10/4/20: My alma mater continues to disappoint me. In 2017, Mike Pence was ND’s commencement speaker, an immoral and arrogantly tone-deaf choice that hurt many Notre Dame students, faculty and alumni who were appalled by the domestic enemies who were advancing upon our democratic republic at the onset of Trump tragedy.
The school refused to give decent health care to the families and spouses of married students. This policy is a betrayal of the teachings of the Catholic Church.
ND’s law school is the home base of right wing and illegitimately appointed U.S. Supreme Court nominee, Amy Coney Barrett. Is Notre Dame committed to developing the talents of the facilitators of American oppression? https://richardsteventhomas.wordpress.com/2020/10/13/10-13-20-the-straight-a-student-and-the-puppet-show-poetry-amyconey-barrett/
The school’s President, Father John Jenkins, contracted COVID-19 by ignoring mask and social distancing protocols in order to make the scene at the super-spreader ceremony at the White House where Trump announced Barrett’s nomination to the Supreme Court. It is disgraceful that Jenkins has warmly associated himself with a criminal regime that continually assaults the heath, economic welfare and right of democratic self-determination of the American people.
Notre Dame was the first major university to announce its immoral intention to re-open for the Fall 2020 semester in the midst of our unmitigated pandemic. The decision has been an equally unmitigated disaster, an imposition on students, faculty, staff and the local South Bend community.
There is a smug self-satisfied culture of self-admiration for the school’s supposed goodness and moral certitude at Notre Dame that is wholly undeserved.
This is marketing masquerading as higher education and religious experience.
I am embarrassed by Notre Dame. It wasn’t this right wing when I attended the school.
Now the fundaments of the place are all wrong.
Follow the links to various blog segments below related to this de-evolution of Notre Dame.
Notre Dame was always a relatively conservative place — quite a bit more conservative than I personally ever was, and there was a certain straight- laced authoritarian type that existed, but not exclusively, on campus when I was there in the 1970s — but it was never not Catholic in its values, or un -American. It is both of those things now.
The school is too interested in money and ego, and is too insensitive to its alumni who don’t share the fascist views of the administration and rich benefactors.
Some may think that “fascist” is a hyperbolic word to use in this context and will accuse me of being “radical” or “socialist” (those who use this word often don’t know what it means — they conjure pictures of tinpot dictators when the people that they attack are thinking more about examples in the European Union, and the administrations of Lincoln, Grant and Franklin Roosevelt)) or some such nonsense. I don’t care. The radicals are the far right wingers who have taken control of Notre Dame.
A cavalier attitude toward human life for the worship of money, status and a feeling of superiority over people of imagined lesser statuses —- sounds pretty fascist to me. And sounds a lot like Notre Dame.
Notre Dame should re-visit the Church’s teachings about social and economic justice, the American Constitution and our American traditions of democratic inclusion.
Father Hesburgh must be rolling in his grave. He wasn’t exactly Che Guevara. He was a good Catholic and a patriotic American.
How sad that Notre Dame is not on the right side of things at this moment.
I cheer cheer for the values that made me want to attend the university — not mascots, logos, branding and real estate.
Copyright 2020 Richard Thomas
8/12/20: Dissent re: my Alma Mater Notre Dame’s Re-opening Collection #Poetry #essay #PoeticEssay
I am a Notre Dame alumnus morally opposed to Notre Dame’s re-opening. I’ve written a few segments about this and I share them here.
I’ll also include these admittedly harshly angry pieces from early 2017 (remember the common rage of those early days of the Trump disaster?), before re-opening was an issue, but addressing related problems.