From Largest Catholic University Bans 'Unborn Lives Matter' Posters as 'Bigotry' in the US Herald:
Chicago’s DePaul University, the largest Roman Catholic University in America . . . has determined that the phrase “Unborn Lives Matter,” used to express the pro-life, anti-abortion stance of the church may not be used on posters because it is – “bigoted.”
In what can only be called a bizarre letter of rationalization, former DePaul University, President Reverend Dennis H. Holtschneider, a Vincentian priest, had refused to allow a conservative, pro-life student group from posting the phrase on the urban campus.
The absolute sanctity of life at the moment of conception through a natural death is a foundational tenet of the Catholic faith.
President Holtschneider claimed that although the institution, which has a reputation for academic rigor and excellence, “is committed to developing arguments and exploring important issues that can be steeped in controversy and, oftentimes, emotion…we refuse to allow members of our community to be subjected to bigotry that occurs under the cover of free speech.” [original emphasis]
"By our nature, we are committed to developing arguments and exploring important issues that can be steeped in controversy and, oftentimes, emotion," wrote Holtschneider in a letter last Friday. Despite this supposed commitment to free speech, "there will be times when some form of speech challenge our grounding in Catholic and Vincentian values. When that happens, you will see us refuse to allow members of our community to be subjected to bigotry that occurs under the cover of free speech."
The “bigotry” in question is the display of posters stating “Unborn Lives Matter,” a takeoff from the “Black Lives Matter” movement which is allowed to display their posters on the campus.
DePaul University President Reverend Dennis H. Holtschneider apparently doesn’t know what freedom of speech means. Freedom of speech means the right to express ideas, period. It does not mean the expression only of ideas approved by some authority. If that were the case, bad ideas would never be challenged and defeated by better ideas, and/or good ideas would never get a hearing and debate if the good ideas don’t measure up to approval by the authority.
Now, the authority we need to worry about is the government, the only institution that can use force against the citizenry. Of course, DePaul University, being a private university, has the right to regulate the expression of ideas on its own property. But don’t claim that banning certain ideas is consistent with free speech. It is nothing of the sort. Free speech sanctions the expression of ideas, whether bigoted or not, moral or not, “politically correct” or not—so long as the speaker isn’t directly and explicitly meant to incite violence or other rights-violations against others. Bigoted speech is offensive, yes. But it is not expression under the cover of free speech”—it is free speech.