Loyola University in Chicago has invited a pro-abortion rights speaker to be the keynote speaker at its January 21 celebration of the life of Martin Luther King Jr. The event is sponsored by Loyola’s Department of Student Diversity and Multicultural Affairs.
The journalist Touré, who goes by his first name alone, is co-host of The Cycle on MSNBC. He has been invited by the Jesuit institution to deliver a speech entitled “How Racism Functions Today.”
SUPPORT FOR ABORTION AT A CATHOLIC UNIVERSITY?
Loyola University administrators are now facing criticism from pro-life Catholics including Kimberly Scharfenberger. Writing for the Cardinal Newman Society, Scharfenberger reports that on the 40th anniversary of Roe v. Wade, Touré spoke publicly about his girlfriend’s abortion and how it had “saved his life.” According to Scharfenberger, Touré touted the importance of abortion rights on MSNBC’s The Cycle:
“I knew that pregnant woman and I were not going to be able to form a lasting family,” Touré reportedly remarked. “She decided it was best to have an abortion and days later she did, we did, and in some ways that choice saved my life.”
“I cannot imagine arguing against a woman’s right to control her body,” Touré continued. He even went on to “thank God and country” for abortion, which he claimed “was there to save [him] and keep [him] on a path toward building a strong family…”
In November 2012, before the presidential election, Touré brought on complaints from pro-lifers when he posted a tweet on Twitter encouraging young women to have abortions before the election, “in case the Republicans win.”
RACISM HAS ALSO BEEN AN ISSUE
This is not the only controversy to beset the liberal MSNBC host. The Daily Caller reported that during his college years at Emory University, Touré founded a militant anti-white student newspaper, The Fire This Time. According to The Daily Caller, the paper
“…lavished praise on famous anti-Semites, black supremacists, and conspiracy theorists whom Touré helped bring to campus. Before he became an intense-but-sardonic TV personality, Touré also decried “the suffocating white community” and defended a nationally famous fake hate crime.
In an interview with ‘The Daily Caller,’ Touré described the newspaper as “an important black voice on campus” and “a form of community building.”
‘The Fire This Time’ only solicited funds from blacks. “Kujichagulia means self-determination,” he wrote. “Economic kujichagulia is an essential part of any realistic program of African-American liberation. This is why we insist on being completely funded by African-Americans.”
As recently as 2014, Touré was accused of anti-Semitism when he suggested on The Cycle that Jewish survivors of the Holocaust benefited from “the power of whiteness.”
THE ROLE AND RESPONSIBILITY OF THE CATHOLIC UNIVERSITY
This was the theme of Pope John Paul II’s apostolic constitution Ex corde Ecclesiae (Born from the Heart of the Church). Ex corde laid out the “honor and responsibility of a Catholic University to consecrate itself without reserve to the cause of truth.”
Ex corde shows how universities can remain a faithful Catholic institution, while pursuing academic excellence. Among the requirements of Ex corde is that “any official action or commitment of the university is to be in accord with its Catholic identity.”
And Loyola University Chicago seems, according to its website, to understand that precious responsibility. It says,
“As a Jesuit Catholic university, we are stewards of our Catholic tradition and our unique Ignatian heritage. Our mission defines our roots, our ways of proceeding and the outcomes we strive to achieve….”
So why, then, is a pro-abortion speaker given a voice on this Catholic campus?