Friday, January 25, 2008

Let's See How This Plays Out

Rick Majerus, the men's basketball coach for the University of St. Louis, told a reporter at a recent Hillary Clinton rally that he supports abortion and embryonic stem cell research. Upon receiving this news, St. Louis Archbishop Raymond Burke called on SLU, a nominally Catholic school, to discipline Majerus. The school hemmed and hawed its way out of doing so, but unfortunately for them the incident has now taken on a life of its own.

ESPN had a front-page article on the situation, and CBS Sports also got in on the act (both support him in the name of free speech). Pundits have weighed in from both sides of the debate, including Fr. Tom Euteneuer, the president of Human Life International, who went so far as to say that Majerus "should be excommunicated along with all the Jesuits who 'educated' him."

The Majerus incident is no different from scandals that occur time after time at Catholic schools, our Lady's University included. We've seen school figures publicly endorse positions incompatible with the Catholic faith many times, and we've tried to chronicle them in the Rover.

But none of those events were instigated by anyone nearly as famous as Majerus. Archbishop Burke's condemnation seems to have reached a tipping point in the media -- and particularly the sports media -- and thus is (or should be) pressuring SLU with more force than they've faced with a rogue professor or administrator. This time, they can't make the situation go away quietly.

There's a lot more to this story, including background on Majerus, SLU, and Burke, but I'll refrain from going into any discussion of what we can draw from this episode. For now, watch closely as the events unfold, and when the dust settles we'll figure out what happened.

1 comment:

Brandon said...

Coach Majerus is well within his right to hold political views, but he should know that sports figures are best served and most loved by silence on such issues. See: Tiger Woods, Michael Jordan