Dear Declan Leary

Bridget Branning, Alumna

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I write this as an alumna that hopes to see John Carroll succeed: I am mortified by the way in which you espouse hatred on campus under the guise of being a “true” Catholic. “True” Catholicism is not synonymous with hegemonic patriarchy, though I can forgive you for that confusion given the history of the church. As an alumna – and a Catholic one at that – I am deeply concerned that you believe that your freedom of speech protects you in the inciting of hatred. Your speech should never serve to attack those that are quantifiably more vulnerable than you. Queer Carroll students already feel marginalized on campus without you actively attacking their very existence and expression of self.
I can see where your confusion may lie. How dare they take up space for themselves? How dare they have one event a year for themselves that doesn’t cater to you? I can understand how it may be confusing for you to experience something that wasn’t made to confirm your world view, given that most things in your life have likely been tailored to your tastes. However, allowing others to have a space to experience some semblance of acceptance does not intrude on the ways in which you experience acceptance in every public space. What does this hatred that you write do to serve others? You are clearly unaware of your privilege and I ask you to critically analyze the ways in which you hold views that only benefit yourself and those like you. What may it look like to consider the livelihoods of others? I mean this sincerely, how do your views serve to shine light and love on others? Is that not what Jesus taught you?
While you may think your articles are stating some radical, minority view, all you that you do is restate the heteronormative patriarchal values that society has operated by for the majority of history. You are not a marginalized voice so, please, stop acting like one. We have progressed as a nation and are in the process of progressing as a university towards a more equitable society, one that Jesus would be proud of, that affirms the dignity and worth of each human soul, yet your articles seem counter to the equality and love that Jesus himself preached. What happened to not passing judgement?
Furthermore, reading your piece on how Kavanaugh is one of the few “honorable” men left and that we must “protect” him leads me to believe that you don’t know the meaning of the word honorable. If you truly value the career of a man with multiple sexual assault accusations over the lives of the women he has victimized just because that man claims to be Catholic, you and I have a fundamentally incompatible view of the meaning of honoring Jesus’s legacy. Please consider the ways in which your voice and power may be used to create peace instead of dividing us further.