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The Catholic alt-right: Violence and death threats in the name of Jesus

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As much as I loathe Donald Trump, the man, and his policies, I will give him credit for one thing—although it was inadvertent on his part: He has shined a glaring light on the darkest abscesses of the culture, where hate groups proliferate like cockroaches.

We always knew these groups exist. But they seemed so fringe that we didn’t worry about them. With the rise of Trumpism, however, these hate groups have been given permission to vocalize their message of terror, in a way they never did before. And that’s a good thing for decent Americans: you can’t fight something you can’t see.

I’ve been accused on social media of being anti-Christian, but that’s just another lie from the Trumpists. I’m not. But I am against the religio-fascist wing of the Christian-Republican-Trump Party that is violently anti-LGBTQ; indeed, the more I learn of these people, the more concerned I become. And I learned a lot yesterday, with this report from NBC News, “How the Catholic ‘alt-right’ aims to purge LGBTQ members from the church.”

It describes the war—one of violence, intimidation and Hitlerian madness–against LGBTQ people that is gathering momentum within full sight, and possibly the collusion, of the most fascist elements within the Vatican, who may or not not include Pope Francis (who really knows?).

The article makes frightening reading. You probably heard the other day how Trump has gone to war with his own Republican Chief Justice, John Roberts, because Roberts is not (in Trump’s view) sufficiently radical, in an alt-right sense. Well, these rabid, Catholic homophobes have declared war on their own Pope, Francis, for his “Who am I to judge?” remark concerning gays. They want every single gay, Lesbian, bisexual and transgendered Catholic hunted down and purged. They also want any Catholic who shows any tolerance for LGBTQ people hunted down and purged. And this, they do in the name of their Jesus.

Their methods are the same as the Nazis: terror, spying, snitching , blackmailing and punishing those they deem criminals. And what are the criminal acts they wish to expunge? Here are a few examples cited in the article:

  • Scores of Catholic church employees who were fired after being outed as gay or gay-friendly
  • A man who was fired by the Diocese of Cleveland after he “liked” a Facebook post about a gay wedding
  • A Florida teacher forced the resign from her Catholic high school after the became engaged to her partner
  • A San Diego man who had to resign from his job at a parish after receiving death threats, harassing letters and having his tires slashed as a result of his marriage to another man
  • A group of Dominican nuns in Milwaukee who had to hire security guards to protect them after they hosted a retreat for gay clergy

It’s worth your while to read the whole NBC article so you can appreciate in depth how serious a threat this alt-right wing of the Catholic Church is—not only to LGBTQ people but to our basic American values of diversity and inclusion. And presiding over this threat, like a dark, evil genie, is the President of the United States, Donald J. Trump, encouraging the violence and hatred, egging his worshippers on through dog whistles and outright lies, making who-knows-what promises behind the scenes to the haters, following the entire disgusting game on social media, and making who-knows-what pacts with who-knows-what entities he himself worships?

Yes, it’s come to this: I have slowly, disbelievingly come around to the conclusion that Trump may in fact have made a Faustian deal with the Dark Side. I’m no conspiratorialist. I don’t even really believe in “the Devil” or “Satan” or anything like that. I was raised a Jew, and, except for crazy elements in Judaism, like Chabad, most Jews think these Christian fantasies of Hell and diabolic beings are ridiculous, maybe even signs of mental illness.

But when I look around the world, it’s clear that there is a “force” (for want of a better word)l that prompts some people toward murder, torture, the commission of evil, awful acts. I don’t have a name for that force. I don’t know what it is or where it comes from or why it’s so entrenched. But it does exist, and I have to believe that throughout history some people have worshipped it and made (as I said) Faustian deals with it: “Give me power and I will do your bidding.” I’m afraid of that force: I think many sane people are. I don’t engage with it or indulge it, and I don’t even like movies that depict it. But I think I know someone who isn’t afraid of it, who welcomes it, perhaps during his famous late-night Twitter sessions. That person is the President, and I think these alt-right Catholic monsters are his legions of flying monkeys, similarly in thrall to something dark.

The Catholic Church is in a very precarious situation in America and many Western countries because of its history and cover-up of child molestation by priests. Any normal corporation would already have been shut down for engaging in such a persistent pattern of criminal felonies. But the Catholic Church is, of course, very rich and powerful, and has been able to ward off threats to it, mainly through paying Court settlements to victims. This alt-right Catholic phenomenon, however, may be the straw that breaks the camel’s back, and finally puts the Church out of business, or at least forces a schism. At the center of this controversy, naturally, is Pope Francis. He paints a picture of himself as a wise, compassionate moderate: “Who am I to judge” is one of the most famous utterances by a Pope in history.

But we have to judge him by his actions, not his words. Neither Francis nor his Vatican regime has lifted a finger to stop this alt-right madness in their own ranks. By their silence, they aid and abet it. The situation is no longer tolerable. You may not have experienced the alt-right Catholics yourself, but believe me, they’re out there in the hundred of thousands, burrowing into parishes and dioceses, fostering theocratic fascism and violence, in Jesus’s name.

If you’re Catholic, and you love your Church, you must—repeat, must speak out against the Catholic alt-right, as often as you can, and to whomever has the ability to stop it.

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