I had a visit to our Catholic parish the other day from an elderly lady suffering from cancer. She had two anecdotes about how successful the FBI is in fomenting violence against those guilty of the crime of believing in Jesus while Catholic. The gentlemen she mentioned might actually be FBI agents frustrated at their apparent lack of success in their profiling of Catholics as domestic terrorists. The agents, apparently, feel they have to step up preliminary terrorist activities against Catholics so as to teach the general public how to go about committing whatever violence against Catholics.
EXPERIENCE #ONE: Our elderly lady suffering from cancer told me how she was at a restaurant with friends the other day and quietly made the Sign of the Cross for a prayer before meals. It’s a quintessentially Catholic thing to do. The neighboring table erupted with a guy getting up and accosting her, belligerenting about her being a ♬ CATHOLIC ♬ and how she’s therefore an FBI targeted ♬ DOMESTIC TERRORIST ♬.
I bet that was a-not-at-all-out-of-control FBI agent who was actually very purposed in doing this for the benefit of the entire now-gone-silent, shocked restaurant, giving everyone else an example of how to do up hatred of Catholics. Otherwise – think about it – it otherwise just can’t happen. Too particular. Too at-the-ready. But he didn’t get the reaction he wanted. Of course not.
Mentions of “FBI” and “Catholic” and “Domestic terrorist”? Consider what our guys and gals are trained to do when they hunt terrorists around the world. They shoot them on the spot. This guy could have easily taken out a gun and shot our quiet, prayers-before-meals-cancer-patient elderly lady. This guy was purposely escalating from 0 to 100 to get some sort of reaction by which he could prove his point. He was dangerously believing his own fake narrative, filling himself with an adrenaline count he wouldn’t have the training to control. This is exactly how the FBI does up social engineering when frustrated with behind the desk efforts. Where’s FBI agent Ray Epps? Was this him?
EXPERIENCE #TWO: Our elderly lady suffering from cancer told me about the Latin Mass Catholic parish where she attends many hundreds of miles from my parish, not in my diocese, you know, much closer to FBI Richmond. It seems the FBI was there in church, you know, just gathering footnotes, anecdotes as proof that all Catholics everywhere are terrorists. Surprise, surprise.
Seems he was doing up preliminaries for humint Type Five Assessments involving human tripwire sourcing wherein it is legal to do up extortion, blackmail, and bribery. This guy was, from the description, totally squared away. Agents are always so obvious. He was standing at the back of the Church just before Holy Mass, not accepting multiple super-polite invitations to take a seat in a pew. He had his phone out documenting exactly who was there, making it obvious he was counting people and commenting on everyone in a flurry on his phone, scaring everyone, and then departing. We’ve already had many of these violently self-absorbed personages at our parish. Then they go, frustrated that everyone is so gentle, so friendly, so inviting, so not-racist, so not-anti-Semitic… just… you know… friendly.
But the accusations of domestic terrorism and the escalating of apparently setting up terrorist incidents against Catholics in churches sets up a dangerous cultural shift. Dangerous is exactly what you get when a government labels an entire class of people, by the tens of millions, as domestic terrorists. It ain’t Catholics that are going to be dangerous, but it seems to me that history has witnessed time and again that law enforcement will do whatever the ones paying them their salaries want. Political law enforcement.
But it’s not working.
- What these thugs and buffoons did to Mark Hauck’s family didn’t work.
- What these thugs and buffoons do to little old ladies battling cancer just making a quiet Sign of the Cross before meals in a restaurant didn’t work.
- What these thugs and buffoons do at Holy Mass doesn’t work.
Historically, when whatever military or law enforcement agency is bored because their “enemies” are peaceful, they will do some act of real violence against their own country, their own civilians, then blame their enemies, giving them an excuse unilaterally to escalate violence, take away rights, grab properties. That’s just how it is with our fallen human nature.
So very frustrated, is the FBI now escalating? Sad state of affairs.
What’s the next emergency powers event? Is the solution to whatever fake crisis against the 10 commandments? Are pious Catholics the ones most likely to rebel? Is there a need to perceive Catholics as terrorists for their rebellion in not wanting to do what is immoral? Will that make detaining the “rebels” all the more easy? Are there going to be lockdowns? Will the Sacraments be forbidden again? Will there be the full force of Martial Law thrown up against Catholics trying to get the Last Rites, Confession, or just want to go to Holy Mass?
By the way, why are almost no bishops reprimanding the Feds for this persecution of Catholics? And the Holy See? Nothing? What the hell is up with that?
17 responses to “FBI violently harassing Catholics?”
We desperately need to widen the Overton window. If only all those who attend Mass but who self-censor in every day life stopped doing so, this kind of thing would quickly become unthinkable,
Karen in Cambridge, UK
I haven’t studied the overton window but it sounds like a brutish democracy. It requires everyone to be saintly but of course not everyone is a saint but pretty much everyone thinks he is. Here in these USA we do not have a democracy but a Constitutional Republic with rights such as the free exercise of religion not granted by government but recognized in law as God-given. But having said that, we also say that we have a government for, by, and of the people. It’s good to speak up. Yet, this isn’t a loudmouth might makes right riot. We are to respect natural law and divine law and helpful human law that is consonant with natural and divine law.
The Overton window is a political concept that describes what actions are politically possible at the moment. The purpose of the idea of a “window of possibilities is not to identify and act upon what is possible, but to take actions that will move the window towards the direction of a desired action that lies just beyond the window, by purposely pursuing an action that lies even further outside the window.
The idea is to get the discussion and opposition to spend all their ammunition on shooting down this outrageous attempt, to desensitize them into accepting a “compromise” which just happens to be the desired action . For example:
One wishes to make politically acceptable, greater latitude for abortion by proposing abortion up to and including birth. The opposition expends political capitol fighting this insane idea. “Plants” in the oppositions suggest a “compromise,” which by comparison seems, only by having moved the Overton window by this tactic, now ostensibly reasonable.
Another example is the drag queen story times, lap-dances in schools, etc. By actually implementing these ideas, proponents of the LGBTQrstugetheidea get to play victim from the backlash and the conversation is turned to protecting this class by blah, blah, blah.
In other words, the Overton window is the movement of a political fulcrum in relation to a political lever in order to amplify political power. The accumulation of political power in service of the selfish will to power, not for the greater good.
But I am just a sinner – what do I know?
You know a lot of you know you’re a sinner.
007, I had not heard of the Overton window until I read the above comments and thank you for your very clear exposition of it. You see clearly overall but it was your 4th paragraph that struck a personal chord for I have a family member whose present beliefs, attitudes and behaviours epitomise what you describe. It’s heartbreaking. He sees himself as a victim, claiming he lives in fear for his life because of “homophobes” and “transphobes” (anyone, really, who is not a member or ally of the LGBTQIA community and especially Catholics who hold to the traditional teachings of the Church) and is an online activist and hero of his own story as he works to shame all who do not agree wth him as he demands protection for his people/community by way of universal acceptance of their way of life as something good. His particular interest is children and having them “protected” from being taught the Christian religion and hence to hate (so he claims) and also their “right” to puberty-blockers and other assistance protected. If there is one person he hates the most it is the mother who raised him in the Catholic religion. He suffers with relatively new depression which he does not blame on his relatively new “lifestyle” but on her and the Church for telling him the path he is on is wrong and mortal sins lead to hell if not repented of. His mother was especially disturbed by a picture he reposted of a man in the LGBTQIA community with the caption “Are you male or female?” with the response, “Baby, I’m an affront to god” (that being the mindset behind being “out and proud” I suppose). These activists claim persecution but they are among those inciting persecution of those who truly love them and want their good: parents who have not yet lost the plot and the Church faithful to its founder, Jesus Christ.
Oh my goodness, Mum, I am also heartbroken for your family member. I will add my prayers to yours for the Lord to bring back your loved one to the Truth.
In fact, let’s both say a Rosary for your loved one. I’ll start as soon as I submit this comment, and you can start any time after you read my comment. The Lord will connect our prayers over time and across space.
The Lord hears the cry of the poor. Blessed be the Lord.
Thank you, so very much 007. Father M brought Holy Communion this morning and after thanksgiving I prayed the Rosary, uniting it to yours asking God through the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of our Mother Mary to bring back my loved one to the faith.
Thank you again. Your concern and prayer for him is very much appreciated and comforting.
It’s getting crazy out there. God bless and the sweet, courageous, pious elderly lady! Praying for you and your safety too, Father.
Thanks for the reply..”007″
>a shrinking Overton window reflects a check upon the government’s power.
It simply means that citizens become serfs as they have no way of doing their citizen’s duty of holding up government actions to public scrutiny.
> Expanding the Overton window makes for an unfocused government because many more actions may be taken
This is only true in a context in which government feels empowered to legislate for any matter discussed by citizens but this in itself is a situation which would not arise if citizens were holding government to account for exercising power only within the limits of legitimate authority. Citizens are unable to do this if they never discuss politics. If citizens do not hold those in power to account and hold their actions up to public scrutiny and dscuss alternatives to government policy on a full range of issues, government will steadily encroach on all areas whether or not they are covered in public discourse and it will quickly become impossible to do anything at all without permission from the State.
The Overton window is about what is and is not open for discussion and hence critque by citizens.
It is our job to make sure that nothing is off limits, most especially not freedom of worship and the sanctity of life.
Of course, regarding the living Truth, Jesus Christ, doctrine, morality, we can develop understanding, but not throw everything into an Hegelian vortex, like, say, the Synod on Synodality…
Quite right, Father. I found most telling, the cognitively dissonant remark:
“The Overton window is about what is and is not open for discussion and hence critque by citizens.
It is our job to make sure that nothing is off limits, most especially not freedom of worship and the sanctity of life.”
Everything is already open to discussion, even “third rails” such as SS reform, which reside far outside of the Overton window. This is evidence that the window is not about what may be discussed, but what may be accomplished. But let me point out the dissonance.
“Our job is to make sure that nothing is off limits” is how a society jumps from liberty to libertine, and is not consonant with “especially not freedom of worship and the sanctity of life” which, to me, comes off as pandering.
For a concerned commenter, I see a marked defense of one particular understanding of the Overton window as a”simple” matter. I am unpersuaded by the transparent appeal to fear of “It simply means that citizens become serfs as they have no way of doing their citizen’s duty of holding up government actions to public scrutiny.” What a non-sequitur.
Father, I apologize for taking the bait of “Overton window” and momentarily turning your readers attention from the Spiritual, to the worldly. Jesus is the one, the only one.
We live in this world, 007, which our Lord also took pains to describe, only to say, Behold, I have told you beforehand. That’s so we wouldn’t be scandalized, you know, because He remains the One, the only One.
Ever since Eve and Adam (the order of the downfall) were sucked in by the spiel of the original “Snake Oil” salesman things have been getting more and more crazy. Who would ever think that a very elderly “Catholic” national leader would be perverting law enforcement as a means to harm his co-religionists? Well, here we are. It is best to follow the advice of St. Teresa of Avila. We need to be reminded how this all turns out in the end.
Please be careful, Father. There are so many crazys out there
Thanks for the replies.
I should perhaps have defined my terms..I had recognised the phenomenon a long time before I heard the expression and was glad to have it as a shrinking Overton window explained why I had
had a sense of increasing suffocation in exchanges with peers over the past thirty years. How delightful are my memories of being able to discuss anything and everything with a wide variety of friends from a vast array of different backgrounds after dinner at College in the 1980s in conversations which often lasted half the night without any of us falling out and now I can barely talk about Sacramentals with fellow Mass-attenders lest the conversation offend.
“The Overton window of political possibility is the range of ideas the public is willing to consider and accept.”
As Catholics I feel we are called to push back against the strategy so starkly outlined by “007”
which aims at preventing us from responding to the Great Commission and indeed from carrying out any of the Spiritual Works of Mercy but not by adopting the same tactics; simply by doing what we are called to do; catechising, evangelising and listening to others who may be sent to catechise us. In particular it seems to me vital that we reaffirm at every possible juncture to sanctity of human life from conception until natural death to counter the current campaign to make suicide by elderly people and abortion by exprectant mothers into unquestionable and laudable exercises of social responsibility.
This is why despite my disinclination to wear sloganised clothing I try to wear as often as possible a sweat shirt designed by our talented illustrator of a daughter
depicting a nuclear familty plus grandparents with the slogan readable across a room; ” A person’s a person no matter how small. Or how old. Or how ill.”
Karen in Cambridge, UK
God bless you, Karen. Whoever suggested that your feelings of increased suffocation were due to a “shrinking” Overton window, were (how shall I put this charitably) economizing on the truth*. Your suffering, I submit, was due to attacks on faith, on civility, and on the free exchange of ideas.
It is an irony to suggest that an expanded Overton window would lead to greater liberty, when the opposite occurs. Expanding the Overton window makes for an unfocused government because many more actions may be taken by it. Ever heard of the saying “They that govern least, govern best?”
Consider an already gigantic U.S.government, which takes on matters far beyond its enumerated responsibilities, being presented with an even larger opportunity to take license with new matters! Can you say “Department of Disinformation?” An expanded Overton window would lead to government making more laws intrusive to individuals daily lives. The size of government would need to grow in order to “oversee” the newly created laws with new departments to regulate the implementation of each law which would require new staff, hired, not elected, to make “policies” and “penalties” to be imposed and enforced when those policies are violated.
By stark contrast, a shrinking Overton window reflects a check upon the government’s power. A check that is imposed by an engaged and virtuous people for whom and whose pleasure the government is meant to serve. A small Overton window allows only a parochial government, that is to say, a focused government.
* I recall that it was Samuel Clemens who, when caught spinning a tale, quipped [I paraphrase] “Sir, nothing is more valuable than the truth! So why not economize?”
One might be thankful that this is anti-Catholic movement is being acknowledged. It has quietly been going on for decades. Oddly the attack against Catholics is being led by Catholics.
Forced Behavior Initiative