So, no wonder Joe Biden is forbidding any emphasis on Mount Rushmore on 4 July 2021. I get it. No fireworks to celebrate the Constitution that celebrates God-given unalienable rights. Dems what all rights to be repealed, trampled upon, given to whom they like as an act of politically expedient condescension. No. I celebrate the free exercise of religion, the freedom to assemble, to speak freely even when that’s unpopular, the right to defend the innocent from the threat of deadly, already being delivered aggression, etc. Let’s see… that fireworks celebration… Ah, yes…
Category Archives: Patriotism
When Cardinal Jorge Bergoglio was first presented to the world as Pope Francis, when pretty much all the more “traditional” Catholics condemned him so severely that one was condemned for asking for prayers for him, I nevertheless insisted that to be a good son of the Church I must pray for him, also at Holy Mass. But what I call the ultra-tradition-al-ism-ist began a cancel campaign for anyone promoting, say, this prayer:
V. Oremus pro Pontifice nostro N.
R. Dominus conservet eum, et vivificet eum, et beatum faciat eum in terra, et non tradat eum in animam inimicorum eius. [Ps 40:3]
Pater Noster… Ave Maria…
Deus, omnium fidelium pastor et rector, famulum tuum N., quem pastorem Ecclesiae tuae praeesse voluisti, propitius respice: da ei, quaesumus, verbo et exemplo, quibus praeest, proficere: ut ad vitam, una cum grege sibi credito, perveniat sempiternam. Per Christum, Dominum nostrum. Amen.
The ultramontane heresy of the ultra-tradition-al-ism-ists is that the Pope must be immaculately conceived and is not ever to have personally sinned, so that he has no need of our prayers and no need of Christ Jesus to be his Savior. Because that is not the case (ever), the ultra-tradition-al-ism-ists went all apoplectic in their heresy of ultamontinism and continued in condemning him to the point of condemning those who prayed for him. Too sad. We will all stand before Him whom we have all pierced, all of us, men of every tribe and race and people and nation. What’s there not to understand with this. We pray for the Pope as we pray for each other.
- “Father George, you don’t understand. If you pray for Pope Francis that means that you agree with everything he says no matter what and you’re going to go to hell just like him because we said so and everything!
Sigh. Remember Peter, who denied our Lord three times and only later became Saint Peter? I’m guessing that he was martyred because Divine Jesus’ good mom, the Immaculate Virgin, prayed for him, already then assumed to heaven soul and body, Queen of heaven and earth, angels and men. We follow her lead. Get it?
But what about praying the likes of the present POTUS Joe Biden, the most anti-Catholic pro-abort ever? Saint Peter himself has something to say about that (1 Peter 2:11-17):
- “Beloved, I urge you as aliens and sojourners to keep away from worldly desires that wage war against the soul. Maintain good conduct among the Gentiles, so that if they speak of you as evildoers, they may observe your good works and glorify God on the day of visitation. Be subject to every human institution for the Lord’s sake, whether it be to the king as supreme or to governors as sent by him for the punishment of evildoers and the approval of those who do good. For it is the will of God that by doing good you may silence the ignorance of foolish people. Be free, yet without using freedom as a pretext for evil, but as slaves of God. Give honor to all, love the community, fear God, honor the king.”
A generation later, in the Letter to Diognetus, from waaaaaaaay back in the day, like the end of the first or beginning of the second century, addressed to the early Christians, all Catholic, of course, we read this:
- “For the Christians are distinguished from other men neither by country, nor language, nor the customs which they observe. For they neither inhabit cities of their own, nor employ a peculiar form of speech, nor lead a life which is marked out by any singularity. The course of conduct which they follow has not been devised by any speculation or deliberation of inquisitive men; nor do they, like some, proclaim themselves the advocates of any merely human doctrines. But, inhabiting Greek as well as barbarian cities, according as the lot of each of them has determined, and following the customs of the natives in respect to clothing, food, and the rest of their ordinary conduct, they display to us their wonderful and confessedly striking method of life. They dwell in their own countries, but simply as sojourners. As citizens, they share in all things with others, and yet endure all things as if foreigners. Every foreign land is to them as their native country, and every land of their birth as a land of strangers. They marry, as do all [others]; they beget children; but they do not destroy their offspring. They have a common table, but not a common bed. They are in the flesh, but they do not live after the flesh. 2 Corinthians 10:3 They pass their days on earth, but they are citizens of heaven. Philippians 3:20 They obey the prescribed laws, and at the same time surpass the laws by their lives. They love all men, and are persecuted by all. They are unknown and condemned; they are put to death, and restored to life. 2 Corinthians 6:9 They are poor, yet make many rich; 2 Corinthians 6:10 they are in lack of all things, and yet abound in all; they are dishonored, and yet in their very dishonor are glorified. They are evil spoken of, and yet are justified; they are reviled, and bless; 2 Corinthians 4:12 they are insulted, and repay the insult with honor; they do good, yet are punished as evil-doers. When punished, they rejoice as if quickened into life; they are assailed by the Jews as foreigners, and are persecuted by the Greeks; yet those who hate them are unable to assign any reason for their hatred. /// To sum up all in one word — what the soul is in the body, Christians are in the world. The soul is dispersed through all the members of the body, and Christians are scattered through all the cities of the world. The soul dwells in the body, yet is not of the body; and Christians dwell in the world, yet are not of the world. The invisible soul is guarded by the visible body, and Christians are known indeed to be in the world, but their godliness remains invisible. The flesh hates the soul, and wars against it, 1 Peter 2:11 though itself suffering no injury, because it is prevented from enjoying pleasures; the world also hates the Christians, though in nowise injured, because they abjure pleasures. The soul loves the flesh that hates it, and [loves also] the members; Christians likewise love those that hate them. The soul is imprisoned in the body, yet keeps together that very body; and Christians are confined in the world as in a prison, and yet they keep together the world. The immortal soul dwells in a mortal tabernacle; and Christians dwell as sojourners in corruptible [bodies], looking for an incorruptible dwelling in the heavens. The soul, when but ill-provided with food and drink, becomes better; in like manner, the Christians, though subjected day by day to punishment, increase the more in number. God has assigned them this illustrious position, which it were unlawful for them to forsake.”
/// UPDATE: So after weeks of having gone missing, the American Flag is back up, coincidentally just hours after my having put up this post. :-) ///
Someone has been removing the American Flags from the town properties. I noticed many times the empty flagpole pictured above after 6 January 2021 and before the inauguration on 20 January 2021. I was waiting for it to be replaced. No one would take down the flag to destroy it in this town, surely.
I have some history with the particular flag that was here. My neighbor purchased it himself because the town had just let the other one rot away. The town flag that rotted out was a 3’x5′ flag. My neighbor replaced it with a 8’x12′ high quality outdoor heavily stitched flag. I helped him hoist this one up a while back, and then later, on one of patriotic days on the calendar, I had brought it down to half mast in the morning and put her up once again at 12:00 Noon, as required to honor our fallen veterans. This flag, topping up the highest point in town, the town’s memorial to our fallen veterans, had a special significance since it was very much emphasizing our local fallen veterans.
In the past this blog has sported many posts on the American Flag. This post has consistently been visited ever since going up some years ago:
That happened just over the mountain from Andrews, up in Graham County.
Back to the town flags. The large flag mentioned up top of this post disappeared. But there’s another American flag in another town park, next to train tracks, down from the gazebo. It was quite a bit smaller. It taken down and simply tossed over some bushes. It’s been put back up by patriots. But the trashing of this flag may indicate that the larger flag was kept for desecration in an upcoming protest.
There are a number of other town flags, down by the highway, next to a largely abandoned strip mall, etc. We’ll see what happens to those. So far, no one has stolen the flags on my street. There are plenty. And there are many others round about, also with flag poles put up at quite an expense to the owners.
Those who have flags displayed around the town year round all have stories, mostly Army, including 82nd and 101st Airborne and others, including Navy, the USMC, Airforce… the usual, though no Space Force, yet. There are almost uncountable guys and gals retired out of careers on some kind of Intel, either military intel or other agencies and institutes, not to mention contractors galore. I couldn’t point to any who are not very much involved in service of the local community in a myriad ways, such as being at the top of their game as EMTs, such as risking their lives as firemen.
Apparently we are now back to the Dem days of past administrations when all veterans, all police, all active duty military and National Guardsmen were suspected to be… terrorists. Stunning. But now it’s worse.
This country does have its problems. We have a fallen human nature that people will follow up on. Of course there are going to be problems. But this is the fatherland we have, the patria, whence we have the virtue of patriotism, giving due honor to one’s country. This is not some sort of bad and evil and malicious nationalism of the sort which plays identity politics. No. This is the nationalism of a family. We help each other strive for excellence, for what is best for everyone while never letting go of what is good for the individual: not the mob-rule of the wildly fake “democracy” of dictator Dems, but the good of a Constitutional Republic with the Rule of Law (which is to be the same for everyone equally), which recognizes unalienable God-given rights, and three diverse branches of government.
Why, you might ask, do I make such a big deal of the flag and patriotism? Because if the Constitution is destroyed, if the Rule of Law becomes a merely a jackbooted power play, the very first right to be smashed into the pavement will be the free exercise of religion.
Why, you might ask, do I care? After all, as a priest I should know of the superabundance of martyrs throughout the centuries and today and that I cannot expect that we should somehow be exempt where we happen to live. Indeed. Jesus said: “As the Master so the disciple.”
My heart is ready, O God, my heart is ready.
Also most pro-life.
The video below is just three minutes. By the end, you’ll know that we are all Americans, together. Listening to the patriotic emotion of this gentleman in the video is one of the many re-set buttons we need in these USA. Patriotism is a virtue that is consonant with all that is Judeo-Catholic. Oh, and there’s one more thing I have to say about this…
Amen and amen. :-)
Below is a screen shot of Google’s totally dishonest YouTube presentation, claiming, falsely, that the Associated Press is supreme judge certifying election results with a “SHOW ME” button, which only presents deep-state mass media idiocy:
Google’s proclamation of “robust safeguards” do not refer to the integrity of elections and results but to the instantaneously manipulatable Dominion voting machines (which were manufactured to be easily manipulatable imnsho), the relegating of observers in back of boarded up windows, the commanded ignoring of diverse signatures, of no signatures, of dead people voting, of non-citizens voting, the counting of tranches of thousands of mail-in ballots appearing out of nowhere long after the election even 100% of which were for Joe Biden, the even violent intimidation, on and on, and on and on, and on and on…
Dear President Trump, I agree with you. The 2020 presidential election was rigged and rigged against you, against the country, against me, for I voted for you (and I can say that as a priest as it is after the election, right?).
Dear President Trump, you are my president now, and whatever happens in future, you’re still my president. Oh, and just to say, if the AG is going to be Kamala’s relative, I had better say this, just in case he tries to throw me in prison for sedition: When I say that Trump will still be my president, I could be referring to an endearing emotion, right?
I could be referring to 2024, right? I’m guessing if Harris-Biden gets in, there will be an introduction of the guillotine for the 74 million+ who voted for Trump, you know, because it is all about being enlightened like the low information people proclaiming liberté, égalité, fraternité. They are right about all that liberté, égalité, fraternité, but exclusively only for the children of hell. Recall the assault, rape, murder, arson, looting and violence against innocent citizens, against law enforcement and firefighters and emergency medical responders in Democrat controlled cities. Get it?
Having said that – and I’m no attorney – I’ll add that while it is felony for an individual to commit voter fraud I believe (not a legal term) that it is traitorous to arrange massive voter fraud. A coup d’état, violent or not, even just attempted, is an act of treason is it not? And we know what the penalty is for that, right?
Having said that, I add that I myself publicly challenged the “American Community Survey” of the “U.S. Census Bureau” of the “Department of Commerce”, and that public challenge, because public, could be considered sedition, right? And we know what the penalty is for that, right? Touché. But I do go on…
There is an honest Judge who is not under control of the traitors of these United States of America, an honest Judge, God Himself, in whom we trust: He will come judge the living and the dead and the world by fire, including those who think they are presently powerful in their lack of honesty, their lack of integrity, their lack of patriotism.
Let me spell all that out:
- Election fraud is an act of hate against God. These fraudsters voted God out of their party, and they will lie, cheat and do whatever they have to do to get their party “in” so as to make sure God is “out,” so as to make sure there that the unalienable right to the free exercise of religion is removed from the Constitution.
- Election fraud is an act of hate against neighbor. It cancels individuals in their tens of millions.
- Election fraud is an act of hate against the military who have served and have given their lives that we might be free to have free and fair elections for a government which is to be of, for and by the people.
- Election fraud is an act of hate against law enforcement in this election, as one side supports a Constitutional Republic and the Rule of Law while the other wants to defund and even eliminate police, and even endanger them, mortally, because of policies designed to bring harm to them.
- Election fraud is an act of hate against children in this election, as one side is all about protecting life from conception while the other side is all about death for all, all the time: kill the children they scream, both inside and just outside the womb.
- Election fraud is an act of hate against the elderly, as is proven by the promise of these fraudsters to once again kill off the Little Sisters of the Poor who care for the elderly, just because the Little Sisters won’t assist in killing off the littlest of Jesus’ brethren, just conceived in the womb, with abortifacient chemicals: they won’t provide “insurance” coverage to their workers that would ensure this type of murder. And thus the elderly and the dying would be thrown out onto the street to die of exposure just like aborted children who survive. This election fraud is about the willful murder of millions of Americans.
- Election fraud is an act of hate against me because I voted for POTUS Trump and I don’t like that I have been cancelled as a citizen in good standing by those who committed and are still committing election fraud in their destruction of evidence, in judging that tranches of thousands of votes mostly for Trump enough to sway an election are irrelevant, in judging that tranches of votes received after the election even 100% of which are for Biden are relevant, etc. and so forth and so on.
I mean, do you see any connection? The Green New Deal IS the Chinese Communist Party, right? I wonder if “NOW” refers to the National Organization for Women. Just sayin’.
Oh, I forgot, isn’t China the most absolute world’s worst in their arrogance of pumping out carbon emissions? Yeah, I think that would be right.
Always hypocrites, all the time, everywhere, about everything. Styrofoam puppets.
Lemme see. I think I remember a particular medal of dad.
It’s given for the World War II service in…. China. Japan was being slightly aggressive at that time. So, these USA and China were friends at one time, you know, until the Wuhan Virus was sent around the world.
The power grabs and hypocrisy are ever so typical of the ways of the world. In all honor, we can indeed attempt to serve our fellow man right around the world by risking life and limb on behalf of the mercy of justice. John the Baptist gave good advice about proper morality to the occupying military forces of Rome. He didn’t ask them to go AWOL.
And if you’re wondering about Little Boy and Fat Man and the role of my dad in that fiasco with Japan and why we were friends with China, check out what actually ended WW2 in the South Pacific theater. It wasn’t Little Boy and it wasn’t Fat Man:
Someone should do a doctoral thesis on this at, say, West Point, concentrating on the culture of Japan, what McArthur said about the instantaneous surrender of Japan should the Philippines fall from their control, and the whole story of Minoru Wada and George Byers Jr.
If we forget history, it will replay in all of its worst aspects, with players changing sides just to be clever.
- For the worst of the worst, it’s never about patriotism, but only about power.
- For the best of the best, it’s always about respect for fellow human beings wherever they are in the world, about honor, about the patriotism which supports all the best of a localized national family, if you will, which is at the service, as a nation, to others around the world.
For the best of the best to take place, with honor and integrity and honesty and justice and mercy, humble reverence before God Almighty must be rendered.
My best memory of Dad in early 1962, at two years of age, was kneeling with him at Communion time at the granite altar rail with its linins folded over our hands. That was, at that time, in the gorgeous Cathedral of Saint Mary in Saint Cloud, Minnesota.
In America and around the world, we have forgotten that our identity is to be found in God, who so loved the world…
The party that has voted God out of its platform, the Party that is all about attacking the free exercise of religion and freedom of speech, the party that is all about the suppression of the Living Truth… that Party is bringing hell on earth in an ever more unleashed manner.
We pray for a return to the faith: Hail Mary…
One of our parishioners who died toward the beginning of Covid-19 lockdowns (not from Covid) could only have the full burial rites (Air Force leading up to the Church rites) carried out just now, in November. We’re talking Georgia and the military, not my parish.
Being early at the cemetery, there was time to slowly go round about the cemetery. Oh my. The following scene is repeated again and again and again. Everywhere. Those who hate the flag, who hate these USA, should come here, to any national military cemetery, especially when all the flags are out at all the tombstones. But they aren’t worthy to do that.
As always, I got totally choked up finding it very difficult to compose myself during the folding of the flag. It was as if the flag represented everyone in America, everything good for which we recite the pledge as one nation under God, and in particular the veteran who had served all at great risk to himself. We’re talking tenderhearted affection by the military. Especially difficult was when the Airman went down on his knee before the widow, offering her the flag while starting off with: “On behalf of the President of the United States…” The widow had tears streaming down her face…
Afterward, we all trundled off to some old parishioners who had moved nearer their kids quite near the cemetery, all good friends. He was at the top of acquisitions for the Air Force. Quite the reunion of old friends and parishioners. A sorrowful day, but a good day. Thanks be to God.
We live in a time of anti-God, marxist bullies, whose BLM Antifa style fascism (yes, they reflect each other), whose primary method of anarchism is meant to bait law enforcement officers into being ambushed, wherein no matter what happens, it’s the fault of any authority other than their narcissistic selves. The entitled bully’s is reaction to authority, which is, then, by definition, no identity at all:
- Identity politics is about being devoid of identity. There is no self-respect, no respect for others, no respect for God our Creator, no respect for the natural law or any law other than the absolutism of one’s personal relativity to oneself, which is nothing. Yuck.
Assassination of law enforcement officers is the “order” of the day, with such assassinations celebrated by all criminals who entitle themselves to blind obedience of their rich masters who pay them slave wages.
There’s a political party which celebrates such as this:
No apologies from this Catholic-priest-law-enforcement-chaplain: if I saw someone pumping bullets into law enforcement officers who were just minding their own business, I wouldn’t bother with any failure drill (two to the body and then one to the head if the threat weren’t yet ended), but I would rather just do a quick double tap to the head. Yes. No time to waste, especially with someone who looks like they might well be wearing body armor. Of course, then, as the priest, I would conditionally absolve the perp, you know, while calling in the “Shots fired!” and “Officers down!” and EMS and LEO assistance required. One hopes there will always be time for deescalation techniques. One hopes that one can use the old “continuum of force” fairy tale made up by someone who has never been in the field.
But encounters don’t always go very slowly, and are not always subject to a half dozen steps bringing one within rules of engagement, you know, greeting a person who then runs, who then resists arrest, who then gathers a crowd interfering with the arrest, who then assaults the LEOs with stones and bottles, who then grapples with the LEO, who then uses deadly force on the LEOs. It can go from zero to one hundred in less than a nanosecond.
It is expected, nevertheless, that the officer, while pumped full of bullets, will call social services to calmly talk the perp down at all of these stages, waiting an hour or two for the nice social worker to show up, that is, after a few weeks when messages are retrieved during these Covid-19 zero service, zero office hours difficult period we are going through in these USA and around the world.
When it goes from zero to a hundred in a nanosecond, there’s no time for this kind of BS. No deescalation techniques. No coping mechanisms. No offering of lolly-pops and cotton candy. No time.
There’s a political party which demands that the criminally insane be allowed to murder whomsoever they want, but especially law enforcement officers:
No apologies from this Catholic-priest-law-enforcement-chaplain: if I saw someone repeatedly plunging a Bowie knife into any law enforcement officer who was just minding his or her own business, I wouldn’t bother with any polite discourse, using words like sir or miss, or please, but I would rather just do a quick double tap to his or her head. Yes. And that’s even if I knew the guy or gal was criminally insane. He might not be personally responsible for his actions, being criminally insane and all that, but that doesn’t mean that the threat shouldn’t be subdued. We live in a fallen world. It’s not the officer’s fault or my fault if unjust aggression is afoot. It’s all very sad. I wish it weren’t so. The one who assists in lessening the threat is also a victim. Who wants to carry that event around in one’s soul for the rest of one’s life? Nobody. Deescalation IF POSSIBLE.
Meanwhile, I’m patriotic and I’ll tell you this, there’s only a small percentage of those in America (whether citizens or paid foreign terrorists) who are like that. Most people are like those I met on the day off yesterday. They were happy for me to take pictures of the backs of their T-Shirts:
I make it a habit to have lunch on the day off with another priest at this particular restaurant in the middle of absolutely nowhere. I don’t think I’ve ever been here when there hasn’t been some law enforcement officers, or spec ops guys and gals. This is the order of the day in this back-mountain region of Appalachia. There is no harassment of those dining here. ;-)
The other week as we were leaving that restaurant, one such guy threw out a greeting to me, and I made the observation that he had a tattoo of a very unique American Bald Eagle on his forearm (stating the extremely obvious), but I asked what the symbolism was, expecting something about that stylized eagle being the logo of a particular military group. He hesitated a couple seconds, perhaps not wanting to share anything like that at that moment while trying to eat with his wife (I’m so imprudent, but he started it), but he then exclaimed that it stands for “Freedom!” I laughed in joy and wished him a “Be safe!” as he did for me.
Look, I realize that this is not the experience of those who live even just down the road from me in Atlanta, where, as in so many other places, people are accosted while quietly eating in a restaurant, their meals thrown on the floor, getting spit on, insulted and shrieked at, their tables and chairs being overturned, and even elderly people being smashed to the floor and beat up by uncontrollable mobs. Let’s see… that would be defined for the elderly as at least grave bodily harm. I’ve seen what an intracranial hematoma can do to people – like a 66 year old parishioner of mine. She died pretty quickly after that, but only after tortuous suffering.
That kind of assault, threatening grave bodily harm or death in some circumstances to be evaluated, would also be a threat which would have to be confronted, though such a confrontation would surely – at least with me, I hope – be able to be wrought in such manner that deescalation of unjust aggressors would immediately ensue. These kinds of perps are such cowards when anyone confronts them. Just use the Jedi Knight trick by telling them – in no uncertain terms – that they will stand down, NOW! Yes. It does work.
Perhaps you remember that Jedi Knight trick:
Here’s the deal. We all want peace and joy, goodness and kindness, all of us, including and perhaps especially the perps. There’s no one more thankful for having been stood down than a perp who then has had an opportunity to think about it and repent. Praise the Lord, for His mercy endures forever. We pray for better times. We pray that we get through the next few months unscathed.
While out on Communion calls this past Sunday afternoon, I saw this American Flag… wait… wait… that’s strange! I haven’t seen this for a long, long time. Can you guess what this is all about?
While you’re thinking, let’s listen to old Johnny tell us a story about the Ragged Old Flag. Take note of the introductory bits:
Some people object about that introduction, and to the cheers of the crowd that it brings. He says this:
- “We’ve also got a right to bear arms and if you burn my flag, I’ll shoot you, but I’ll shoot you with a lot of love like a good American.”
People think that statement refers to brats burning this or that flag. No. He expressly says that he respects the right of whoever to burn whatever flag.
The flag Johnny is speaking about – his flag – is… is… wait for it… his flag is these United States of America in their entirety, one nation, under God. Don’t believe me? Listen to the rest of the story.
This is patriotism. Patriotism is a virtue of piety. It’s a virtue of natural law. It’s a virtue described by the great Saint Thomas Aquinas.
And there we have it once again: what is held up by reason and what is lived in the faith are consonant with each other. Of course, both faith and reason come from God Almighty.
Back to the quiz. Can you guess what in the world is going on with that American Flag pictured at the top of this post?
The above is worn by our church musician. There’s also a bit of mercy to be had:
And then there’s humor in all truth. I totally laughed out loud when I saw this:
I don’t see any inconsistency with any of these with each other nor with what is happening at the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass.
Now extremely rare in the homeland of Israel, the Cheetah is this very day, this very hour, flourishing in Iran, fast as they can go. Just in time. Fancy that.
Cheetahs of the Homeland. Catchy name. I like it. It even reminds me of Homeland…
Sure: the powers that be might slander me and drag me before kings and princes and imprison me, have me tortured and put to death. So? Have they taken my liberty? No. No they haven’t. Jesus will NOT let anyone rip me away from His unstoppable grip on my heart and soul and mind. No one else can take my liberty in Him who freely let Himself be nailed fast to the cross for our sake, standing in our place, the Innocent for the guilty.
We all have the liberty, the freedom to stand with the Son of God, the Son of Man, Christ our God, and retain that freedom of Love and of Truth and of Life that is eternal. We are free to be as happy, joyous, blessed as the beatitudes would have us be. And that, my friends, is a great freedom that no one can take away.
No worldly battle, nothing that evil men can come up with, nothing that Satan can devise, is enough to rip us out of the very Heart of our Lord. We might take a hit from a soldier’s spear when we are in that Sacred Heart, which was pierced through, but it’s a privilege to witness to Jesus, Christ our God, unto death, unto life. Blessed are they who… So…
I don’t laugh because I am strong or virtuous or not a sinner or whatever. I laugh because Jesus is my strength. I’m with Him. I praise Him as my Savior. And you? He will come to judge the living and the dead and world by fire. Amen.
Thanks, Johnny. RIP. My ragged old flag is still flying down here.
Basic definitions of terms used in public conversation based on privately perceived statistical perceptions as in “It seems to me that lots of people think that this word means that” are useful only for exacerbating divisions so as to smash others down, making sure that all are sinners except for oneself.
“Freedom”, for instance, might well be equated by some as narcissistic behavior that does not respect others, you know, the ol’ I feel like murdering you, so I have the duty and therefore right to murder you, you know, because I’m just enjoying my “Freedom.”
Um… No… That’s not what Freedom is all about. We are provided free will by our Creator so that, in all love and in all truth we might continue always to choose that which is consonant with the love and truth which we are called to live. Beautiful. That is eating from the “Tree of the Living Ones” described way back in Genesis.
The word “Freedom” for some has become a moving target, much the same as some have made male/female a moving target with their weirdly self-perceived gender-bender narcissistic “definitions” of masculine/feminine whereby someone momentarily confused about any life experiences would have them think they have to get a surgical intervention to make their genitals fit their momentary depression leading – because of the pandering of society – to suicidal despair. Um… No…
Symbols are particularly open to this kind of manipulation, so that the American Flag is said by some to be a symbol of hate because many say it is. Oh? Really? A symbol of hate?
Making definitions of terms used in public conversation based on privately perceived statistical perceptions as in — “It seems to me that lots of people think that this symbol means *fill-in-the-blank* because lots of people emotionally throw tantrums about it” — making definitions in that fashion is useful only for exacerbating divisions so as to smash others down, making sure that all are sinners except for oneself.
What does the flag actually stand for as a symbol, and what should we all insist upon in public conversation? How about the resolution itself?
- “Resolved, that the flag of the United States be thirteen stripes, alternate red and white; that the union be thirteen stars, white in a blue field representing a new constellation.”
After standardized numbering, the thirteen original colonies are still represented by the thirteen stripes, while the stars unified in the azure sky have increased with the number of states in the union, and it is a symbol of unity. Thus far I myself have lived under two revisions, though all such changes to the flag are nevertheless The Flag.
That the Flag represents Freedom is not arbitrary. It is by its very existence placed in contradistinction to the oppression of the Brits, whose oppressive regime at the time disallowed, for instance, the free exercise of religion whether hidden away or in the public square.
There are other symbols of the Flag which were understood at the time, not as arbitrary personal whims, but as historically verifiable meanings. Thus, we find way back in the day, that the secretary of the Continental Congress had it that “White signifies purity and innocence, Red, hardiness & valour, and Blue…signifies vigilence, perseverence & justice.”
- White = “purity and innocence” — for, of and by the people, but under God
- Red = “hardiness & valour” — lots of blood shed in that valor my friends
- Blue = “vigilence, perseverence & justice” – as continuous as the sky holding the stars
But let’s get back to the Freedom which the Flag does in fact represent. I would like to take the faces of any self-congratulators who dismiss all the teenagers in our national cemeteries, buried there for having shed their blood for our Freedom, having confined themselves to their graves for our Freedom, who laid down their lives for us analogous to how the very Son of the Living God laid down His life for us, so as to grant us the greatest of freedoms – freedom from sin, the freedom to praise God on this earth and in heaven forever – I would like, I say, to take the faces of all those insulting the flag, insulting all those who laid down their lives, and put them face to face with all those youngsters in our national cemeteries, you know, until they appreciate the cost of that freedom.
Does God give us our unalienable rights which we are indeed free to exercise even at the cost of our lives? Yes.
Are those youngsters in our national cemeteries co-workers with God in giving us that free exercise of religion, that freedom of assembly, that freedom of speech…? Yes.
Rant story: While enjoying a meal with a large group of Colombian priests who were discussing all their pastoral initiatives for their respective flocks, I blurted out that, wow, they have done so very much. I’m so naive. I was instantaneously and quite ferociously reprimanded by the youngest of them, who went from calm to white hot over against my stupidity. He stated in no uncertain terms that, No! They have done NOTHING! They have not laid down their lives – yet – for their flocks. He said that they all personally knew priests who had been killed in the line of duty for their flocks. And then came the flood of stories about how those priests had been viciously executed in public even right in front of them. You have to know, this affected me profoundly.
Here’s the deal: We have nothing about which to boast unless this boasting is about the Son of the Living God who threw away His own Freedom to be nailed to the Cross for us, standing in our place, the Innocent for the guilty, so as to have the right in His own justice to have mercy on us. We will all of us stand before Him, looking upon Him whom we have all pierced through with our sin, original sin and whatever personal rubbish we ourselves have added, all of us, from every tribe and tongue and people and nation.
If we think we have actually done something, we’re pretty much lost. But, having said that, the death of the faithful is precious in the eyes of God, and there is no greater love than that one lays down his life for his friends.
Just yesterday I mentioned how many times I’ve been shot at throughout my life, from my earliest years until much more recently, bullets whizzing by my head, an unforgettable sound. My favorite interlocutor said that that’s nothing. Nothing ended my life. There’s nothing there; it’s just normal life, said he. Yes, indeed. I agree. I stand corrected. I’ve done nothing.
Even if we have laid down our lives, for instance, for the free exercise of religion for our friends, I can absolutely guarantee that no one, not even one, will be bragging at the last judgment upon seeing the wounds of the actually innocent Son of the Living God.
In fact, let me just say this right now about myself, because I will certainly do so at my judgment, so says Christ the King; Jesus instructs us to say this:
- “We are unprofitable servants; we have done what we were obliged to do.'” (Luke 17:10)
Well, I hope to be able to say that I’ve done what I was obliged to do, that presuming I have done ALL that which I, which we have been commanded. When it comes right down to it, the one thing we are obliged to do, that which sets us up for a reward, is to get on our knees and humbly and contritely and with firm purpose of amendment confess our sins. “I am a sinner,” says Father George. I beg Jesus’ forgiveness and the forgiveness of any and all I have offended by my idiocy and brashness.
But Jesus will say to those who did bear His love: “Come, you who are blessed by my Father; inherit the kingdom prepared for you from the foundation of the world.” (Matthew 25:34)
I hope Jesus will say that to me and will say that to all with whom I’ve had any contact with in this world.
Finally, for those who want a rant of rants in favor of the Freedom of these United States of America. To critics of the Flag, get out of your safe spaces and sing along with Whitney Houston, meaning also reading an analysis of the words of the National Anthem:
My, my… THAT didn’t take long. Having put up Lee’s patriotism the other day, a comment came in condemning Lee as sinful for having written such a great song.
- “Awesome and moving musical performance combined with insane propaganda lyrics! “…I know I’m free…” Really? “I’m Proud….I’m Proud…I’m Proud” Pride is a sin and comes before the fall! “men…gave the RIGHT of freedom to us”? Seriously? Men don’t give us rights, rights come from our duty to God! “they can’t take our freedom away”? Our culture is giving away our freedoms more and more every day. Freedom of speech, freedom to assemble, freedom to freely exercise our religion. If you would “gladly stand up and defend her”, the first step is to realize that she needs defending now and the next step is to do it! Complacency is killing America.”
Sounds serious, that. “Propaganda lyrics…” sounds like a something a marxist would say. So, I’m game! Let’s analyze the lyrics [my comments]:
If tomorrow all the things were gone
I worked for all my life [like with all the marxist rioting, arson, looting, murder, assaults…]
And I had to start again
With just my children and my wife [pro-family: one man, one woman, children!!!]
I’d thank my lucky stars [That’s actually a reference to States which have a representative star on the flag.]
To be living here today [Because despite the marxists, who think life is equated to things, real Americans know there is much more to life in a country under God.]
‘Cause the flag still stands for freedom [as in the free exercise of religion, freedom of assembly, freedom of speech…]
And they can’t take that away [And that’s true. And here’s the point: we always have the freedom to do the right thing against whatever bullies. To just get frustrated and jaded and depressed and cynical and full of hate is NOT the way to go. Don’t be such a wimpish empty shell of a human being and go ahead and be a martyr. That brings us to the next words…]
And I’m proud to be an American [Obviously, this does not refer to some sort of sin, but instead refers to the happiness, contentedness, joy in that which just so right, you know, one nation, under God… Marxists hate patriotism. Patriotism is a virtue.]
Where at least I know I’m free [Free exercise of religion… you know the drill…]
And I won’t forget the men who died
Who gave that right to me [To the critic, I ask you, what have you done? Nothing is the answer. You haven’t given your life, have you? The answer is no. No you haven’t. How very pathetic of you. Here’s the deal: God grants us the unalienable rights, yes, but, wait for it, God also uses us. The defense against unjust aggression is also a corporal work of mercy regarding which God will judge us. If you condemn all those who have died cooperating with that is under God for your benefit…]
And I’d gladly stand up next to you
And defend Her still today [The critic holds that there is no one doing anything right now. Do you know how many members of the military and law enforcement are being injured and laying down their lives for you as we speak, despite your ignorance and hatred? I invite this critic to the next Officer Down! Memorial Dinner where we read off all the LODDs, all the Line of Duty Deaths for the year.]
‘Cause there ain’t no doubt
I love this land
God Bless the U.S.A.
From the lakes of Minnesota [Hey! My home state! Thanks for the shout out, Lee. The soldiers from Minnesota suffered the most casualties in Gettysburg during the Civil War percentage-wise, that is, more than any other troops in any battle in modern history. Get it? You know, about doing something for freedoms?]
To the hills of Tennessee
Across the plains of Texas
From sea to shining sea
From Detroit down to Houston
And New York to L.A. [This geography recalls, of course, Martin Luther King Jr’s “I have a dream” speech, right?]
Where’s pride in every American heart
And it’s time we stand and say
That I’m proud to be an American
Where at least I know I’m free
And I won’t forget the men who died
Who gave that right to me
And I’d gladly stand up next to you
And defend Her still today
‘Cause there ain’t no doubt
I love this land
God Bless the U.S.A.
And I’m proud to be an American
Where at least I know I’m free
And I won’t forget the men who died
Who gave that right to me
And I’d gladly stand up next to you
And defend Her still today
‘Cause there ain’t no doubt
I love this land
God Bless the U.S.A.
Finally, the keyboard warrior critic who is on the attack lives next to an FBI station. Interesting, that. Perhaps a follower of Peter Strzok and James Comey… trying to sound patriotic but just smashing down any patriotism anywhere anytime.
In Congress, July 4, 1776. The unanimous Declaration of the thirteen united States of America, When in the Course of human events, it becomes necessary for one people to dissolve the political bands which have connected them with another, and to assume among the powers of the earth, the separate and equal station to which the Laws of Nature and of Nature’s God entitle them, a decent respect to the opinions of mankind requires that they should declare the causes which impel them to the separation.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.–That to secure these rights, Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed, –That whenever any Form of Government becomes destructive of these ends, it is the Right of the People to alter or to abolish it, and to institute new Government, laying its foundation on such principles and organizing its powers in such form, as to them shall seem most likely to effect their Safety and Happiness.
Prudence, indeed, will dictate that Governments long established should not be changed for light and transient causes; and accordingly all experience hath shewn, that mankind are more disposed to suffer, while evils are sufferable, than to right themselves by abolishing the forms to which they are accustomed. But when a long train of abuses and usurpations, pursuing invariably the same Object evinces a design to reduce them under absolute Despotism, it is their right, it is their duty, to throw off such Government, and to provide new Guards for their future security.–Such has been the patient sufferance of these Colonies; and such is now the necessity which constrains them to alter their former Systems of Government.
The history of the present King of Great Britain is a history of repeated injuries and usurpations, all having in direct object the establishment of an absolute Tyranny over these States. To prove this, let Facts be submitted to a candid world.
He has refused his Assent to Laws, the most wholesome and necessary for the public good.
He has forbidden his Governors to pass Laws of immediate and pressing importance, unless suspended in their operation till his Assent should be obtained; and when so suspended, he has utterly neglected to attend to them.
He has refused to pass other Laws for the accommodation of large districts of people, unless those people would relinquish the right of Representation in the Legislature, a right inestimable to them and formidable to tyrants only.
He has called together legislative bodies at places unusual, uncomfortable, and distant from the depository of their public Records, for the sole purpose of fatiguing them into compliance with his measures.
He has dissolved Representative Houses repeatedly, for opposing with manly firmness his invasions on the rights of the people.
He has refused for a long time, after such dissolutions, to cause others to be elected; whereby the Legislative powers, incapable of Annihilation, have returned to the People at large for their exercise; the State remaining in the mean time exposed to all the dangers of invasion from without, and convulsions within.
He has endeavoured to prevent the population of these States; for that purpose obstructing the Laws for Naturalization of Foreigners; refusing to pass others to encourage their migrations hither, and raising the conditions of new Appropriations of Lands.
He has obstructed the Administration of Justice, by refusing his Assent to Laws for establishing Judiciary powers.
He has made Judges dependent on his Will alone, for the tenure of their offices, and the amount and payment of their salaries.
He has erected a multitude of New Offices, and sent hither swarms of Officers to harrass our people, and eat out their substance.
He has kept among us, in times of peace, Standing Armies without the Consent of our legislatures.
He has affected to render the Military independent of and superior to the Civil power.
He has combined with others to subject us to a jurisdiction foreign to our constitution, and unacknowledged by our laws; giving his Assent to their Acts of pretended Legislation:
For Quartering large bodies of armed troops among us:
For protecting them, by a mock Trial, from punishment for any Murders which they should commit on the Inhabitants of these States:
For cutting off our Trade with all parts of the world:
For imposing Taxes on us without our Consent:
For depriving us in many cases, of the benefits of Trial by Jury:
For transporting us beyond Seas to be tried for pretended offences
For abolishing the free System of English Laws in a neighbouring Province, establishing therein an Arbitrary government, and enlarging its Boundaries so as to render it at once an example and fit instrument for introducing the same absolute rule into these Colonies:
For taking away our Charters, abolishing our most valuable Laws, and altering fundamentally the Forms of our Governments:
For suspending our own Legislatures, and declaring themselves invested with power to legislate for us in all cases whatsoever.
He has abdicated Government here, by declaring us out of his Protection and waging War against us.
He has plundered our seas, ravaged our Coasts, burnt our towns, and destroyed the lives of our people.
He is at this time transporting large Armies of foreign Mercenaries to compleat the works of death, desolation and tyranny, already begun with circumstances of Cruelty & perfidy scarcely paralleled in the most barbarous ages, and totally unworthy the Head of a civilized nation.
He has constrained our fellow Citizens taken Captive on the high Seas to bear Arms against their Country, to become the executioners of their friends and Brethren, or to fall themselves by their Hands.
He has excited domestic insurrections amongst us, and has endeavoured to bring on the inhabitants of our frontiers, the merciless Indian Savages, whose known rule of warfare, is an undistinguished destruction of all ages, sexes and conditions.
In every stage of these Oppressions We have Petitioned for Redress in the most humble terms: Our repeated Petitions have been answered only by repeated injury. A Prince whose character is thus marked by every act which may define a Tyrant, is unfit to be the ruler of a free people.
Nor have We been wanting in attentions to our British brethren. We have warned them from time to time of attempts by their legislature to extend an unwarrantable jurisdiction over us. We have reminded them of the circumstances of our emigration and settlement here. We have appealed to their native justice and magnanimity, and we have conjured them by the ties of our common kindred to disavow these usurpations, which, would inevitably interrupt our connections and correspondence. They too have been deaf to the voice of justice and of consanguinity.
We must, therefore, acquiesce in the necessity, which denounces our Separation, and hold them, as we hold the rest of mankind, Enemies in War, in Peace Friends.
We, therefore, the Representatives of the United States of America, in General Congress, Assembled, appealing to the Supreme Judge of the world for the rectitude of our intentions, do, in the Name, and by Authority of the good People of these Colonies, solemnly publish and declare, That these United Colonies are, and of Right ought to be Free and Independent States; that they are Absolved from all Allegiance to the British Crown, and that all political connection between them and the State of Great Britain, is and ought to be totally dissolved; and that as Free and Independent States, they have full Power to levy War, conclude Peace, contract Alliances, establish Commerce, and to do all other Acts and Things which Independent States may of right do. And for the support of this Declaration, with a firm reliance on the protection of divine Providence, we mutually pledge to each other our Lives, our Fortunes and our sacred Honor.