Le Moyne commencement speaker generates controversy among some students
Cardinal Timothy Dolan, Archbishop of the Catholic Diocese of New York, is expected to speak at Le Moyne College's graduation ceremony Sunday, but some students won't be listening. They aren't happy with the choice of Dolan as commencement speaker.
They say the Catholic Church's handling of sex abuse allegations and Dolan's past comments on gays and lesbians makes him unfit to speak at graduation. More than 300 people signed a petition asking the college to disinvite Dolan.
Le Moyne President Linda LeMura says she understand the concerns of the students, but thinks Dolan will be a compelling speaker.
"There are some controversies, certainly, surrounding the Cardinal, but that's ok," said LeMura. "That's what Jesuit education is all about. We want our students asking the hard questions. It's a fantastic opportunity to learn from him."
LeMura says she was surprised at the depth of concern coming from the students.
"I underestimated their concern for social justice, their concern for those who have been abused and marginalized, their concerns for reparations for those who have been abused," she said. "My hat is off to these 20- and 21-year olds who are beginning to see already the big picture, which is the function of having a liberal arts education and our tradition."
Le Moyne's graduation is Sunday morning.