School Wants Feminist Professor with Abortion Activism Experience (Others Need Not Apply!)
With an ad for a new hire, another university is ramping up the emphasis on 'reproductive justice'
With the Trump administration’s pro-life policies deflating the abortion industry, it’s no wonder “reproductive justice” is gaining more traction as a social justice issue on many college campuses.
Boasting some 27,000 students, Portland State University in Portland, Oregon, is currently looking for a women’s studies instructor with a proven track record in feminist activism, including reproductive justice — which often translates to being partial to abortion on demand.
Long gone are the days, it seems, when feminism discussions on campus focused on equal pay and equal opportunities — now, it’s all about protecting abortion rights.
“We seek a colleague who is an experienced instructor and practitioner of feminist activism with particular attention to women of color feminisms, reproductive justice, and community-engaged learning,” reads PSU’s job description. “Teaching experience should include women of color feminist theories, contemporary feminist social justice activism, global reproductive justice, and/or introduction to women’s studies, using an intersectional lens of analysis.”
“The job posting does not indicate that applicants must have viewpoints of any kind,” department chair Dr. Winston Grady-Willis said in defense of the job listing, according to reporting from Campus Reform.
Not everyone is convinced of that chairperson’s point of view.
“The university wants to pretend that it has not sided with abortion industry interests in advertising for a professor who has spent a career promoting ‘global reproductive justice’ and feminist theologies,” Kristan Hawkins, president of Students for Life of America, told LifeZette.
“But they are fooling no one but themselves,” added Hawkins, whose organization is based in Fredericksburg, Virginia. “It’s totally inappropriate for taxpayer-supported schools to create departments dedicated to philosophizing and mobilizing around ending pre-born life. Parents, students and taxpayers are right to be outraged over this misuse of class time and money.”
As conservatives notch big wins on multiple fronts, including a Supreme Court decision that pro-life centers do not have to give clients information about abortion, college campuses are doubling down on efforts to prioritize reproductive justice efforts.
Last month, University of Minnesota students aiming to put abortion access front and center petitioned their school to reinstate a fellowship to hire a “teacher in training” to learn abortion practices — and to share that knowledge with others. The university, with locations in St. Paul and Minneapolis, suspended the program in May until further review after parents, students, and pro-life advocacy groups became concerned it would promote abortion.
And in late March, Hampshire University in Amherst, Massachusetts, hosted a three-day conference on reproductive justice called “From Abortion Rights to Social Justice: Building the Movement for Reproductive Freedom.”
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“It’s disturbing that a college-sponsored conference is dedicated to not only pushing a radical pro-abortion agenda, but also stigmatizing anyone who is pro-life,” Lila Rose, founder and president of the Washington, D.C.-based Live Action, said at the time. Rose is a fervent advocate for the dignity and life of all human beings.
As for this latest women’s studies department — perhaps not so much.
Elizabeth Economou is a former CNBC staff writer and adjunct professor. Follow her on Twitter.