President Barack Obama prepares to speak at and receive an honorary doctorate at Notre Dame's commencement this weekend on the heels of a new Gallop Poll that shows a majority of Americans consider themselves pro-life. His appearance flaunts his abortion-on-demand ideology at a Catholic university in contravention of Church teaching (see LifeSiteNews.com), and against the urging of 76 bishops, (including, interestingly, Bishop of Arlington Paul Loverde, but not Bishop of Richmond Francis DeLorenzo), as well as more than 360,000 Catholics who have signed a petition. The decision to honor him, despite his pro-abortion-on-demand fanaticism, provoked outrage at the Vatican (CardinalNewmanSociety.org). It also prompted Mary Ann Glendon, a Harvard professor and former U.S. Ambassador to the Vatican, to decline the event, where she was to receive the highest honor for a Catholic lay person, the Laetare Medal (Boston.com). (Not only was she disappointed in the decision to honor him, she was disturbed that Notre Dame issued talking points that, in effect, used her as an apologist for his appearance.)
The angry left, of course, is typically twisting the truth and topic in order to demonize traditional Catholics and all pro-lifers. They say those protesting the president's attendance at Note Dame want to stifle opposing opinions, and worse, stifle them where all points of view are welcome. It's the left's standard operating procedure — not only twist your words and reasoning, but change the entire premise of the debate in order to make opponents look foolish.
But free speech and opposing views are not the point. The point is honoring someone who so violently opposes authoritative Church teaching, a teaching Notre Dame is sworn to uphold. Let him speak all he wants, but Notre Dame has no reason to honor him with the prestige of an honorary doctorate, which gives its imprimatur to his point of view.
Aside from the abortion issue, what has he done in 100-plus days to merit an honorary doctorate from such a prestigious school? By his own admission, nothing! He spoke at Arizona State University's commencement Wednesday, but university officials there previously stated ASU would not confer upon him such an honor because he had not done enough to merit it.
"But more than that I come to embrace the notion that I haven't done enough in my life. I heartily concur. I come to affirm that one's title, even a title like 'president of the United States,' says very little about how well one's life has been led."
Still, Notre Dame persists and, despite his seeming humility, there is no doubt the pro-abortion-on-demand president relishes the acclaim the honor will accrue to his image as well as a smug "in-your-face" to pro-lifers. Additionally, Catholic St. Joseph University in Philadelphia is honoring pro-abortion Chris Mathews (Philadelphia Inquirer), as did Georgetown a few weeks ago, with Vice President Bishop Biden.
While all of this proves that political expediency over principle isn't limited to individuals, but touches "revered" institutions as well, here is something for Mr. President to look at and ponder as he takes advantage of the Catholic Church this weekend. It a reprise of a paid commercial NBC refused accept for the Super Bowl. It is from CatholicVote.org.