Even CST must be judged as to under which part of the ordinary Magisterium various pronouncements fall. The Compendium of Catholic Social Doctrine recognizes that CST is a product of moral theology. However, Zmirak may go too far in his critique -- slavery which is a punishment may not be unjust or intrinsically evil. There probably has been a change on teaching on the charging of interest for certain loans, to the detriment of society. As for religious liberty - I do not think his interpretation of Dignitatis Humanae as a rupture with previous papal prenouncements is the only tenable one. Finally, the infliction of pain as a punishment is different in its moral species from its use to coerce the revealing of information or the confession of guilt. The latter, as a means of coercion, is unjust, unless it has the character of punishment (for disobeying a lawful command to reveal information), but even that justification of the use of torture is problematic when one considers due process and procedural justice.
Zmirak has shifted in his views over time and the essay reflects this shift.
But maybe he doesn't address the problem with first-world English-speaking Western women enough in the interview. I haven't looked at the author's blog, but based on the comments and questions, he seems to be a typical Catholic socon.
For an Asian to be speaking about race relations to a predominantly white audience. "I've got my minority cred." Never mind that generally relations between Asians and African-Americans are very cool, if not worse.
In light of the post I just wrote on Catholic secondary education, I flipped over to the website of Gregory the Great Academy to get an update. (Why was the title of Saint dropped from the name of the school? I had noticed this before, when the initial attempt was made to resurrect the school after it had been closed in Elmhurst.)
iirc, they try to implement the ideas of John Senior in conjunction with a liberal arts program.
They are probably doing the best with what they have, but is there a cheap (and more dignified) alternative to the modern desk/chair combo? I would prefer something more along the lines of a long oval or rectangular table, even if the class is not a seminar/discussion/tutorial.
I had said I would write a response to a comment left by a reader in May of last year regarding Catholic classical education in the San Francisco Bay Area, and I am getting to it now. This post will probably not be as long or thorough as I originally planned; the notes for it I have typed somewhere but I do not know in what document.
I don't think I need to list the advantages of a classical education in combination with a liberal education. (Though I will have to write something up eventually if we were to promote such a school.) It would be economically advantageous and more in-line with the nobility of education to have school that is affordable, low tuition and financial assistance for families that cannot afford it. But with the real-state prices in the Bay Area as inflated as they are and the costs of construction, the economics may be prohibitive. (Unless one builds in the less developed areas that are next to the Bay Area - but then how could such a school serve those who live here?)
There used to be a school attached to the FSSP parish in Sacramento. I did not know about the initiative in Concord which was mentioned by my reader. In Napa there are Kolbe Academy and Trinity Prep, and in the South Bay there is at least one non-denominational Christian school that offers a classical education at the secondary level. I suspect the state of Catholic education here is abysmal (intellectually, morally, and spiritually); I do not know if all of the local Roman-rite dioceses have adopted Common Core, but it would not be surprising if that were the case.
If such a school were to be started, would it be easier to start with grade 9, and then a middle school could be added later? But it seems that the transition phase would have to start with a middle school, if the students are to receive an adequate instruction in Latin (and eventually more than a beginning introduction to Greek). Those who do not enroll in the school until grade 9 may have to be put on a different (or less rigorous) track for classical languages. (Would it be possible to squeeze in 3 years of Latin and 2 years of Greek along with all of the other requirements at the secondary level into 4 years?)
Even if there is funding now, with the precarious state of the economy could such a school be financially sustained? It seems rather risky. Or should that not be a concern, and we are to leave the school in the hands of God? Is it wasteful though to seek the resources for the multimillion dollar construction of a school campus if the school goes out of business shortly after it is completed (or even while it is being built)? Not to mention the consequences of taking on big loans for such a project...
Because of my opposition to exploiting families to keep the higher-ed bubble inflated, I do not think the school should do much to push students in the direction of pursuing a college education, unless they have clear goals in mind which require such an education and they have the intellectual talents to justify it. Nonetheless, I think the school would have to be marketed as a college prep school; otherwise parents here would not enroll their children in it. If we are ambitious, we might even claim that the education provided by the secondary school (and middle school) is superior to some colleges (even Catholic ones) with respect to the holistic formation it provides, as well as the intellectual training. [Did not pupils in the medieval universities enroll in their early teens? Was this true up to the Renaissance and the colleges/universities of St. Ignatius?]
It would be best for the school to advocate vocational training for those who have the aptitude and interest; could the curriculum allow time for vocational training? And what sort of vocational training do our young people need for the post-carbon era? How many of our trades will still be needed?
The school could also be promoted as our solution to the current man crisis; as such the school would not be co-ed but for young men only. (Though another school, with a different education, could be created in the future for young women.) More on this aspect some other time. Ideally, the each graduating class would be around the size of a company (100-120) but would the school need to embrace a greater (and less ideal) scale in order to be sustainable? (I would have to compare it with Catholic high schools in the area, along with other private schools.)