Exclusive: Craige McMillan urges readers to document stories of perseverance and hope
Yes, there is something you can do to help preserve America. You don’t have to be loud, eloquent, learned, thrown in jail or become a victim of the left’s communist insanity.
America is first and foremost an ideal, one that lives in people’s minds and hearts. Once your mind and your heart are destroyed by leftist propaganda, the ideal of America vanishes with them.
In this sense America bears some resemblance to the difference between the spiritual and natural worlds. In the heavenly realm, things happen in the spiritual world first, before they happen in the natural, physical world.
Similarily (but not exactly the same), America must exist in the hearts and minds of enough people before it can become a reality in the physical world of nations. Our founders’ Christian faith carried them through impossible battles and against unconquerable foes, before America emerged into nationhood in the physical world. It did this because it was first born in the spiritual realm.
Some of us learn best by example. For that reason I will share the personal history that brought this column to mind now. I have – and you likely do as well – an old and dear friend who has faithfully sent greeting cards on birthdays, anniversaries; thank you notes for gifts received, and remembered many more occasions in my life. Out of the blue I was moved to send her a thank you letter for all that she has faithfully remembered in my life.
For that kindness, I was rewarded with a handwritten history of her own family including her grandparents, who grew up as new immigrants to America in the 1890s to early 1900s. They left their native land because of religious persecution. This included not being able to get jobs and work. America welcomed them.
My friend’s father and mother were married in the midst of the Great Depression. They worked, saved, and eventually bought a small farm, which the bank repossessed. Her father found work as a tradesman. Two more children were born. One Monday morning her father became ill, was taken to a small hospital, and by Wednesday he died of the tuberculosis he did not know he had. Her mother was left alone with five children. She wrote, “Our father had made the last payment on the house they had bought … things looked bleak, but Daddy and Mother were Christians. The faith they possessed was real, and Mother explained the gospel to us as soon as we could understand it!” She went on to describe nurse’s training and her work in hospitals, meeting her husband to be and marrying, and having her own children.
Early on I promised there was something you could do to help keep America from vanishing. Here it is: Document what we had, when all we had was God and each other. Just like this dear friend, each of you have someone in your family who has a story to tell. Because it is real it will make their story real to the people walking our land today who do so in the fog of lies, propaganda and evil, which is all they see.
In this sense, nations are very much like people: God made each one for his own purposes. Your job, whether nation or individual person, is to find what God made you to do. He will empower you in that task, and the gates of hell will not withstand your calling from the God of Heaven. Go in peace, but know that when you discover your calling, God will move Heaven and earth to help you.
No government is here to empower you. Each one is here to enslave you, deprive you of the rights God has given you, and then take credit for whatever you manage to accomplish in spite of their efforts. Just like Mussolini, Hitler, Mao, Stalin and the rest of the world’s want-to-be dictator-gods, communism and fascism are the tools of the trade today, aided by big tech censorship and big media wartime grade propaganda campaigns.
If they manage to take America, all these stories that are hidden within your family will disappear as well. But if together we expose only a tiny fraction of the truth, even by word of mouth, America will yet survive, because it is first and above all a spiritual nation, albeit one that has strayed far from the truth. But God always forgives when He sees sincere repentance. The story you find in your family history may be the story that leads someone in need to repentance, faith in Christ and eternal life.
These stories are there, right where you live. Do some digging. Then write it up and email and post it where others will see the truth – and it is the truth that sets us free.
I can’t post this message often enough. We are at the precipice of disaster.
This is Russian Premier Nakita Khruschev’s QUOTE: A sobering reminder. It’s been almost sixty one years since he delivered this, “We cannot expect the Americans to jump from capitalism to communism, but we can assist their elected leaders in giving Americans small doses of socialism, until they suddenly awake to find they have communism.”
Remember, socialism leads to Communism. Karl Marx took socialism to what he viewed as its natural conclusion: The “abolition of private property.”
So, how do you create a Socialistic State?There are 8 levels of control; read the following recipe:
1) Healthcare – Control healthcare and you control the people.
2) Poverty – Increase the poverty level as high as possible, poor people are easier to control and will not fight back if you are providing everything for them.
3) Debt – Increase the debt to an unsustainable level. That way you are able to increase taxes, and this will produce more poverty.
4) Gun Control – Remove the ability to defend themselves from the Government That way you are able to create a police state.
5) Welfare – Take control of every aspect (food, housing, income) of their lives because that will make them fully dependent on the government.
6) Education – Take control of what people read and listen to and take control of what children learn in school.
7) Religion – Remove the belief in God from the Government and schools because the people need to believe in ONLY the government knowing what is best for the people.
8) Class Warfare – Divide the people into the wealthy and the poor.
Eliminate the middle class This will cause more discontent and it will be easier to tax the wealthy with the support of the poor. A perfect parallel to the Democrat agenda!!!!!
The answer to combatting socialism and communism, the demonic force behind the transition taking place in America today, is the TRUTH.
We all know that there is an evil force blanketing our country. Elections are stolen, terrorists are given billions, soldiers are offered up like sheep to our enemies, pro-growth and stable economic policies are lost and lies are everywhere. Just this week the top individual overseeing our country’s justice system threatened good Americans for speaking their mind.
Our freedoms are being taken away and our children are being taught to hate Caucasians with racist teachings. Free speech is taken away by Big Tech Oligarchs and Big Media pushes all these lies.
What is the answer? What do we do?
Great and courageous leaders in the past have told us what to do in situations like this.
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn, the Russian political prisoner, and dissident shared:
And therein we find, neglected by us, the simplest, the most accessible key to our liberation: a personal non-participation in lies! Even if all is covered by lies, even if all is under their rule, let us resist in the smallest way: Let their rule hold not through me!
Vaclav Havel, the Czech statesman, and dissident turned President of Czechoslovakia, shared this:
If the main pillar of the totaliarian system is living a lie, then it is not surprising that the fundimental threat to it is living the truth. This is why [the truth] must be suppressed more severely [by the communists] than anything else.
The Truth is the answer. Individually and together we must stand for the truth.
Xi Van Fleet delivered the speech in front of the Loudoun County School BoardLoudoun County School Board
A Virginia mom who grew up under Chairman Mao’s brutal Communist regime has angrily ripped critical race theory as “the American version of the Chinese Cultural Revolution.”
“Critical race theory has its roots in cultural Marxism — it should have no place in our schools,” Xi Van Fleet said to cheers and applause at a Tuesday meeting of the progressive Loudoun County School Board.
“You are now teaching, training our children, to be social justice warriors and to loathe our country and our history,” she told the meeting of the district already bitterly divided for pushing the policy that critics accuse of itself being racist.
“Growing up in Mao’s China, all of this seems very familiar,” insisted the mom, who finally fled China when she was 26.
“The Communist regime used the same critical theory to divide people. The only difference is they used class instead of race,” she said.
The mom — whose son graduated from Loudoun High School in 2015 — compared the current division in the US to her experience growing up under Mao Zedong, one of the most brutal rulers in history until his death in 1979.
She recalled seeing “students and teachers turn against each other,” and school names being changed “to be politically correct” as they were “taught to denounce our heritage.”
“The Red Guards destroyed anything that is not Communist — statues, books and anything else,” she said.
“We were also encouraged to report on each other, just like the Student Equity Ambassador program and the bias reporting system,” she said of systems that other parents have sued over.
Van Fleet told Fox News on Wednesday that she initially planned to say more but was forced to cut her speech to a minute.
“To me, and to a lot of Chinese, it is heartbreaking that we escaped communism and now we experience communism here,” she told Fox of her strong feelings against the progressive agenda.
Ian Prior, the father of two students attending Loudoun schools, said Van Fleet’s remarks “should serve as a stark warning.”
“I think for a while now, school systems have really put this stuff in the schools right under our very noses, and we just weren’t aware,” he told Fox, saying parents were “trusting the school system to do the job.”
“It took a pandemic and all the information that parents could see with this distance learning to understand exactly what was going on.”
The school board in a wealthy district has become a hotbed of controversy for numerous progressive teaching policies.
This week, a judge ordered the reinstatement of a Christian teacher who had been suspended for refusing to recognize “a biological boy can be a girl and vice versa” and use transgender students’ preferred pronouns.
In this audio you will hear Bella Dodd who was a leader of the Communist Party of America (CPUSA) in the 1930′ s and 1940’s. She explains what she did while working as a communist and then describes her conversion back to the Catholic Faith thanks to Archbishop Futlon Sheen. Dr. Dodd served as legal council (attorney) for the Communists. Her book, “School of Darkness” (1954) reveals that Communism was perpetrated by financiers “to control the common man” and to advance world tyranny. She also testified before the US House Un-American Activities Committee. Speaking as a former high ranking official of the American Communist Party, Mrs. Dodd said: “In the 1930s we put eleven hundred men into the priesthood in order to destroy the Church from within.”
The idea was for these men to be ordained and progress to positions of influence and authority as Monsignors and Bishops. A dozen years before Vatican II she stated that: “Right now they are in the highest places in the Church” — where they were working to bring about change in order to weaken the Church’s effectiveness against Communism. She also said that these changes would be so drastic that “you will not recognize the Catholic Church.”
These words would prove frightfully true after the Second Vatican Council. We have seen the absolute destruction of faith, morals, doctrine and Tradition since the disasters of the Second Vatican Council and the Illicit ‘New’ Mass.
You probably don’t need a list of issues that need your attention.
If you’ve had a plumber in to discuss his solution to your bathroom leak you’ll understand. The quick-fix may turn out to be much more costly in the long run…and may not work at all.
Different people have different thoughts on how to address or resolve an issue and that is perfectly acceptable. We have a right to express our thoughts and ideas. We don’t have any right to require anyone else to adopt our beliefs.
There is a trend today to shut down differing ideas. May I suggest that we spend perhaps half as much time listening to differing ideas as we do shutting those down who disagree with us? We just might find common areas of agreement.
There is also a trend to replace our long held system of government with something that has failed every time that it was adopted. Our long held system of government provides for corrections and changes. The proposed system endorses one thought and one solution with disagreements met with harsh retribution. You can vote yourselves into socialism; you cannot vote yourself out of socialism.
Most are aware of Ben Franklin’s famous reply when asked as he emerged from the convention, “Well, Doctor, what have we got—a Republic or a Monarchy?” “A Republic, if you can keep it.”
It is of utmost importance to hear and now understand that “Democracy” is not found in any Founding Document, and “Socialism” is not found in any founding document, much less “Socialist Democracy”!!
Franklin’s alleged description of Democracy is “two wolves and a lamb voting on what to have for dinner.” Thomas Jefferson is alleged by some to have said, “Democracies are dangerous because a Democracy is nothing more than mob rule, where fifty-one percent of the people may take away the rights of the other forty-nine.” Because of that understanding the United States was formed as a Republic.
Socialism is government regulation and controls all aspects of our personal life and businesses. Combining Democracy and Socialism is doubling up on the evils of both. So-called “Democratic Socialism” would completely wipe away the Constitutional Republic which we were given. Individual Freedom with control over our own lives and property would be gone forever under Socialism.
The United States was formed as a Republic by design, with limits upon the government set forth in our Constitution, in order to substantially limit the government’s power and to protect our “natural individual rights.” Our rights of life, liberty, and pursuit of happiness are “natural,” not government-allowed. We formed our government; it did not form us.
Individual Freedom is your right or power to act, speak, or think as you want without hindrance or restraint in your “life” and complete “liberty” to “pursue your own happiness.”
Socialism or “Democratic Socialism” is the exact opposite of a Constitutional Republic. Your life, lived with the liberty to pursue your happiness unhindered and unrestrained, is not allowed in a Socialist government. The movement to destroy our Constitutional Republic and replace it with a Socialist government is led by those people who identify themselves as Democratic Socialists, Communists, Progressives, Liberals, and others. The most common in the United States presently are “Democratic Socialists” and “Progressives.” No matter what the label, make no mistake; all are Socialist or Communist in some form and will eventually lead to complete control of the way we are allowed to live. (1)
Going back to the plumber and the bathroom, right now the water is running full blast and the drain is not connected. The water is out of control and causing damage in its wake. The shut off value is stuck open. The permanent fix requires new drain pipes and a working shut off value. The temporary fix might be to put extra towels on the floor.
Another problem under socialism is that fear, anxiety, and depression become the normal way of life for the masses.
Let’s just say NO to socialism and YES to our Constitutional Republic.
Dr. Sebastian Gorka, a former senior aide to former President Donald Trump, explained in a wide-ranging interview last week how he has faced cancel culture, how to fight back against it, and why the left and establishment practices it against Trump supporters.
Appearing on Breitbart News Daily on SiriusXM 125 the Patriot Channel with editor-in-chief Alex Marlow, Gorka — who now hosts America First on Salem Radio Networks — laid out first the reasoning why the left and political establishment seeks to shut down voices like his.
“We could write a book about this. I don’t kiss and tell, but you’ve been on this issue from the get go. I’ve been very honest about it publicly,” Gorka told Marlow. “It’s the reason I left the White House and it was Breitbart that published my resignation letter. I told the president at the time, you literally have anti-MAGA forces in ascendance. At the time, it was H.R. McMaster and it was General Kelly who were pushing me out of the building. And I told the president, ‘There is no way I am going to pick up a $160,000 pay check from the taxpayer just to be boxed out of meetings by people who hate me and the president. I can better serve you on the outside.’ He agreed and now I have a national radio show, three million listeners, and we’re fighting the good fight. But at the end of the day, this isn’t really a function of any incompetence by the president, it’s a function of the swamp. What is the conclusion that has to be drawn from the experience of people who are pro-MAGA and work for the president? The left, the establishment, the mainstream media, the RINO class, want to make it impossible for good people to represent the forgotten men and women of America. They want to make your life impossible.”
Gorka said that he does not mind attacks against him personally, but when people attack his family, that crosses the line. He cited the example of Disney canceling Gina Carano, the star actress from The Mandalorian, over social media posts that she published commenting on the state of society and noted that similar tactics have been used against any talented people who may want to work for Trump or other effective Republicans.
“Look, I don’t mind being attacked, that’s fine, but when they come after your wife, when they attack my teenage son, it has one purpose: To make sure good people don’t get involved in representing this nation,” Gorka said. “So I’m not involved in choosing the president’s lawyers, but I’ll tell you one thing: How many law firms would actually risk representing Donald Trump? I talk national security, but I woke to this Gina Carano story. Seriously, a woman who speaks the truth — absolutely speaks the truth about the left’s attempts to dehumanize their fellow Americans — is canceled by Disney? It’s the same effect of a lawyer wanting to work for Donald Trump. It is an attempt to attack and create an environment where good people will simply keep their heads down.”
Gorka then recounted a story from his daughter’s time in college and her senior year when he worked for President Trump. “My children who are now grown will admit that the tribulations that we went through as a family during my time in the White House as a supporter of the president have truly made them stronger human beings,” Gorka said. “I am convinced as their father that their value system is all the more robust for what they witnessed happened to us and to them personally. Read the first chapter of my book The War for America’s Soul. What happened to my daughter in her last year in college was simply a function of her last name.”
What happened was leftists on campus made posters with his daughter’s face falsely claiming she was a white supremacist and then plastered them all around campus. When he showed up for her graduation that year, at least one leftist falsely accused Gorka of being a Nazi.
“So because she was a Gorka, because she volunteered to work with some of the professors who created something called the Churchill Institute to propagate the values of western civilization — that’s in their mandate — she had posters with her face put up across the campus and on social media saying this girl is the face of white supremacy,” Gorka said. “That was just weeks before her graduation. Then when I was there for the graduation, I had a girl come up after we had celebrated my daughter getting her diploma and, in front of witnesses, call me an ‘effing Nazi’ because I work for Trump.”
Gorka, who was born in London to parents who fled Hungary after the failed revolution in 1956 against Soviet control but then later served in Hungary as a Ministry of Defence adviser after the fall of communism, compared the bending of America’s will toward cancel culture to efforts of a Soviet dictator in Hungary to slowly break someone’s spine.
“This is the reality, but let me tell you a story which puts it into perspective,” Gorka said. “During the Cold War, the Warsaw Pact had various levels of persecution and sovietization. The harshest were of course the Soviet Union, East Germany, and Romania. Those were the really kind of absolute worst of the worst. Others, like Hungary, kind of dialed back a little on the Stalinist nature of the regime. By the 1970s, Hungary was called the ‘Goulash Communism.’ You weren’t allowed to go to Paris for the holidays, but you could go to Yugoslavia. You still had political prisoners, you still had a one-party state, but they just dialed it back a little bit. There’s a story that’s associated with then-dictator Janos Kadar, where somebody was lambasting him for not having a hard Stalinist line and he said — and who knows whether it happened or not — he said ‘my friend, it is far easier to bend the human spine slowly with time than to try to snap it with one move.’ That, that is what you are giving in to when you say, ‘I’m just going to get my head down, I’m just going to send checks to the local Republican candidate, but I’m not going to say anything and not going to do politics on social media.’ Guess what? You’ve already surrendered, that’s what you’ve done.”
Gorka said establishment media figures and top Democrats from President Joe Biden’s administration like Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin are doing the same thing to the general public in the United States right now.
“Look at what is happening right now in America. We have not just Jake Tapper on CNN using the phrase, ‘MAGA terrorism,’ we have the Department of Homeland Security issuing their first terrorism warning memorandum after the election targeting those who disagreed with the results of the election or who questioned them,” Gorka said. “We have the new Secretary of Defense, an absolute disgrace to the uniform he once wore, Lloyd Austin, talking about the ‘enemies’ in the ranks of the military who shut down our military for 60 days while he reviews the level of extremist penetration into our ranks. I guarantee you one thing, none of the extremists that SecDef Austin will find will be members of Antifa or BLM who took the lives of 40 people in the riots last year, half of them black like he is. This is the reality of America today and if you don’t talk out about it — you don’t have to have a national radio show, you don’t need to be editor-in-chief of the most influential conservative website. But if you’re an American and you care about the freedoms upon which it was built and for which Americans died and bled, and you don’t say the truth you are complicit and you are making the dehumanization of your fellow man all the more possible. That’s the crux of the matter.”
Hope is not all lost in America, though, Gorka said. Conservatives and Trump supporters and Americans across the board can fight back against cancel culture in much the same way he did with an example from this past week when a leftist employed at a major law firm in New York City sent him disparaging messages on Twitter.
“This Sunday, on my Twitter feed, my direct messages are open — that means anybody can direct message me if they wish to,” Gorka said. “That’s how you can keep in touch. Sunday, somebody who has a Twitter account in his own name… sent me the following messages, ‘I’m going to piss on your grave and send the photographs to your children.’ We did a little bit of research and found out who this person is and we verified where he works. He’s an accountant for one of the biggest accounting companies in New York and I proceed to message him back. I don’t say I’m going to piss on his grave, but as soon as I respond to him and I make it clear I know who he is, he blocks me from his account, he makes it private, and then he deletes it.”
Then, Gorka reached out to the man’s employer and asked about it. The CEO of the company apologized and disavowed what the man said, and apparently convened an all-hands company meeting to discuss what happened and what to do about it. Gorka said the man is no longer employed.
“I immediately dig up the email for his boss at Marcum LLP in New York and I send him the screenshots of the now-deleted account about what his employee said about me and my children and about wanting to urinate on my grave,” Gorka told Marlow. “To his credit, the CEO immediately emailed me back on a Sunday afternoon, apologized, and then on their social media accounts, they disavowed the words of Joe Wiley. I heard late last night from another follower who knows somebody who knows somebody that there was an all hands meeting at Marcum LLP on Monday morning and this individual has since been fired for his language. Now this isn’t cancel culture. Don’t get me wrong. I don’t do this to people who politically disagree with me. And I don’t tell people I politically disagree with that I want to piss on their graves and send the photographs to their children. But, if you use language like that, if you use vile, abusive language and involve my children, guess what Joe Wiley. I am going to let my voice be heard and I’m going to stand up for the truth. I know that thousands of others also went to the Marcum website and also went to their Instagram feed. That is why all of those feeds have been locked or closed. This is how you fight back — not with the dirty tactics they use because we believe in the truth. But you must not buckle under — it’s not just my voice, it’s everyone who stood for the truth the last four days. You cannot let them get away with it. You don’t have to run for public office although gosh could you imagine if every listener to your radio show decided to run for the local school board?”
Gorka also discussed the incident on his own program, here:
Gorka and Marlow concluded the conversation on cancel culture by discussing the popularity of both Trump and Breitbart News founder Andrew Breitbart. Of Trump and Breitbart, Gorka said, “there is a massive commonality between them.”
“Donald Trump, for all his mannerisms and style, never starts the fight,” Gorka said. “But if you bring the fight to him, he will finish it. He will fight back just as robustly as those who attack him. The commonality with Andrew is very simply this: Andrew, above all else, in addition to love of country, was motivated by the need, the burning sense of injustice when he witnessed bullies. What you are doing, what I am doing, what the president is doing, is fight back against those who start the abuse first. That is what all of us should be doing every single day. If you see a bully, whether it’s on the playground or on social media — I don’t care where it is — if you see one and you do nothing, I’m sorry you are part of the problem. Just stand up to the bullies and America will be a better place.”
Gorka advised Americans to put a sticky note on their desks that has the number 74 — representing the 74 million Americans who voted for Trump in 2020, to signify they are not alone — and think of that anytime they see someone getting canceled or shut down. Instead of staying silent — and being part of the problem — Gorka advises Americans to start using their voices, a powerful tool protected under the First Amendment, to fight back.
“If you do it, you will have people who say, ‘oh my gosh, he spoke the truth. So can I,’” Gorka said. “It is a catalytic effect that you have when you speak up to the bullies and liars.”
LISTEN TO DR. SEBASTIAN GORKA ON BREITBART NEWS DAILY:
Excerpted from Saul Alinsky’s book: Rules For Radicals, published in 1971.
“Power is not only what you have, but what the enemy thinks you have.“ Power is derived from 2 main sources – money and people. “Have-Nots” must build power from flesh and blood.
“Never go outside the expertise of your people.“ It results in confusion, fear and retreat. Feeling secure adds to the backbone of anyone.
“Whenever possible, go outside the expertise of the enemy.“ Look for ways to increase insecurity, anxiety and uncertainty.
“Make the enemy live up to its own book of rules.“ If the rule is that every letter gets a reply, send 30,000 letters. You can kill them with this because no one can possibly obey all of their own rules.
“Ridicule is man’s most potent weapon.“ There is no defense. It’s irrational. It’s infuriating. It also works as a key pressure point to force the enemy into concessions.
“A good tactic is one your people enjoy.“ They’ll keep doing it without urging and come back to do more. They’re doing their thing, and will even suggest better ones.
“A tactic that drags on too long becomes a drag.“ Don’t become old news.
“Keep the pressure on. Never let up.“ Keep trying new things to keep the opposition off balance. As the opposition masters one approach, hit them from the flank with something new.
“The threat is usually more terrifying than the thing itself.“ Imagination and ego can dream up many more consequences than any activist.
“The major premise for tactics is the development of operations that will maintain a constant pressure upon the opposition.” It is this unceasing pressure that results in the reactions from the opposition that are essential for the success of the campaign.
“If you push a negative hard enough, it will push through and become a positive.“ Violence from the other side can win the public to your side because the public sympathizes with the underdog.
“The price of a successful attack is a constructive alternative.“ Never let the enemy score points because you’re caught without a solution to the problem.
“Pick the target, freeze it, personalize it, and polarize it.“ Cut off the support network and isolate the target from sympathy. Go after people and not institutions; people hurt faster than institutions.
Cuban-American clergy must stand united with the growing chorus of Catholic voices on the island condemning communist oppression, Father Fernando Hería, who heads the Cuban exile community’s most important Marian shrine, told Breitbart News this week in an exclusive interview.
Hería noted that, after decades of Catholic leaders in the country struggling not to “lose the little they have achieved” after the mass firing squad killings of Catholics that defined the early days of the Cuban Revolution, Catholic voices are rising to condemn the anti-Christian practices of the Castro regime, often risking their lives. Now, more than ever, he asserted, they need unity from those on the other side of the Straits of Florida.
Father Hería, who arrived in America himself as a refugee from the island, currently serves as the rector of Our Lady of Charity National Shrine in Miami, commonly known in Spanish as the Ermita de la Caridad. Our Lady of Charity is the patroness saint of Cuba and her shrine is widely seen as the most important religious and cultural site for Cuban-American Catholics in the country. Father Hería also serves as an adviser to the Global Liberty Alliance, which offers legal and advocacy aid to victims of human rights abuses around the world.
As the head of the Ermita, Father Hería has written multiple public letters in support of priests and human rights activists in Cuba seeking an end to communism. Given social distancing requirements in place to fight the Chinese coronavirus pandemic, the Ermita has begun to broadcast Catholic Mass online through the U.S.-funded Radio and TV Martí, which makes Father Hería’s Mass accessible to Cubans on the island.
He first published a statement in early November in response to remarks published online by Father Alberto Reyes Pías of central Camagüey province, who wrote on the platform, “I’ve always wanted to say this: communism is a great lie. It’s all a lie.”
Public challenges to communism on the island are illegal, typically punished as vaguely defined crimes like “disrespect.”
“Dictatorships, whether on the left or the right, have never respected the dignity of the being or his or her existential freedom – there is no such thing as a ‘benevolent’ dictatorship,” Father Hería wrote, urging the Catholic leadership on the island to support Reyes.
“For years in ever Ad Limina visit with the Pope, they are always asked, ‘why do so many Cuban priests leave their country and serve in the diaspora?’ To which Cuban bishops have always responded, unjustly, ‘because they are attracted to money,” Father Hería wrote. “Enough already with this farce! Cuban priests who stay abroad do so because they are tired of living under two types of dictatorships: the ecclesiastical and the governmental, and that is the truth!”
Father Hería has adopted basta ya, “enough already,” as a rallying cry, and Cuban dissidents on the island have begun to use it as a hashtag on social media.
The top of the hierarchy has not taken up the cause of Cuban freedom with much gusto in Rome. Pope Francis himself has demurred when asked about human rights abuses on the island, instead using the opportunity to condemn Europe for alleged religious rights abuses. The pope also claimed to have “no news regarding detentions” in Cuba during his 2015 visit, when reporters filmed Cuban police beating and arresting a dissident, Zaqueo Báez, in front of Pope Francis’s vehicle.
The father explained to Breitbart News that, despite his harsh criticism in his letters of Cuban bishops and clergy who do not support the people on the island, the Church has endeavored to help the repressed in ways that are not “obvious” and a growing number of Catholic leaders on the island are losing their fear.
“For example, in Cuba right now there are 70-something food pantries for aid to the elderly and children throughout the island. Caritas International in Cuba and the Order of Malta maintain these from abroad,” he noted, referred to two Catholic entities. “There are many, diverse ways that the Church helps the people.”
As for those who try to work to help the Cuban people on the island without being vocally antagonistic to the regime, “I understand,” he said. “I’m on the outside. I’m outside. Am I hurt? Yes. Why? Because not a single priest in the diaspora has called me to say ‘I’m with you.’”
“You can quote that,” he continued, “because they’re afraid to get committed [to the cause of freedom] because many go with religious visas to Cuba for whatever reasons. We can’t keep going like this. We have to be one because basta ya,basta ya with so much abuse against a people who are noble, who push forward.”
“We have put that into evidence here [in America],” Father Hería said of the Cuban people. “I came here at age 11 to this country. I brought three outfits, which is what they let us bring. … We are a persevering people, a people who always seek unity, peace.”
The resistance, he emphasized, was not promoting violence to overthrow the regime.
“We are not talking about violence. We’re talking about demanding rights and that the rest of the world support us because unfortunately, Cuba does business with the entire world. With every country in the world. And at whose expense? The people. They live in poverty, no medicine, no food. But they export abroad,” he explained. “It is a lot of pain, a lot of pain.”
Spiritually, Father Hería told Breitbart News, the Church has to role to play with the youngest members of the anti-communist resistance.
“These young people are hungry. These young people have no identification with the revolutionaries that fought the Batista dictatorship in the 1950s that got to power in 1959. There’s no identification there. … they were born from the mid-1970s to the 1980s,” Father Hería noted, adding that many subscribed to the uniquely Cuban syncretic faith of santería – “they are baptized in our Church but they practice their African roots, just like they did during the time of independence.” Santeros honor both Jesus Christ and the orishas, the gods of the Nigerian Lukumí faith.
The week of this interview began with an unprecedented protest of Cuban artists – an estimated 300 of them – surrounding the doors of the Cuban Ministry of Culture, which prohibits artists from creating any art without a special permit they must receive beforehand. Under “Decree 349,” anything from a rap song to a screenplay requires prior Communist Party consent before being created.
The protest followed the violent raid of a home where members of the San Isidro Movement, an anti-communist art collective, were engaging in a hunger strike to demand the release of one of their members. allegedly because the dissidents were risking spreading Chinese coronavirus, Rapper Denis Solís was convicted and sentenced to eight months in prison for “disrespect” after not allowing a police officer to illegally enter his home, then filming the encounter as proof of the officer’s crime.
Over 200 clergy and laymen Catholics in Cuba signed an open letter in late November demanding the communist regime act to protect dissident artists and find a peaceful resolution to the San Isidro hunger strikes that included reforms.
The San Isidro Movement, led by performance artist Luis Manuel Otero Alcántara, was established in part as a response to Decree 349, though Otero had engaged in anti-communist activism for years before it passed in 2018. The group’s hunger strikes, though since concluded, have fortified a movement for true democracy on the island enjoying increased momentum and international attention.
Socialism, by any other name, is still—well—socialism. The Oxford English Dictionary defines socialism as “a political and economic theory of social organization which advocates that the means of production, distribution, and exchange should be owned or regulated by the community as a whole.” Note: owned, or merely “regulated” by the community in the United States refers to the government, where a republican-style democracy is supposed to represent the will of the people.
It seems that, depending on the actions of Congress and the Executive Branch (who are elected to represent the people), sometimes it is the will of the people—other times, not so much. In Marxist theory, socialism is an actual transitional social state between the overthrow of capitalism and the realization of Communism. We all know how that has worked out.
Socialism—like its fraternal twin Communism—over the last one hundred years-plus has led to the absolute elimination of personal freedom in nations around the world. It is a failed system that, unfortunately, is still with us. We need look no further than Cuba, Venezuela, China, and the failed Soviet Union.
Millions have died over the last century at the hands of socialism and communism. In the name of fairness and everyone having all things in common, people still suffer, are imprisoned, and die because of this political system. Human rights are sidelined in the faux claim of taking care of everyone. It is blatantly unfair in every country where it exists.
Having everything in common has always led to an elitist few who control the lives of everyone else. After the Bolshevik Revolution in Czarist Russia, for example, Vladimir Lenin—who deposed the Czar—inherited the palaces and wealth of that ruler and became a ruthless de facto monarch himself. His was a political system that successfully advocated the overthrow of capitalism with the promise that the government would take care of everyone. It may sound like a nice theory to some, but it is one that never works out in practice.
While some politicians, such as Bernie Sanders and Alexandria Ocasio Cortez (AOC), readily identify as democratic socialists, socialism as a political and economic philosophy in the United States is often more subtle and disguised. There is a reason for the subtlety. While there is much discussion about socialism in America today, most people in the United States have a suspicion—if not an outright fear—of America becoming a socialist-style country. A politician in most parts of the United States would have a difficult time being elected to any office if they openly espouse socialism.
The reason for the suspicion and fear has everything to do with the definition and history of socialism. Do we really want the production, distribution and exchange of products and services to be controlled by the government? Does that control eliminate the basic principles of a democracy like the United States? Socialism is the antithesis of capitalism, an economic principle that values freedom and entrepreneurship.
Winston Churchill famously stated, “Socialism is a philosophy of failure, the creed of ignorance, and the gospel of envy; its inherent value is the equal sharing of misery.” He went on to describe socialism as taking care of the “submerged tenth” by bringing the other nine-tenths down to their level. The logical end of socialism is the elimination of upward mobility. It robs people of the dream of bettering themselves and building a better life for their families. The end result of socialism has ever been economic stagnation, shared misery, and government control.
Americans have every right to be suspicious of quasi-socialist ideas. Whether it is the Green New Deal, a federally mandated guaranteed minimum wage, government control of critical aspects of the economy and elimination of other parts of the economy and its related industries, or a single-payer health system—we need to be afraid, very afraid, of any program that diminishes personal freedoms and increases bureaucratic government control. (While the much-lauded Affordable Care Act provided healthcare for millions—it eliminated private healthcare for millions more who believed the empty promise that if they liked their doctor or health insurance, they could keep it.) It is an insidious philosophy that will not have a happy ending.
While few politicians would openly promote rampant socialist takeovers of the private sector—it is the general direction advocated by many on the Left. Many of those on the Left view the United States as a failed nation, “a country of irredeemable inequities and people with reflexively racist instincts.” Left-leaning elected officials are simply clever enough to parse their words and to promote their misguided philosophy under the guise of equality and fairness. That has been the modus operandi of every socialist leader in human history.
Like the proverbial camel who puts his nose under the tent with the intent of eventually moving in, Americans must be aware of the dangers of creeping socialism—no matter how it is dressed up—and defend the individual liberties of all people and a compassionate capitalism that has made the United States the great nation it is to this day. There is a reason people flee socialist regimes and risk their lives and livelihood to come to the United States of America.
Kimberley Strassel | The Resurgence of Socialism Today
Nov 22, 2019
The idea of socialism is ancient. Organized socialist movements took form in Europe in the nineteenth century, and socialism emerged as a dominant political ideology in many places around the world by the twentieth century.
This isn’t a rant. It’s just a few thoughts I (Jason) jotted down on Facebook this morning as I tried to make sense of the craziness I saw in the streets of America last night.
This also isn’t about how broken I felt for George Floyd and his family. I posted my thoughts on that the day after he died. I still can’t stop thinking about how he called for his momma moments before he passed. Gut-wrenching. So if you wanna un-friend me because I’m writing about the riots please be my guest. But read my last paragraph before you go.
My brain can’t handle all the big words and articulate arguments I see on TV, so I have to boil things down very simply before I can understand stuff.
What I saw in the streets last night was not just a clash between angry people and the police – it was a clash of worldviews. What I know from studying history is that the only way one worldview can overthrow another is for two things to happen:
1. History must be rewritten
2. Words must be redefined
Neither of these are good, but they are strategies used in effort to topple truth throughout the centuries.
Socrates said, “If you wish to converse with me, define your terms.”
If he were alive today, his response to these riots would first require us to define some terms. So I’m gonna give this a stab.
Emotion is an impulse to act.
Anger is an emotion with a purpose.
Anger’s purpose is to see that justice is done.
Justice means “to make right.”
You cannot have justice without first defining what is “right.”
You can’t define what’s right w/out a basis for truth.
Today, we see people fighting for “justice” who have different definitions of what’s “right” because they don’t agree on the standard of truth.
One side says, “Truth is what I want it to be.”
The other side says, “Truth is defined by a higher power (God).”
Separating the two schools of thought is one very important word – ACCOUNTABILITY.
For those in the first camp, they’re accountable to themselves to help themselves….to whatever they want.
For those in the second camp, they’re accountable to God to help others.
Problem – so many people today were taught that truth is relative (there’s no real right or wrong). But when they live out this worldview on the streets they seek for justice by destroying things. This, in their minds, will make “right” what happened to George Floyd.
But for there to be true, lasting change – the kind of change we’d all like to see – we have to first agree on the standard of truth (God), let Him define for us what is right, and operate our lives by His power so we can control our emotions.
Then, when something evil happens – like what happened to George Floyd – our anger will cause us to RESPOND in love with a heart of compassion rather than REACT in hate with a heart of destruction. This compassion will move us to action so we can help the people who are being mistreated.
This was lived out in the 60’s when you saw the difference between Martin Luther King Jr. and Malcolm X. Both men were just as angry and emotional about the racial inequities in culture, but their responses were vastly different. Why? Because they had different standards of truth.
MLK held a Bible. MX held a Quran.
I’ll let you guess which one’s worldview was better. If you’re not sure, it’s the one who has streets all over the country and a Holiday named after him.
We can make things right. But it will require us to first do business with God. As Dr. Tony Evans posted, “This is a time for a national reset…based on a spiritual foundation influenced by a repentant, obedient, and unified church…Pray for peace. Pray for unity. Speak truth, in love, but still speak. Then, act. Together, we can effectuate positive change if we pursue it with wisdom, tenacity, and strength.”
Oh, and one more thing. For those who are going on an “unfriend” rampage, it’s time to move out of the 7th grade and jump onto a field where ideas can clash and hearts unite at the same time. If you’ve ever been married for longer than a year you’ll know this is entirely possible, but only when you control your emotions and operate out of….wait for it….a heart of love.👩❤️💋👨
Communist-minded pundits see the nuclear family as a cultural anomaly, but living with friends can’t replicate the need for family that is in our DNA.
Feb 18, 2020
I love my extended family. David Brooks, not so much. His way of writing about the decline of the American extended family is occasionally hysterical, sometimes saccharine, and entirely lacking perspective. The suggestion that the nuclear family was a mistake strikes this immigrant as un-American.
Brooks uses the 1990 movie “Avalon” as a metaphor for family fracture. In the beginning, we see a large group of kinfolk at a holiday dinner:
As the years go by in the movie, the extended family plays a smaller and smaller role. By the 1960s, there’s no extended family at Thanksgiving. It’s just a young father and mother and their son and daughter, eating turkey off trays in front of the television. In the final scene, the main character is living alone in a nursing home, wondering what happened.
Thus, nuclear family is a station on the way from the tribal “tangled, loving, exhausting glory” to total loneliness.
It’s a flawed, overly dramatic setup because, while it’s the norm for today’s nuclear families to live apart from cousins and grandmas, everyone still gets invited to Thanksgiving dinners. Multigenerational gatherings are so much the cultural expectation that pundits advise starting political arguments around the holiday table: See what happens if the crazy uncle chimes in.
Is the Nuclear Family an Anomaly?
Brooks explains that, prior to industrialization, most Americans lived on farms and worked together within corporate family arrangements. Distant relatives filled in for each other, taking care of the young and the old, smoothing out intra-family feuds.
Brooks tends to overly idealize the extended family, which is not exactly primitive communism where leadership emerges spontaneously and everyone contributes according to his ability and takes according to his need. Clans operate with a clear chain of command, and that chain is not matrilineal. Some family members often end up feeling cheated or alienated, so rivalries abound.
Brooks sees the nuclear family as an anomaly fashioned in the Victorian era and fully realized in the 1950s. Even then, it only existed for about a dozen years and solely because of unique historical circumstances — namely, unions enabled men to find good-paying jobs, women were excluded from the workforce for child-rearing, and a high degree of social trust meant families in geographic proximity could forge tribal bonds.
With its focus on the last 250 years, Brooks’ narrative overlooks the fact that the extreme nuclear family — mom, dad, and minor children living in a single household — has been the Anglo-Saxon ideal since time immemorial. In “America 3.0,” James C. Bennett and Michael J. Lotus note that Germanic tribes on the outskirts of the Roman Empire lived in dwellings that resembled today’s single-family suburban households. These tribes eventually took over the British Isles, and their descendants have spread across the American continent.
Young families were always expected to move out as soon as land became available. Only economic pressure kept children under the same roof as their parents — not unlike what student loans are doing today. In Bennett and Lotus’s model, the success of the post-war extreme nuclear family is not a step on the way to total disintegration, but a contemporary realization of the age-old dream.
Brooks notes that economically stressed immigrant families are more likely to live in multigenerational households. Coming from an upwardly mobile immigrant subculture, I can assure you something more significant than economic pressure keeps multiple generations under the same roof: tradition. Bennett and Lotus argue that as immigrants assimilate, they adopt the kinship model of their American neighbors. The extreme nuclear family is a building block of a dynamic, mobile capitalist society — our past, present, and future.
What Brooks Doesn’t Get About Community
Brooks would agree with the point about dynamism, but would ask: “At what cost?” The fracture of the “fragile” nuclear family has been debilitating for the lower classes. He chides conservatives for incessantly telling the poor to build stable nuclear families — a pointless undertaking, in his opinion. If he knows conservatives so well, he should perhaps acknowledge that we offer different explanations for the decline.
Where the author sees unions as benign enablers of the short-lived blossoming of patriarchal nuclear families, conservatives argue that the greedy labor establishment destroyed American industry and point out that the working class in right-to-work states is doing fine. Moreover, capitalism isn’t eating into the family. Rather, that’s what welfare state is doing, providing mothers subsidies that enable fatherless child-rearing.
Our lawmakers in all levels of government are putting in place an elaborate set of workplace arrangements that will make it costly for a young mother to disentangle herself from full-time employment to raise children. That said, many conservatives more or less align with Brooks’s idea that societal trust is evaporating, or that we are perhaps too individualistic.
Brooks acknowledges that extended family can be excruciating and repressive. He blames it on the fact that people don’t choose their kin. He then suggests replacing the allegedly failed nuclear family with “families of choice,” which is a dramatic way of saying “friends.” He rounds up anthropological evidence:
The Chuukese people in Micronesia have a saying: ‘My sibling from the same canoe’; if two people survive a dangerous trial at sea, then they become kin. On the Alaskan North Slope, the Inupiat name their children after dead people, and those children are considered members of their namesake’s family.
The first study sounds like a description of a rite-of-passage ritual, or a trial not unlike what young Americans do in fraternities or the Armed Forces, and the second practice is a bit like having godparents or namesakes. Fraternity brothers and soldiers bond and live together for a while until they age out of the communal arrangements. Their close camaraderie is a stage in life following childhood and preceding marriage.
Brooks sees youthful adventure as a foundation of permanent living arrangements. He gives the example of Temescal Commons in Oakland, California, as a functioning, chosen extended family mysteriously bound into a tight-knit community:
[T]he 23 members, ranging in age from 1 to 83, live in a complex with nine housing units. This is not some rich Bay Area hipster commune. The apartments are small, and the residents are middle- and working-class. They have a shared courtyard and a shared industrial-size kitchen where residents prepare a communal dinner on Thursday and Sunday nights. Upkeep is a shared responsibility. The adults babysit one another’s children, and members borrow sugar and milk from one another. The older parents counsel the younger ones. When members of this extended family have suffered bouts of unemployment or major health crises, the whole clan has rallied together.
So, like a dorm, but for life. As a descendent of people who at some point were all crammed into Soviet communal apartments, or kommunalki, I find the description above hopelessly naïve.
Communal Living Isn’t Romantic
Brooks is not the only pundit who has been romanticizing communal living, especially communal kitchens. In a bizarro segment, National Public Radio lauded Soviet communal kitchens for allegedly fostering anti-Stalinist resistance. In reality, those were a constant source of irritation and discontent: the worry about broken dishes, stolen food, noisy drunks, and, during Stalin’s Reign of Terror, the numbing fear that the neighbors may turn to the NKVD to evict an odd tenant to the Gulags.
There was little trust in kommunalki, but plenty of fear and resentment. The 1950s suburbs with high trust and lots of privacy, and where every woman was the mistress of her own kitchen, were the polar opposite of Soviet communal apartments.
Wealthy Americans such as Brooks tend to romanticize food and rituals surrounding it, and this is a mistake. Like living in close proximity does not ensure trust, and scheduling people to break bread with each other is an unnatural way to form meaningful relationships.
Cooking with others and for large groups of people is nerve-racking. Brooks mentions a study showing that women working in extended family kitchens tend to have higher rates of heart diseases because of the stress of cooking for a large brood. Imagine cooking for two dozen non-relatives while sharing the kitchen with random neighbors!
A Co-op Can’t Replace the Nuclear Family
Actually, none of it should be too hard to imagine. Because young Americans typically leave their parents and spend several years living with roommates, we all have a kind of window to the lifelong communal misery. In the short term, hanging out together and meeting new people is fun. Yet once romantic relationships are forged, roommates move out. To move back to a communal arrangement at the point in one’s life when the habits have already formed is an odd sort of midlife crisis.
The reason extended clans work is that individuals don’t chose them. They are bound together by bloodlines for which there are no substitutes. Friendships are optional, and if they go astray or buddies grow apart, there is no shame in breaking them off, or at least stopping friendship maintenance. Glorified roommates are not displacing families because the former are not nearly as reliable.
Nuclear families are not fragile, but friendships are a poor substitute for tribes and families. A co-op may sound better than total isolation, but to spend one’s entire life in one is still a lonely proposition.
The erosion of trust Brooks notes is not going to be countered by arranging diverse families in crypto-socialist dwellings where they are forced to share amenities. That’s a miserable life, and it’s not in our cultural DNA. A better option is to free men and women to form stable nuclear families, have many children, and then organize communities around family needs. Yes, rebuild nuclear families.
Katya Rapoport Sedgwick is a writer from San Francisco Bay Area. She has published at The Daily Caller and Legal Insurrection. You can follow her @KatyaSedgwick on Twitter.