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Michael Voris – the United States not a Christian nation November 11, 2013

Posted by Tantumblogo in Basics, Christendom, disaster, error, General Catholic, scandals, secularism, self-serving, Society, the enemy, Voris.
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Michael Voris has a new Vortex out that examines the extent to which the United States is a “Christian nation.”  This is a rather nebulous and problematic term, meaning radically different things to different people.  First the video, then some quibbles I have with it:

Overall, an important video, but one that I must confess I disagree with in detail if not in general.

I don’t know if Michael has read Christopher Ferrara’s Liberty: The God that Failed, or if this video is in some way a response to Ferrara’s book.  I would say, based not only on that book but a number of other histories written from an orthodox Catholic perspective, and even some that aren’t, that I would disagree with some of the claims made in the video above.

First, while one cannot say that ALL or even most of the Founding Fathers of the US – that is, those who took part in the crafting of the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution – were purely enlightenment deists, men with often a profoundly hostile attitude towards orthodox Christianity, the most important ones most definitely were.  Thomas Jefferson was the prime author of the Declaration of Independence, and his views regarding Christianity would be considered radical even today.  Likewise, James Madison was the prime architect of the Constitution, and he, too, held at best a distant, aloof view of God and Christianity.  So did many other crafters of the Constitution.  Good Heaven’s, George Washington was such a freemason he wore masonic garb and “baptized” the US Capitol building with a masonic “baptism” when laying the cornerstone!  Hamilton, Adams, Patrick Henry, Benjamin Franklin – all these men were essentially enlightenment deists and thus had an inveterate hostility towards orthodox Christianity and especially the Catholic Church.

Later on, Michael cites Alexis de Toqueville as a source of faithful Catholic criticism of the construct of the United States as it was in the 1820s.  This is pretty surprising, as de Toqueville was an out and out Jacobin who played a key role in the final destruction of the Bourbon Monarcy in the revolution of 1830 in France. He was definitely on the revolutionary side – and his Democracy in America was written with an eye towards providing guidance on how to build a very long lasting libertine government based on enlightenment principles without the influence of the Catholic Church.  He saw America as a model of that construct, and thus admired portions, critiqued others, all with the idea of taking the best and leaving the worst so France could build the ultimate enlightenment society.  That de Toqueville did not have the inveterate hostility towards Christianity, as most Jacobins, does not mean he was thus a stalwart Catholic – especially at that time.

Rule “by the people, of the people, and for the people” is a philosophical and theological error that was denounced by popes dozens of times from the late 18th through the mid-20th century.  “Democracy,” as it has been crafted in the US and now around the world, tends to set up the “will of the people” as an idol, a replacement for government founded directly upon Jesus Christ openly and avowedly.  The “rights of man” have, in practice, meant the crushing of the Rights of God. That is not to say democracy as such is always and everywhere irreconcilable with the Catholic Faith – but it does mean that the democracies we now have, all of which derive directly from enlightenment belief that was built around an immense hostility to the Catholic Faith are extremely problematic, at best.

The conclusion of the video is the best part.  Orestes Brownson was a great Catholic apologist, but on his death bed he lamented that he had failed to proclaim Extra Ecclesiam Nulla Salus more vigorously.

19th century American Catholicism underwent a great struggle, a struggle for the heart and soul of the Church, with people lined up on both sides from the highest to the lowest levels. The split was over whether to proclaim ALL the Faith and demand the United States be built upon an avowedly Catholic confessional state, or whether to acquiesce to the predominant Protestant population and take advantage of the “religious liberty” the enlightenment ethos of this nation offered, as a way to just sort of exist without making too many waves.  I think we know how that struggle turned out.  Even more, the operational characteristics of the US Church then spread around the world in the latter half of the 20th century, to the extent that even Catholic confessional states like Italy and Spain were encouraged, even directed, from the highest levels of the Church, to cease being so!  And so they complied.

This gets to the root of the entire crisis afflicting the Church.  Liberalism, and the Church’s response to it, is the defining socio-political-ecclesial conflict of the last 250 years.

Pray that the warnings and condemnations of 8+ popes be heeded!

Comments

1. Catholic Glasses - November 11, 2013

Good grief. George Washington was not a Free Mason. He was an Episcopalian, yet he was taught by Jesuits, and may have become Catholic on his death bed. Your assertions have no basis, in truth.

tantamergo - November 11, 2013

Ferrara destroys the claim regarding Washington’s possible deathbed conversion. That is simply fantasy. He rarely attended Episcopal services and if he did, he refused to kneel or communicate. He absolutely WAS a mason – there is a huge masonic shrine to him in Pennsylvania Virginia – and he absolutely did conduct a masonic ceremony when “blessing” the US Capitol.

This stuff is all over the web, you can easily find confirmation.

The idea put forward by Catholics that George Washington had a secret conversion is an attempt to “baptize” him, and by extension this nation, in the Faith. There might be good motives for doing so, but Washington’s last days were recorded in detail by his secretary and he asked for no priest, no Episcopal minister, no one. He was an enlightenment deist through and through.

Sorry if that’s upsetting, but the above is amply demonstrated by history.

2. Blaine - November 11, 2013

Great post which leaves a lot to think about. Thanks!

tantamergo - November 11, 2013

Hey, sorry I haven’t e-mailed you back. I got started and then got interrupted.

Have mercy on me! I’ll try to get back to you tonight.

Blaine - November 12, 2013

No worries and no rush!

3. MFG - November 11, 2013

Tantumergo,

The Shrine is at the Alexandria, VA metro stop. As for Vorris’ topic, he apparently was responding to a recent EWTN/Arroyo interview with Janice Connell author of the new book, The Spiritual Journey of George Washington.

As for Washington’s death bed conversion. I’d love to believe it (as we would for any soul), but if it happened the evidence should be documented by now.

Historian Warren Carroll claims the evidence was in the DC or Maryland Jesuit archives and that supposedly the Jesuit priest who converted him (or his province) sent a letter/documentation to Rome. This documentation is allegedly in the Vatican archives.

If true, then an advocate needs to go and dig out this documentation. Otherwise its just wishful thinking.

P.S. Do appreciate Vorris’ pointing out our war was not a revolution, but rather a war of independence. Its commonly misunderstood (though the principles were still “enlightenist”)

tantamergo - November 11, 2013

Good comment. Ferrara goes to some depth dispelling the myth of Washington’s deathbed conversion. I’d like to believe it, too, but I think he exposes the fallacy. All the claims are basically based on word of mouth, there has been no formal evidence found confirming the blessed, if illusory, event.

TG - November 12, 2013

I saw the EWTN episode with Jannice Connell. She said she had read George Washington’s letter – that they were prayers. She was all giddy. Raymond never did ask her if George Washington was a Mason.

4. Terry Carroll - November 11, 2013

If Voris was responding to anyone, it was probably to the Alan Keyes interview from a recent Mic’d Up episode. Alan Keyes seems fully convinced that our country was founded on Christian values and that we need to return to those values if there any hope for our country to survive.

As I interpreted this episode of the Vortex, I understood Michael to be emphasizing that our country was NOT founded on Christian values but that the prevailing “moral code” at the time of the founding of our country happened to be predominantly Judaeo-Christian and that a commonly accepted “moral code” was both useful and necessary for a successful democracy. There is no doubt that our founding fathers themselves were largely Deists, but the prevailing Judaeo-Christian values within the culture were useful but nothing more. It could have been any other “moral code” but our founding fathers accepted what was then dominant.

We are now at the point in cultural “development” that liberty is more valued than any specific “moral code” and this “individualism” and “private judgment,” rampant within Protestantism, how now produced its inevitable fruit. As Voris said, if we could hit “reset” on return immediately to the values dominant at the time of our country’s founding, we would simply set in motion the same process that leads to where we are now. Our country was, essentially, doomed to fail from the start because it failed to embrace a TRUE “moral code” grounded in reality and Truth.

That was, as far I interpreted the video, the whole point of the video. We have never been a Christian nation and, given how we started out, it was inevitable that we are where we are now.

TG - November 12, 2013

“As I interpreted this episode of the Vortex, I understood Michael to be emphasizing that our country was NOT founded on Christian values but that the prevailing “moral code” at the time of the founding of our country happened to be predominantly Judaeo-Christian and that a commonly accepted “moral code” was both useful and necessary for a successful democracy. ”
This’s how I understood the episode, too.

tantamergo - November 12, 2013

I wasn’t arguing with the overall take, just some of the details. He did say the Founders were avowedly Christian men and not enlightenment deists, which I take some issue with.

tantamergo - November 12, 2013

Again, I wasn’t taking issue with the Vortex overall, just his statements about the Founders not being enlightenment deists (the key ones all were) and with de Toqueville being a solid Catholic. De Toqueville was a prototype liberal Catholic.

5. Hannah - November 12, 2013

Down with the Rights of Man and up with the Social Kingship of Jesus Christ.

Only when this Nation acknowledges Christ as their King will it truly be a Christian Nation.

6. DiscipleoftheDumbOx - November 13, 2013

He lost me at ‘Christian nation’. One of the errors that the public education system no doubt has wittingly or unwittingly taught to you, me and our children was this notion that from the Atlantic to the Pacific those bounded borders of this country contained within it a single cohesive unit wherein no matter the individual’s particular location he or she shared in the collective whole of this ‘one nation, under God’. With all due respect to the Knights of Colombus, this is an egregious error. The founders of these United States, regardless of what we may think of their secret affiliations, in their public discourse gave us evidence that they did not believe that they had given us a government to manage a single homogenous entity. Rather, they gave us a framework of a system that could manage the affairs which transcended the capability of a single or a few sovereign states for the purpose providing for the common defense on an as needed basis or to manage interstate commerce, to name a few. To the extent that the United States maintained a Christian character was a matter best left to the individual states where the expression thereof varied wildly within the Christian camp, as it were, from Charles Carroll’s Roman Catholicism of Maryland as in St. Mary’s Land to John Dickinson’s Quakerism of Pennsylvania.

For the decline related to all of the states, I dare not blame the founders of this Union. Flawed as they were, they certainly did their best to warn us of the dangers which would result in the dissolution of the Union. No. The decline, as I see it, began with the imperialism of the Lincoln administration which manifested itself in his war against the southern states who were acting as a whole on the principles of the republicanism and self-determination handed down to them from the founders of these United States, cf. The Rise and Fall of the Confederate Government, Vol. I. Popularly attributed to Benjamin Franklin, the Philadelphia convention gave us a constitutional republic, NOT a democracy. Well did they recognize the dangers related to mob rule based on their study of history, particularly the Roman and Greek. John Adams quipped that these United States and its federal government can only last so long as the people remain religious and moral. It is wholly unfit for any other type of people. Without a doubt, the religion and morality he referred to were to be of the Christian character. This can be known based on the study of the 2nd president’s own background and by understanding the nature of the world in which he lived and when he lived it. Another example. From whence did John Dickinson get his pacificism? Islam? The masons? Buddha? I’ve made my point here, I believe.

Since the Civil War of these United States, our constitutional republic has been in steady decline. The people of the Union have been taught incorrectly the nature of our federal system, our proper relationship to it as well as the individual state’s relationship to it and the individual’s relationship to his or her own state and local government. The notion that we are one ‘indestructible nation’ was a result of post-Civil War Supreme Court sophistry argued in the Texas v. White case of 1869. No doubt the wars we’ve allowed ourselves to be participants in have only served to the speed at which we have declined. Our soldiers come back from these evils disillusioned and many of them have lost the faith and this loss has been passed on to their children. I write as a veteran here.

At the federal level, these wars have given reason to perpetrate ill legislation like that of the 16th amendment which bypasses the state for funding its activities for good or for ill and forces revenue to be directly taken from the individual which, no doubt, undermines the notion of state sovereignty. Another result, the centralization of our money supply in a non-governmental entity, i.e. the ‘Federal’ Reserve. This, we were warned about as well from our founders and from Thomas Jefferson, in particular. Following this, naturally I would argue, is the passage of the 17th amendment allowing for the direct election of our senators to the U.S. Congress. No longer do the states have a representative in the federal government to safeguard the sovereignty or the state’s rights under the Tenth Amendment. Further did we descend to a pure democracy, or mob rule. Congress has 535 voting members, each one of these are sent to Washington at the behest of the popular elections. The bicameral system the founders set up has been demolished. It just doesn’t exist except in name only. A result of this? Abortion on demand for all of the supposedly sovereign states.

Need I go on?

What is the solution to all of this? Prayer, first and foremost, and a return to Jesus Christ for all but in particular for my friends, neighbors and colleagues who share a common locale, that is within the nation of Texas. Second, independence from the sinking ship that is the United States.

Yes, we can secede.


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