Commentary: In Defense of Melissa Goldberg and Academic Freedom at Catholic Colleges

February 08, 2024 1 min read

John K. Wilson
Academe Blog

Excerpt: Last week, the Catholic University of America (CUA) fired psychology professor Melissa Goldberg one week after she invited doula Rachel Carbonneau to address her class, Psychology 379: Lifespan Development. Doulas coach women during the birthing process, and Carbonneau discussed helping “birthing persons” deal with having abortions and assisting transgender men. One student called the discussion “really upsetting” and turned over a recording to the right-wing website The Daily Signal, which ran a Jan. 26 story with the headline: “SHOCKING: Catholic University Brought in ‘Abortion Doula’ Who Coaches ‘Pregnant Men’ Through Giving Birth.”

CUA immediately declared it was “appalled” by Carbonneau and banned her from speaking on campus, and then over one weekend, CUA completed their investigation and dismissed Goldberg.

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