By Juan Carlos Ramirez ’18
CNN political reporter Eugene Scott, the Rev.. Jim McDermott, S.J. from Loyola Marymount University, Arizona Gov. Doug Ducey, and Phoenix Mayor Greg Stanton are slated to this year’s Summit on Human Dignity keynote speakers.
This year’s Summit is titled “We the People” and will focus on our call to respect the human dignity of each person especially as it pertains to democracy.
A document provided by Assistant Principal for Ministry Mr. Paul Fisko said that the Summit will present four main questions to the Brophy community.
First, “How did our political system get to this point of fracture with such distrust of government and deeply polarized and polarizing discourse in politics?”
Second, “How are the current powers of influence and processes of government essentially leaving citizens out of their own democracy?”
Third, “Why are life, liberty, and the pursuit of happiness still so hindered by issues of race, religion, family, and globalization?”
Finally, “What would responsible, inclusive, faithful citizenship look like in our modern democracy?”
The first speaker will be the Fr. McDermott.
Mr. Fisko said that his purpose is to present a religious way of looking at elections.
“Where is it that people are missing the mark in our society right now to allow people to have civil dialogue and live freely?” he said. “Why is it that we still have a problem with such a simple idea: accept everyone?”
Mr. Fisko also said that the second thing the Jesuit will do is give us some perspective on why the Catholic Church’s approach presents a middle ground opposed to a radical idea.
“Does the Catholic Church’s teachings on being involved in policy represent one or the other? No. It’s somewhere in the middle and how that can help us,” Mr. Fisko said.
CNN political reporter Eugene Scott was a national figure in the coverage of the 2016 presidential election.
Mr. Ryan Hubbell said that Mr. Scott is one of his personal friends and that he had worked many years at the Arizona Republic reporting on the downtown community, criminal justice reform and issues surrounding race.
“He now got promoted and is working for CNN,” Mr. Hubbell said. “He co-hosts their program Early Start on CNN in the morning. He also covered the Trump campaign from start to finish, so the first day he worked at CNN was the day Trump announced his running for president. He’s seen the election from the beginning up until now, and he’s going to continue to cover it.”
Mr. Hubbell also said that Mr. Scott checks many boxes that qualifies him as a relevant speaker for the student body.
“He’s also a deep man of faith too,” Mr. Hubbell said. “I think being an African-American male covering this election, given that he’s covering on a national level and that he is a person of faith, he kind of checks a lot of different boxes that makes his perspective really relevant to you guys.”
Mr. Fisko said that Mr. Scott will be second speaker, and he will dive deep into the media and how it influences human beings when it comes to elections.
“Everything from news reporting to false news reporting to the power of Twitter … things like that,” Mr. Fisko said. “If all you do is go to one news source, does that do you a disservice to only go to one news service or only hear certain opinion papers?”
Mr. Fisko said that Mayor Stanton and Gov. Ducey are slated to offer insight in a panel format on how to be a person of faith and still operate as a person who serves the people.
“Hopefully they offer stories of personal struggles,” Mr. Fisko said. “How have I really wrestled with my faith when it comes to what I want to do?”