“Truth enlightens man’s intelligence and shapes his freedom.”

—Pope St. John Paul II, Veritatis Splendor

The Veritas Center for Ethics in Public Life exists to bring faithful Catholic scholarly reflection to bear on the most pressing ethical questions in contemporary culture—questions of marriage and sexuality, war and peace, life and death, as well as economic and social justice.

Through research, writing, and academic conferences, the Veritas Center seeks to combat what Pope Benedict XVI described as “the dictatorship of relativism,” promoting the natural moral law, illuminated by the light of faith, in order to defend both human freedom and dignity in the public square.

Our Associates
Timothy Williams
Fr. Dan Pattee
Kevin Miller
Regis Martin
Patrick Lee
Stephen Krason
Jacob Wood
Anne Hendershott
Fr. Brian Cavanaugh, TOR

Hendershott: “Can a Catholic University be too Catholic?”

Concerned about a nearly $3.5 million operational deficit and falling enrollments, Catholic University of America—long considered the national university of the Catholic Church in the United States—hired a group of consultants who reportedly told them the university’s religious identity was actually a liability in recruiting students.

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Hendershott: “The Decline and Fall of Sociology”

As totalitarian modes of rule continue to decline throughout the world, readers of Minding the Campus will recognize the insidious strain of totalitarianism that has emerged on many college campuses—one that is characterized by the bullying, and sometimes silencing of faculty and students who deviate even slightly from the prescribed progressive campus politics.

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Krason: “The Illusion of Independent Thinking”

In John G. West’s book of a decade ago, Darwin Day in America, in which he sketches the influence of Darwinian-inspired materialist thinking on a range of subjects, he has a striking chapter showing how all too many academics, teachers, and their supporters in the media tolerate no questioning about any part of evolutionary theory—even by fellow scholars in biology and related fields and even when it is strictly on the grounds of careful scientific analysis.

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Hendershott: “Will Colleges Divest from The Gun Industry?”

Bowing to pressure from MoveOn.org, Monsignor Franklyn M. Casale, the President of St. Thomas University in Miami, issued an ultimatum on March 13 to Anita Britt, his Chief Financial and Administrative Officer: choose between your work for this university or membership on the Board of American Outdoor Brands, the former Smith & Wesson Holding Company cited as the maker of the AR-15 that Parkland shooter Nikolas Cruz used –you can’t do both.

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Hendershott: “Transgenderism: Semantic Contagion or Biological Fact?”

While there has been a dearth of reliable data on the surge in numbers of transgender children and adults in the United States, data from Sweden, Australia, and the United Kingdom indicates an explosion in demand for gender-identity treatment. According to the Guardian, the UK’s 14 gender identity clinics have seen referral increases of up to 100 percent in the past year.

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Krason: “A Catholic Reaction to Trump and the Media”

It is not an overstatement to say that the time of the Trump presidency has been one of protracted struggle between the national administration and most of the media. To be sure, the press and the electronic media have faced off with presidential administrations for a long time.

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Krason: “Will the Court Overturn Bad Precedents?”

In his recent book, Nixon’s White House Wars, Patrick J. Buchanan writes about how most of Richard Nixon’s Supreme Court nominees—Buchanan was an aide to Nixon—did not turn out to be the “judicial restraintists” that the thirty-seventh president had hoped for. Buchanan says that has been a problem for Republican presidents generally.

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Hendershott: “Progressive Politicians Two-Faced Over Due Process Rights”

For nearly a decade, progressive politicians like Senator Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY) helped to create a culture that has denied due process protections to college students accused of sexual harassment and assault. Convinced that college campuses had become havens for rapists, Senator Gillibrand and her progressive peers in the Senate helped to usher in new federal requirements under Title IX.

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Hendershott: “The Purge of the Deviants May Go Too Far”

Sociologist Emile Durkheim would find validation for his theory of deviance in the fury surrounding sexual harassment and abuse by powerful men in politics, the media, business, and academia. More than one hundred years ago, Durkheim argued that the reason acts of deviance are identified and publicly punished is because defining deviant behavior reinforces social order, and inhibits future deviance.

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Hendershott: “The Campus Left’s Mass Attack on Amy Wax and Middle Class Values”

In an attempt to document “the impact of web-driven political outrage” on the lives of professors, The Chronicle of Higher Education launched a series called “Professors in the Political Cross Hairs.” Updated periodically whenever a new story unfolds of web-based attacks on professors for their classroom comments, opinion essays, tweets, or Facebook posts, The Chronicle series added an essay one week by a professor who promises to: “Teach Administrators Not to Cave Into Right-Wing Outrage.”

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Wiker: “Enemies of Christianity at the Time of the Reformation”

Nearly everyone knows the basics of the Reformation, the first being that 500 years ago, it began with Martin Luther nailing his Ninety-Five Theses to the Wittenberg castle door on October 31, 1517—except that scholars now think that what probably happened was that Luther mailed them, not nailed them, to his archbishop, Albrecht of Brandenburg. A much less dramatic beginning, perhaps.

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Hendershott: “Hollywood’s dishonest campus rape panic”

For all of its flaws and fabrications, “The Hunting Ground,” Harvey Weinstein’s activist documentary film about sexual assault on college campuses, finally succeeded in helping to actually identify a real predator — the filmmaker himself. And, although some of his apologists like filmmaker Rob Reiner tried to excuse Mr. Weinstein’s predatory behavior…

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Krason: “The Many Assaults on the Rule of Law”

A central principle of the American Founding—in fact, one that great thinkers have held as central for any democratic republic—is the rule of law. We often hear the phrase that we are a nation in which “the rule of law and not of men” prevails. This is another way of saying that law—applicable equally to everyone—as opposed to whim and arbitrariness is what rules. Yet, one does not have to look far to see the substantial assault on the rule of law from many quarters in our day.

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Hendershott: “Devos’ New Focus on Rights of the Accused”

In her speech last week on how colleges handle accusations of sexual assault., Education Secretary Betsy DeVos promised to “end the era of rule by letter” begun by the Obama administration. The reference was to the “Dear Colleague” letter sent to colleges and universities by the Education Department’s Office for Civil Rights on April 4, 2011, offering “guidance” but in effect mandating new procedures notably harsher toward the accused.

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Wood: “Questions and Answers on the ‘Filial Correction'”

Steubenville, Ohio, Sep 29, 2017 / 03:19 am (CNA).- Dr. Jacob Wood, an assistant professor of theology at the Franciscan University of Steubenville, offers answers on some frequently-asked-questions about the ‘Filial Correction on the Spread of Heresies” a letter sent to Pope Francis by a group of bishops, priests, and scholars, who released the letter this past weekend.

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Krason: “A Role for Government that Nobody Thinks About”

A few years ago, as Obamacare was being put in place, Republican governor John Kasich of Ohio suggested that the Christian obligation to assist the poor was a reason for expanding Medicaid in the state. Catholic social teaching does indeed make clear that the state has a role in assisting the needy, but only—in line with the principle of subsidiarity—when there is no other way it can be done. Is that the case with providing access to health care?

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Hendershott: “First they came for the Confederacy”

While most Catholic leaders have been silent about the removal of the statues of Confederate War hero Robert E. Lee, and the desecration of statues of Abraham Lincoln and Christopher Columbus, it may be time for them to get involved in the debate as religious statues are now on the chopping block.

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Wiker: “Sexbots, or How the Pill Made Women Obsolete”

Nearly every day the news presents yet another article on sexbots, robots that are designed to take the place of women. This is the most obvious “objectification” of women that has followed upon the sexual revolution, the literal creation of an artificial object, a robotic woman, for the sexual pleasure of men degraded enough to prefer a machine to the real thing.

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Wiker: “The Deep History Behind Radical Islam’s Attacks in _____”

Depending upon when you read this article, you can fill in the blank. As I write, the newest was in Barcelona, Spain, perpetrated (so officials think) by an ISIS-inspired Moroccan, 18-year-old Moussa Oukabir. According to reports, Oukabir had recently “joked” on social media, when asked what he might do on his first day as absolute ruler of the world, “Kill all infidels and only allow Muslims to continue the religion.”

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Wiker: “Atheists Don’t Even Trust Other Atheists”

A new study has just found something rather interesting: even atheists don’t trust atheists. Or, to put it the other way around, atheists themselves assume that religious believers are more likely to act morally than their fellow atheists, and atheists are more likely to engage in grossly immoral acts.

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Hendershott: “Reaping What We’ve Sown”

The recent research revelation that sperm counts for men living in the West have plunged by 60 percent since 1971 provides readers of P.D. James’ great dystopian novel, The Children of Men, with a prediction of an unsettling future for a society that can no longer reproduce.  Set in Britain in 2021, James’s frightening fiction described a world of mass infertility among males – a world in which no children have been born in more than twenty-five years.

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