Human Rights vs. Private Property Rights at Catholic University

I am an ardent supporter of private property rights. Maybe I take my support of private property rights to the extreme. You be the judge. Although I personally abhor bigots and will not associate with those I deem to be bigots, I do believe that within ones private property people have the right to discriminate at will. For example,  if the owner of a men’s clothing store only hires male sales clerk, that should be the right of the owner to do so; or if a Chinese restaurant only hires Chinese, that should be the right of the owner to do so.  I think you get the idea of my views on private property rights.

So, please take a look at this Fox News story. A law professor, John Banzhaf, at Georgetown University is charging that Catholic University in Washington D.C. is violating the human rights of their Muslim students by not providing them a place to pray that is void of Christian symbols. I don’t deny that the professor has the right to file whatever charges he sees fit against whomever he sees fit. What bothers me is that the  Washington, D.C. Office of Human Rights  has agreed to open an investigation which they say may take six months to complete. Why shouldn’t this case have been dismissed immediately? And here is the kicker. The professor who filed the charges doesn’t believe that what Catholic University is doing is illegal.

“It may not be illegal, but it suggests they are acting improperly and probably with malice,”

So what is going on here. I seems to me that Professor  Banzhaf is in the harassment business.  To me, Catholic University is demonstrating a great deal of tolerance in even admitting Muslim students to their private university. Why should they have to make special accommodations for students of other faiths than the one for which they stand?

Although I know it happens all the time in America today, my question to you, dear readers, is: when do civil rights trump inalienable rights?

Well, that’s what I’m thinking. What are your thoughts?

31 thoughts on “Human Rights vs. Private Property Rights at Catholic University

  1. Synchronicity! I just wrote a post on this same topic and queued up that post to publish next week.

    I have a former student attending CUA and am looking forward to hearing his take on this story. Maybe he has some inside knowledge.

  2. Catholic Universities ceased being Catholic institutions long ago. Too much government money corrupts anything in the end.

    We have no more property rights, thanks to the “public accommodations” rubric employed by civil rights law to solve the bigotry of private property owners.

    I predict the Muslims will get there way on this. They have the best PR mojo, their grievance machine is well-funded, and we are all too stupid to understand what’s really going on.

  3. I have been reading a lot on the back and forth discussions about the roles of Catholic Universities for some time. The problem is that many of them are really no longer Catholic, as Silverfiddle noted. Many of them are secular and are Catholic in name only. That makes it a ripe field for the federal government to come in and tell them what they can and can not do. The trouble with accepting federal money is the strings that come with it, and these University are willing to accept the money. I don’t know the answer here but I wish that the government could be limited in their ability to tell people what they can and can not do!

    1. Whether it is Catholic or not is of less importance to me, Patricia, than the fact the it is private property. Property rights is an extension of the right to life and, therefore an inalienable right. The government has no right what so ever to infringe on an inalienable right.

  4. When the government can walk in and claim your property under Eminent Domain in order to re-distribute to others, there is really no private property. Private becomes public any time the government desires. I see little difference here. The government rules, and its serfs acquiesce.

  5. Parental government strikes again. When private property rights and individual liberty are diminished, when personal choices and responsibilities for those choices are no longer valued because government has taken on the role of parent rather than servant, government will act like a bad parent (government is bad at everything it does). The bad parent wants to mollify everyone, rather than standing for what’s right and what’s wrong and teaching their kids about consequences.

    If a Muslim chooses to go to a private university that is Catholic, part of that decision has to included that Christian, and not Muslim, symbols will be everywhere. They made the choice and the consequence is that it is the Catholic faith that will be on display at the Catholic university and it is the Muslim that will have to be accommodating.

    Here’s the thing about parental government and people like this dimwit professor. It is an insult to an adult to continue to treat them like children. I’d love to see these Muslim students stand up and say, “Shut the hell up, professor. Believe it or not, we knew exactly where we were going to be attending school and we can deal with it.” And, the university should likewise say, “Shut the hell up, professor. These students knew exactly where they were going to be attending school and they can deal with it.” The government, if it was a servant and not a bad parent, would say the same thing.

  6. CUA is a Pontifical University, meaning that it isn’t just a Catholic University but was instituted by Rome. It answers to the Pope so can’t be secularized.

  7. I agree with you Jim, the owner of a private business should have the right to impose their own rules and decide who they hire. I also think that privat clubs should have the right to only include the members they want to. I may not agree with their decisions, but it is their right.
    It is unbelievable to me that a case can be brought against a Catholic school for teaching Catholic beliefs and Catholic beliefs only, these people knew what they were getting into when they went to school there and if they did not like it they should have gone somewhere else. This sounds like a setup to me, what other reason could a person have for going to a religious school when they held different beliefs?

  8. Wouldn’t it just be common sense for anyone attending a Catholic University, knowing full well that it was a Catholic University, to expect to run into Catholic teachings? Why is filing a lawsuit the first thing they think of? Heaven forbid they use a little common sense.

  9. There are NO Muslims involved in this suit. Prof Banzhaf has filed this suit on his own, so it is unjust to criticize Muslim students. Prof. Banzhaf seems to delight in using the courts to further his agenda; all you need do is look as his own website. A truly just judge would dismiss this suit AND require Banzhaf to pay all court costs.

    I wonder when this Catholic University will say enough is enough and sue Banzhaf and his university for religious discrimination. There should be ehough lawyers who are persons of faith to do this pro bono, one would think.

    1. revrea, I agree with you 100%. Thank you for coming by and sharing you thoughts. This action by Prof. Banzhaf is frivolous and the Office of Human Rights should ignore him. My reason for writing this post, however, was to point out that no matter the facts in this case, human rights should never trump inalienable rights.

  10. This has nothing to do with civil or human or any other rights. It’s harassment pure and simple.
    I heard about it on the radio yesterday, and I think there was more to the suit than that — I’m sure all bogus. If you don’t like the school, vote with your valet and go to another one.

  11. Who is Prof Banzhaf and where does he get his funding? Who is paying for the lawyers? Is he working under a grant connected to one of our freedom-destroying non-profits. If I were to investigate this story further, that’s the route I would take. It seems like our TPTB buddies are always pushing the envelope this way abusing the legal system and “policies” to try to erase Christianity from view. I’ve read the back of the book and the payback on that is going to be quite the show.

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