an iPod/Pad (let alone a TV) can get "diverse philosophies and backgrounds", the only people who live in a bubble are those who choose to. One does not need to rely on a Catholic University to supply said diversity, which is readily available from countless sources at any given nano-second.

That being said, I also went to a Jesuit University, and it was just a given that the most radical, dissenting opinions available would find their way to a speaking engagement on campus. I don't think there are any envelopes left to push at Jesuit Universities; like Madonna (the performer) they simply have become too controversial for the sake of controversy to remain relevant.

Katy Anders said...

I'm not sure that "You can search the internet and find THAT" is the same as saying you can be exposed to or learn about something in the university setting.

If that were the case, then we could cancel college classes, church, and just about everything else entirely, reasoning that if it's on the net, then everyone already knows about it.

I agree with you, though, that much if not all of the shock value that sex, drugs, rock, and bad politics ever had is pretty well worn out at this point. If we're pushing envelopes, it's going to have to be to new places.

The Pope shocked some Catholics last week, so maybe that's a start.

TonyD said...

There is a potential benefit to having someone like Angela Davis speak.

The Jesuits might examine her ideas to help improve them. For example, why did Angela Davis say that the right to abortion is fundamental to feminism? Is it possible to achieve those ends, and much more, in a different way? As Catholics, we are allowed to think of changing society for the better. God transcends liberal and conservative, yet too many Catholics do not.

Our neighbors include people who are communist and pro-abortion. We can argue that those are not God's values, but such arguments make little sense if we understand the importance of "love your neighbor". And logic which puts "love of life" over love of our neighbors is flawed. Such logic is an intellectual flaw of the Church. It is appropriate to sacrifice personal values, Church values, and God's values in order to uphold "love your neighbor". Angela Davis represents a subset of our society - God would sacrifice His values to allow her to hold her values, and we too should be willing to sacrifice values. Ironically, that will allow us to create a society that more closely reflects God's real values - even if that society is Communist and pro-abortion.

We must get past liberal and conservative and move closer to God. Perhaps then more will be able to hear His voice. It is possible.

Qualis Rex said...

And I'm not sure a "University setting" is always the best lithmus test for learning. Some of the stupidest people I have ever come across were in said "University setting"... both students and faculty. And to look at the success of people such as Bill Gates, Larry Elison et al who did not finish or learn their craft "in a university setting" would prove my point. Your elitist and biased attitudes aside, I can assure you that learning-wise you CAN find anything you would in a University either a) on the internet or b) in a library (shocking, I know). But it does presuppose some self-control, personal ambition and drive. Maybe you needed that "University setting" to motivate you personally. But many do not. I didn't...but I graduated from University anyway, because that's what I was expected to do.