Obama Judicial Nominee Calls Abstinence Education ‘Unconstitutional’
The Senate will consider the nomination of Cornelia Pillard, a vocal abortion advocate who said abstinence education was unconstitutional for violating “reproductive justice,” to serve as a judge on the D.C. Circuit Court of Appeals in a hearing Wednesday.
“The equal protection critique of abstinence-only curricula is strengthened and rendered more amenable to judicial resolution by the fact that sex education classes are designed not only to expose students to ideas, but also to shape student behavior,” Pillard, a Georgetown University Law professor, wrote in a 2007 article titled “Our Other Reproductive Choices: Equality in Sex Education, Contraceptive Access and Work Family Policy” in a faculty publication.
“Obligatory education permeated with discriminatory content alone raises serious constitutional concerns,” the article continued. “But the conduct shaping purpose of sex education curricula makes them vulnerable to equal protection challenge even if communicating retrogressive sex roles in traditional academic classes might not be.”
Pillard’s 2007 assessment reflects both a radical ideology and disregard of basic factual information, said Valerie Huber, president of the National Abstinence Education Association, which is urging the Senate to reject the nomination.
“There are politically liberal nominees, but this is beyond that,” Huber told CNSNews.com. “She is so extreme that when I was reading this I had to remind myself this was a real person that actually believes the words I’m reading. She believes abstinence education should be a criminal activity.”
Pillard is one of three nominations President Barack Obama announced in a Rose Garden speech on June 4.