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Michigan football coach Jim Harbaugh addressed an extremely controversial topic during a podcast interview with the National Review’s Jay Nordlinger on Saturday morning.
Near the end of the interview, after talking at length about the COVID-19 pandemic, Harbaugh brought up his views on abortion — something he called “horrendous.”
Harbaugh, who is gearing up for his sixth year with the Wolverines, hit on a number of topics during the nearly hour-long interview, including his thoughts about the upcoming season returning amid the coronavirus outbreak. While the pandemic has significantly altered life for Americans all across the country, Harbaugh said he’s noticed a growing sense of community and caring — especially among young people — that he hadn’t seen before.
“Even now, as we all go through what we’re going through with COVID-19, I see people more concerned about others,” Harbaugh said on the podcast. “More prayerful. As I said, God has virtually stopped the world from spinning. I don’t think it’s coincidence. My personal feeling, living a faith-based life, this is a message or this is something that should be a time where we grow on our faith for reverence and respect for God. You see people taking more of a view of sanctity of life. And I hope that can continue. I hope it continues, and not just in this time of crisis or pandemic.”
That, though, is when the tail end of the interview took a turn. Harbaugh, unprompted, decided to share his views on abortion.
“And lastly, abortion. We talk about the sanctity of life, yet we live in a society that aborts babies,” Harbaugh said on the podcast. “There can’t be anything more horrendous.”
The topic change seemed to catch Nordlinger off guard, too, who broke several seconds of awkward silence by saying, “indeed” before ending the interview there.
Now, Harbaugh is certainly allowed to take that stance on abortion. It’s his right to do so. However hearing those comments from him, a college football head coach at one of the most storied programs in the sport’s history, is truly stunning.
Not only are there more important matters at hand — like the more than 518,000 confirmed cases and 20,100 deaths due to the coronavirus in the United States as of Saturday afternoon, according to The New York Times — but his comments are sure to drive a deep wedge between Wolverines fans across the country.
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