Monday, October 19, 2015

The Other Gun Culture That No One Dares to Mention

Written by John Horvat II
The gun debate has ignited once again as it does with each new killing spree. Every time, we hear the same message. The public is invited to clamor for measures to control guns to stop the violence. We are told to pressure our politicians to have the courage to face the powerful gun lobby. We are urged to reject our violent “gun culture.”
To be honest, there really isn’t much I can do personally to reject this culture. My exposure is actually minimal — and I suspect it is the same with tens of millions of other Americans, gun owners and non-owners alike. Most are like me who very rarely handle a weapon. People I know who do handle arms often are usually quite discreet about it. They seem to understand the seriousness of carrying any gun — and are familiar with those very rare occasions when a gun might be needed for self-defense. To these owners, guns represent restraint. I have no problem with this gun culture since its adherents act responsibly, rationally and calmly.
It is telling that, despite the extreme ease with which a person can become a member of a major gun rights organization (just pay dues), no mass killers appear to have been members. In a similar way, no mass killershave been found to be fervent Christians, family men or owners of significant property.
There is a second gun culture that no one dares mention. And this gun culture, I vehemently oppose. Unlike the first culture, I am and can be constantly exposed to it. It is in my face and found all over the media. The use of weapons in this culture is irresponsible, deadly — and incredibly supported by liberals. And yet, no one protests.


This second culture is defined by the plots and themes constantly found in Hollywood films and video games. It seems that every action film is full of guns, misuse of weapons and gratuitous violence. In fact, I am exposed to more guns in one of these films than a full year of exposure in the first culture.
You see this culture in the chase scenes where characters shoot at each other without any regard for what is around them. These are trigger-happy cowboys (and cowgirls) ever ready to shoot anything that moves. The weapons they sport are semi-automatic pistols, automatic weapons and yet more sophisticated arms that deaden the public sensibility to violence. No one complains about these characters that cling to their guns and wreak havoc on society. Daily we are flooded with images of these irresponsible characters that pull out a firearm at a moment’s notice. We are witnesses to dramatic deaths that bear little resemblance to real death. Film stars engage in the frenetic intemperance of a surreal world that acts upon impulse and brutal actions. They make killing look so easy and gratifying.
I don’t understand why people have no problem with this unreal world that glamorizes the gun and glories in scenes of massive violence. I am especially appalled by bloody video games that make today’s mass murder sprees look like cakewalks. There seems to be no problem with these bloody acts that would be illegal and criminal in the real world.
Such scenes from action films and video games represent not a single episode of a mass murder. Rather, it is as if the same mass murder is committed millions of times inside theaters, homes and mobile devices. Inside the minds of countless youth, they send a message that guns are the means to impose one’s will upon another. Guns represent power. To lonely young men from fatherless families frustrated by their failure to be part of society, the gun is the ultimate platform and avenger.
The same liberals who decry the first culture have little problem accepting the second. Ironically, liberal actors and actresses who support gun control will play ruthless characters that gun down their opponents. The same liberals that call for drastic gun control measures action fill the theaters showing these action thrillers. They will idolize the film stars who wield their weapons so irresponsibly.
Is it any wonder that we have those who act out their fantasies based on the unreal world on the screen? Isn’t it time we, liberals and conservatives alike, publicly denounce this other gun culture that sends such a deadly message?
I am not saying that Hollywood and video games are the only causes of the mass murder phenomenon. However, I believe this second gun cultures play a major role. That which none dares mention, should be mentioned.
As seen on theblaze.comThe Other Gun Culture That No One Dares to Mention

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

14 Inspiring Photos of Mass Celebrated in War Zones | ChurchPOP

Nothing is more important than the Mass, and the Church is bound to keep on celebrating it in and out of season. And that includes war.
Here are some photos of priests celebrating Mass in war zones, or at least out on the field for members of a military.
You can click on any image to enlarge it.

American soldiers in the bombed Cologne Cathedral (March, 1945)

via imgur
via imgur

U.S. Civil War (~1861-1865)

Public Domain / via
Public Domain / via

To see more photos, click below

14 Inspiring Photos of Mass Celebrated in War Zones | ChurchPOP

Monday, October 12, 2015

VIDEO: 14,000 Rosary Rallies Give Hope in a World Torn by Sin and Abortion

With great faith and devotion, hundreds of thousands of Catholics gathered at over 14,108 different locations across the country on October 10 to pray the Rosary in public and beg God and the Blessed Mother to save America. Simultaneously at noon that Saturday, more than 14,000 Rosary Rally captains went into the public square with friends and family to beseech God for special graces of conversion for our beloved nation.

Within one hour, approximately 31,500,000 Hail Marys rose up to Heaven on city streets across America. From coast to coast, these Public Square Rosary Rallies -- sponsored by the American TFP and its America Needs Fatima campaign -- highlight the importance of the Blessed Mother's call to conversion at Fatima, Portugal, in 1917.

14,000 Rosary Rallies Give Hope in a World Torn by Sin and Abortion

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

The Benedict Option Without Benedict -

Written by John Horvat II

Many conservatives are facing the brutal reality of a culture that undermines their Faith and destroys their values. Not a few have made the logical comparison to the Christians facing both the Roman Empire’s decadent “establishment” and the ruthlessly aggressive ways of the barbarians who threatened to destroy what remained of civilization.

And so, the tendency of modern Christians is to write off today’s establishment and neo-barbarians. Our decadent establishment has facilitated the culture of death by supporting abortion laws and other modern evils. Today’s wired neo-barbarians in their turn have departed from Christian norms and adopted aggressive attitudes and lifestyles that threaten our own, which can be especially seen from the constant attacks on the traditional family.
That is why many say the only thing to be done is to admit defeat and strategically retreat into close-knit communities in which they might intensify their Christian Faith. Writer Rod Dreher has called such retreats the Benedict Option since it seems to imitate the strategy of Saint Benedict of Nursia who in the sixth century withdrew to live an intensely liturgical life in isolated communities far from both decadent Rome and raging barbarians.
It is true that Saint Benedict did gather together monks and established a rule centered on the liturgy. As the founder of Western monasticism, he laid the foundation of Christendom. But if there was someone who did not exercise the Benedict Option, it was Saint Benedict himself.
It must be admitted that in the beginning, he did try to flee civilization. He became a hermit and gradually attracted followers from which he established small monasteries in the rocky and inaccessible valley of Subiaco.

Saint Benedict learned the hard way that he could not isolate himself from the decadent culture, which would not leave him alone. The horrors from which he fled followed him to the isolated valley. Some of his monks rebelled and tried to poison him. A group of impure women entered to tempt the monks. Saint Benedict exercised another option and returned to civilization.
He soon established his main monastery in Monte Cassino, which was on one of the great highways to southern Italy. This brought the place into frequent communication with the outside pagan world. Saint Benedict confronted and actively engaged the culture. In fact, he himself overthrew the idols in the region and converted the population to the Faith. He built Monte Cassino on the site of a pagan temple, and composed there his famous Rule to govern his communities.
His monasteries not only defied the dominant decadent culture but actually became centers of influence and culture themselves wherever they were established. Even in Benedict’s time, the monks established schools for the poor, developed agriculture and preached to the people. At the same time, however, Benedictine monasteries, including Monte Cassino, never lived happily ever after in peace since they had to ward off the constant attacks of barbarians and adversaries.
The lessons we can learn from this are many.
The first is that there is nothing wrong with living in a rural area or developing an intense spiritual life. Vibrant and faith-filled families and communities are much needed in the fight against our decadent culture.
However, the focus of our actions should be outward not just inward. All these measures should be seen as means toward securing the goal of our salvation and the building of a culture that facilitates, not conspires against, our sanctification.
The second lesson is that we cannot escape from our decadent culture. Like Saint Benedict, evil influences will always come looking for us. We must always defend ourselves against the evils of the day, resigned to the fact that good Christians will never be left in peace. The best defense is a well-planned offense.
Finally, we need the “neo-barbarians” that so persecute us. Many fervent Christians today are those who were once “neo-barbarians” in the sense that they formerly embraced the culture of death. They saw the futility of our postmodernity and enthusiastically entered the Faith. Indeed, the Church never wrote off “barbarians” but went out in search of them. We should do the same. It is in the clash of the cultures that we can expect the conversion of many of them and the strengthening of our own Faith.
We can thank God that Saint Benedict did not exercise the so-called Benedict Option. Had he done so, history could well have been different.

The Benedict Option Without Benedict -