Monthly Archives: June 2009

Idolatry

That’s what it is.

Idolatry. I was gonna be sick when I saw the headline the other day–was it Yahoo?–that put up a picture of Michael Jackson with “Princess Diana” and talked about “Jacksons friends who died young” or whatever.

I don’t get it. When these people are alive, the media tear them apart, and then, as soon as they croak, it’s “Oh, what a good person he/she was.”

One of my all-time favorite essays is Fr. George Rutler’s classic from the December 1997 Crisis, “Speaking Well of the Dead,” which contrasts the funerals and media canonization of Gianni Versace, Diana Spencer, and Justice William Brennan with the death of Bl. Teresa of Calcutta.

Michael Jackson was a wreck of a man, and a miserable musician. Now, there’s a post at Vox Nova asserting that Michael Jackson’s so-called “music,” not the Consecration of Russia, brought down Communism! 

I can’t believe any Catholic would actually *listen* to Michael Jackson’s music, much less be a fan of it. 

And while I’m singling out the Viva La Revolution folks, some of my conservative Catholic internet friends have expressed similar sentiments. 

I can’t believe any Catholic would actually *listen* to Michael Jackson’s music, much less be a fan of it. 

Listen, I don’t know what the man did or did not do with little boys.  But it’s surprising the vitriol at Catholic bishops for their negligence of dealing with child molester priests, that every single Catholic priest is tainted by the behavior of a few, but Michael Jackson, despite the many allegations against him, is still idolized, and his critics are the ones despised.

He quite obviously engaged in multiple cosmetic surgeries, which is intrinsically evil. 

That a man who showed very little virtue of any sort is being so held on a pedastal. 

That people are looking to the satanic music of this man who helped build the edifice of evil that is MTV, and trying to interpret as somehow working for good.

Because, of course, rebellion is good to those who reject the past, and Michael Jackson’s music is about rebellion.

Bach said all music is worship.  If your music isn’t pointing to God, then who is it worshipping?

I have Michael Jackson to thank for one thing.

He’s a major reason I’m a conservative.  He’s also a major reason I’ve always had a great deal of scorn for my generation.  Him and Garbage Pail Kids.

Other kids would watch his videos on MTV, and I’d think, “this is disgusting!  How can you watch this garbage right under your parents’ noses?”

I’m sorry he’s dead for the same reason I’m sorry George Tiller is dead: he’s very likely in Hell, having died an unprovided death.

Scientists study recombination

Geneticists unearth the Roots of Human Genetic Variation“, says this sensationalistic headline.  In reality, it’s just a study of the exact process of recombination, and the “what to take home with you” in this article isn’t anything different than what I learned in Advanced Biology 17 years ago.

But it’s still interesting to read.

Now here’s an interesting list.

A compilation of 52 film suggestions to watch during the Year for Priests.

Evangelium Vitae on Other Offenses to Life

Expounding on the vast range of offenses of the Culture of Death, John Paul II writes, in Evangelium Vitae,

What of the spreading of death caused by reckless tampering with the world’s ecological balance, by the criminal spread of drugs, or by the promotion of certain kinds of sexual activity which, besides being morally unacceptable, also involve grave risks to life? It is impossible to catalogue completely the vast array of threats to human life, so many are the forms, whether explicit or hidden, in which they appear today!

Ecological responsibility is a pro-life issue.
The drug war, obviously, is a pro-life issue.
But it is interesting that John Paul notes, in passing, how sexually promiscuous behavior, due to spreading STDs, is also an offense against life.
Interesting contrast to those who say that the Church is irresponsible in regard to AIDS by opposing condoms: how about those who engage in promiscuous sex are “irresponsible” in regard to AIDS?

Obama *is* a Communist; what should we do? Pray.

Here’s a column from Marie Jon at Renew America, which lists various policies of Obama that are communist, quoting in turn:

  1.   He wants to convert the government-owned bank stocks to make the government the majority shareholder in the banks.
  2. Obama is arranging the GM and Chrysler bankruptcies to the Labor Unions are the first creditors paid off.
  3. Obama ignores the Constitution (as did Bush) and changes the government procedural rules to suit his will
  4. Rahm Emmanuel has written a book called The Plan, calling for a mandatory militia like that of Hugo Chavez (how about Hitler)
  5. “Public hate and disdain for people of faith”

She also quotes someone named Hal Licino:
Throughout history, communist leaders have seized power by promoting themselves as populists, and often completely hiding their own ideology. Indeed, in a poll taken after communist Hugo Chavez’ first election victory in Venezuela, only 3% of the electors believed Chavez to be a socialist, let alone a communist. Currently 32% of Americans believe Obama to be a socialist.

The rest of the article argues that the best way to deal with this is prayer and heroic virtue, and Christian networking. “Dare to be a Daniel,” she says.

Colleges don’t want students who “study, study, study”

Walter Williams reports on how California colleges are afraid of ever-increasing enrollment by Asian students.  So they’re trying to get around a 1996 law that outlaws racial discrimination in college admissions.  Why are they against Asians?  Well, says one administrator, “Asians are ‘too dull — they study, study, study.'”

Williams is commenting on this column by Ward Connerly, former regent of the University of California.

Is there a new kind of Culture War emerging?  Albeit one that has been under the surface for a while now: as America descends into national mediocrity adn worse, it will engage in an ever-increasing war against those who actually work hard.

As the French Revolutionaries and Russian Revolutionaries discovered, it is a lot easier to tear down greatness than it is to build it.

If one’s goal is egalitarianism, it is much easier to punish those who succeed than to help up those who refuse to try.

Are you afraid of the flu?

One of my major pet peeves with modern Americans is their fear of illness.
This is especially true when it comes to people who claim to be Christians.

Whether it’s discussion of vaccinations (ethicality or otherwise), distribution of Holy Communion (even though I disagree with common distribution of the Chalice, anyway), the technical rules of the VIRTUS program according to its website (church employees and volunteers are to stay home if they cough or sneeze, for fear of causing a lawsuit for infecting smoeone), or attendance at Mass (some say it’s morally obligatory, not just permissible, to stay home if you’re sick), it baffles me why anyone who has faith in Christ should fear illness.

As Fr. John Corapi puts it, “It is not fit for a prince or a princess of the kingdom to be afraid.”

Think Fr. Corapi’s a “right wing extremist”?  OK, how about this “extremist” “fideist” fanatic?

“And fear ye not them that kill the body, and are not able to kill the soul: but rather fear him that can destroy both soul and body in hell.” (Mt 10:28; this and next several from Douay-Rheims).

“He that findeth his life, shall lose it: and he that shall lose his life for me, shall find it.” (Mt 10:39).

“2 And when they had seen some of his disciples eat bread with common, that is, with unwashed hands, they found fault. 3 For the Pharisees, and all the Jews eat not without often washing their hands, holding the tradition of the ancients: 4 And when they come from the market, unless they be washed, they eat not: and many other things there are that have been delivered to them to observe, the washings of cups and of pots, and of brazen vessels, and of beds. 5 And the Pharisees and scribes asked him: Why do not thy disciples walk according to the tradition of the ancients, but they eat bread with common hands?

6 But he answering, said to them: Well did Isaias prophesy of you hypocrites, as it is written: This people honoureth me with their lips, but their heart is far from me. 7 And in vain do they worship me, teaching doctrines and precepts of men. 8 For leaving the commandment of God, you hold the tradition of men, the washing of pots and of cups: and many other things you do like to these.[. . .]15 There is nothing from without a man that entering into him, can defile him. But the things which come from a man, those are they that defile a man. (Mk 7:2-15).

“41 And the Lord answering, said to her: Martha, Martha, thou art careful, and art troubled about many things: 42 But one thing is necessary.” (Lk 10:41-42).

So, what do you have to be worried about?  Don’t you know that every hair on your head is counted, that your Father in Heaven will protect you as He protects the lilies of the field?

That isn’t to say you won’t get sick.  As St. Teresa of Avila teahes, and experience proves, God’s will is often precisely that we *will* be sick and suffering.  God wants to keep us knocked down so we’re dependent upon Him.

But God will provide.  What possible thing is there to worry about in getting the flu?

Death???  Are you, a Christian, really afraid of death??? 

“O death, where is thy victory? O death, where is thy sting?” (1 Cor 15:55)

Why be afraid of death?

“Now the sting of death is sin: and the power of sin is the law” (1 Cor 15:56)

The only reason to be afraid of death is when we live in Sin.

For he that eateth and drinketh unworthily, eateth and drinketh judgment to himself, not discerning the body of the Lord. Therefore are there many infirm and weak among you, and many sleep. (1 Cor 11:29-30).

When we sin, we place ourselves under the law instead of the freedom of Christ.  We lose God’s protection–except in efforts to bring us to repentance–when we live in sin.

That is the real reason people fear the flu.  They fear their own sins, which put them in subjection to the Devil.

If you fear death, go to Confession.  There is a Catholic psychologist who says obsessive compulsion is just a “guilt complex,” and that guilt complexes come from unrepented sin.  He recommends that compulsives make a constant prayer of Psalm 51.

Otherwise, if you are trying to live a holy life, if you are trying to be as close to Christ as possible, why fear death?  Why obsess over organic food?

If you die, it’s God’s will.  You can’t escape that.  Certainly, you must do certian basic things to maintain your life, but obessively pursuing health is contrary to the Gospel.

So you eat your organic food and exercise an hour a day and wash your hands every hour, and sterilize everything, and brush your teeth 4 times a day.  Even if you live like Adrian Monk, how can you add a single day to your life?  Can you really escape death?

“You fool: don’t you know this very day your life will be demanded of you?” (Lk 12:20).

“But I have responsibilities,” you say.  “I have a family.  A spouse.  Children.  Elderly parents.  They need me.”

Do they?  Do you, in your pride and vainglory, presume to be so important?  Do you not trust God to provide for them? 

In vain is your earlier rising,
your going later to rest,
you who toil for the bread you eat,
when he pours gifts on his beloved while they slumber. (Psalm 127:2)

If you are worried about providing for your family, live in a state of grace! Those who live according to God’s Will will always have their needs provided by God’s Providence. Those who die in a state of grace, and free from attachment to sin, will go straight to Heaven. The best way to provide for your family after your death is not a “nest egg” or life insurance policy.

The best way to provide for your family after your death is to become a Saint.

So, what have you, Christian, to fear from the flu?