Thursday, August 10, 2006

Knights joust with UW-Madison

In a flare-up seemingly destined for the courts, the University of Wisconsin-Madison has decertified the campus Knights of Columbus chapter because it admits only Catholic men; state law requires that campus-affiliated organizations be open to all students regardless of religion and be run by students. Although the university originally released a statement that it had reached an agreement with the Knights to create an affiliate organization that would be open to all students, the Knights are protesting that no such deal had been struck.

This seems to me to be a no-brainer: If the Knights want university recognition (and probably a chunk of student fees to go with it), they should be open to all students; actually, it might be a great opportunity for evangelization. If the Knights impressive enough, they might attract some new folks to Catholicism. On the other hand, if they want to restrict membership, they can easily affiliate with a local parish. Piece of cake. Like it or not, if you want public recognition at a state school, you have to play by their rules. Let this be a lesson to all you folks who want public funding for Catholic schools; you can expect the same.

I know, I know, this is just another example of liberal academia taking potshots at us poor Catholics. Then again, it could be a great opportunity to show how calm and open Catholicism can be, unthreatened by the people who might want to share our work but aren't ready to accept our beliefs.

It'll be OK, guys. And if it doesn't work out, you can always change your mind. That parish is probably just right down the street.

7 Comments:

At 4:13 PM, Anonymous anr said...

I'm sure there's a Newman Center or the like on campus -- couldn't the K of C be based there?

But all this of course skips over a larger question: A student chapter of the K of C at Madtown? at Madtown? Why not do it up right and set up a Knights chapter at UC Berkeley?

 
At 4:28 PM, Blogger CtotheL said...

Hilarious!!! You should send that suggestion to the Grand Poobah Knight!

 
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At 9:51 PM, Blogger Heidi said...

Put this one in Signs. Any excuse to get my home state in the mag.

 
At 11:43 AM, Anonymous Anonymous said...

I disagree. In this day of age, men need to build solid friendships with other men of faith. Women in the knights of columbus would only serve as a distraction. Sure, they could affiliate with a nearby parish, but campus affiliation would attract more members, and let other young men on campus know that there are men out there who are serious about their Catholic faith. I find it ironic that female-only groups are allowed at most colleges but male groups are not. What hypocrisy!

 
At 12:36 PM, Blogger CtotheL said...

I've no problem with the Knights being men only, but if they want college sponsorship (and money), which is the issue, then they have to follow the rules. Besided, if UW follows it's policy, there are no women-only orgs either.

 
At 3:42 PM, Blogger Kristin said...

I just checked their website, and I wasn't surprised to find a number of organizations that operate on a seemingly exclusionary basis. For example, this college (like most other colleges) has a women's center...there is no "men's center." Seems like a double standard to me.

 

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