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St. Ignatius College Preparatory, San Francisco
  • Rethinking Africa: The staff of the African Advocacy Network includes Joe Sciarrillo, pictured here with Jean Elias Xavier, Director Aboudou Traore, Charles Jackson and Clementine Ntshaykolo outside their office in the Dolores Street Community Services building. They help a growing number of African immigrants to the Bay Area who may number as many as 50,000.
  • Retiring Pillars: SI’s faculty surprised Fr. Sauer in May with applause and flowers after the announcement of his reassignment.
  • The SI boys’ lacrosse team enjoyed what may have been best year since its founding nearly a quarter century ago. The lacrosse press ranked the team among the top 15 in the nation as SI turned in another undefeated season in league play – its fourth undefeated season since it joined the WCAL in 2010.
  • Richard Driscoll ’06, a performance engineer for Oracle Team USA that will defend the America’s Cup in September, is among the few locals hunkering down in Pier 80 off Marin Street, where they work 65-hour weeks to make sure that Ellison’s boat sails twice as fast as the wind and maneuvers with precision and power as it takes on challengers from around the world.
  • Retiring Pillars: Since the 1970s, Mary McCarty made sure Latin was a living language for students in her classes.
  • Rethinking Africa: Ira Shaughnessy ’00 spent two years in Ghana from 2007 to 2009 working with the Bormase helping with the cultivation of the Moringa tree, whose leaves are rich in vitamins.

Op Ed



Liam Bischoff ’15
Contributing Editor 

St. Ignatius College Preparatory, on the whole, is up to date with what’s trending and happening in our community. We are also a school that calls out controversial topics when we see them (witness the movement to “bring back the announcement period”). But how willing are we to call out major issues that affect the United States and the world?

While most SI students could tell you the name of the number one game in the App Store right now, they wouldn’t know that the Elvis impersonator originally charged with mailing ricin poison to our President and a Senator had all charges dropped against him, and now the FBI has arrested a new suspect!

 I am in no way condemning the student body, I mean I have a hard time checking Ms. Finn’s announcements daily, but many students are so wrapped up in their own little bubbles that they don’t give a hootenanny about anyone else.

I realize that watching Wolf Blitzer or Anderson Cooper on CNN is not the most captivating thing in the world, and reading The Economist can be the equivalent of reading an air conditioning manual written in ancient Slavic, but doing both of those things keeps people informed of happenings in the world. Bray McDonnell ’15 comments, “I read The Economist in the morning as I eat my breakfast. I like to read a couple articles in the morning and a couple articles in the evening, finishing in time for the next issue”—but he’s an exception. Although a significant number of students check either “Yahoo!” or another preferred on-line site for the latest news, why not also take another minute to look at The New York Times or the San Francisco Chronicle? Contrary to popular belief, reading newsprint will not kill you.

Let’s think about this. Of all the pressing matters in the world, is it more important to know who has the highest-level archers in Clash of Clans, or should we be focused on the fact that Syria has been using chemical weapons to kill its own people? If we don’t even know what the problems are, we must take the initiative and live up to our amazing reputation of being men and women with and for others. Pay attention to what’s happening!

Monday or Friday mornings, teachers could address current events with students, introducing students to politics, social justice issues, and the like. We would all benefit from learning a little more about our world and our place in it. Megan Lau ’13 reflects, “I wish I had the opportunity to learn more about current events before my AP Government class. I’m flabbergasted by the manipulation and corruption within our government, but at least I can watch and understand The Daily Show, SNL, and the Colbert Report now.” When we approach the world’s issues with interest, humor, and analysis, we gain understanding. The day we become oblivious to the issues in our world is the day we start to forfeit our humanity.

Posted by Mr. Paul J. Totah on Friday May, 24, 2013 at 12:21PM


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