The Gospel Truth

Amid the Cultural Ruins | November 24, 2009

Ever since I was a child and used to attend a double feature with Randolph Scott and Alan Ladd at the Midway Theater on Queen Boulevard, in Forest Hills, I have loved going to the movies.  Films are bigger than life yet they reflect so much of what we are, strive to be and sometimes what others want us to become.  Their visual lessons dramatize the truths of life, appeal to our romantic sentiments and sometimes even inflame our passions.  Sometimes they even teach us something.

I recently saw a new film, An Education that was ostensibly about the loss of innocence of a sixteen year old girl. Now in most parts of this country, except where there is a Planned Parenthood Clinic, that would send off alarms about sexual abuse and the exploitation of our children.

The previews and the opening segments thoroughly romantized their budding relationship.   But half way through the movie, it became apparent as Jenny’s parents’ initial resistance to their mutual affection began to melt away under the intense animal heat of the charmingly slick suitor, David Goldman that Jenny was as good as “ruined.”

During the second half of their story the onion layers peeled away as Goldman is characterized for what he really was, a conniving flim-flam man who used black immigrants to break real estate blocks, stoled art work from elderly women and deflowered virgins—all in a day’s work.

Despite its veiled attempt at anti-Semitic depiction, this movie is not about that.   Its main focus is on the seduction of a culture by materialism, greed and self-advancement.  It was no accident that this movie was set in the 1960s because this is when the fruits of modernism first started to reel their ugly head.  An Education is rich in metaphorical content.  Jenny’s parents are the guardians of their daughter’s virtue because that where the future of any culture resides.  Morally strong and virtuous women make for a strong society.  (For a thoroughly insightful review of this film with all of its cultural implication, go to

It was Antonio Gramsci, the Sardinian Communist (Yes Virginia there really are things called “communists” and they truly want to destroy the way you life.) and later the Frankfurt School of Social Research that started the long march through our culture that has given us unrestricted abortions, unbridled pornography, a litany of sexually transmitted diseases and a culture a few meters this side of self-immolation. (I guess I have finally gone metric.)

It is also no odd coincidence that Betty Friedan, “the Mother of all Feminists” was a Cultural Marxist who was mentored by Herbert Marcuse.  He was the radical college professor of the 1960s and a refugee from the Frankfurt School who told our young people to make love, not war during the Vietnam era.  (It has always been my view that they should get married and do both.)  It was Mrs. Friedan who wrote the Feminine Mystique, the book that launched a thousand ships of marital discord and unhappiness.  I understand that thousands of divorce lawyers say novenas in her honor.

All this is important for the Catholic and Christian Churches…and anyone else who liked the culture essentially the way it was BM—before Marx.  Catholics had suffered persecution and discrimination for generations.  Signs, such as NINA—no Irish need apply—dotted the commercial landscape along the east coast.  Catholics so desperately wanted to be part of mainstream America but their allegiance to a “foreign power” and their “strange” rituals prevented them from securing a seat at the banquet table of culture.

Then along came the Kennedy family—rich, powerful, unscrupulous and hell-bent to make the starting team.  It was the patriarch, Joseph Kennedy who thrust his children into the political limelight.  When his second son John was elected president, Catholics celebrated in joyous anticipation that the culture would finally listen to them.  (My good Catholic mother voted for Nixon.)  Buffered by his “Irish mafia,” Kennedy’s presidency heralded the fact that Catholics were now part of the official power structure.

Just what affect has this Catholic arrival had on American culture? Look around!  Does our culture look like the Church has had much impact?  Who is winning the Culture Ware—Karl or Jesus?  Could it have something to do with the fact that Kennedy did his very best to dance away from his religious beliefs?  So is it any wonder that his sectarian successors have done the same?

Is it not possible that our Catholic leaders have been seduced by a modernist culture, not unlike Jenny’s parents in “An Education?”   Is that why most of our Catholic politicians in DC are pro-abortion? Has not the secular establishment with its feminist and homosexual lobbyists taken our college presidents to the woodshop of humanistic learning where “a plasma TV in every den” has replaced the “pie in the sky” of faith?

Modernism was a heresy that the Church condemned 150 years ago. I don’t think it was any different then from what it is today. Whether they call it health care reform or social justice, it is a raging inferno and its residue smoke is wafting through Catholic teaching, pastoral work and even the pulpit.  Perhaps what we seriously need is a new Church militant with its true Christian weapons of prayer, penance, self-sacrifice, and relentless charitable protest.  The alternative is that future generations will curse us amid their cultural ruins.



  1. The Kennedy Clans “moderenization” of the teaching of the Catholic Faith” to fit their politicial and secular agendas, along with Marxism and Modernism, stands as a public Sacralidge that has to be addressed by the CCB Bishops. The Kennedy’s along with the Democratic and Republician Parties along with their supporters have redirected the Moral Compass of the United States. Obama and his Czars are destroying the United States every day as we struggle to support our Military and economy.

    Comment by Vons-Express — November 24, 2009 @ 4:56 pm

  2. Truth cometh forth from thy writngs. When the Church was falling down in the 1200’s, God told St. Francis to “rebuild His
    Church”. After Francis finally understood , he took the vow of poverty and the church was restored. Could that be part of the message now–Materialism out and God back in by the practice of POVERTY?

    Comment by Mary B. Lachney — November 25, 2009 @ 12:34 am

  3. I neglected to add: With Obama at the helm, we are and will continue to be practicing poverty –like it or not. It wont be long, maybe the first of the year 2010.

    Comment by Mary B. Lachney — November 25, 2009 @ 12:54 am

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About author

After graduating from Holy Cross, Bill Borst earned an MA in Asian History from St. John's University and a Ph.D in American History from St. Louis University. (1972) A former New Yorker, he taught for many years in the St. Louis area, while also hosting a weekly radio show on WGNU from 1984-2006. He currently is a regular substitute for conservative Phyllis Schlafly on KSIV radio. (1320) He is the author of two books on social history, "Liberalism: Fatal Consequences," and "The Scorpion and the Frog: A Natural Conspiracy." He just retired as the Features editor of the Mindszenty Foundation Monthly Report. In his 11 years from 2003-2013 he wrote nearly 130 essays on Catholic culture and world affairs. Many in St. Louis also know him as the "Baseball Professor," because of a course that he offered at Maryville College from 1973-74. It was arguably the first fully-accredited baseball history course in the Midwest.The author of several short books on the old St. Louis Browns, he started the St. Louis Browns Historical Society in 1984. In 2009 his first two plays were produced on the local stage. "The Last Memory of an Ol' Brownie Fan," ran six performances at the Sound Stage in Crestwood and "A Perfect Choice" ran for two performances at the Rigali Center Theater in Shrewsberry. His third play, "A Moment of Grace," ran six performances at DeSmet High School in January of 2011with First Run Theater in January of 2011. He is currently working on a 4th play, "A Family Way," which is a comedy about a happy dysfunctional family. He can reached at







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