By Charlie Johnston
Today, in Sacramento, a host of people from across California will be processing from the Cathedral to the steps of the Capitol, saying the Rosary along the way and then forming a living Rosary on the steps of the Capitol. I will have pictures up by Monday of what transpired. It is a quiet, but forceful, statement on the part of Catholic laity that, in defiance of secular government orders seeking to suppress Christian worship and practice, we will not be silenced. One of the coolest things the organizers have come up with is great lengths of white chiffon, which they will hold six feet apart from each other. The people forming the living Rosary will wear white shirts for the Hail Mary beads and red shirts for the Our Father beads. I am really looking forward to the pictures that our Sacramento coordinator has promised to send me. This is the project CORAC has been helping with and that Fr. Richard Heilman of the US Grace Force has also been helping with.
Last year, Msgr. Charles Pope wrote a telling piece about the stages of persecution. The manufactured and criminally mishandled Covid crisis has been used as a lever by the anti-God left to move that persecution into hyper-drive. Covid is a genuine challenge – but our response has been untethered to any honest health imperatives, solely calibrated to accomplish the three aims of attacking Donald Trump, marginalizing and persecuting people of Judeo-Christian faith, and habituating a formerly free people to arbitrary controls.
We have done a horrific job, failing to protect those who were most vulnerable while enforcing draconian rules on the rest of the population who are not unusually vulnerable. Years from now, there will be those who go back over the data from this period to find out what really happened. It will be hard, because so much of it has been intentionally bowdlerized and falsified – almost all flu deaths have been listed as Covid (and health providers get bonus money for doing so); people who had Covid antibodies but died from something else have been listed as Covid deaths, and single Covid positive results have been, in some cases, multiplied by a factor of ten. But by taking the death rate for a normal year and extrapolating it with the death rate from this year – while normalizing historic flu deaths – future researchers will be able to form a rough picture. Personally, I think the total Covid deaths for this year will cap out at around 70,000 – with 30,000 of those being entirely preventable and unnecessary deaths caused by forcing the most vulnerable into Covid-rich environments, such as nursing homes. Those 30,000 are a criminal offense, because in a system genuinely committed to best health practices, none but a few would have happened before we understood enough to adopt actual best practices. Those people were sacrificed on the altar of political aggression – and the worst aggressors are the ones our disgusting leftstream media most celebrate. Why not? The reckless aggressors are the guys advancing the narrative. I know, I know…somebody will tell me the death toll is already 150,000 in this country. I am telling you that is like the vote count in Chicago: when you pull out the frauds, there is much less to show – and a few years down the line serious work will be done to show what has really happened. And shoot, if they admitted the death rate is akin to a normal flu season, the aspiring tyrants could not keep the folksies under their thumbs.
You don’t hear much about Sweden these days, simply because all the evidence suggests their approach has worked, without destroying peoples lives and livelihoods or holding them captive to draconian diktats. Perhaps some of the irrational panic fostered by the likes of Dr. Anthony Fauci is about to be balanced out. Trump appointed Stanford Dr. Scott Atlas, a harsh critic of the over-reaction AND of the refusal to take actual needed prophylactic measures to protect the most vulnerable. Don’t expect any let-up until after November at the earliest, though: pretending that the venomous lizard which is Covid is actually Godzilla is just too useful for the aspiring tyrants of the left.
The #science crowd has become, overtly anti-science. William Kirkpatrick of Crisis Magazine has called them the new primitives. They think they are creating something new, but they are just using very old, discredited ideas to destroy what others have built over many generations. The new primitives are too lazy to learn much actual science or any actual history, but cannot bear to think they just are not very smart. Incapable of building anything themselves, they just destroy the work of better people than themselves. Some of them may actually have the potential to be smart, but after generations of mis-education and being told that they are special without any actual achievement being demanded, reality is colliding with their vastly inflated sense of prowess and sophistication. It is not surprising that the realization that they have been conned should spark rage in them, but they are raging at the people who have held things together rather than at the people who have systematically conned them. If left unchecked, they will usher in a new “dark ages.” They are just not educated enough to know what brings public health and what merely brings destruction. Some are lazy, foolish and shallow enough that they just want power by any means as quickly as possible. This is the “I want what I want, when I want it,” crowd and there is little hope for them. Others, though, may sense the con and act out in frustrated and poignant anger at it. These latter may be potent potential converts to reason and renewal.
All of this puts America and Western Civilization, itself, in grave danger. Healthy societies are built on faith in God. We have abandoned that in America, just as Europe did in the aftermath of World War I – and now are in danger of ingesting the same ideological poison which led to the execution of tens of millions for the crime of “wrongthink.” In truth, relentless ideology is not the opposite of faith; it is a clawing, superstitious faith for people who have lost the real thing.
The dissonance is heightened because religious institutions have, thus far, failed to mount any vigorous defense of faith, family and freedom. Pope Francis, the head of the largest Christian Church on earth, adds to the confusion because he focuses on ideology rather than faith. More and more Christians are wondering whether Christian leaders have the vigor to stand for Christ. Fortunately, I do know that the limp response of our Catholic hierarchy to the new waves of (for now) soft persecution and oppression is not the whole story. Many of the Bishops have figured out what game is afoot – and are talking quietly with each other on how to respond effectively. I don’t know what will come of it, whether it will be effective or feckless. But I do know they are quietly talking about it in hopes of mounting a united front – and that heartens me.
Back in the 60’s talk began of a “silent majority.” It was this silent majority that was credited with giving Richard Nixon his presidential victory in 1968, as people tired of the convulsions and violence of radicals – with the seeming tolerance and acquiescence of the Democratic Party. A silent majority, when effective, simply rises up quietly on election day to express their disapproval of the status quo.
Contrary to many popular current themes, we have no silent majority today which is going to come in and quietly banish the radicals to the sidelines. We have a silenced majority: normal people who the left with its agents in the media, social platforms, and public officials are actively suppressing with threats of losing their jobs or being literally and violently attacked. The difference between a silent and a silenced majority is that the silenced majority, when it speaks, is not content to let bygones be bygones. They want justice and punishment for those who have persecuted them. Unfortunately, the modern radicals do not want to be listened to; they want to forcibly silence anyone who disagrees with them. Their intellectual arteries have so hardened that they are no longer capable of making a coherent argument. The longer the wait before the reckoning, the larger and more punitive that reckoning is.
I have been grateful to see the silenced majority starting to find its voice. I was really struck by the massive defeat of incumbent Atlanta District Attorney Paul Howard. Howard, you may recall, charged two Atlanta policemen with murder in the case of Rayshard Brooks in June – without waiting for Georgia Bureau of Investigation to complete its investigation. The 23-year incumbent apparently thought that tossing in with Antifa and the Black Lives Matter communist front would ensure his re-election. Listening to the media and the rhetoric of loudmouth radicals, it seemed a safe bet. But when the votes came in, Howard lost to opponent Fani Willis, who garnered 73 percent of the vote to Howard’s 27 percent. A 46-point loss is not a landslide; it is a furious beatdown. For an incumbent who had been re-elected six times before, it is a humiliating beatdown. This should be a profound alarm to the radical left. The leftstream media can assure us that woke activism is the wave of the future, but the first hard results say otherwise. When the silenced majority finally speaks, it does not just politely rebuke the offenders. Sean Lennon, son of the late John Lennon, sent out a tweet parodying his father’s famous peace ballad, writing, “All we are saying is give looting, rioting and violence a chance.” Lennon has become a rather witty and wry social conservative.
I have been praying for the silenced majority to find its voice. It is one of the primary reasons I have been forming CORAC – the Corps of Renewal and Charity. The longer we wait to say enough is enough, the more pitched and violent the battle is likely to be. I would rather have converts than conquests. But whatever it takes, those of us who believe in faith, family and freedom will not be silenced. We will stand – and pray that the madness passes so we can ascend together into peace and brotherhood under God rather than continue to descend into a deep, dark night of chaos and terror.