Anthony and Barbara Scarpo, a wealthy couple based in Tampa, Florida, once pledged $1.35 million to the Academy of the Holy Names, a Catholic school their own daughters attended.
But the couple is now suing the school — demanding their money back — because they claim the school is too “woke” and not Catholic enough.
The lawsuit is just a list of FOX News-type grievances aiming to punish the school’s leaders for trying to educate students about being decent human beings aware of our nation’s history and how to treat others with basic decency. The Scarpos’ complaint, in some parts, just reeks of people who can’t handle confronting racism.
… the Academy in actuality failed to provide any semblance of a Catholic education conforming to mainstream Catholicism or the Catholic Catechism and instead insidiously indoctrinated its students, requiring that they, “check their white privilege,” and feel sufficiently guilty merely because of the color of their skin and because their parents could afford their attendance at the Academy.
How do they justify that? The complaint explains how school officials publicly said the community rejects “the racism and hatred reflected in the deaths of Ahmaud Arbery, George Floyd, and Breonna Taylor.” That sounds sensible enough, though the couple claims that actually taught students they “should be guilty if you are white and your parents can afford our tuition.”
The Scarpos are also mad the school promoted respect for LGBTQ people:
… contrary to its advertising as being a Catholic school, Defendant Academy avoided and continues to avoid all mention of main-stream Catholicism or the accepted Catholic Catechism. For example, on a blackboard at the entrance to the school where all ages pass, Defendant Academy explains how to be a good ally to LGBTQ+ individuals but utterly fails to put any part of this explanation into perspective with mainstream Catholicism or the Catholic Catechism…
That’s a long way of saying the Scarpos want students to know the Catholic Church teaches that homosexual acts are “intrinsically disordered.” But no one’s denying the Church teaches that! You can be a good ally, and support LGBTQ rights, while still upholding Church teachings in your personal life — just as Joe Biden can be a practicing Catholic who opposes abortion privately but understands the importance of pro-choice policies publicly.
Divya Kumar of the Tampa Bay Times reports:
In addition to asking for a return of the pledged donation, the lawsuit seeks a tuition refund. It also asks that the academy be stopped from advertising itself as a Catholic institution and for the Florida Catholic Conference to stop accrediting the school.
The school has denied the claims. In a letter to Adam Levine, the Scarpos’ lawyer, Tampa lawyer Gregory Hearing called the lawsuit a publicity stunt. If the Scarpos choose to move forward, he said, the academy would consider filing a counterclaim asking them to pay the remainder of their pledge, which he said Florida law may require them to do.
It seems rather obvious that what this school is teaching is perfectly aligned with the better Catholic schools throughout the country. They embrace Catholicism without necessarily shoving it down students’ throats. They make sure students get a quality education and graduate understanding their obligations to the broader culture. Not every Catholic school works that way, but many do, and they should be commended for it.
The Scarpos, who have a daughter who graduated from the school, are basically implying that she’s at a disadvantage in the future because she learned to be compassionate and sympathetic. Do you know how shitty you have to be to make the Catholic Church look good?! If this is a publicity stunt by the Scarpos, who knows what they’re trying to achieve because everything in the lawsuit makes the school look pretty damn decent.
Can’t say the same about the family, though. They have enough wealth to make a donation of over a million dollars yet none of that money can buy them an ounce of self-awareness.
(Image via Facebook. Thanks to Jeff for the link)