In our Oct. 17 issue, editor Chris Potter wrote a column about WDUQ-FM's decision to reject $5,000 in underwriting from Planned Parenthood of Western Pennsylvania. The rejection was ordered by the administration of Duquesne University, which holds WDUQ's license, because Duquesne is a Catholic school and opposes abortion and contraception.
The Oct. 17 column, "Amazing Gracelessness," suggested protesting the school's move by making a donation to Planned Parenthood in the name of Duquesne University's president, Charles J. Dougherty.
On Oct. 31, Dougherty wrote Planned Parenthood, asking them to notify contributors that he did not want to be associated with PP donations "in any way." The next day, a PP staffer informed City Paper of Dougherty's wishes.
Planned Parenthood, which didn't seem anxious to revisit the WDUQ controversy, declined to release Dougherty's letter publicly, or to comment further on the matter. Still, we feel obliged to inform readers that Charles J. Dougherty would rather not have contributions made in his honor.
Sadly, that is just something Charles J. Dougherty is going to have to learn to live with; Planned Parenthood has already cashed editor Chris Potter's check. But for the record, Charles J. Dougherty does not want you to make a contribution to Planned Parenthood in his name. He does not want you to make the check out to "PPWP," or send it to 933 Liberty Ave., Pittsburgh, PA 15222.
City Paper apologizes to readers who might have thought Dougherty did want you to do these things. We tried to make it clear that contributing to Planned Parenthood was probably the last thing Dougherty wanted -- and that this was precisely why City Paper was suggesting it. City Paper's point was that Duquesne administrators had hijacked WDUQ's name and reputation to promote their own ideology; we were merely returning the favor.
But apparently, at least one person, Charles J. Dougherty, was confused on this point.
So to ensure there are no further misunderstandings, Chris Potter will make another contribution in the name of Charles J. Dougherty. This time it will be to NARAL Pro-Choice America, the country's foremost advocate for reproductive freedom.
If you care to follow suit, make out your check to "NARAL Pro-Choice America," and mail it to 1156 15th Street NW, Washington, DC 20005. Bear in mind, please, that Charles J. Dougherty does not wish to be associated with your gift.