Catholic Gonzaga University Rejects Pro-Life Fliers
By Kathleen Gilbert
SPOKANE, Washington, November 24, 2008 (LifeSiteNews.com) - The student publication board at the Jesuit-run Gonzaga University has again rejected pro-life advertisements sponsored by the Human Life Alliance (HLA).
The advertisement insert, which would have been placed in the University’s newspaper, reveals at length the falsehoods of the "pro-choice" culture, and includes a condemnation of Planned Parenthood and the eugenic philosophy of founder Margaret Sanger. (To view or download the insert, go to: http://www.humanlife.org/wkbn.php)
Officials from "The Gonzaga Bulletin" rejected the inserts with the statement that, "There are articles in the insertion that cast a negative light on various organizations or individuals. While these statements may be true, we simply cannot insert them in our paper per our advertising policies."
Dale Goodwin, the Director of Public Relations at Gonzaga, told LifeSiteNews that the student publication board decision was based purely on their policy rejecting any advertising that attacks an individual or organization. Goodwin declined to comment whether the insert’s condemnation of Planned Parenthood was the issue.
Goodwin said that Gonzaga issued their own pro-life publication after turning down HLA’s earlier offers. He emphasized that Gonzaga, as a Catholic institution that supports the teachings of the Church, was not opposed to the pro-life message and would be posting on their website a document entitled "Standing for the Unborn" outlining Gonzaga’s support for the pro-life movement (http://www.gonzaga.edu).
Joe Langfeld of HLA, however, said he was "saddened" at the rejection, and suggested that the University’s reasons for the rejection don’t pass muster.
"Of course some statements in our publication are objectionable to ‘various organizations or individuals,’" said Langfeld. "The business of abortion is ugly and we think college and university students have a right to read the facts from someone other then abortion providers."
The Human Life Alliance is a non-profit organization dedicated to educating college students about the reality of abortion and the unborn child.
Joe Langfeld told LSN that the Alliance has had difficulty distributing their message at Gonzaga in the past, where their inserts had been rejected previously.
Langfeld says that after years of petitioning from HLA as well as pro-life Gonzaga students and parents, they learned that someone receiving the requests had disposed of them without passing them on to the administration.
"After that, we stepped up our efforts," said Langfeld. He also said that Gonzaga had attempted to negotiate the removal of some material from the inserts, an idea HLA rejected. If Gonzaga continues to decline the inserts, Langfeld said, HLA will encourage individuals on campus to distribute them among their peers.
Gonzaga states that its mission as a Catholic school is to "affirm the heritage which has developed through two thousand years of Christian living, theological reflection, and authentic interpretation," and, "As Jesuit, we are inspired by the vision of Christ at work in the world, transforming it by His love, and calling men and women to work with Him in loving service of the human community."
To contact Gonzaga University:
Fr. Robert J. Spitzer, S.J., president
502 East Boone Avenue
Spokane, WA 99258-0102
phone: (1-800) 986-9585