Category Archives: First Amendment

Why it’s not illegal to hack those WikiLeaks emails

In recent days, the Obama administration and Hillary Clinton have made bombastic threats of cyber-attacking Russia because they claim Russia had hacked into those DNC, Hillary and Podesta emails released by WikiLeaks, which are embarrassing and damaging to Hillary’s presidential ambitions.

See “Who really hacked the WikiLeaks emails? – Russia, Romania or the CIA?

However, neither Hillary nor the Obama administration has given any evidence that Russia is the hacker, although that hasn’t stopped the media whores from  parroting that allegation as truth. Indeed of solid evidence of Russia’s hacking, what the administration said in its press release on this matter is that the U.S. intelligence community merely “is confident” that the Russian government is the hacker.

In other words, the U.S. is prepared to instigate a likely World War III by going to war — cyber or military — against Russia based on the CIA’s vague sense of “confidence”.

Donald Trump pointed that out in the second 2016 presidential debate on October 9. In response to Hillary saying “Our intelligence community just came out and said in the last few days that the Kremlin, meaning Putin and the Russian government, are directing the attacks, the hacking on American accounts to influence our election,” Trump stated a simple truth:

“She doesn’t know if it’s the Russians doing the hacking.”

Hillary’s media whore, CNN’s Chris Cuomo, even declared that we must not read those emails because “it’s illegal to possess [and read] these stolen documents” — which is rich, coming from Cuomo who had openly admitted that the media are whole-hog for lawless Hillary, saying “We couldn’t help her any more than we have, she’s got just a free ride so far from the media, we’re the biggest ones promoting her campaign.”

In other words, it’s illegal only when we the little people do it, but it’s okay for Hillary to conduct business as U.S. secretary of state with an unsecured email server, in direct violation of State Department rules and U.S. law.

Instead of reading those hacked emails ourselves — which is “illegal”! — Cuomo says we are to rely on media whores like him to read those emails — which is legal! — and tell us what’s in those emails. But as UCLA law professor Eugene Volokh pointed out, “The First Amendment offers the same protection to the media as to the rest of us…, the media has no more First Amendment rights than the rest of us.”

But is possession (and reading) of the hacked emails by us little people really illegal?

William Dunkerley, a media business analyst and the author of Ukraine in the Crosshairs (2014 Omnicom Press) and Litvinenko Murder Case Solved (2015 Omnicom Press), maintains that the hacked emails are not stolen because they are in the public domain because no one owns them. And since the emails are not owned by anyone, how then can they be stolen?

In an article for Russia Insider on Oct. 18, 2016, Dunkerley writes:

The issue here is whether or not any documents were stolen. Some suggest that they instead have been leaked by an insider. But no evidence of a leak has been presented.

The overarching issue, however, is that there is no legitimate legal theory under which the documents could have been stolen. Here’s why. For something to have been stolen there must be an owner from whom it was stolen. The fact is that no one had legal ownership of those State Department documents.

On the surface that may sound preposterous. They were indeed State Department documents after all.

But nothing was taken physically. No papers were removed from any premises or taken away from any person. What’s at issue here is “intellectual property.” The body of law that deals with content such as the emails in question is US Copyright Law. It allows a person or organization to own intellectual property.

That law does not protect the emails in question, though. That’s because the law specifically exempts content produced by federal government employees as a part of their jobs. It is considered to be in the public domain. There is no owner. There is no one to have stolen from.

Then there is the question of why the Clinton campaign is focused on whomever or however the emails were obtained. If the Russians had done the hacking, and for all I know they very well may have, why is Russia being blamed for the publication?

Isn’t the publication of the emails the source of Clinton’s embarrassment? Why isn’t Wikileaks the focus of Hillary’s angst? If Russia had just put hacked emails in a vault, would the Clinton campaign be so aggrieved?

That points to the essence of this whole Russian hacking story. It really doesn’t matter who got the ball rolling. It’s the publication of the emails that hurts. And the publication of public domain content does not infringe anyone’s copyright.

I suspect that Russia is being targeted as part of a provocation. Even the use of the word “stolen” is pejorative.

Which then explains why the Obama administration is instrumental in cutting off WikiLeaks founder Julian Assange’s Internet connection. (See “The Evil Empire strikes back: WikiLeaks’ Internet connection severed; RT’s bank accounts frozen“)

On October 16, Assange’s Internet service was intentionally cut off by “a state actor,” identified by WikiLeaks as the government of Ecuador. Assange has been holed up in the Ecuador embassy in London for the past 4 years.


On October 18, WikiLeaks tweeted that they were told by “multiple U.S. sources” that the Obama administration had pressured Ecuador to sever Assange’s Internet connection:

wikileaks-tweet-on-john-kerry“FARC peace negotiations” refers to the ongoing negotiations between the Columbian government and the country’s largest Marxist rebel group — the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (in Spanish, Fuerzas Armadas Revolucionarias de Colombia or FARC), a guerrilla movement in the continuing 5-decades long Colombian armed conflict since 1964.

An article on makes an interesting observation:

Whether the State Department [John Kerry] was the only entity placing pressure on Ecuador on behalf of the Clinton campaign, or whether Wall Street also intervened directly, is unclear. The timing of the Internet cutoff, in the immediate aftermath of the release of Clinton’s Goldman Sachs speeches, may be more than coincidental.

In the spring of 2014, the government of Ecuador agreed to transfer more than half of its gold reserves to Goldman Sachs Group Inc. for three years, in an attempt to raise cash to cover a growing deficit brought on by the collapse in oil prices. It reportedly sent 466,000 ounces of gold to Goldman Sachs, worth about $580 million at the time, in return for “high security” financial instruments and an anticipated profit on its investment. It is hardly a stretch of the imagination to believe that such a relationship would give Goldman Sachs considerable leverage in relation to the Ecuadorian government.

In any case, it is evident that the US ruling establishment is growing increasingly desperate to stanch the flow of previously secret emails and documents that are exposing the real character not only of Clinton […]

The transcripts of Clinton’s speeches to Goldman Sachs and other top banks and employers’ groups, for which she was paid on average $200,000 per appearance, are the most incriminating. They expose the workings of the oligarchy that rules America and the thinking and actions of a politician prepared to do anything to advance the interests of this ruling stratum, while simultaneously accruing ever greater riches and power for herself.

While on the campaign trail, Clinton has postured as a “progressive,” determined to hold Wall Street’s feet to the fire. But in her speeches to Goldman Sachs, she made clear her unconditional defense of the banks and financial houses. Under conditions of popular outrage against the bankers and their role in dragging millions into crisis in the financial meltdown of 2008, Clinton gave speeches praising the Wall Street financiers and insisting that they were best equipped to regulate themselves. She apologized to them for supporting the toothless Dodd-Frank financial regulatory law, saying that it had to be enacted for “political reasons.”

In front of her Wall Street audiences, Clinton made clear she had no inhibitions about ordering mass slaughter abroad. While telling her public audiences that she supports a “no-fly zone” in Syria as a humanitarian measure to save lives, she confidentially acknowledged to her Goldman Sachs audience that such an action is “going to kill a lot of Syrians” and become “an American and NATO involvement where you take a lot of civilians.” In the same speech she declared her willingness to bomb Iran.

The emails have laid bare the nexus of corrupt connections between the State Department, the Clinton Foundation, her various campaigns and her network of financial and corporate donors, which together constitute a quasi-criminal influence-peddling enterprise that could best be described as “Clinton, Inc.”

The revelations contained in the WikiLeaks material have been ignored or downplayed by the corporate media, which instead has focused unrelentingly on the charges of sexual misconduct leveled against Clinton’s Republican rival, Donald Trump.

H/t Will Shanley


Ruth Bader Ginsburg on Kaepernick protests: ‘I think it’s dumb and disrespectful’


From CNN: Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, never shy to weigh in on the controversies of the day, said she thinks “it’s really dumb” for San Francisco 49ers quarterback Colin Kaepernick and others to refuse to stand for the national anthem. But the 83-year-old justice said she “wouldn’t lock a person up for doing it.”

Ginsburg made the comments to Yahoo’s Katie Couric while promoting her book “My Own Words.”

In the interview, Ginsburg steers clear from criticizing presidential candidate Donald Trump but calls the rhetoric from the election cycle “distressing.” She updates her health status, her thoughts on Hillary Clinton and Merrick Garland’s nomination and admits, to an amazed Couric, that she’s never even seen the famous parody of her on “Saturday Night Live.”

Of Kaepernick and others she says, she thinks their actions are “dumb and disrespectful”. “I would have the same answer if you asked me about flag burning. I think it’s a terrible thing to do, but I wouldn’t lock a person up for doing it. I would point out how ridiculous it seems to me to do such an act.

In 1989, before Ginsburg joined the court, the Supreme Court held that the conviction of a man named Gregory Lee Johnson for burning the flag was inconsistent with the First Amendment.

Of the athletes, Ginsburg said, “if they want to be stupid, there’s no law that should be preventive. If they want to be arrogant, there’s no law that prevents them from that. What I would do is strongly take issue with the point of view that they are expressing when they do that.”

Ginsburg’s words were similar to the comments that the late Justice Antonin Scalia made when he was asked about his vote in favor of Johnson in the flag burning case.

“If I were King,” Scalia told CNN’s Piers Morgan in 2012, “I would not allow people to go about burning the American flag. However, we have a First Amendment, which says that the right of free speech shall not be abridged.”



“I have said everything I’m going to say about the current election,” Ginsburg told Couric and refused to discuss her comments last summer when she said she regretted calling Trump a “faker” among other comments to journalists.

She laughed, though, when Couric brought up a tweet by Trump that said Ginsburg’s “mind is shot.” “I’m not on Twitter, and I think I would not have responded,” she said.

She also refused to to speak directly to whether one could ban an entire religious group from entering the country in case that question could come before the court. But she did speak in personal terms about signs she saw as a young girl in the roadside in New Jersey that said “No dogs or Jews allowed.”

“All I can say is I am sensitive to discrimination on any basis because I have experienced that upset,” she told Couric. She said she looked at the sign and said to herself, “I am a Jew, but I’m an American, and Americans are not supposed to say such things.”

Ginsburg said “I’m proud of the US as a country that welcomes all sorts of people.”

She called the rhetoric of the election “distressing” but said she was “hopeful it will go away.”


Clinton and Garland

Calling Garland “eminently qualified,” she reiterated her belief that the Senate should hold a vote but “it’s the Senate’s prerogative.” She added, however, that the court is “handicapped” without nine justices. Asked whether she said Clinton would re-nominate Garland, if she were to win the election, Ginsburg said, “your guess about what she would do is as good as mine.”

She also praised Clinton. “It’s very refreshing to see a woman with the knowledge that she has, with the poise and the command of language,” Ginsburg said.


During the interview, conducted before the start of the term last week, she said, “I’m still as excited about this new term about to start as I was in my first term here.” She said she “won’t be here forever,” but that at her age, she has to ask herself the question each year. “I can tell you this year, I’m fine, I’m OK … what will come next year, I don’t know.”

Ginsburg reminded Couric that she still can do 20 pushups and was dismissive when Couric asked if she performed so-called “girls pushups.”

“Oh no, no, no, the real ones,” Ginsburg responded. She was asked about the infamous “Saturday Night Live” skit, where comedian Kate McKinnon portrays her. She said she hadn’t seen it.  “What is this SNL?” she queried.


Media Bias in 2016 Election: CNN demanded Dr. Drew withdraw his comments about Hillary Clinton’s health before canceling his show

In his 1765 Dissertation on Canon and Feudal Law, John Adams, the first Vice President and second President of the United States of America, wrote:

Liberty cannot be preserved without a general knowledge among the people, who have a right…to knowledge, as their great Creator, who does nothing in vain, has given them understandings, and a desire to know; but besides this, they have a right, an indisputable, unalienable, indefeasible, divine right to that most dreaded and envied kind of knowledge; I mean, of the characters and conduct of their rulers.

For his part, Thomas Jefferson— author of the Declaration of Independence, the second Vice President and third President and of the United States of America — in his 1787 letter to Edward Carrington, warned that the attention of the people must be kept alive, for:

“If once they become inattentive to the public affairs, you and I, and Congress, and Assemblies, Judges, and Governors, shall all become wolves.

It was in order that the people are informed and have the appropriate knowledge to make informed choices in elections and about their government that our Founding Fathers institutionalized a free press in the First Amendment of the U.S. Constitution.

Alas, freedom is no guarantee that the press properly exercise that precious liberty.

An interesting phenomenon in the 2016 election is that the liberal Mainstream Media have abandoned all pretences at conducting objective journalism. They’ve voluntarily stripped away their masks to reveal the wolves that they are.

wolf003On August 16, 2016, Dr. Drew Pinsky — board-certified internist, addiction medicine specialist, and media personality who has a TV talk show called Dr. Drew On Call on HLN –broke ranks with the MSM’s lockstep denial of the many disturbing signs of Hillary Clinton’s health problems.

HLN is a television network owned by CNN, Cable News Network, Inc.

In an interview on KABC 790AM’s McIntyre In The Morning, Drew pointed out that the thick Prism eyeglasses that Hillary wore after she fell and sustained a brain concussion in December 2012, are indicative of brain damage. He called “bizarre” the behavioral symptoms displayed by Hillary, such as her on-camera brain seizure, and said he’s concerned about the antiquated level of health care she’s receiving, especially the antiquated anti-coagulant Coumadin she’s prescribed.

Later that day, KABC deleted Dr. Drew’s interview from its website.

On August 25, 2016, 9 days after Dr. Drew’s KABC interview, HLN cancelled Dr. Drew’s TV show. (See “Dr. Drew’s TV show cancelled, 9 days after he raised concerns about Hillary Clinton’s health“)

Now, Richard Johnson, a columnist for the New York Post‘s Page Six, reveals that before his TV show was cancelled, CNN — the parent company of HLN — had demanded that Dr. Drew retract his comments about Hillary’s health, followed by a campaign of harassment and intimidation. Moreover, Dr. Drew is now in fear of repercussions from Hillary and her goons. Johnson writes on Sept. 4, 2016:

Dr. Drew Pinsky is so afraid of Hillary Clinton and her supporters, he won’t blame them for the cancellation of his show on HLN, the sister channel of CNN.

“No, no, no. I just want them to go away!” he told one friend.

“Dr. Drew” was canceled eight days after Pinsky discussed Clinton’s health on a radio show, saying he was “gravely concerned not just about her health, but her health care.”

“CNN is so supportive of Clinton, network honchos acted like the Mafia when confronting Drew,” a source told me. “First, they demanded he retract his comments, but he wouldn’t.”

What followed was a series of nasty phone calls and emails. “It was downright scary and creepy,” a source close to Pinsky said.

But a spokeswoman for Pinsky said the show’s cancellation had been decided weeks before Pinsky’s comments, as part of an HLN revamp that includes the end of Nancy Grace’s show.

“I know the timing is suspicious, and I know it’s hard to believe, but the two things had nothing to do with each other,” Pinsky’s rep Valerie Allen told me.

For other instances of blatant media bias, see:

The media are not alone. University professors are also openly biased. See “Professor says Trump is so bad, university class doesn’t have to be balanced“.


Hillary Clinton’s thugs threaten to shut down Breitbart and theaters showing ‘Hillary’s America’

She hasn’t [yet] been elected President, but Hillary already is stomping down on our First Amendment right to free speech.

Blake Neff reports for The Daily Caller, Aug. 18, 2016, that in a fundraising email, Hillary’s deputy communications director Christina Reynolds said that the conservative, pro-Trump has no “right to exist,” and that if Hillary is if elected, the website will be shut down entirely.

A day before Reynold’s email, on Wednesday, August 17, Trump had recruited Breitbart News‘ executive chairman Stephen Bannon to be the CEO of the Trump campaign.

Christina ReynoldsChristina Reynolds is a Democratic Party apparatchik who had worked in the Obama White House (see her profile here).

Calling Breitbart News “a fringe website where there’s no opinion too ugly, too divisive, or too outright crazy to be worth breathless promotion,” Reynolds writes:

“We’ve had a conservative media in this country for a while. I don’t always like what they have to say, but I respect their role and their right to exist.

Breitbart is something different. They make Fox News look like a Democratic Party pamphlet. They’re a different breed altogether — not just conservative but radical, bigoted, anti-Muslim, anti-Semitic conspiracy peddlers who never have been and never should be anywhere near the levers of power in this country.

It goes without saying that we have to beat these people. But I want to beat them so decisively that their kind never rises again.”

Meanwhile, Hillary’s minions reportedly are threatening movie theaters to prevent them from screening Dinesh D’Souza’s documentary, Hillary’s America.

A poster on Free Republic who calls himself Swordmaker claims that on the night of August 17, 2016, his friend was told by the manager of Regal El Dorado Hills Stadium 14 movie theater in El Dorado Hills, California that they’re pulling D’Souza’s Hillary’s America because they were threatened with a lawsuit. As recounted by Swordmaker:

“Last night (August 17, 2016) a friend of mine want to take some friend to see “Hillary’s America — The Secret History of the Democratic Party,” the newest documentary film by Dinesh D’Souza. It had been showing at quite a few theaters locally but he suddenly could not find any theaters showing it near Modesto, Stockton or Lodi. He asked me to see if I could find where it was showing.

I tried Sacramento. None. . . not a single theater in a city with a metropolitan population over over 1.5 million was showing that film, when just last week there were about a dozen screens with it. I expanded my search area.

The closest theater showing the movie was in El Dorado Hills, the Regal Eldorado Hills Stadium 16 [sic], almost 60 miles away from Lodi and 70 miles from Stockton. There was another in Roseville, which was 80 miles away from Lodi. The El Dorado Hills theater listed showings for the rest of the week.

When my friend and his group got there, my friend ran into the manager of the theater and thanked him for showing the film. The manager informed him that this showing was going to be the last showing because that afternoon a group of people had come in and told him that if showed it beyond today, they were going to see that the Projectionist’s Union was going to pull his projection staff and his theater was going to be sued for whatever they could think of to sue him for. He said, I just work for the chain and their policy is if we are threatened to pull the film and be done with it. I don’t have the resources to fight, much as I want to. He further said, the grapevine among theaters is they’ve been doing it where ever “Hillary’s America” is showing, starting in the big theaters in the cities and working outward to the outlying areas. That’s why none of the theaters have it anymore! None of the theaters are willing to stand up to them because they all have union projectionists and they do not want a lawsuit they’d have to defend!

Here’s a trailer of Hillary’s America:

And here’s a free documentary, Hillary Clinton Exposed:

H/t What Really Happened

See also:


Sunday Devotional: You are called for freedom!

Galatians 5:1, 13

Brothers and sisters:
For freedom Christ set us free;
so stand firm and do not submit again to the yoke of slavery.
For you were called for freedom, brothers and sisters.

Today’s powerful reading from St. Paul’s Letters to the Galatians is a ringing endorsement of Thursday’s Brexit referendum to free the UK from the EU, as well as an affirmation of all who resist tyranny, whether in the form of one-party totalitarianism, or America’s “soft” guileful tyranny of cultural Marxism and the ever-expanding unelected administrative state.

But St. Paul’s exhortation to freedom is not the licentious, satanic “Do as thou will” which permeates our popular culture today, nor is it the amoral selfishness of political libertarianism. Rather, it is a freedom informed by our understanding that we are to use well God’s most precious and selfless gift to us — the gift of free will — not for self-indulgence, but to choose to be good.

Galatians 5:13-17

But do not use this freedom
as an opportunity for the flesh;
rather, serve one another through love.
For the whole law is fulfilled in one statement,
namely, “You shall love your neighbor as yourself.”
But if you go on biting and devouring one another,
beware that you are not consumed by one another.
I say, then: live by the Spirit
and you will certainly not gratify the desire of the flesh.
For the flesh has desires against the Spirit,
and the Spirit against the flesh;
these are opposed to each other,
so that you may not do what you want.

Then St. Paul spells out what true freedom means.

Galatians 5:19-23, 25

Now the works of the flesh are obvious:
immorality, impurity, licentiousness,
idolatry, sorcery, hatreds, rivalry, jealousy,
outbursts of fury, acts of selfishness,
dissensions, factions, occasions of envy,
drinking bouts, orgies, and the like.
I warn you, as I warned you before,
that those who do such things
will not inherit the kingdom of God.
In contrast, the fruit of the Spirit
is love, joy, peace,
patience, kindness, generosity,
faithfulness, gentleness, self-control….
If we live in the Spirit,
let us also follow the Spirit.


May the Joy and Peace and Love of Jesus Christ our Lord be with you this glorious Sunday! For by His grace, we have lived to see the sun rise on another magnificent day.


Sts. Thomas More and John Fisher

Yesterday, June 23rd, was the Feast Day of St. John Fisher. The day before that, June 22nd, was the Feast Day of St. Thomas More. More and Fisher were 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 Episcopalians, Methodists, Lutherans, 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.

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!



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.

40% of Millennials are OK with limiting speech offensive to minorities


From Pew Research Center: American Millennials are far more likely than older generations to say the government should be able to prevent people from saying offensive statements about minority groups, according to a new analysis of Pew Research Center survey data on free speech and media across the globe.

We asked whether people believe that citizens should be able to make public statements that are offensive to minority groups, or whether the government should be able to prevent people from saying these things. Four-in-ten Millennials say the government should be able to prevent people publicly making statements that are offensive to minority groups, while 58% said such speech is OK.

Even though a larger share of Millennials favor allowing offensive speech against minorities, the 40% who oppose it is striking given that only around a quarter of Gen Xers (27%) and Boomers (24%) and roughly one-in-ten Silents (12%) say the government should be able to prevent such speech.

millennials censoring free speech

Compared with people we surveyed in dozens of nations, Americans as a whole are less likely to favor the government being able to prevent speech of any kind. The debate over what kind of speech should be tolerated in public has become a major story around the globe in recent weeks – from racial issues on many U.S. college campuses to questions about speech laws in Europe in the wake of concerns about refugees from the Middle East and the terrorist attacks in Paris.

Overall, our global survey found that a majority of Americans say that people should be able to say offensive things about minority groups publicly. Two-thirds of Americans say this, compared with a median of 35% among the 38 nations we polled.

In the U.S., our findings also show a racial divide on this question, with non-whites more likely (38%) to support government prevention of such speech than non-Hispanic whites (23%).

Nearly twice as many Democrats say the government should be able to stop speech against minorities (35%) compared with Republicans (18%). Independents, as is often the case, find themselves in the middle. One-third of all women say the government should be able to curtail speech that is offensive to minorities vs. 23% of men who say the same.

Furthermore, Americans who have a high school degree or less are more likely than those with at least a college degree to say that speech offensive to minority groups should be able to be restricted (a 9-percentage-point difference).

Read the rest of the poll results here.

h/t Weasel Zippers