A number of student groups at the University of Notre Dame issued a statement today repudiating the University’s selection of President Barack Obama to deliver its 2009 Commencement Address. The statement criticizes the president’s position on abortion, embryonic stem cell research, and other life issues, and chastises University administration for apparently looking over what they termed "fundamental moral principles."
The statement responds to Friday afternoon’s announcement of Obama as the speaker for the University’s 164th Commencement. Citing Catholic teaching on abortion, as well as the US Bishops’ 2004 document "Catholics in Political Life," which deals with issues surrounding a Catholic response to politicians who advocate abortion, the student statement expresses “deepest opposition” to the decision. "This is not a partisan issue; rather, it’s an issue of respect for human life, and our Catholic character. We want to emphasize that we are not attacking the office of the President, but taking issue with his moral stances. I think the statement makes it clear that the student body of Notre Dame is not unequivocally in favor of this decision,” said senior Emily Toates of Notre Dame Right to Life.
An Ad Hoc committee sponsored by a coalition of University-sponsored student groups has been organized to lead student response.
The Groups include:
Notre Dame Right to Life
The Irish Rover Student Newspaper
Notre Dame College Republicans
The University of Notre Dame Anscombe Society
Notre Dame Identity Project
Militia of the Immaculata
Children of Mary
Orestes Brownson Council
Notre Dame Law School Right to Life
Notre Dame Law
St Thomas More Society
The Federalist Society at Notre Dame Law School
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