Speaking of anti-choice hypocrisy…

Georgetown law student Daniel Hughes, who threatened the GULC administration that he was going to go to Catholic church higher-ups if they continued to allow students to work at pro-choice organizations, is reportedly an openly gay man who sits on the board of OutLaw, the Georgetown Law LGBT organization.

One certainly does not have to be pro-choice just because one is gay. But if your reason for being anti-choice is because of religious doctrine, then it might be worth looking at what that religious doctrine says about you before you go around throwing stones. It’s relatively clear, though, that Dan isn’t as much concerned with following religion than he is with cherry-picking issues which result in the oppression of other people:

“I don’t think Georgetown needs to enact Catholic doctrine on every issue — that wouldn’t be desirable,” he said. “But the most bedrock Catholic teaching is the protection of life. No advocacy group that works against that principle should be supported by the university.”

Hughes said he doesn’t understand the complaints. Students, he said, need to realize that there are tradeoffs to coming to a Jesuit institution, such as the fact that some alumni donate because they support certain beliefs associated with the church.

Well, were Georgetown to enact Catholic doctrine on every issue, Dan would be in a spot of trouble, no? And I wonder how those alumni who support “certain beliefs associated with the church” would feel about groups like OutLaw? Or Georgetown offering funding for students who work at organizations like Lambda Legal Defense?

Hughes argues that “protection of life” is the most bedrock Catholic teaching, which may very well be true. But “protection of life” has not always had to do with fetuses and zygotes, given that the Church didn’t take a stand on contraception or abortion for much of its existence. But way, way back, Christian leaders did loudly argue that the only acceptable sex was for procreative purposes between two married people, even if the Bible doesn’t mention a whole lot about that (kind of how the Bible never prohibits abortion). While the history of abortion in Christianity is pretty mixed, even St. Augustine did not consider abortion to be murder — and for a good period of time, the sins of oral and anal sex were punished more heavily than abortion. According to one source:

Pope Stephen V (served 885-891) wrote in 887 CE: “If he who destroys what is conceived in the womb by abortion is a murderer, how much more is he unable to excuse himself of murder who kills a child even one day old.” “Epistle to Archbishop of Mainz.”

Pope Innocent III (?-1216) wrote a letter which ruled on a case of a Carthusian monk who had arranged for his female lover to obtain an abortion. The Pope decided that the monk was not guilty of homicide if the fetus was not “animated.”

Early in the 13th century, Pope Innocent III stated that the soul enters the body of the fetus at the time of “quickening” – when the woman first feels movement of the fetus. After ensoulment, abortion was equated with murder; before that time, it was a less serious sin, because it terminated only potential human life, not human life.

St. Thomas Aquinas (1225-1274) also considered only the abortion of an “animated” fetus as murder.

Pope Sixtus V issued a Papal bull “Effraenatam” in 1588 which threatened those who carried out abortions at any stage of gestation with excommunication and the death penalty. Pope Gregory XIV revoked the Papal bull shortly after taking office in 1591. He reinstated the “quickening” test, which he said happened 116 days into pregnancy (16½ weeks).

There’s no question that the Catholic church is currently opposed to abortion and birth control. But to argue that opposition to abortion has been more “foundational” to the Church than opposition to homosexuality is just factually inaccurate. I happen to disagree (strongly) with the Church on both counts. But if Georgetown law students are making attempts to de-fund their classmates under the guise of religious requirements, perhaps they should take a good hard look at all of those religious requirements, and ask themselves if they really want to study law at a place that imposes the whole range of Catholic doctrine.


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50 comments for “Speaking of anti-choice hypocrisy…

  1. April 7, 2007 at 2:03 pm

    This is another excellent post. Church doctrine has evolved? This is one of the worst affronts to Christian sensibilities ever!

    This Hughes fellow isn’t just a member of a gay law student organization; it’s an organization with a campy pun for its title. That makes it at least twice as bad. On the other hand, “Outlaw” does call to mind the outlaw country of yesteryear; perhaps it’s just the Waylon Jennings effect. Or maybe Hughes is trying to be the new Andrew Sullivan, gay-rights activist and anti-feminist all rolled into one. Someone needs to tell these chumps (hmm..who am I channeling here?) that the ultimate sin/horror of patriarch isn’t giving a woman control of her own uterus, it’s sexual submission to another man. These oh-so-“complex” fellas are shooting themselves in the foot.

  2. April 7, 2007 at 2:04 pm

    It’s relatively clear, though, that Dan isn’t as much concerned with following religion than he is with cherry-picking issues which result in the oppression of other people:

    fun fun fun for the whole family, that one!

    *sigh*

  3. April 7, 2007 at 2:37 pm

    I want to call this “I’ve got mine so fuck you” – a la, say, Phyliss Shafly – except Dan hasn’t got his yet either.

    This one doesn’t even require the brilliance of a Mr. Shakes: gay rights and women’s (reproductive) rights are definitely not a zero-sum game. Since the roots of each prejudice are so closely intertwined, especially in terms of religion, the oppression of one of those groups makes it that much easier it is to oppress the other. What rational purpose could it possibly serve for an lgbt activist* to argue for discrimination on the basis of Catholic doctrine?

    *I don’t know that Hughes fits the term ‘activist,’ but I don’t know what else to call it when you’re on the board of an issue-oriented organization.

  4. Sayna
    April 7, 2007 at 2:53 pm

    Ah, I’m so glad I saved an image that someone in my favorite pro-choice forum made.

    Here it is.

  5. April 7, 2007 at 3:03 pm

    What bothers about this isn’t the absolutely concise way of dealing with his hypocrisy above, but the fact that if he’s shown that, he’ll only somehow twist it around so his hypocrisy and sexism is still A-OK. I went through stuff like that repeatedly with my own church leaders, and it gets fast depressing how quickly “progressive” churches will turn on intelligent women.

  6. April 7, 2007 at 4:13 pm

    There is a massive difference between declining to subsidize the salaries of students working in pro-choice organizations and “not allowing them” to work there. I don’t think the issue is prohibition, only funding. My first job in the first summer of law school, I made exactly $1,000 in a prosecutor’s office and my university did not subsidize me. They did stick a bill in my hand for tuition, however. Frankly, if they are taking money out of tuition of every student to subsidize a few, it bothers me not if they are picky and I would as soon see practice stop entirely, regardless of the nature of the organization that gets cheap labor of the backs of other insamely indebted students.

  7. April 7, 2007 at 4:14 pm

    What’s important to keep in mind about Mr. Hughes is how entirely tenuous his position at GULC is. The only reason that OutLaw even exists is that a group of queer students sued Georgetown under the DC Human Rights Act in the late 80s, and they won – all the way up to the DC Supreme Court – on the grounds that DC’s interest in prohibiting discrimination based on certain categories (including sexual orientation and gender) was more imporant than Georgetown’s interest in its free exercise of religion. IOW, Georgetown could not “conscience clause” its way out of this one.

    The case was granted certiorari to be argued before the US Supreme Court, but settled almost on the eve of oral arguments – apparently, Scalia had been overheard mouthing off about the case at some alumni event, and had to recuse himself. The university, having lost its most reliable Justice, finally backed down.

    As part of the settlement, and only as part of the settlement, Georgetown agreed to allow (and fund) queer student groups on its campuses. I can say from some unfortunate personal experience that this school does not change its mind absent the pressure of litigation.

  8. Tony
    April 7, 2007 at 5:16 pm

    Isn’t the church also pretty “hard” when it comes to gay lifestyles as well?

  9. zuzu
    April 7, 2007 at 5:41 pm

    There is a massive difference between declining to subsidize the salaries of students working in pro-choice organizations and “not allowing them” to work there. I don’t think the issue is prohibition, only funding.

    No, it’s de-funding, selectively and without notice.

    Either you announce that you won’t fund certain internships with certain organizations, or you fund everyone. Because this business of letting students accept summer jobs in reliance on your past funding of summer jobs at the very same organizations and then yanking the funding is just dirty pool.

    And maybe it’s been a while since you’ve had to think about this, but for any number of students, having funding yanked means not being able to take the position after all. It’s a bit late in the game to be scrambling for another source of funding. They could have let the students know about the policy change BEFORE recruiting season started.

  10. April 7, 2007 at 5:53 pm

    I missed Bruce missing the point when I responded earlier.

    Frankly, if they are taking money out of tuition of every student to subsidize a few, it bothers me not if they are picky and I would as soon see practice stop entirely, regardless of the nature of the organization that gets cheap labor of the backs of other insamely indebted students.

    But … that’s not what they’re doing. The money for the fellowships does not come out of tuition – it comes from a fundraising drive, which solicits professors, local businesses, and alumni. No tuition is involved.

  11. blair
    April 7, 2007 at 5:54 pm

    I just sent in a tuition deposit to start a Master’s program at Gtown in the fall. To be honest, I hadn’t thought much about the implications of attending a Jesuit University. But I’m beginning to get a little worried. I just read something on the Gtown Dems blog about the health insurance available through the school not covering reproductive health stuff. I don’t want to take the thread OT, but do any current or former Gtown students have any advice, names of groups on campus to get involved with or anything?

  12. Lizzie (greeneyedfem)
    April 7, 2007 at 7:41 pm

    blair:
    I’m a second-semester grad student (MA) at Georgetown. Don’t let the post scare you too much. Yes, it’s Jesuit (I’m taking one class from a priest this semester), but the religious stuff is, for the most part, avoidable. I don’t have a lot to do with the undergrad institutions, but there’s an active Women’s Center, pro-choice group, and LGBT student group. A grad-specific LGBT group was started this year, but hasn’t done a whole lot yet (we’re all, y’know, grad students).

    The biggest imposition I’ve heard folks talk about is the reproductive health coverage – women entering and being shocked that their birth control pills aren’t covered. In my case, there’s no way I can get my partner on my insurance plan since we’re not married.

    The culture shock for me has been more of a class thing than a religion thing.

  13. mandi
    April 7, 2007 at 7:46 pm

    Hey Blair,

    I’m nearly finished getting my masters at Georgetown (if I can just stop procrastinating!). You’re required to have health insurance, but not from Georgetown; page 27 of this pdf confirms that birth control is not covered by the school’s plan.

    Frankly, I’ve found (and maybe this is just me) that unless you’ve gotten a scholarship with a particular program (and thus have to devote hours to another part of the school), the workload is going to be pretty overwhelming, enough to curtail involvement in activities. That said, College Dems and Hoyas 4 Choice would probably be good choices, even though (as the Dem blog states and I wasn’t aware of), H4C gets no funding from the school.

    http://www.georgetown.edu/student-affairs/insurance/premierplanbooklet.pdf

  14. April 7, 2007 at 10:23 pm

    Sounds like yet another cut-throat tactic from an A-type law student who’s so pathetically afraid of competition that he’ll do anything to sabotage the work of his classmates.

    Can’t he just rip pages from their casebooks, or give them inaccurate summaries, just like everyone else does? *sigh*

    (That was a joke, by the way. But you get the point.)

  15. agatha mandrake
    April 8, 2007 at 12:55 am

    If this guy is going to use the church to defend his dickishness, then someone needs to bust Leviticus out on his ass.

  16. blair
    April 8, 2007 at 1:49 am

    thanks for the advice, mandi!

  17. Mipa
    April 8, 2007 at 5:25 am

    As a law student, I’m just not surprised. Something about law seems to attracts those types. A lot of great people too, of course. But a lot of nutters.

  18. Psychobunny
    April 8, 2007 at 5:50 am

    What’s hilarious is when you bring up the “Pope says procuring abortion OK if fetus not animated”, many fundies try to claim that “what the Pope told one of his monks personally DOESN’T COUNT AS THE CHURCH’S STANCE AT ALL.”
    Which seems to suggest that the Pope in question was deliberately breaking the Church’s teachings or … I dunno, it’s all Latin to me.

  19. B.D.
    April 8, 2007 at 8:48 am

    Great post, Jill. If one looks at the history of the church’s stance against homosexuality, then one would see that it based this stance in part on it’s bedrock principle of protection of life. After all, it would be a waste of life to not be depositing that sperm into a woman. Hence, homosexuality must be wrong. Or so the ignorant reasoning goes.

    The two issues are terribly entwined. Before making statements about his religion, I’d suggest this asshat learn about his religion.

  20. Holly
    April 8, 2007 at 10:04 am

    Here’s another image that sometimes comes in handy when you run into asshats like Daniel Hughes:

    We’re Just Like You!

  21. blair
    April 8, 2007 at 10:33 am

    Lizzie, thanks for your help too, forgot to add that in my last comment…looks like I’ll be getting my own health insurance! (apologies for hijacking the thread everybody!)

  22. April 8, 2007 at 11:12 am

    This kid is going to have a problem when he finds out the hard way that “But…but…that’s DIFFERENT!” is not widely considered to be a good counterargument.

  23. Michael
    April 8, 2007 at 4:42 pm

    I do hope that some GULC alumni/ae start a fund specifically to support law students who work for reproductive rights, and support it in place of GULC for at least the next few fundraising cycles…

  24. nausicaa
    April 8, 2007 at 4:53 pm

    When a plan doesn’t fund “birth control,” does that mean women can’t be prescribed hormonal birth control pills for non-birth control reasons (eg endometriosis, regulate cycles, prevent ovarian cancer, etc?) It seems like it would be very clear discrimination if that weren’t allowed.

  25. April 8, 2007 at 5:30 pm

    Of course, this would be utterly wrong, but it would be fun to do the following:

    1) Get several good mugshots of the guy.

    2) Post them all over campus and at a few gay bars.

    3) Put text underneath each mugshot explaining just exactly who he is and what he did.

    Let’s see if he still gets laid.

    Of course, the really cruel thing would be to get pics of him in a gay bar kissing another man and then send them in to the GLUC administration.

  26. ZC
    April 8, 2007 at 5:35 pm

    I don’t think you’re making a very apt analogy. He’s holding a consistent position, whether or not you personally like it or agree with it.

    The Catholic Church isn’t opposed to gay people, it’s opposed to homosexual sodomy (and for that matter, sex or sodomy between straight people outside of marriage). So, being a gay person at a Jesuit school isn’t contrary to school policy. However, funding pro-abortion groups is contrary to church teaching.

    If he was seeking funding for a summer job for an organization that tried to advance homosexual sodomy, then, he would be a hypocrite. But, since he’s simply gay, he should not be ridiculed for believing that the school shouldn’t fund pro-abortion summer jobs.

  27. Jason
    April 8, 2007 at 5:41 pm

    Indeed, if you look here, it suggests his affiliation with OutLaw:

    Google cache

  28. April 8, 2007 at 5:48 pm

    ZC, he’s a member of OutLaw — and if Georgetown OutLaw is anything like NYU’s, then they advocate for things like same-sex marriage rights, parenting rights for gays and lesbians, and adoption rights for gays, lesbians and same-sex couples. They support the decision in Lawrence. They do not support criminalizing sodomy. Georgetown funds student internships at organizations like Lambda Legal Defense, which don’t try to “advance homosexual sodomy” (since that doesn’t even make sense, but which do defend the rights of gays and lesbians to make private sexual decisions. Kind of like how Planned Parenthood doesn’t “advance abortion,” but does push for abortion rights.

    OutLaw, which Hughes is a board member of, also promotes gay rights — including the rights of gay people to have sex. So I’d say it’s a pretty apt analogy.

  29. zuzu
    April 8, 2007 at 5:53 pm

    The Catholic Church isn’t opposed to gay people

    Tell that to the Pope. What with the rooting out of gay men from the priesthood, whether or not they’re celibate.

  30. Gabe
    April 8, 2007 at 5:55 pm

    How ironic. It was way back in college that I learned that as a gay man I better get my ass on board with abortion rights. Till then it wasn’t something I gave much thought to (ah the things that seem important in high school). Conservative religious movements are as keen to control the body of a gay man (outlawing his sexual practices) as they are to control the bodies of women (outlawing certain health and reproductive practices…which is also a stab at controlling sexual practices). Gay men who think that an unchecked conservative religious movement won’t go after Lawrence v. Texas soon after taking down Roe v. Wade are fools.

  31. April 8, 2007 at 6:09 pm

    When a plan doesn’t fund “birth control,” does that mean women can’t be prescribed hormonal birth control pills for non-birth control reasons (eg endometriosis, regulate cycles, prevent ovarian cancer, etc?)

    The last time I was on it, Georgetown’s health plan allowed prescription of contraceptives for five conditions; I think endometriosis might have been one of them. However, if you could get a doctor to actually write out a prescriptions, the pharmacy on campus wouldn’t fill it.

  32. ZC
    April 8, 2007 at 6:59 pm

    Jill– I would guess (although I’m not sure) that OUTlaw is not anything like NYUs because most Jesuit/Catholic schools make each student org have in their constitution something like a Supremecy Clause, which states that “whenever this group’s mission conflicts with church teaching/university policies the church/university trumps”.

    If it doesn’t have that in the group’s constitution and he doesn’t want to cut their funding off as well, it is an apt analogy. But, since the Jesuit school I attended made us do that, I just assumed they would as well at GULC.

  33. April 8, 2007 at 7:17 pm

    ZC, you are entirely wrong in your guess.

    I am a former GULC OutLaw member, and we most certainly did not limit our activities to comply with church teaching. We organized protests of the DADT recruiters; we organized trips to hear the Lawrence oral arguments; we advocated for domestic partner benefits under the university’s insurance plans.

    As I said earlier, the only reason GULC *has* an OutLaw is because the university settled with the queer student group and agreed to let it exist and do its thing. The school did not, when I was there, tell OutLaw what it might and might not do in keeping with Catholic tradition.

  34. ZC
    April 8, 2007 at 7:49 pm

    Rachel — if that’s true then he’s advocating an inconsistent position.

    I would add that it still may be in the Constitution, just not followed.

    Even so, I’m not sure any of those activities would be against Jesuit/Catholic doctrine. Protesting DADT recruiters would be consistent with Catholic Church teaching, as many Jesuit universities have added sexual orientation into their anti-discrimination by-laws. Also, listening to the Lawrence argument clearly doesn’t violate church doctrine. Also, domestic partner benefits (arguably) doesn’t violate church doctrine either (several Jesuit Universities have these).

    My broader point is that there is a difference (in the eyes of Catholic doctrine) between someone who is gay and who chooses to have an abortion.

    A Jesuit university should fund gay groups that deal with gay issues in a way that is consistent with church teaching (fighting discrimination, having a gay lay ministry). A jesuit university should not fund a group that advocates abortion. Along the same lines, a Jesuit university should not fund a group that pushes for gay marriage, but should fund a support group that help women deal with the stigma (if there is/should be any) of having an abortion.

    There are many people that hold a pro-gay, pro-life view and it’s not an inconsistent position.

  35. Mel
    April 8, 2007 at 10:14 pm

    I actually go to school with Dan Hughes. This is not the first time he has pissed on someone else’s parade. At the beginning of this year he managed to get the Georgetown Law Students for Choice stripped of the right to have an email address ending in law.georgetown.edu because their goals were inconsistent with Georgetown’s pro-life stance.
    I should also clarify that the organization that he has most recently screwed over, the Equal Justice Foundation, is a student-run group that raises money both from students and from outside donors to fund unpaid summer internships for first-year law students. EJF only gets about a quarter of its money from Georgetown itself; the most important thing the school contributes is its infrastructure and its mailing lists. So my point is not that the school is making an executive decision with its own money; instead, it’s trying to tell EJF what to do with its mostly independent money. I think there’s a huge difference, and it’s frankly unbelievable that the administration caved to pressure from him and the six or so other anti-choice activists on campus. I’m terribly disappointed in my school.

  36. April 8, 2007 at 11:49 pm

    ZC, I went to a Jesuit school, too. I actually worked actively with a student organization in creating its charter so I know what was required and there was no kind of “supremacy clause” like you describe. Indeed, it would absurd to have a student group that would be chartered to advance a cause except not to.

    I’ll also defend Georgetown officials here insofar as I don’t think its fair to say they caved on this issue. What Hughes did was far worse than demand his way. He played a trump card which ensured he would get his way. Georgetown officials clearly wanted an open academic atmosphere. As do many Jesuit institutions from my experience. They weren’t interested in imposing standards and values on its academic community. But it is a Jesuit school and ultimately, all Jesuits do answer to the Pope. That heirarchy is very important to the Society of Jesus and its ultimately a means for change within the Catholic Church. These aren’t renegade Catholics, but many Jesuits are powerful voices in opposition to mainline Catholic positions. Hard as it is to think, many Jesuit priests and theologians at Jesuit universities provide a major coutner-balance to the increasingly dictatorial fervor among conservative Catholics. These are voices working within the Catholic Church to encourage dialogue with the secular community. But they are working within the Catholic Church. And if the Church heirachy wants to shut down their efforts, they can. And will and have. Hughes’ threat was very purposeful. He knew that threatening to take this to the church establishment would force his will upon the school. Their only choice remaining was to relent or fight and take the risk of far harsher restrictions being ordered. Hughes basically took this fight nuclear with no provocation. It is outrageous and his actions are offensive to the principals of Jesuit education. Jesuits schools should have a strong Catholic identity, but that identity should be inclusive, not exclusive. To make the school Catholic to the exclusion of others misses the purpose entirely. To do so as someone who openly rejects Catholic teaching when it suits him is frankly immoral. He wants one standard applied to himself and another standard applied to those he disagrees with. The school was left without a choice because of his heavy-handed tactics. But one imagines that the members of the OUTLaw chapter do have a choice. They should reject tactics that could shut down their organization and reject members who want to introduce such methods into the student community at Georgetown Law.

  37. April 9, 2007 at 8:24 am

    Good point, BStu. I was just wondering whether or not the same tactic could be used against OUTLaw. Apparently, according to your post, it could. Not that one would want to do that, but it could be held as a trump card in negotiations aimed at getting them to disavow Hughes’ tactic.

  38. April 9, 2007 at 9:01 am

    # Mel Says:
    April 8th, 2007 at 10:14 pm

    I actually go to school with Dan Hughes. This is not the first time he has pissed on someone else’s parade. At the beginning of this year he managed to get the Georgetown Law Students for Choice stripped of the right to have an email address ending in law.georgetown.edu because their goals were inconsistent with Georgetown’s pro-life stance.
    I should also clarify that the organization that he has most recently screwed over, the Equal Justice Foundation, is a student-run group that raises money both from students and from outside donors to fund unpaid summer internships for first-year law students. EJF only gets about a quarter of its money from Georgetown itself; the most important thing the school contributes is its infrastructure and its mailing lists. So my point is not that the school is making an executive decision with its own money; instead, it’s trying to tell EJF what to do with its mostly independent money. I think there’s a huge difference, and it’s frankly unbelievable that the administration caved to pressure from him and the six or so other anti-choice activists on campus. I’m terribly disappointed in my school.

    Ah, so he’s the Catholic version of Roy Cohn? Charming.

    He’s destined to be remembered the same way Cohn is: Bully. Coward. Victim.

  39. April 9, 2007 at 9:11 am

    See, that’s what Hughes is relying on. The people he attacks with this tactic wouldn’t want to use it against him. But by showcasing this tactic, he’s just giving a blueprint to anti-gay groups to get OUTLaw banned. And all his fussing about how it would be inappropriate to apply Catholic teaching to him won’t mean a thing.

  40. April 9, 2007 at 9:22 am

    RE: OUTLaw — Yeah. I wonder what the lesbian members of OUTLaw, if any exist, are thinking of him right now.

    Since it looks like he’s trying to crawl back into the closet — note that none of the recent articles on his latest crusade mention his OUTLaw membership? — I’ll bet that if the OUTLaw folks made a big, BIG stink about kicking him out, complete with local newspaper coverage as well as the campus paper, it would short-circuit his efforts to become the next Cohn, Rove or Abramoff, and the conservative sugar daddies who are or who plan to subsidize his career will suddenly drop him like a bad habit.

  41. April 9, 2007 at 9:56 am

    Good point, BStu. I was just wondering whether or not the same tactic could be used against OUTLaw. Apparently, according to your post, it could.

    It probably wouldn’t, though, since OutLaw exists due to a lawsuit settlement – if GULC dismantles OutLaw, they’ll be in violation of a settlement agreement.

  42. Mel
    April 9, 2007 at 10:48 am

    Dan Hughes isn’t trying to crawl back into the closet. He’s openly, outwardly, proudly gay. This means that he has sex with men, something he’s had multiple discussions with folks on campus about. It isn’t a case of a gay man attempting to follow catholic teaching, including the church’s prohibition on gay sex. It’s a case of a gay man trying to pick and choose which of the church’s teachings best suit him and his political agenda.

  43. April 9, 2007 at 11:18 am

    See, that’s what Hughes is relying on. The people he attacks with this tactic wouldn’t want to use it against him. But by showcasing this tactic, he’s just giving a blueprint to anti-gay groups to get OUTLaw banned.

    Apparently OUTLaw can’t be dismantled, but I imagine Georgetown could refuse funding to students who work at gay-friendly organizations, like Lambda Legal.

    And then I have a feeling he wouldn’t mind too much when all the progressive, pro-choice GLBT-identified people and allies stood up for the rights to students to work at organizations that promote those civil rights.

  44. Erik
    April 9, 2007 at 11:24 am

    Like Mel, I am a classmate of Dan’s at GULC. He has published blurbs in the Georgetown Law Weekly about having had sex with men, so he is personally in violation of the church’s teachings. This is not the first time he has aimed his crosshairs at the Equal Justice Foundation; back in the fall, he published an op-ed in the Law Weekly decrying EJF’s annual fundraising auction because of the level of alcohol consumption.

    And for what it’s worth, his hypocrisy seems readily apparent to every member of the student body and faculty except him.

  45. April 9, 2007 at 11:40 am

    It probably wouldn’t, though, since OutLaw exists due to a lawsuit settlement – if GULC dismantles OutLaw, they’ll be in violation of a settlement agreement.

    Actually, if Georgetown wanted to put up a fight, I think they could shut down OUTLaw and other gay student groups. They did settle a lawsuit on this issue, but in response to the settlement the law they were violating was changed to allow an institution like Georgetown to discriminate against gay student organizations (Armstrong Amendment, I believe).

    Georgetown has chosen to honor the settlement they reached, but wouldn’t they have legal grounds to back out of it since the law was changed following the settlement? I’m afraid I’m not a lawyer, so I don’t know how such a situation would be handled. If you reach a settlement based on a law which is subseqently reversed, are you still bound to that settlement?

    If the Church ordered Georgetown to fight, though, believe me it would. Given that the Armstrong Amendment is still law, I think the gay student organizations at Georgetown should feel little security if Hughes’ tactics are taken up by anti-gay groups. At the very least, they would have a very protracted fight on their hands.

  46. nausicaa
    April 9, 2007 at 12:03 pm

    Is Dan Hughs even Catholic? The idea of a non-catholic, sexually active gay man using this slimy tactic (the unprovoked nuclear option, as someone wrote upthread) to further his political agenda is incredibly distasteful.

  47. April 9, 2007 at 3:25 pm

    Like Mel, I am a classmate of Dan’s at GULC. He has published blurbs in the Georgetown Law Weekly about having had sex with men, so he is personally in violation of the church’s teachings.

    Erik, do you happen to have copies of those articles? I tried to find them online but they aren’t there. If you could send them to me (scanned or whatever), I would be deeply indebted.

  48. Erik
    April 9, 2007 at 9:56 pm

    Yeah, the website seems to be down. I’m not on the Law Weekly, so I may not have access to the print archives, but I will see what I can find.

  49. Ryan
    April 12, 2007 at 10:38 am

    Mel and Erik have stated only the tip of the iceberg on Dan Hughes. As they indicate, he is notorious here at GULC – starting with 1L year when he throw a hissy fit and disrupted class when a professor made fun of Lynne Cheney’s books. He also opposed groups handing out condoms on World AIDS Day. He claimed in the law weekly to have been propositioned by Mark Foley. When asked to contribute to EJF he decried their “pro-public interest bias” since they don’t give money to people like him with high paid firm jobs. He has been an opponent of EJF forever. Basically he’s an attention whore so I’m sure all of us writing about him is making him quite happy. And yes, he states often that he is a gay, catholic, republican. So you have to expect him to be messed up in the head.

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