Villanova University Blocks Student Chapter of Pro-Abortion ACLU

State   |   Steven Ertelt   |   Nov 8, 2004   |   9:00AM   |   WASHINGTON, DC

Villanova University Blocks Student Chapter of Pro-Abortion ACLU Email this article
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by Maria Vitale Gallagher Editor
November 8, 2004

Washington, DC ( — A Catholic university in Pennsylvania has blocked students from forming a chapter of the pro-abortion American Civil Liberties Union on campus.

Villanova’s Director of Student Development, Tom Mogan, told the student newspaper, the Villanovan, "It’s problematic to have a group affiliated with a national organization that takes positions against Catholic teachings."

"The ACLU does a lot of things that are consistent with the mission, but there are some of their issues that are in conflict with the Catholic teaching," Mogan added referring to abortion.

Instead, Villanova will allow the students to form their own unaffiliated group called the Villanova Civil Liberties Association.

The Catholic college is not the only one to ban pro-abortion groups from campus.

Last year, Catholic University of America blocked the formation of a campus chapter of the NAACP, which has also adopted a pro-abortion stand.

However, last month the university backtracked, saying it would permit a student NAACP chapter if students pledged the group would not advocate legal abortion.

Also, the NAACP says it has rescinded the pro-abortion position its board of directors approved earlier this year.

In September, Villanova made headlines by inviting the pro-abortion Father Robert Drinan to speak on campus. Drinan, a former Democratic congressman, “bears heavy responsibility for making the Democratic Party the party of abortion,” according to Catholic historian James Hitchcock.

However, there have been moves on campus to ensure that the university is not linked with pro-abortion activists and groups lobbying to keep abortion legal.

Last year, the dean of the Villanova University School of Law announced that students competing for research fellowships and summer internships would not be permitted to work on pro-abortion issues or for groups supporting abortion.

“A Villanova program obviously cannot be associated with advocacy for abortion rights,” law school dean Mark Sargent said last year.

“Though many individual Catholics believe that there should be some legal right to abortion, the church’s teaching on the topic is fundamental and unambiguous," Sargent added.

"We have no choice but to ask program fellows working in our name to agree not to engage in such advocacy. They are, of course, free to take jobs outside the program doing whatever they want. But as program fellows they represent us, and they cannot represent us in advocacy for abortion rights," Sargent explained.

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