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Law, culture, and Catholicism...up in smoke!

Sunday, December 13, 2009

Golisano Responds: "I Am Pro-Life"

If you recall, there was some concern (best expressed by the Cardinal Newman Society) as to whether AMU had honored a pro-choice public figure when it announced that it would be naming its athletic center after New York businessman Tom Golisano.

Golisano has issued a public letter in which he states: "I am pro-life now and have been always pro-life. I believe a woman's 'right to choose' ends when sexual activity results in pregnancy. From that moment, a woman has a fiduciary responsibility to the child in her womb. Hence, I do not believe that a woman should have a right to an abortion."

In his letter, Golisano also clarifies that when he was running for NY Governor in 1994, he was misquoted on his abortion stance. He says that his position at the time was that if elected, he would enforce the law of New York (including abortion) whether he agreed with it or not. On this point, I can't fault Golisano, as he had the correct stance: since he was running for an executive office, it is correct to say that one will enforce the law as it is, even if there are certain portions of the law one disagrees with. (If he was running for legislative office, that would be a different story.)

The Cardinal Newman Society President Patrick J. Reilly has responded to the Golisano letter: "Having great hope for the future of Ave Maria University and sharing its commitment to faithful Catholic education, I am relieved and grateful that Mr. Golisano has publicly opposed legalized abortion. This is the best possible outcome of a situation that helps demonstrate the importance of Catholic institutions refusing honors for public opponents of fundamental Catholic teachings and avoiding even the appearance of compromising Catholic identity."

I also applaud Mr. Golisano for explicitly stating his current position on pro-life matters. Unfortunately, his statement would have been even better if he had addressed his past donations to candidates and organizations with questionable positions on abortion.