I meant to comment on this a few days ago. Holy Cross College in Worcester, Mass. canceled a speech they had scheduled for Frances Kissling of the group “Catholics” For a Free Choice. CFFC is a small organization (no real members, only a small paid staff) that is almost entirely supported by big foundations whose goal is to blunt the Church’s strong pro-life voice internationally. Such groups see the rising population in the Third World versus the declining population in the First World as a threat to their own security. So Kissling goes out and smears the Church, including trying to have the Holy See’s status at the UN revoked, blaming bishops for millions of AIDS death because the Church teaches contracepted and extramarital sex are immoral, and charging the Church with trafficking in child sex because of the Scandal. In a rare act of backbone, the USCCB even publicly stated that CFFC is not entitled to use the name “Catholic.”
So with all this in mind, the women’s studies department at Holy Cross invited Kissling to speak at the Catholic college. Rather than forbidding the speech, the college president just sent a letter to the department saying it exercised “poor judgment.” The modern Inquisition: a severe tongue-lashing. The women’s studies professors revoked the invitation—not because they realized that inviting Kissling was a slap in the face to authentic Catholic teaching and Catholics everywhere, but because they were afraid right-thinking alumni would retaliate against the department. Maybe that should still happen, but I don’t expect it will happen.
“[Father Michael] McFarland said he supported free speech and ‘strong feminist positions’ at Holy Cross, but said the women’s studies faculty should have been more careful in its choice of speakers.” Walter Mitty, call your office.