Wednesday, November 30, 2011

How to Do A Traditional Marriage Rally

By Lucas Pribble

In August, TFP Student Action’s St. Joseph Caravan came through Rockford, IL. Thankfully, I had the opportunity to participate in their campaign. Afterwards, I thought to myself, “Why can’t my friends and I do something similar?”

Then I received an email about the TFP’s new Traditional Marriage Captain campaign. It looked like a great opportunity to get people together and make a stand for the truth. After replying and filling out the form to sign up, I received a banner saying, “God’s Marriage = One Man and One Woman.” The package also contained a letter from Robert Ritchie explaining how to do the rally, along with some flyers listing 10 reasons to oppose same-sex “marriage.”

After making a few phone calls to some friends, I set up the rally for Sunday, November 20th.

As the rally day was approaching, we decided to make some “honk for Traditional Marriage” signs to use at the campaign, just as I had seen TFP Student Action use them in their street campaigns. We went to Staples and bought some posterboard and markers, and my mom and little brothers and sister made some large signs, with “honk for Traditional Marriage” on each one.

Besides the phone calls to friends, the rally was also announced at our local Knights of Columbus meeting. I also sent the information to a local pro-life leader, who kindly posted it on his blog. I wasn’t sure how many people to expect, but I figured that if we made the effort, Our Lady would do the rest!

The campaign was set up for 1:00PM. We chose the intersection of State and Alpine streets. The location couldn’t have been better - with lots of traffic and long-lasting stop lights.

On the day of the campaign, the weather was a crisp 40 degrees, but thankfully no rain. At 1:00pm sharp, we set up the banner on one of the corners of the intersection. Little by little, people starting arriving, mostly teenagers. All in all, we ended up with about 25 people! We started off by praying three Hail Marys together, asking Our Lady for Her protection and guidance.

It was a great campaign. At first we were worried that no one would honk, but honk people did! In the middle of the rally, we decided to pray the Glorious mysteries of the rosary, and it was hard to hear each other with so much honking! There were also many “thumbs up.” It was clear that, besides being on the side of God, we are also on the side of the majority of Americans in opposing same-sex “marriage.”

In spite of the honks, we also had some opposition. One passerby, obviously furious with the rally, demonstrated her opposition by throwing a full cup of soda at one of the young ladies in the rally. So much for tolerance I guess. Another woman in her car mocked us saying, “Look, no one is honking!” Providentially, right at that moment about eight cars started honking behind her!

We ended the campaign with the prayer to St. Michael. After the rally, we all resolved to do this again on a regular basis. The traditional marriage rally reminded me of the words of Our Lord in the gospel: “Every one therefore that shall confess me before men, I will also confess him before my Father who is in heaven.”

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

The Hat

The Hat Symbol of the person wearing it
In different epochs, the hat became a symbol of the dignity of the one wearing it; today, it still survives as a reminder of an ancient vision of courtesy

While not a surprising sight, the hat certainly awakens the dormant attention of people in today’s standardized settings. Their gazes linger, even in passing, at the sight of a hat as they are forced to take a position. Even if just for a moment, different social conceptions erupt in their minds and Ideologies flare up. Quick as a flash — even if this interior movement takes place most often in silence — mentalities are shaken by the stimulus of that vision. Ideologies and social conceptions leap forward, not only toward a worldview, but even towards a political position. Is the hat on the right or on the left of the political spectrum?

We are talking about a man or woman wearing a hat in the busy streets of our megacities. The hat survives as a sign of social distinction. It offers a vision of ancient courtesy that revolved around human dignity. When it comes to wearing a hat, maybe I should not say man or woman, but rather gentleman and lady.

Is it reasonable to think that the hat — even when one’s attention is not fixed on it — awakens so many movements in the soul? I invite the reader to do this test: Discreetly ask your friends and acquaintances about their impressions when they see someone wearing a hat, crossing Fifth Avenue or taking an evening stroll on Central Park. Listen to their opinions and discretely take notes. They will reveal that these considerations are not far from reality.

* * *

The first objection against wearing a hat in this second decade of the twenty-first century is so commonplace that I even hesitate to fence against it. Crusade Magazine readers — already knowledgeable of our counter-revolutionary positions — would easily answer it. However, it is worthwhile to analyze where this trite argument comes from, as it is often worn as a mask to disguise an unavowed but fierce opposition.
The hat is not just to protect the head against weather.jpg
The hat is more than just a protection for the head from the weather.

In the beginning of mankind, the hat — so this objection goes — was worn to protect the head from the weather, but with progress that need has disappeared. In the city or countryside, modernity has found so much more effective ways to protect the upper body that the hat has lost its usefulness. Therefore, to wear it today is a display of cultural backwardness or an attachment to an irrational fashion. This is the objection of the so-called practically-minded about the practical and functional use of the hat today.

These persons do not want to bear in mind that the head is the noblest part of the body. In it reside the faculties that lead to intellectual cognition, and therefore that most influence one’s spiritual formation. The Creator placed the head at the top of the body, whence throughout the ages it has communicated its dignity to the hat that protects it like a king transmits his dignity to his closest servants.

Different epochs and countries gave the hat shapes, sizes, colors and decorations indicative of the dignity of the one who wears it. Thus, the hat became a symbol. As it exists today, the hat is an impoverished symbol but a still worthy heir to its former glory. It is supported by many people of good taste who will not allow it to disappear. Yes, the hat is merely an external accessory. But, as Plinio CorrĂȘa de Oliveira observed, it is an “external accessory that reveals to our senses, a mysterious hidden essence of a symbolic nature that exists in it.”
Churchill in top hat walking with Champberlain
The hat is an external accessory that reveals to our senses a mysterious and hidden essence, symbolic of what exists in it.

How does searching for these symbols help a person? The most penetrating observers of Winston Churchill said that “he saw in things and situations, timeless symbols that embody eternal and brilliant principles.” The same principles that gave him strength in the tragic hours of the struggle against Hitlerism, keeping him in that struggle when his reward was only “blood, sweat and tears.”

* * *

Just as a priest wears a biretta to express his mysterious power as mediator between God and men, so also a hat worn with dignity evokes gestures and attitudes that constitute a true social liturgy, necessary for human acts in a Christian society. In both the biretta and hat, a Catholic “should look beyond the mere practical aspects and look for something which people who worship mundane practicality will call ‘useless’ — he must look for the principles that give the meaning of life and prepare the soul for Heaven” (Plinio CorrĂȘa de Oliveira).

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Scene From an Exciting Traditional Marriage Rally: You Can Do One Too!

Here are some pictures from a traditional marriage rally carried out on Sunday, November 20, by young teenage Catholics in Rockford, Il. The public reception to the campaign was truly overwhelmingly favorable and encouraging.

If you would like a banner, like the one shown below, and do a rally like the one shown in these photos, please call Alexander McKay at 717-225-7147, ext. 228.

marriage rally 010

marriage rally 009

marriage rally 008

Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Photos From St. Louis Talk on Col. Ripley

Some scenes from the talk of Mr. Norman Fulkerson of the American TFP on his book, American Knight, a biography of Col. John Ripley.

The meeting was held last Sunday at St. Joe's Java in St. Charles.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Who Do the “Occupy Fort Benning” Protesters Represent? Unmasking the 0.99%

Over the weekend, the American TFP released the following statement:

For over twenty years, pacifist protesters have gathered at Fort Benning in mid-November to oppose the activities of the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation (formerly called the School of the Americas) and demand its closure. The protesters are even invited to break the law and trespass upon the military base as a symbolic act.

The annual event is organized by the School of the Americas Watch (SOA Watch). This year, the organization has admitted that they will be attracting a dwindling mix of protesters since many activists are “busy” in the Occupy Wall Street movement nationwide. These socialist advocates surprisingly claim to represent “99%” of the American people.

In fact, this year’s march is also being called Occupy Fort Benning. Like their comrades in the Occupy Wall Street movement, the activists say they speak in the name of the “99%.” We ask: Who do they really represent?

They Do Not Represent the American People
The American soldier represents 100% of Americans, not “the 99%” or “the 1%.” The American soldier does not use idle words, illegal actions, and Marxist jargon to do so. Rather, he defends the nation with his service, sacrifice and even his life. He represents the best of America and we should honor and be proud of our brave military heroes.
US Army Rangers 100% Americans honor brave military heroes
U.S. Army Rangers: The virtues of the American soldier deserve our admiration and esteem. God bless Fort Benning.

Not only does the American soldier wish to defend our nation, but he also extends an invitation to those in other countries, to learn from his experiences, and come to Fort Benning to better defend their countries against brutal Marxist movements.

To insinuate that a three or six-month course (where the curriculum is no secret) can turn South American soldiers into assassins is an insult to all these brave soldiers and their instructors. The whole school cannot be judged by deplorable acts of some of its graduates. It would be the equivalent of saying the Occupy Wall Street movement turns all its squatting occupants into criminals because of the increasing number of criminal opportunists who are appearing at “occupy” sites nationwide and committing crimes and sexual assaults that have led to a number of arrests.

By defending the whole nation, the American soldier represents 100% of all Americans. By dividing the nation, Occupy Fort Benning seeks to represent only those Americans sympathetic to its radical view.

The American soldier represents 100% of Americans, not “the 99%” or “the 1%.” The American soldier does not use idle words, illegal actions, and Marxist jargon to do so. Rather, he defends the nation with his service, sacrifice and even his life.

Thus We Must Ask: Who Do They Really Represent?
Looking at all the groups that usually attend the protest, we see scattered fringes of the religious, political and cultural left. The event is used as a platform to push ideas that range from communism to socialism, drug legalization to abortion, homosexual vice to women’s ordination, Liberation Theology to anarchy. Realistically, even the most optimistic observer is forced to admit that such views represent at best only 0.99% of Americans rather than 99%.

They Do Not Represent the Church
Although participants may appear in habits and collars, it would be wrong to conclude that these protesters represent the authentic position of the Catholic Church. The strident socialist tone of the arguments presented by the protesters remind us of the words of Pope Pius XI who warned, “No one can be at the same time a good Catholic and a true socialist.”
Fr. Roy Bourgeois excommunicated from Catholic Church
SOA Watch organizer Fr. Roy Bourgeois has been excommunicated by the Catholic Church and dismissed from the Maryknoll order for his persistent and scandalous opposition to Church teaching.

The praising of Marxist guerrillas and despots like Che Guevara and Fidel Castro who promoted violent revolution in Latin America obviously does not represent Church teaching. Indeed, while the Western Hemisphere Institute for Security Cooperation

opens its doors to all democratically elected governments in the hemisphere, the protesters have the dubious distinction of favoring the oldest communist dictatorship in Latin America — the Castro dictatorship which has held sway for over fifty years and persecuted the Church.

The idea that protesters somehow represent Church teaching is refuted by the excommunication of Maryknoll Father Roy Bourgeois who has led the gathering for over two decades. His public support of women’s ordination and persistent dissent has set him at loggerheads with both the Vatican and his religious order.

Indeed, the Fathers and great saints of the Church consistently defend the mission of the soldier to establish order through just war. Saint Thomas Aquinas teaches, for example, that the military profession must have as its goal the defense of the public good, the poor and oppressed. Soldiers are therefore guardians of legitimate authority.

Yet again, in his role of upholding the Church’s teaching on just war, the soldier represents the full 100% while the Occupy Fort Benning activists represent at best a dissenting 0.99% element that does not reflect the teachings of the Fathers of the Church.

A Call to Gratitude
The American Society for the Defense of Tradition, Family and Property (TFP) calls upon the public to thank our heroes. Let us thank them for defending the 100%.

Indeed, we need to thank — not protest — these heroes who put their lives on the line — and represent us all. These heroes guarantee the peace. We live freely because they made the greatest of sacrifices — even that of life itself.
TFP Members Honor American Military heroes at Iwo Jima Memorial
The American TFP calls upon the public to thank our heroes.
The American soldier represents 100% of Americans. And defends
the 100% with his service, his sacrifice, and even his life.

We cannot agree with those who protest against the soldier and see his role as one buttressing “structures of oppression and power.” We do not agree with those who unfairly label those who fight against Marxism as murderers and assassins. We cannot turn a blind eye to a ruthless enemy who breaks all rules and conventions as Marxists have always done.

While we censure any abuses, of course, we will not stand silent while systemic and widespread abuses come from Castro’s Cuba, the FARC guerrillas and other leftist movements that still cling to the outdated and iniquitous Marxist ideologies that so ravaged Latin America.

As Americans, let us be proud of these heroes who represent us all as they continue to fight and train others to defend their nations against those who threaten the peace.

May God protect them and their families in their daily battles around the world.

November 19, 2011
The American TFP

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Meet Us in St. Louis: TFP Meeting on the Inspiring Story of Col. John Ripley

Come hear the talk:

"The Life of Colonel John W. Ripley

An Example for All Americans"

This American TFP Meeting will be held

on November 20, 2011 2:30 p.m. at

St. Joe’s Java

3920 South Old Highway 94

St. Charles, MO


TFP Member and Author Mr. Norman J. Fulkerson will give a talk about the inspiring story of

Colonel John W. Ripley U.S.M.C.

This first cradle-to-grave biography of Colonel John W. Ripley provides readers with the complete story about a great man who is considered by Marines, such as General Carl Mundy, former Commandant of the Marine Corps, to be on the same level as legends Chesty Puller and Dan Daly.

2010 Gold Medal winner, Military Writers Society of America

Mr. Fulkerson will be available to sign copies of his book after the presentation.