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Thoughts from Dr. Joe: Reflecting on Flintridge Sacred Heart's history

March 19, 2014|By Joe Puglia

We’re all stories, when all is said and done. The past becomes our mythology with hidden metaphors tucked in the crevasses of our life. The metaphors become our poetry and in time, poetry becomes legend. Legendary truth, however, is different than historical truth. Legends change us, as they are the historical notes of those who left a treasure.

Last week I sat on the hill at Flintridge Sacred Heart High School contemplating the age-old legend of three Dominican Sisters who, in 1931, walked humbly up the slope to take possession of their new school. They carried a statue of the Blessed Mother and a $5 bill. I can see the sisters struggling as they carry the statue upward in the August heat. I see them carrying something else: a vision to build a school. Eighty-two years later, Flintridge Sacred Heart rests peacefully on the hill educating young women under the banner of “VERITAS,” truth.

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“Peace, Peace! When there is no peace,” said the prophet Jeremiah. His words depict the current reality of Sacred Heart. A coalition calling themselves Protect La Cañada Flintridge continues to demonize the hill, attempting to stop FSHA’s improvement plans. FSHA has left no stone unturned to assure and maintain the quality of life and aesthetics of the community. Their efforts have conformed to the scrutiny of the commissions that adjudicate development. Their plan improves parking, builds an arts and humanities space, and renovates high school classrooms. Their goal is to create a school for young women of the 21st century.

Under the guise of “protecting” La Cañada, the coalition’s newspaper ads destroy any vestige of credibility they may have. They must think we’re a bunch of babbling idiots whereby they can print conjecture, assumptions and hyperbole and pass it off as truth.

“You can’t argue with irrationality,” my philosophy professor, Sister Audrey, told us.

“Clear and present danger” was a doctrine adopted by the Supreme Court to determine under what circumstances limits can be placed on the first amendment freedoms of speech, press, or assembly. The purpose of government is to protect the citizenry. Such protection extends to ludicrous suppositions that hide under the cloak of “freedom of speech” and thereby deter the progression of life. Government becomes an enabler by allowing the irrationality of fringe groups to hijack the provisos of freedom.

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