In Marquette’s latest attempt at damage control regarding the McAdam’s fiasco, there are many points worthy of address. Dr. McAdams appears to have already done so quite readily. But one of the FAQs of particular interest to the Louis Joliet Society was this:“Is this an issue related to Marquette’s Catholic identity? We have taken the position we have because of our Catholic identity and our values. This issue is about conduct and standing up for a student who was publicly shamed by a professor. U.S. Catholic magazine shared this perspective. Across campus, you can find Marquette’s Catholic identity flourishing.

Some thoughts:

  1. Marquette continues to insist that its myopic justification for its action against Dr. McAdams – “standing up for a student” – is the only valid aspect of this entire case. There are many facets to this case worthy of serious consideration regardless of one’s religious or political perspective, including:
    1. The “student” was acting in the role of professor when shutting down legitimate inquiry in the classroom.
    2. The undergraduate student at the center of the controversy did not go straight to Dr. McAdams after the incident but to the College of Arts & Sciences and the Philosophy Department first where he was himself treated quite poorly and secretly recorded by a Marquette philosophy professor. He has since been ignored by the university, receiving no information, counsel, instruction, encouragement or direction and continues to live in relative secret for fear of repercussion from the university and his peers. Neither he nor Dr. McAdams anticipated that this would be his experience.
    3. Dr. McAdams’ objective in blogging about this incident was not to “publicly shame” an individual or “gleeful sabotage and destruction” but to directly address the larger and very serious issue of political correctness usurping the pursuit of truth in American college classrooms. This problem extends far beyond Marquette and should be of grave concern to all of us.
    4. To ignore all of the above is to misrepresent the reality of the situation i.e. to bear false witness – NOT a Catholic value.
  2. A hastily assembled blog post on the website of a magazine called “U.S. Catholic” is not likely to persuade skeptics that there is anything “Catholic” in Marquette’s decision- making in this case, particularly given the reams of analysis and commentary to the contrary, much of it from weighty Catholic/Christian publications as well. (For starters, see here, here, here, here, here and here.)
  3. To claim that Marquette’s Catholic identity is “flourishing” is an open joke among serious Catholics across the United States. Indeed, there are good things happening on campus as the “40 Ways to Reignite Your Faith” post points out. One could certainly argue, however, that these practices ought to be standard at any institution that chooses to distinguish itself as “Catholic.” The article may also have been put together as a public relations salve to appease the rising voice of concerned Catholics from within the university. Regardless, we applaud and encourage all that is good and Catholic at Marquette. But flourishing? Sadly, the only thing that appears to be “flourishing” at Marquette is decidedly anti-Catholic. We submit:

And that was all just THIS year. Here’s our 2014-2015 report.

The anti-Catholic, anti-family, anti-life agenda is flourishing at Marquette. Catholic identity is not. Rather than repeatedly congratulate itself in straw man arguments about Dr. John McAdams, we ask the University to consider what it is doing to souls, minds and lives – on and off campus – by its actions.