Category Archives: First Amendment

Denver may ban Chick-Fil-A due to owner’s stance on traditional marriage

Because Chick-fil-A is being sued every day for discriminatory practices, not.

No hate here...

No hate here…

Huff Po: Chick-fil-A is having some issues getting approval for a new location in Denver, and it’s all because of the restaurant chain’s anti-gay past owner’s personal religious belief.

City council members have halted the approval of a Chick-fil-A location at Denver International Airport as they debate whether or not the franchise should get a seven-year deal, according to the Denver Post. Chick-fil-A was “the second-most sought-after quick service brand at the airport, second to Chipotle,” according to a 2013 survey of airport goers.

But council members voiced concerns over president Dan Cathy’s views on gay marriage. When asked in 2012 whether he believed in the “Biblical definition of a family unit,” president Dan Cathy replied “guilty as charged.”

“All of us become more wise as time goes by. We sincerely care about all people,” Cathy told USA Today last year, after his words ignited a social media firestorm. “I’m going to leave it to politicians and others to discuss social issues.”

Four Denver council members said they want assurances Chick-fil-A’s hiring practices won’t discriminate against people based on their sexual orientation, TV station WTHR noted. Openly gay councilwoman Robin Kniech is concerned that the franchise will be generating “corporate profits used to fund and fuel discrimination.”

Robin Kniech

Robin Kniech

“This discussion — the way it’s unfolding here — hasn’t quite happened before in terms of a contract decision that you all have been asked to make, in all my years here,” David Broadwell, assistant city attorney, said in a council meeting last Tuesday, the Denver Post reported.

The council’s Business Development Committee will consider Chick-fil-A’s proposal again when it meets on Sept. 1.

freedom of speech

h/t Right Scoop

DCG

Rutgers: No such thing as ‘free’ speech

no free speech

Campus Reform: There is no such thing as ‘free’ speech,” according to Rutgers University.

The apparent denial of free speech is part of the public university’s effort to combat student bias on campus. The university’s Bias Prevention and Education Committee lists five ways for students to avoid committing “bias incidents.” Tops on the list is the command that students “Think Before [They] Speak.”

bias

To clarify what this means, the university warns students that “[t]here is no such thing as ‘free’ speech.” However, The university’s student code of conduct contains zero references to “free speech” or “freedom of speech.”

“All speech,” the university continues, “has a cost and consequences.”

The university defines “bias acts” as “[v]erbal, written, physical, psychological acts that threaten or harm a person or group on the basis of race, religion, color, sex, age, sexual orientation, gender identity or expression, national origin, ancestry, disability, marital status, civil union status, domestic partnership status, atypical heredity or cellular blood trait, military service or veteran status.”

The university encourages students to report “bias incidents”—which can be done anonymously—using an online Incident Report Form. Students can report bias incidents as either a victim or a witness.

The Bias Prevention and Education Committee lists four other ways for students to avoid committing a bias incident. Students are encouraged to “overcome cultural biases” and to join “activities, programs, courses, and practices that promote diversity and social justice.”

stupidity

The university also encourages students to “[l]ose stereotypes about any group.” There is “no such thing as a ‘positive’ stereotype,” according to the university. “All stereotypes are inherently negative, hurtful, and damaging.”

The Bias Prevention and Education Committee, according to the university, is a “two-tiered body comprised of the Deans of Students Bias Response Team and the Bias Prevention Education Advisory Panel working in concert to MONITOR, PREVENT, REPORT, RESPOND, and RESTORE environments in the aftermath of BIAS INCIDENTS.”

Rutgers professors are encouraged to prevent bias inside the classroom by using “the syllabus to create ground rules with regard to difference and disagreement.” Professors are also encouraged to ask their students “how they feel about provocative material, especially that which references issues of race, sexuality, gender, class, religion or any of the other ‘protected classes.’”

The university did not respond to a voicemail requesting comment.

DCG

Northeastern allegedly tells RAs that white men can’t be oppressed

white-male-privlege

Campus Reform: Resident Assistants (RAs) at Northeastern University are allegedly required to learn that white men can’t be oppressed.

According to a screenshot posted online from the Boston, Mass.-based university’s website, the RA training guide makes the claim that “In order to have the experience of being oppressed one must belong to an oppressed category. Men cannot be oppressed as men, just as whites cannot be oppressed as whites.”

“For a male to experience oppression,” the guide continues, “they would also need to be a person of color, gay, disabled, or in a lower social class.”

The screenshot was originally posted on the image sharing website Imgur, then submitted to the TumblrInAction subreddit of Reddit, with the title “Northeastern University requires its RAs to read and reflect about how white men cannot be oppressed.”

Redditors mocked the posting, which had received several hundred upvotes by time of publication. “Did anyone catch that whole ‘you have to be oppressed in order to suffer oppression’ bit in there? They are actually defining oppression so that it’s not something one experiences, it’s just something you are or are not, and can only experience it if you were born to it. Oppression is an inborn trait now,” one Redditor said. “I almost went to this school, but I didn’t get enough financial aid. It was a blessing in disguise, apparently,” wrote another.

A few posters who claimed to be Northeastern University students bemoaned the posting. “C’mon, Huskies. We can do better than this,” one poster wrote. “[T]hank [G]od I’m moving off campus in the fall,” said another apparent student.

The umbrella of oppression

The umbrella of oppression

The lesson on oppression comes from a section titled “The Umbrella of Oppression,” which includes an image that “illustrates types of discrimination seen in the world today.” The screenshot shows a partial-view of the “Umbrella of Oppression;” the whole image can be found elsewhere on the internet, and listed categories of oppression include classism, sexism, racism, ageism, anti-Semitism, “able-bodyism,” and “heterosexism.”

Heterosexism, according to the university’s “LGBTQA 101 Guide,” includes oppressive acts such as having “M/F checkboxes on forms.”

Similarly, Northeastern encourages students to report “bias incidents”—much like the “bias reports” at Washington University St. Louis—to either the university police department orthe Office of Institutional Diversity and Inclusion.

The university breaks down “all acts of bias and/or hate” into three different tiers. The first tier consists of “physical assault, stalking, or ongoing harassing behavior.” The second deals with “[d]estruction of property directed towards a person or group…[and] verbal harassment based on the protected class status of an individual or a group.” The third level lists “offensive writings” such as those that could be found on a white board or in a bathroom.

In addition to handling “bias incidents,” the Office of Institutional Diversity and Inclusion advertises six different types of training sessions, which are intended for students, faculty, and staff. Among the training sessions offered by the university are workshops titled “Interrupting Microaggressions,” which allows participants to “practice skills to gain confidence as self-advocate,” and “Get informed! Sexual Harassment Awareness,” which is designed to prepare students heading for the workplace to “professionally address possible sexually harassing behaviors from verbal, physical, and visual communication.”

The university also offers a training workshop titled “Safe Zone Training,” which allows students themselves to become a “registered Safe Zone.” *

Northeastern University did not respond to Campus Reform’s request for comment in time for publication.

*From the web site:

What is a “Safe Zone?”
A Safe Zone is a physical space, such as an office, that is marked by a Safe Zone sticker. This space is a place where individuals of all identities are welcome to express themselves in a safe, supportive and welcoming environment. A Safe Zone is also a state of mind. Actions speak louder than words – as such, individuals who identify as a Safe Zone advocate on behalf of the LGBTQA community by speaking out against homophobia and heterosexism.

The goal of the Safe Zone program is to create a campus community that is welcoming and affirming of the LGBTQA Community and their Allies. At the end of a training session, participants will have the opportunity to sign the Safe Zone agreement and join a network of students, faculty, and staff who support the mission of the program.

I prefer this zone:

safe zone

DCG

Things are getting crazier in America

Alice and the Cheshire Cat

I TOLD YOU THINGS ARE GETTING CRAZIER

By David Limbaugh • Townhall.com • July 7, 2015

Lately I’ve shared my lament that in America today we are witnessing a surreal transformation of the greatest nation in history. Last week, a spate of headlines made this point better than I could make it on my own.

I was minding my business, mind you, surfing the Internet to check out the news and political sites and forums I customarily visit, and these news and column headlines, most from last week, some from a bit earlier and a few from this week, bombarded me. I wasn’t looking for trouble. Nor was the satirical website The Onion one of the sites I visited. The world is upside down, inside out, sideways, crazy, nutso. Bad is good; up is down. Left is right; right is wrong. Evil is good; insanity is sanity. Abnormal is normal. Circles are squares. Hot is cold. Luke warm is red hot — among Republicans, anyway. Common sense is uncommon. The world is otherworldly. Dissent is “hate.” Diversity means conformity. The good guys are the bad guys; virtue is vice; sophistry is intellectualism; jerks are celebrated; debauchery is glorified; the holy is debauched. Let me share some of these headlines, which speak for themselves — loudly and depressingly.

• Shakespeare’s Works — Too Hard, Too White.

• Obama Red-Faced: Iran Nuclear Stockpiles Grew 20 Percent in 18 months.

• Obamacare Dangerous to Our Health.

• Eye-Popping Premium Increases.

• Obama, Clinton Want To Enforce ‘Correct’ Thinking in America.

• High School Denies Pro-Life Club!

• Pentagon Officials Call Out Obama’s ‘Pathetic’ ISIS Strategy.

• Shabazz Calls on Nation of Islam, New Black Panther ‘Army’ to Defend Black Communities Against Police Brutality.

• Obama: Climate Change Deniers Endangering National Security.

• Team Clinton Swarms Sunday Interview Shows, Minus Hillary.

• Antonin Scalia Is Unfit To Serve: A Justice Who Rejects Science and the Law for Religion Is of Unsound Mind.

• In L.A., Obama addresses Washington’s Dysfunction: “I Did Not Say I Would Fix It.”

• Authorities: Gay Slur Carved Into Utah Man’s Arm Was Staged.

• Justice Department: Transgender Students Can Use Bathrooms that Match Their Gender Identity.

• Political Correctness 101: Praising America, Virtues of Hard Work Dubbed ‘Micro-Aggression’ On Campuses.

• Video Shows U.S. Citizens Willing To Ban American Flag.

• Are Americans of Faith in Danger?

• Obama Administration Says Redskins Nickname Could Block Potential Stadium Deal.

• TV Land Drops “Dukes of Hazzard” Amid Confederate Flag Controversy.

• Gay Teacher Files Federal Discrimination Lawsuit Against Catholic School.

• Terrific: Attorney in Charge of Releasing Lois Lerner ‘Lost’ Emails Now in Charge of HRC’s Emails.

• For Obama, Rainbow White House Was ‘A Moment Worth Savoring.’

• Montana Polygamist Family Applies for Marriage License.

• 74 Children Executed by ISIS for ‘Crimes’ That Include Refusal To Fast, Report Says.

• New Undercover Footage Shows VA Officials Admitting of ‘Unaccountability at Every Level.’

• Black Teacher Hits Handicapped White Child, Tells Him Black People Fought To Not ‘Serve White People Like You.’

• Girl Scouts Raise $250K for Transgender Cause.

• Teen Leads Mob in Ransacking of Georgia Walmart.

• U.S. Debt Headed Toward Greek Levels.

• Obama Administration Invokes Executive Privilege on Benghazi Probe?

• United Church of Christ Anti-Israel Extremism.

• U.S. Troops in Afghanistan ‘Feel Abandoned.’

• More than 42 Million Muslims ‘Support ISIS.’

• 17 Shot Since Monday Morning in Baltimore.

• Baltimore Mayor Wants Park Named for Robert E. Lee Changed, Other Monuments May Come Down.

• Christian Preachers Brutally Beaten at Gay Pride Festival.

• Seattle 6th Graders Can’t Get a Coke at School, but Can Get an IUD.

• Local Minister Urges the Flying of Black Liberation Flag This Weekend.

• Christian Bakers Face $135K Fine and Gag Order Over Wedding Cake for Same-Sex Couple.

• Center for American Progress Helped Craft EPA Talking Points, Emails Show.

• White House Blames GOP for Kathryn Steimle’s Slaying, Rise in Gun Violence.

• 10 Killed, 55 Wounded in Fourth of July Gun Violence in Chicago.

• Shock: Arizona Paper Decries Border Fence As Too High For Mexicans To Safely Jump.

• California Family Supports 4-Year-Old’s Decision To Transition from Male to Female.

• Illegal Alien Who Murdered Woman Went to San Francisco Because It Was a ‘Sanctuary City.’

• Chris Matthews: Hillary Clinton is ‘More of a Conservative … Traditional Politician.’

• Netanyahu Says Nuke Deal Getting Worse by the Day.

• Chicago Convulsed By Another Violent Weekend; Top Cop Blames Justice System.

……………………………………

To David Limbaugh’s list, I add these other crazy headlines (h/t FOTM’s MomOfIV, CSM, Glenn47, and marblenecltr):

• Christian Colleges’ Right to Deny Married Housing for Gay Couples Is ‘On the Edge of the Indefensible’

Electric Cars Can Be Worse For the Environment Than Gas-Guzzling Vehicles

Meet the First Trans Pastor Officially Ordained by the Evangelical Lutheran Church

Oregon State Issues Gag Order Against Opposing Gay Marriage

• Schools Implant IUDs in Girls as Young as 6th Grade Without Their Parents Knowing

Millions Going to Train Teachers On ‘White Privilege’

• ACLU: Why we can no longer support the federal ‘religious freedom’ law

• Is Plastic Surgery a Sin? Doctor Argues ‘Jesus Performed Plastic Surgery’

• Google eavesdropping tool installed on computers without permission

• You Can Be Prosecuted for Clearing Your Browser History

• How the Red Cross Raised Half a Billion Dollars for Haiti ­and Built [Only] Six Homes

• Court Rules Disabled Patient Can be Starved to Death Against His Will

• Selfie With Parents’ Sex Toys? Alameda Teacher Accused Of Assigning Bizarre Extra Credit For Sophomores

Why Would Anyone Want An Eyeball Tattoo?

• Schools Ask 12-Year-Olds If They’ve Had Anal Sex

Marine Court-Martialed For Refusing to Remove Bible Verse

Obama Gives Amnesty to Child Molester

• Former [black] Obama Admin Aide Rapes 2 Women, Gets No Jail Time

• Obama blocks Iraqi nun from describing Christian persecution

• US Police Departments Using “Spy Rocks” to Spy on Citizens

With the hindsight knowledge of the past 6½ years, I truly believe America reached a tipping point or “jumped the shark” when millions elected Barack Obama to the White House in 2008, then re-elected him in 2012.

Do you think America has crossed the Rubicon, past the point of no return? Sound off!

~Éowyn

Sandy Hook dad Lenny Pozner’s website redirects to Obama regime’s NSA

Leonard “Lenny” Pozner, 47, is the biological father of Noah Pozner, one of the first-graders allegedly shot dead by Adam Lanza at Sandy Hook Elementary School, Newtown, Connecticut, on Dec. 14, 2012.

Curiously, Lenny did not attend his slain son’s funeral. Instead, after the Jewish shiva mourning period, Lenny skipped Noah’s funeral and instead “went to be with family in Florida.” (Source: Forward)

Lenny is unique among the parents and families of Sandy Hook victims in the aggressive way he’s gone after people who are skeptical of the official account of the Sandy Hook shooting. In addition to decrying the skeptics in a newspaper op/ed, Lenny is using a company called HONR Network which he’d set up expressly for the purpose, to remove any image of Noah from blogs and YouTube on the grounds of copyright violation, although the Facebook page Lenny had created to commemorate his son has scores of Noah’s images, which means those images are in the public domain.

Dutchsince is one of the bloggers hounded by Lenny. Here’s Dutchsince’s account:

Yesterday, a Sandy Hook ($andy Crook) family member came to a video I made and filed a false copyright claim against it because I’m showing a google search containing something they don’t like.

Video they flagged: (dead link) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vwi3KmF0luc

The man filing the false claims of copyright goes by many names [including Lenny P. Osner], the name associated with the COMPANY (which filed the claim against me) is Leonard Pozner (age 47 from Newtown CT). HONR Network is his company which specializes in getting content removed from the internet which they don’t approve of.

…I tried to file a dispute against his false claim, and youtube would NOT allow a dispute to be filed.  First time I’ve seen this in over 4 years of making videos….

Filing a claim of copyright theft (by the Sandy Hook family) is a public accusation of a crime being committed.

The fact that I cannot dispute this means that even though I committed no crime, I have been deemed guilty by the person accusing me of the crime.  I now have to get a lawyer and sue to have this accusation of a crime removed.

If I agree, or let this go, it stands as a copyright crime / violation for life.  I have to counter sue (in actual court not on youtube) to have my name cleared….

People are LETTING this Sandy Hook family walk all over our rights, all because they supposedly lost someone?  Do we let victims of crimes determine our free speech rights?  Crime victims can be unreasonable, reactionary, and sometimes downright crazy in their behavior.

Lenny also went after blogger Johnny Cirucci. Lenny’s harassment and intimidation of blogger and college student Timothy Hunter is especially reprehensible. Hunter’s youtube and email were blocked (see his tweet below); he no longer blogs; and Hunter is now so spooked, he won’t even communicate with me although he and I had collaborated on an important post, “Sandy Hook deception: Associated Press stories & photos predate the massacre.”

Timothy Hunter tweet

Lenny also went after this blog, Fellowship of the Minds (FOTM).

He prevailed on WordPress, FOTM’s server, to take down Noah’s pictures, without even notifying me, the owner, first. WordPress also repeatedly threatened to shut down FOTM for violating Lenny’s copy right claims, despite FOTM’s Fair Use disclaimer as a not-for-profit site. WordPress also removed from FOTM the address and phone number of Lenny’s HONR Network company, although:

  • HONR’s address is public information that anyone can find by “googling” HONR Network.
  • HONR Network has its address on its Contact page.

Curiously, Lenny is incurious about why an image of his son was included on a wall-poster commemorating the victims of a Taliban shooting in the Army Public School in Peshawar, Pakistan, on Dec. 16, 2014. (See “Dead again: Sandy Hook child victim Noah Pozner also killed in Pakistan Taliban shooting!” and “BBC admits but will not investigate why pic of Sandy Hook’s Noah Pozner is among Peshawar massacre victims”)

Back to Lenny Pozner’s company, HONR Network.

Here’s the information Dutchsince found:

HONR Network

Although HONR Network is listed as a business, it conducts no buying or selling, nor does it have a store front. As you can see above, HONR Network’s address is a P.O. Box address, which is why Dutchsince calls it a “‘fictional’ entity created to harass others online under the GUISE of corporate law.”

honr-network-po-box

Some have wondered how Lenny has the resources to set up HONR Network and the time to go after bloggers and YouTubers. There are speculations that HONR Network may be a front for a government operation.

Wonder and speculate no more, for lo and behold, if you go to http://www.honr.com or type HONR.COM into your browser, and hit “enter”, you’ll be directed to a federal government website — that of the National Security Agency (NSA)!

I did that yesterday and have the following screenshots to prove I did.

The first screenshot was taken when I typed the URL http://www. honr.com, then hit “Enter”. Note that the time and date are, respectively, 12:41 PM and 1/6/2015 (see lower right corner of screenshot below, inside the red box I painted). Note that the screenshot shows the Honr URL, but the page that came up is NSA’s website.

↓ Click image to enlarge ↓

Lenny Pozner website1

I took the second screenshot (below) one second later, which shows the URL now says http://www.nsa.gov.

↓ Click image to enlarge ↓

Lenny Pozner website2

See also:

UPDATE:

Minutes after I’d published this post, a friend emailed me that the HONR link no longer redirects to the NSA. Good thing I took the screenshots!

TPTB likes to play mind-games with the little people. See”

~Éowyn

Language Apartheid: Only blacks can say “nigger”

When had America allowed the Left to put chains around the First Amendment by being our Language Police?

It’s verboten for heterosexuals to use “queer” or “homo” or any word other than the approved “gay” to refer to homosexuals, but homosexuals can call themselves “queer.”

Another example of Liberal Tyranny: It’s racist for non-blacks to call blacks “nigger,” but it’s perfectly OK for blacks to use the word “nigger.”

Reacting to the Charleston church shooting, Obama used the n-word in an interview with podcaster Marc Maron on June 22, 2015. Obama said:

The legacy of slavery, Jim Crow, discrimination in almost every institution of our lives, you know, that casts a long shadow, and that’s still part of our DNA…. Racism, we are not cured of it, clearly. And it’s not just a matter of it not being polite to say nigger in public. That’s not the measure of whether racism still exists or not. It’s not just a matter of overt discrimination. Societies don’t, overnight, completely erase everything that happened 200 to 300 years prior.

Obama’s use of the n-word, in turn, prompted black Cornel West, who is a prominent member of the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA) and Professor of Philosophy and Christian Practice at the Union Theological Seminary in New York City, to call Obama the first “niggerized” president in an appearance on CNN yesterday (June 22, 2015).

Note: Formerly called the Socialist Party of America, Democratic Socialists of America is Marxist, anti-capitalist, and a member of the Socialist International.

West said:

“Too many black people are niggerized. I would say the first black president has become the first niggerized black president.

A niggerized black person is a black person who is afraid and scared and intimidated when it comes to putting a spotlight on white supremacy and fighting against white supremacy. So when many of us said we have to fight against racism, what were we told? ‘No, he can’t deal with racism because he has other issues, political calculations. He’s the president of all America, not just black America.’ We know he’s president of all America but white supremacy is American as cherry pie.”

Source: RealClearPolitics

Cornel West & Obama

~Éowyn

St. Thomas More and St. John Fisher

This is the first in FOTM’s new series on the Celestial Army. (Please see my post, “Calling on the Army of Angels and Saints,” for the reason for this series.)

Today, June 22nd, is the Feast Day of St. Thomas More and tomorrow, on June 23rd, is the Feast Day of St. John Fisher — two very brave men who died for the Truth, for their Faith, and for Christ.

Their joint feast day is a timely reminder to Christians in America that we, too, are called to defend our Faith against the Obama administration’s assault on Catholic institutions, under the guise of Obamacare’s contraceptives mandate. Today, it’s Catholics; tomorrow, it will be the Episcopalians, Methodists, Baptists, Evangelicals….

St. Thomas More

Thomas was born in 1478 in England. His father, John, was a barrister and a judge and his mother was Agnes. He received his childhood education at St. Anthony’s school and, at age 13, was received into the household of Morton, Archbishop of Canterbury who was impressed with the lad. Thomas was then sent to Oxford, where he studied at Canterbury College.

Thomas thought he might have a calling to the priesthood and for four years he lived with the London Carthusian monks. However, he did not find a calling to the priesthood. Thomas then studied law and was called to the Bar in 1501 and in 1504 he entered Parliament. In 1505 he married Jane Colt and they had four children, Margaret, Elizabeth, Cecilia and John. Thomas was adamant that his daughters received a scholarly education just like his son. Many religious and learned people of London visited Thomas and his family in their home which was known as a congenial center of learning. In 1510 Jane died, but he later married Alice Middleton, a widow. In 1516, Thomas wrote Utopia, a work of fiction and political philosophy.

Thomas was brought to King Henry VIII’s court and in October of 1529, appointed Lord Chancellor of England, the highest office in England under the King. Thomas became a friend and confidant of Henry VIII, as the King had great respect for Thomas, admiring his intellect, wit, good judgment and holiness.

Henry VIII desired to obtain an annulment from the Pope to his marriage to Catherine of Aragon, so that he could marry Anne Boleyn. Pope Clement VII refused to grant an annulment, finding no valid grounds. Henry was enraged at this denial and forced the English clergy to acknowledge him as “Protector and Supreme Head of the Church of England.”

At this, Thomas resigned as Chancellor; his property confiscated by the King. Thomas and his family became poverty stricken. For 18 months he lived in quiet austerity, engaging himself in writing and with the needs of the household. After King Henry married Anne Boleyn, Thomas refused to attend her coronation.

On March 30, 1534, the Act of Succession provided that the King’s subjects take an oath, which required all English subjects to agree to three clauses: that any heir or offspring of Henry and Anne was a legitimate heir to the throne; that the marriage between Henry and Catherine was null and void; and that the Bishop of Rome, the Pope, had no more authority or power in England than any other bishop. Anyone who refused to sign the oath was guilty of high treason punishable by death.

On April 13, 1534, Thomas and John Fisher, Bishop of Rochester, were given the oath to sign, but they both refused to sign it because of the latter two clauses. Consequently, on April 17, 1534, both Thomas and Fisher were imprisoned in the Tower of London. During this time, Thomas suffered greatly, separated from his family whom he loved so much. But it was also during his incarceration that Thomas began to write the Dialogue of Comfort against Tribulation, the best of his spiritual works, and The Sadness of Christ.

Toward the man who put him in prison, Thomas not only prayed daily for Henry, he thanked the King for his imprisonment, which Thomas called “the very greatest” of “all the great benefits” the king “has heaped so thickly upon me.” With prescience, Thomas wrote to his daughter Margaret that “no matter how bad it seems,” great good would come from his death.

On February 1, 1535, the Act of Supremacy came into operation, giving the title of “only supreme head of the Church of England” to the king and made it treason to deny it. Thomas was asked while he was in the Tower his opinion of the Act, but he refused to give his opinion. On June 22nd, now-Cardinal John Fisher was beheaded on Tower Hill. Nine days after, on July 1, 1535, Thomas was indicted and tried in Westminster Hall for opposing the Act of Supremacy, with false testimony from Richard Rich, the Solicitor General of Wales.

At the trial, Thomas broke his long silence and defended himself with competence, brilliance, and holiness, which intimidated his accusers and judges. He argued that, just as London lacked authority to annul an act of Parliament for the whole of England, so Parliament lacked authority to transfer governance of the Church to the king, since the Church had been entrusted by God to the bishops and the Pope. Thomas noted that this was codified in the Magna Carta 200 years earlier and affirmed in the king’s coronation oath.

Intimidated by King Henry, the jury convicted Thomas of treason. On July 6, 1535, Thomas was taken to be beheaded at Tower Hill. Weak and emaciated, he asked the Lord Lieutenant of the Tower to help him up the steps of the scaffold, but still managed wryly to quip, “As for my coming down, let me shift for myself.” A Paris newsletter published this description by an eye-witness:

“He spoke little before his execution. Only he asked that bystanders to pray for him in this world, and he would pray for them elsewhere.  He then begged them earnestly to pray for the King, that it might please God to give him good counsel, protesting that he dies the King’s good servant, but God’s first.”

The husband of Thomas’ daughter, Margaret, recorded that Thomas asked those present “to pray for him, and to bear witness with him that he should now there suffer death, in and for the faith of the Holy Catholic Church.”

400 years after his martyrdom, on May 19, 1935, the bells in St. Peter’s Basilica rang with joy as Thomas More was canonized a saint, along with St. John Fisher. In November of 2000, Pope John Paul II proclaimed St. Thomas More the patron saint of politicians “for proclaiming the truth in season and out.”

St. John Fisher

John was born in 1469 in Beverly, Yorkshire, the eldest of four children of Robert and Agnes Fisher. Robert Fisher died when John was only 8; his mother remarried and had five more children. John attended Beverly grammar school and later, Cambridge University. He became Proctor of Cambridge in or about 1494, and was appointed Master Debator three years later. On July 5, 1501, he became a doctor of sacred theology; 10 days later, he was elected Vice Chancellor of the University. From 1505 to 1508, John served as the president of Queens’ College: He created scholarships, introduced Greek and Hebrew into the university curriculum, and brought in the world-famous Erasmus as Professor of Divinity and Greek. John was known as a great theologian through his writings in defense of the Sacraments, especially the priesthood and the Real Presence of Christ in the Eucharist. In 1504, he became both Bishop of Rochester, the poorest diocese in England, as well as Chancellor of Cambridge. As Chancellor, he tutored then Prince Henry, who later became King Henry VIII. John loved his flock in Rochester as they also loved him, tending especially to the poor and the children.

From 1527 on forward, Bishop Fisher resolutely opposed Henry VIII’s divorce proceedings against Queen Catherine. Unlike all of the other bishops, John Fisher refused to take the Oath of Succession for the same reasons as Thomas More. Therefore, he was imprisoned in the Tower of London in April of 1534. That very next year while he remained in prison, the Pope made him a Cardinal. Angered by this, Henry VIII retaliated by beheading Cardinal Fisher within a month.

A half hour before his execution on June 22, 1535, Cardinal Fisher opened his New Testament to this passage in the Gospel of John:

“Eternal life is this: to know You, the only true God, and Him Whom You have sent, Jesus Christ. I have given You glory on earth by finishing the work You gave me to do. Do you now, Father, give me glory at Your side.” 

Fisher then closed his New Testament and said, “There is enough learning in that to last me the rest of my life.”

William Rastell, Thomas More’s nephew, witnessed the martyrdom of Cardinal Fisher. He said that Fisher in a strong and very loud voice spoke to the large crowd, “Christian people, I am come hither to die for the faith of Christ’s Catholic Church.” He asked for their prayers and prayed, “God save the king and the realm, and hold His holy hand over it, and send the king a good counsel.” He then knelt, said the hymn of praise, Te Deum, and some short prayers, laid his neck upon the block, and was executed.

On May 19, 1935, along with Thomas More, John Fisher was canonized a saint.

In his Dialogue of Comfort Against Tribulation, St. Thomas More urges us to have the courage and conviction to “die for the truth” with Christ.

We live in a time in America of a culture war against Christ and Christianity. The culture war is now a political war because of the Obama administration’s assault on religious autonomy and liberty. Against the tide of false political correctness and the threat of punishment and sanctions, will we stand firm and remain true to Christ and to our Faith?

St. Thomas and St. John so loved Jesus, they willingly died for Him. May we find inspiration in their examples as we live our faith with courage, integrity, honor and steadfastness.

We are not servants of Obama or any ruler. We are God’s servants, first and last!

~Joan

Sources:

Butler’s Lives of the Saints, edited by Michael Walsh
The King’s Good Servant But God’s First, by James Monti
Catholic Insight
Catholic Online
Catholic Wisdom, edited by John A. Hardon, S.J.