Gonzaga’s commitment to social justice is a fundamentally Catholic principle. Social justice is built upon the equal dignity of the human person. This idea is an integral part of GU’s mission statement, which states that the GU experience, “fosters a mature commitment to dignity of the human person.” 

If GU desires to live up to its mission statement and Jesuit identity, then it must reject anything that either directly or indirectly is contrary to human dignity. Gonzaga Students for Reproductive Rights comes dangerously close to violating this principle. 

An article concerning the club published on Jan. 21 reveals facts about the club that should concern anyone with a dedication to human dignity and social justice. The article articulates that the founders of the club originally intended to be affiliated with Planned Parenthood. 

The initial club, as it was associated with Planned Parenthood, was denied by the administration. The school’s rejection was necessary, because Planned Parenthood is an organization that is contrary to human dignity, social justice and Jesuit values. Although the name changed, the club appears to be ideologically aligned with Planned Parenthood.

Planned Parenthood is in the business of abortion. The Church’s position on abortion is clear; in 2018 Pope Francis said that abortion “ends an innocent and defenseless life in its blossoming stage… It is like hiring a hit man to solve a problem.” Which colorfully depicts the twisted evil of abortion. 

Abortion violates human dignity in the worst way, for it destroys it all together. True social justice, which always affirms the dignity of the human person, is deeply opposed to abortion, and consequently Planned Parenthood. 

Acknowledging that the club has goals, such as real health care products, which are not contrary to social justice and are beneficial to the well-being of students, the club should not be condemned as a whole. 

This includes the founders, who seem to be well intended people, working to make a positive change on campus and in the world. However, if the club wants to be a part of a Jesuit university committed to social justice, then the club ought to issue a statement that affirms that all humans have a right to life from conception to natural death. 

This would be a positive step forward for the club establishing itself as a legitimate conduit for good. 

Ian Willnerd is a sophomore student and seminarian at Bishop White Seminary.

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