Category Archives: Civil Disobedience

Cancel Culture comes to Carmel

On Father’s Day, my longtime pastor Father Ted Rothrock gave a rousing homily reminding the viewing audience at home and the few of us still in the pews that Holy Communion is the point of church (meaning the Catholic Mass).  He also said we needed to preach this from the rooftops.  After Mass, I asked him in honor of his homily if we could have a Eucharistic Procession along the Monon Trail in downtown Carmel on July 4th.  The City had canceled the usual annual Celebration of Secession from the London Crown parade, so I assumed this was a good way to fill that vacuum.  He intended to take his annual July break to boat on Lake Michigan so passed the duty to his young pastoral associate.  The associate happily agreed to do so. 

I called Father Summerlin to start the planning, and we agreed 10am on July 4th worked best.  I started emailing all this lists and contacts I have in the Carmel Catholic Community.  The next day Father Summerlin asked for me to explore whether the City had any permitting requirements for this type of gathering.  I agreed to do so, though since this was small and was essentially a group of people walking together on a public trail, there probably wouldn’t be any permit requited.  I did not intend to block streets or the trail itself. 

My wife humorously asked whether Jesus asked Pilate for permission to enter Jerusalem on the donkey so long ago.  Since this was not about my views on government (I’m an anarchist in the tradition of Murray Rothbard) but about Jesus, I contacted the police department and parks department to determine whether we needed permission or were required to notify.  Both confirmed my original view. 

In the meantime, Father Ted penned his weekly bulletin article; this one would generate national headlines since he made some pointed remarks about the leaders of the BLM and Antifa movements.  In a church with only about 25% of its normal weekend attendance because of the fear of a virus (which is worse, a virus or Satan?), it is somewhat ironic that this one bulletin article of his finally hit such a nerve.  He has written many similar stemwinders over the years.  He is a breath of fresh air in an increasingly irrelevant and milquetoast Catholic Church.  Some people that didn’t like Father Ted’s article announced they were going to protest our church on Sunday.  Father Summerlin said the Eucharistic Procession was cancelled, in light of this, even though it was just a few parishioners gathering together and taking a walk with Jesus on a public trail. 

Our new administrator appointed by the Bishop invited the protestors onto church property. The church also blocked some people, including a Lutheran pastor, from “counter” protesting on church property. Therefore, so these two groups could get visibility, they both ended up largely protesting on the public easements, including a neighbor’s house across the street. They didn’t ask for permission of the city to do this!

In a side note, there were many more of us who prayed in front of the church most of the day around a beautiful St. Elizabeth Ann Seton statue commissioned by Father Ted than there were protestors. Some people walked out during the Bishop’s comments before Masses this weekend about the suspension; my family did not the night before because his message was so watered down either way that it was hard to get so emotional. We are a large parish and I have been asking Father Ted to get the Bishop here. Sad that this is what it took.

Unfortunately, my takeaway from this: John the Baptist said He must increase, I must decrease. The Church did decrease by not having a Eucharistic Procession, unrelated to anything except Jesus, and protestors increased onto church property to celebrate the scalp of Father Ted’s pastorships (this one and his next assignment, at the largest parish in the diocese). This is a site against militarism, but it does not encourage cowardice either by the Faithful or the Hierarchy. I pray that we listen to John the Baptist.

Thank You for Your Service

Cardinal Muller (see previous post) has now been joined by Officer Greg Anderson in the ranks of the “bravest men in the world” category.

Greg makes a very important point at the end of the first video. He warns that if the powerful “keep trampling on people’s rights” they may “wake a sleeping giant” and foment civil unrest. The Catholic Bishops should take heed because the Church is probably the only force which might be able to head off such a confrontation. But they must show some backbone and open the Churches now (regardless of secular threats), and step into the fray and declare that governments and authorities must reverse the tyrannical measures and psychological warfare that they have initiated against the populace. Bishops, it’s your move.

Women and the Draft

Episode 41: Women and the Draft

Don’t miss this episode of the CAM podcast with lots of good information on what is going on with women and military conscription.

You can go here to send a quick letter to your representative.

Finally, a new song by our friend, co-author of The Martyrdom of Thomas Merton, Dave Martin!

Mama, Don’t Let Your Daughters Grow Up to Be Soldiers

Swords into Plowshares, and tea caddies

Until Lew Rockwell posted Ellen’s interview with Andrew Bacevich, whom I have long deeply admired, I knew nothing about CAM. I also knew nothing about Kings Bay Plowshares. I am working through that ignorance, and gained further insight listening to Episode 15 of these podcasts. Coincidentally, I am reading “Pacific” by Simon Winchester. I came across this paragraph of actually turning swords into ploughshares in immediate post-World War II Japan.

“Factories that had been weeks before making war materials switched their production lines to start making items needed not by generals and admirals, but the bone-tired civilians and by the ragged menfolk returning from the battlefields. So bomb casings became charcoal burners, sitting nearly upright on their tail fins and helping households get through that first bitter winter. Large-caliber brass shell cases were modified as rice containers, while tea caddies were fashioned from their smaller shiny cousins.”

Searchlight mirrors were “beaten” into Tokyo windows, and a fighter plane engine factory started making water pumps. What could the United States do if we beat the nukes at Kings Bay into productive use? Hopefully, at the least, the Kings Bay 7 beat their rap.

Christ the King

The following was written by Rev. Emmanuel Charles McCarthy:

***********************

ACTS 17: 6-8
They dragged Jason and some [Christian] brethren before the city authorities, shouting, “These men who have upset the world have come here also; and Jason has welcomed them, and they all act contrary to the decrees of Caesar, saying that there is another king, Jesus.” 

Pledge of Allegiance to Christ the King

(To be used on the Feast of Christ the King, after the homily.)

 I pledge allegiance to Christ the King.

I embrace his eternal and universal kingdom.

I acknowledge his kingdom to be one of truth and life,

of holiness and grace.

I wish to do what I can through prayer and action

to bring to our world his kingdom

of righteousness, love and peace.

If this Pledge of Allegiance to Christ the King can be said at Mass on Sunday why is it not said every day in Christian schools?


-Emmanuel Charles McCarthy

Excellent Overview

Paul Elie, writing for The New Yorker, provides an excellent overview of the Plowshares movement, and places the actions of the Kings Bay Plowshares 7 within the context of not only this movement but the wider evolution of the Church’s thinking and teaching on nuclear weapons. Check it out!

https://www.newyorker.com/news/daily-comment/the-pope-and-catholic-radicals-come-together-against-nuclear-weapons

Write to the Judge

Plowshares Sentencing Pending, Write the Judge

November 20, 2019

Dear ___,Now is the time to write letters to Judge Lisa Godbey Wood regarding her sentencing of the Kings Bay Plowshares 7. We are collecting letters, especially from those who know the defendants, testifying to their character and the good work that they are doing in their communities which will not be done if they are serving long terms in prison. These letters are not the forum to criticize the law, the legal process or government policies.  Rather it is the place to point out positive things about the defendants that should mitigate a harsh sentence.

Letters should be sent to defense attorney Bill Quigley at the address below. He  will compile them and distribute to various defendants’ attorneys for delivery to Judge Wood.  The attorneys suggest it would be helpful to get these done by Thanksgiving or the week after in order to get processed and delivered. Sentencing may be in January or possibly February.
The best letters are simple, polite, and tell good things about the person you are writing in support of. 
The suggested format is as follows:DateSender’s NameSender’s AddressJudge Lisa Godbey Woodc/o Bill QuigleyLoyola University New Orleans Law ClinicCampus Box 9027214 St. Charles AvenueNew Orleans, LA 70118Regarding Sentencing of: Mark Colville [or] Clare Grady [or] Martha Hennessy [or] Fr. Steve Kelly SJ [or] Elizabeth McAlister [or] Patrick O’Neill [or] Carmen Trotta  (or all seven of the Kings Bay Plowshares)Dear Judge Wood,  Suggested outline for the letter:    – Explain who you are.    – Explain who you are writing about, how you know them, and what good they do for their       community.    – Explain why the Judge should not send them to jail.    – Thank the Judge for reading your letter.Valediction,Signature
For more ideas and details for your letters, you are welcome to see the defendants’ biographies here
Thank you for your attentiveness to the trial, your support for the defendants and their families, and your focus on the issue of the abolition of nuclear weapons. 
As Fr. Steve Kelly says, “The nuclear weapons won’t go away by themselves.” We do this work together.
In solidarity,The Kings Bay Plowshares 7 Support Team


Please Donate

Thanks to your support, we have mobilized thousands of people around the world to speak out for the abolition of nuclear weapons. Please help with expenses, housing, and supporting defendants’ families following the verdict and the upcoming sentencing. 

  • Send checks to: Plowshares, PO Box 3087, Washington, DC 20010
  • Donate online: GoFundMe

EMAIL: Media: kbp7media@gmail.com

            General: kingsbayplowshares@gmail.com

WEBSITE: www.kingsbayplowshares7.org

FACEBOOK: https://www.facebook.com/Kingsbayplowshares

TWITTER: https://www.twitter.com/kingsbayplow7

INSTAGRAM: https://instagram.com/kingsbayplowshares7

YOUTUBE: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCkSCM4dxIJxAolsl2oMP72Q/

Calling Out MSM

“Dear Mainstream News Media –
I’m talking to you, New York TimesWashington PostMSNBCCNN, and all your upstanding, highly professional conglomerate cohorts.
Thank you one and all very, very much for not covering the trial of the Kings Bay Plowshares 7.”

CounterPunch.org

Omnicidal Tendencies

Jeremy Scahill interviews Liz McAlister, one of the Kings Bay Plowshares 7 and wife of the late Phil Berrigan, on The Intercept podcast titled “Omnicidal Tendencies.” You can listen here: https://theintercept.com/2019/10/23/omnicidal-tendencies-the-nuclear-presidency-of-donald-trump/

On a whim, I Googled Jeremy Scahill, whom I’ve admired for years, and it turns out he was raised by two Catholic activists and spent a year living at Jonah House, founded by Phil and Liz. Here is some more information on that:

“The Blackwater scandal of American (and other) mercenaries in Iraq and elsewhere popped up on my radar as yet another dark chapter in this national nightmare surrounding Iraq. Yet I didn’t explore it as much as I would have liked (or should have) until channel-surfing the other night I came across a Bill Moyers’ interview with Jeremy Scahill, author of an impressive book of investigative reporting on Blackwater. The interview and parsing of the media counter-attack by Blackwater CEO Erik Prince was illuminating, and chilling. And Scahill’s dedication, work and presentation were beyond impressive, to me.
I was not aware, however, that Scahill and Prince are both Catholic, until last night I read an Oct 12 profile of Scahill in NCR. Scahill was raised in a Catholic Worker home, and went to live at Jonah House with the Berrigans in Baltimore for a year in the 1990’s. 
It had a profound impact on me, he told NCR. I think that being alive in the times that we live in means to be a resister…For me, media is a nonviolent weapon in that struggle.”

Catholic antipodes
By David Gibson
October 21, 2007
Commonweal
https://www.commonwealmagazine.org/catholic-antipodes