MANASSAS, VA June 2, 2005 (LifeSiteNews.com) - A special research report from the Cardinal Newman Society (CNS) published in the June issue of Crisis magazine documents the activities of 15 professors at leading Catholic universities who have publicly rejected Vatican teaching on euthanasia and assisted suicide. Several actively paved the way to Terri Schiavo’s death by starvation, and others serve on the boards of national pro-assisted suicide lobbies.

“The danger is obvious: If the Church is going to face up to a growing movement for euthanasia and assisted suicide in the United States, Catholic universities must help in that important battle,” writes CNS president Patrick J. Reilly in Crisis.“Harboring the enemy and training new spokesmen for the culture of death is not the way to do it.”
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  The Cardinal Newman Society is a national organization dedicated to the renewal of Catholic identity at America’s 219 Catholic colleges and universities. CNS recently captured national attention when its protest of pro-abortion and otherwise inappropriate commencement speakers and honorees at 20 Catholic colleges forced Marymount Manhattan College to formally declare itself nonsectarian after inviting 2008 presidential contender Sen. Hillary Clinton to speak and receive an honorary degree, and prompted Baltimore’s Cardinal William Keeler to publicly boycott Loyola College’s commencement ceremony featuring another presidential hopeful, former New York City mayor Rudolph Giuliani.
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  The report published in Crisis identifies several Catholic university professors who helped convince Florida and federal courts that removing Terri Schiavo’s feeding tube was acceptable and consistent with Catholic teaching-even while the VaticanÂcondemnedÂitÂas euthanasia. Several professors went to the airwaves and major newspapers to publicly undermine Pope John Paul II’s clear statements on the moral obligation to feed and hydrate even the most severely injured patients. Six professors signed an amicus brief urging the Florida Supreme Court to overturn “Terri’s Law,” a measure passed by the state legislature to empower Gov. Jeb Bush to save Schiavo’s life.
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  Professors identified in the report include:
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·ÂÂCharles Baron of the Boston College Law School, who has testified before Congress and Britain’s House of Lords on legalizing physician-assisted suicide and serves on the board of directors of the Death With Dignity National Center.
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·ÂÂCarol Bayley, adjunct professor of nursing at the University of San Francisco and vice president of a large Catholic healthcare system in the western U.S., who signed a brief in the Schiavo case rejecting Vatican teaching soon after announcing that Catholic Healthcare West would “take the Pope’s statements very seriously.”
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·ÂÂÂTom Beauchamp, senior research scholar at Georgetown University’s Kennedy Institute of Ethics, who serves on the board of directors of the Compassion in Dying Federation.
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·ÂÂÂMaxwell Gregg Bloche of the Georgetown University Law Center, who signed an amicus court brief arguing that doctors’ actions protected by Oregon’s assisted-suicide law constitute “sound and ethical medical practices.”
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·ÂÂRobert Free of the Seattle University Law School, who has signed court briefs arguing for assisted suicide and has served as an advisor to Compassion in Dying of Washington.
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·ÂÂHoward Freed of the Georgetown University School of Medicine, who signed a court brief arguing that former U.S. Attorney General John Ashcroft’s attempts to interfere with Oregon’s assisted-suicide law diminished “physicians’ ability to care for terminally ill patients nationwide.”
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·Â Lawrence Gostin of the Georgetown University Law Center, who has served as the health law and ethics editor of the influential Journal of the American Medical Association and on the executive committee of the ACLU board of directors, has signed court briefs supporting legalized assisted suicide in Oregon.
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·ÂÂMilton Heifetz of the Boston College Law School, whose book The Right to Die advocates legalizing assisted suicide and even entertains the possibility of euthanasia for severely retarded people and newborns with severe medical problems.
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·ÂÂMarquette University theology professor and former Jesuit priest Daniel Maguire, who has accused Pope John Paul II and Vatican officials of a “fetishism of life signs,” using any sign of life as a justification for delaying death.
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·ÂÂRev. Richard McBrien, theology professor at the University of Notre Dame, who proclaimed to Bill O’Reilly of FOX News that the removal of Schiavo’s feeding tube was “the removal of an extraordinary means of sustaining life,” publicly contradicting Vatican teaching and presenting his own view as the Church’s teaching.
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·ÂÂCurtis Naser, philosophy professor at Fairfield University, who is touted by Fairfield as an expert in biomedical ethics and “end of life decisions” despite his opposition to New York and Washington state bans on physician-assisted suicide.
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·ÂÂAttorney Lawrence Nelson, who despite his unsuccessful court battle in California to euthanize a disabled but not vegetative man and his writings arguing for embryonic stem cell research, is a scholar at Santa Clara University’s Markkula Center for Applied Ethics and even has received a grant from the university “to explore the place of philosophical ethics in Jesuit higher education and mission.”
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·ÂÂRev. Kevin O’Rourke, O.P., ethics professor at the Loyola University of Chicago Medical School, who said it was “blasphemy” to keep people like Schiavo alive “as if you were doing them a favor.” O’Rourke drafted a statement critical of Vatican teaching on euthanasia that was circulated at a Catholic Health Association meeting in March.
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·ÂÂRev. John Paris, S.J., bioethics and theology professor at Boston College, who ridiculed Terri Schiavo’s family for their ties to “the radical, antiabortion, right-to-life Christian right” and dismissed the Pope’s statements on feeding tubes as “mischief-making at the Vatican.”
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·ÂÂJames Walter, chairman of the Bioethics Institute at Loyola Marymount University, did not personally evaluate Schiavo yet insisted that “any chance of self-awareness is not going to happen” and expressed certainty that Schiavo would not suffer from the removal of her feeding tube.

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