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||John Starr III
||New Orleans, LA
||I am writing today to argue for the demolition of the building that once housed St. Francis Cabrini. I have been following this case feverishly since the beginning, and I would like to share a few points I have noticed. I am not an alumnus of Holy Cross, but my family history is tied to this school in so many different facets. My grandfather and his two sons graduated from Holy Cross, my brother is currently a senior, and my father an employee.
First, this property is only 43 year's old. And in its short lifetime, it has been plagued with maintenance problems and a cross that was broken prior to the storm. It is a difficult and expensive building to upkeep because of its unique design. I will give you that, it is unique. But unique is not historic. To me, historic design is a design that is memorable and replicated. You want historic design; look at the gothic cathedrals through out our nation. This design is easily remembered and was copied throughout. I have attended mass at Cabrini church numerous times, and I couldn't tell you what the inside looks like. I also am hard pressed to find a church building that was copied from this building.
Second, as a future educator, it makes me sad to say that our schools are nothing more than a business. It is disappointing to look at education from this angle, but it is the truth. One thing that is stopping people from rebuilding and coming back is the lack of business in the city of New Orleans. This is another business wanting to rebuild in the city. This is another group wanting to come back. The archdiocese has already stated they don't want to refurbish this building, and they have stated they don't want to reopen this parish right now. Holy Cross wants to stay in New Orleans and not abandon the city like countless other businesses. Would you rather a closed down eyesore, or a thriving school full of energy and tradition? The area and former parishioners of Cabrini have already made that decision, PLEASE don't undermine them. Holy Cross has already stated they don't want this building on their property, let's not push them to move their school to Metairie or the North Shore.
Historic is the definition of Holy Cross. With over 125 years dedicated to the enrichment of young men, Holy Cross is as much New Orleans as beignets. It is the history of my family and countless other families throughout our great city. So, I am asking for you to vote for history, not a unique building. Vote for tradition. VOTE for HOLY CROSS.