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Smackdown, Phoenix style

Owing only to being otherwise ridiculously busy I haven’t yet had a chance to blog on the whole Notre Dame/Obama scandal yet.  Suffice it to say I’m disgusted but not surprised, and I’m not surprised at either the arguments used by Notre Dame President Fr. Jenkins nor his unwillingness to recognize the error of his ways.  The former are boilerplate excuses used in academia to excuse any of a litany of abuses under the sovereign (and thus super-Constitutional) right of educational institutions to do anything necessary in the name of “exploring the issues” or “engaging in conversation”.  The latter is what happens when you rise to the level of University President, particularly one with such a grand reputation as Notre Dame – you begin at some point to believe your own arguments and fail to see the ocean of reality surrounding the small island that is your campus.  I have spent enough years in academia both as a student and an employee to recognize these things with some ease.

Just every once in a while something will happen that actually gets through the densely packed polysyllabic layers of insulation in academia, and it’s usually utter simplicity that does it.  Quite simply, you can’t out-talk a talker or out-quibble an academic, but you can thwack them over the head with a pointy stick and stop them in their tracks.  The good Bishop of Phoenix, Bishop Thomas Olmsted has done just that in an email to Fr. Jenkins that is a pointed as it is brief and as stiff as it is armored with truth.  AmP has first coverage of the letter and, to put it plainly, not a word was spared.  Go there to read the rest, but let me only say that when a Bishop uses the words “public act of disobedience to the Bishops of the United States” and they’re directed at you, it would serve you well to pay close attention.  I only hope Fr. Jenkins doesn’t have any “helpful” staff screening his email, and pray with the Bishop that he realizes what a massive public scandal he has caused.

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