When I attended my 50th high school reunion at Xavier H.S. in New York City, three years ago, I was reminded of the story of Jim Harmon’s bold request to me before the start of the second of my three varsity football games.
He had forgotten to bring with him the most important piece of equipment next to his helmet and that was the small plastic cup that would protect his manhood from any harm during the game with Cardinal Hayes High School, a known refuge for tough kids who would thing nothing of punching our starting center between his beefy legs during a play.
Reluctantly I agreed to do it. I was a team player and he was a starter. How could I refuse? I am not sure where we made the exchange which left me with little more than the anxiety of feeling vulnerable. I prayed that I would not get to play which was a pretty good bet since I did not play in our first game, nor would I ever play in a real game for Xavier.
Jim went on to distinguish himself, first at West Point and later on the bloody battlefields of Vietnam where he was awarded the Silver Star for valor, the nation’s second highest honor. You usually have to die to get the first one.
I doubt if he would remember my one little tiny act of valor, near the battlefields of Randall’s Island where he had played while I meekly watched the loss to Hayes.
Before my high school days I always felt uncomfortable when much more knowledgeable boys would make crude references to the anatomical difference of our female classmates in the schoolyard.
I was even more uncomfortable when they made similar references to our own bodies. Such crude terms for our genitals or other private areas roiled my sensibilities and usually left me in pure disgust.
A man’s body parts–the one’s I would have sacrificed for my football comrade—are part of the political lexicon. While the number of crude and vulgar references for that part of a man’s body are legion, the one that has made it to the ranks of America’s political debates is balls.
Technically this is a misnomer since their shape is closer to that of almonds. But that has no ring to it.
The schoolyard has now moved to the political arenas of the boardroom and the electoral campaign.
Today a man’s balls have become a household metaphor for power, authority, courage and all the aggressive tendencies that men have been publicly displaying since the Greeks held the first Olympics where all the athletes were nude.
What inspired me to write this essay on balls was an article that an e-pal sent me a few weeks ago. She is a very astute and modest person. If she felt no compunction in addressing this issue then it must have become perfectly mainstream.
Here’s the gist of the article’s content with the heading simply BALLS
It could easily be titled: Balls and the Games Men Play
1. The sport of choice for the urban poor is BASKETBALL.
2. The sport of choice for maintenance level employees is BOWLING.
3. The sport of choice for front-line workers is FOOTBALL.
4. The sport of choice for supervisors is BASEBALL.
5. The sport of choice for middle management is TENNIS And…
6. The sport of choice for corporate executives and officers is GOLF.
THE AMAZING CONCLUSION:
The higher you go in the corporate structure, the smaller your balls become. There must be a boat-load of people in Washington playing marbles.
And this has nothing to do with drugs. Just ask Barry Bonds.
The e-pal asked me what kind of sport the USCCB played.
To the uninformed that is the United States Catholic Conference of Bishops.
My response tried hard to convey both my respect for her and my personal discomfort with this subject. I told her that they played chess, a sport without any balls because they were according to their celibate vows, spiritual eunuchs.
I raise the question as to why and how a man’s balls or lack of have filtered into the political equation?
I might offer a few ideas in an attempt to explain my understanding of this rhetorical invasion of the body parts by looking to Sigmund Freud.
It was Dr. Freud who tried to explain women over a 100 years ago and their so-called Electra Complex, in wanting to kill their mothers and marry or at least have incestuous sex with their fathers.
He said that women suffered from Penis envy. I have run that term by several people and no one seemed to have ever heard of it.
For the record penis envy in Freudian psychoanalysis refers to the theorized reaction of a girl during her psychosexual development to the realization that she does not have a penis. Freud considered this realization a defining moment in the development of gender and sexual identity for women
While Freud was wrong about girls he might have accidentally nailed it with boys and men. According to Freud the parallel reaction in boys to the realization that women do not have a penis is castration anxiety.
So if Logic may have a moment it is not the penis that women envy but the battery pack below it that energizes him to climb mountains, sustain all kinds of physical deprivation, fight wars, race down fields and knock opponents senseless and within an inch of their lives.
Properly he should have called it Ball Envy.
I believe this is the kind of envy that prompted radical feminism and abortion on demand.
Like slavery the abortion issue was primarily an economic issue.
I remember the 1964 movie with Polly Bergen and Fred McMurry, Kisses for My President. The United States elects its first female President in the form of Leslie McCloud. She and her first gentleman, Thad, move into the White House with their daughter Gloria and son Peter.
Complications with her rule lead her to become pregnant and resign her office so she can spend more time with the family. This is how Hollywood wrote it but the understated truth is that being pregnant many times necessitates a woman leaving the workforce and staying home with her children.
This has become the worst of all possible worlds for feminists today.
The only way women can become equal with men is to neuter their sexual role in reproduction. As a result 50 million have died so that a woman can be economically competitive with men.
Hardly a war on women!
Phyllis Schlafly quotes a frustrated young man who left his wife because he did not want to be married to another man. Had his former wife grown a real pair?
This is refers to the term used by California mayor, Cameron Hamilton who made his declaration to victims of bullying while on the dais of the Porterville City Council in May.
Or had she just internalized the aggressive spirit so that everything they did became a competition?
I have seen this in my own life. I have met many women who would enjoy being called ballsy. They seem to think little about sacrificing their feminine spirit and integrity or what made them special if they could beat a man beating a man in the courtroom, boardroom or maybe some day on the football field.
What has this attitude done to traditional marriage?
Gay couples argue that it is heterosexuals who have destroyed the institution of marriage. They do have a valid point.
Most men don’t want to marry a woman who acts like a man. They have to fight it out everyday on the battlefields of work and life with men. They don’t want to continue the battle at home as well.
I think this explains why so many marriages fail and our society is in such shambles.
We have come a long way from the schoolyard that used to embarrass me. I now see and hear references to my manhood each and every day. Movies today are filled with men and women jesting about breaking the other’s balls.
Like it or not balls has transcended the schoolyard and now has become an established member of the political lexicon
All this makes me wonder what my life would have been if I had actually gotten into that game 54 years ago. Hopefully Mayor Hamilton was right and one can grow a pair.
We live in a society that denigrates and denies conspiracy theories. Sure many theories are unmitigated balderdash, such as Kennedy’s Secret Service Driver actually fired the fatal shot but in truth history is ladedened with conspiracies.
Communism is a conspiracy and is probably the most long-lasting and successful conspiracy in history.
Even more sinister is the fact that the Russian KGB has had an influential role in the prominence of LT as a global movement. According to former Romanian communist operative Ion Pacepa since ancient times the Russians have used religion to manipulate people.
Like the tsars before them the KGB used the churches to instill dreams about world revolution and heaven on earth to keep the masses at bay.
Because of their imperial vision they used the KGB to work through the church to help the Kremlin expand its influence into Latin America and beyond.
Creating a secret intelligence army of religious servants and using it to promote the Kremlin’s interests abroad was an important task of the KGB. Since priests were not allowed to become KGB officers, they often assumed the position of a cooptee or deep cover officer. Thousands of uncooperative religious, like those in 18th century France, perished in the wake.
The KGB’s effort to use religion to expand the Kremlin’s influence abroad began with Nikita Khrushchev in 1959. His “secret weapon” was Cuba, which was to serve as a springboard to launch a KGB-devised religion into Latin America.”
It was Khrushchev, who called the new KGB-contrived religion Liberation Theology.
His appetite for “liberation” has had many KGB derivatives, such as the Palestine Liberation Organization, the National Liberation Army of Columbia (FARC), and the National Liberation Army of Bolivia.
He also wanted to send a few priests who were cooptees as deep cover officers to Latin America, to expand Liberation Theology South of our border.
To affect this the KGB also built a new international religious organization in Prague called the Christian Peace Conference (CPC) to spread Liberation Theology within Latin America.
As a doctrine Liberation Theology urges the poor and downtrodden to revolt against their established governments as well as capitalism and form a Communist government, not in the name of Marx or Lenin, but in the name of Jesu Christi, a revolutionary who opposed economic and social discrimination.
Since then Liberation Theology has been a breeding ground for revolutionary ideas and violence against the wealthy class.
In 1968, the KGB’s Christian Peace Conference maneuvered the leftist South American bishops into holding a Conference of Latin American Bishops at Medellin, Colombia.
At that conference, the attending bishops proposed to combine the teachings of Jesus Christ with those of Karl Marx as a way of justifying violent revolution to overthrow capitalism.
This movement encouraged the poor to rebel against the institutionalized violence of poverty, and to recommend it to the World Council of Churches for official approval. The Medellin Conference did both.
FYI: Romanian writer and former operative Ion Pacepa and historian Ronald RICH-lak Rychlak have written a comprehensive analysis of the KGB’s nefarious role in this conspiracy in their book Disinformation.
All new religions need a Bible. Their seminal text is A Theology of Liberation, written in 1971, by Gustavo Gutiérrez, a Peruvian priest and theologian, also known as the father of liberation theology.
While Marx stood Hegel on his head in directing the focus of life from ideal pursuits to materialistic endeavors, Gutierrez wedded the two thinkers in an ontological union that has created a new social engine for all of Latin America, if not the entire world.
This new theology has man at its core making it more like anthropology than theology, which is ostensibly about God. It does not limit itself to morality or even ethics but involves economic and political agendas as well.
Its major points are that Christ came into this world to liberate man from oppression, not to open the gates of Heaven. The real goal of Christianity was to struggle for the full liberation of man.
To the liberationisti every socio-economic system that is not socialist is essentially a system of exploitation and oppression.
Prior to liberation theology, Catholicism was unambiguously hostile to socialism and communism, which it saw as “godless.”
Gutierrez’s book was swiftly acknowledged as a pioneering and prophetic approach to theology, which famously made a preferential option for the poor, at the top of its agenda.
Gutierrez’s theology is founded on two contradictory beliefs: (1) God loves all persons equally and gratuitously; (2) God loves the poor preferentially.
Sounds like: All men are equal—only some are more equal!
A student of the French Revolution, Gutierrez proposes a end to capitalism and its replacement by a social democracy that will give all the world’s poor a sense of hope in the transformation of the human soul in its relationship to a self-communicating God.
HOPE AND TRANSFORMATIOM—HMMMMM!!!
Liberation Theology teaches that the church must stand on the side of the impoverished and the downtrodden, and that it must, if necessary, support the overthrow of social systems that contribute to their oppression…like ours.
Its main sacrament is victimhood.
In recent decades, Latin America’s Liberation Theology movement has been oriented towards the image of Jesus Christ as the Redeemer and Liberator.
This type of thinking is prevalent in several newly published books on Jesus.
Jesus is portrayed as a revolutionary dressed in guerrilla fatigues and carrying a rifle.
A primary critique of liberation theology is its tendency towards violence. Gutierrez, its greatest exponent, has said, The theology of liberation is rooted in a revolutionary militancy. This is not what the Church meant by the Church militant!
Liberation Theology is a radical departure from the essential message of the Gospel. Thanks to Father Gutiérrez the poor now had their own ideology—one rooted in Marxist praxis.
In 1984, Pope John Paul II charged the Congregation for the Doctrine of the Faith, led by Cardinal Ratzinger, later Pope Benedict XVI, to prepare an analysis of Liberation Theology. His devastating study exposed Liberation Theology as a heinous combination of class struggle and violent revolution.
According to these revolutionaries, true Christians must commit themselves to the Marxist Revolution as a religious duty. Violence, stealing and lying can be employed for the greater good of mankind. This is the language and praxis, not of Jesus Christ but more of Karl Marx, Josef Stalin and Saul Alinsky.
Any time you see the word oppression treat it as another warning because it is a Marxist term that somehow has invaded our translations of the Bible used in Mass.
While the historical and religious roots of liberation theology may be found in the prophetic tradition of evangelists and missionaries from the earliest colonial days in Latin America – its praxis and methodology had more traditional communist forebears
In the first year of his papacy, Pope Leo XIII (1878-1903) devoted an encyclical to condemning socialism. QUOD APOSTOLICI MUNERIS
Liberation Theology has a much broader tapestry than its Marxist threads.
Virtually every social movement that has anything to do with religion, race, sexual preference or the environment has emanated from this philosophy.
Liberation Theology is certainly not on the right side of history…whatever that empty term means but it is definitely in the wave of a chaotic global future. This raises the question: will the United States be able to withstand its powere surge or will it be swept away in its powerful vortex?
Earlier this year I called Pope Francis the Russian Pope. I am well aware that our new pope’s name is Francis and not Vladimir but his many statements—some out of context—remind me of a man who either shoots from the lip or is reminiscent of Winston Churchill’s comment about Russia being a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma.
This viewpoint is more evident in reading his November papal exhortation, Evangelii Gaudium—the Joy of the Gospels.
In it he condemns libertarian capitalism and the dictatorship of a global economic system and a free market that according to him, perpetuates inequality and devours what is fragile, including human beings and the environment.
Pope Francis believes that capitalism, which defends the right to a free market system, is to be discarded, while the right of states, charged with vigilance for the common good, to exercise control over the economic status of the people, is laudable. Lenin would not be disappointed in these views.
I am very upset by Conservative Catholics, religious leaders and others who wage a vendetta on capitalism.
They say little or nothing about the government’s role in poverty. From the earliest centuries of the Christian era, a long line of orthodox theologians had consistently rejected collective ownership, embraced private property, and affirmed business economies.
Also alarming is the fact that the current Prefect for Doctrine and the Faith, Cardinal-elect Gerhard Ludwig Müller thinks that LT must be included among the most important currents in 20th century Catholic theology.
Müller never hid his friendship with Gustavo Gutiérrez, whom he met in Lima in 1988, during a study seminar. Müller says the merits of Liberation Theology go beyond the Latin American Catholic. He stressed that a Latin America’s Liberation Theology movement has been oriented towards the image of Jesus Christ the Redeemer and liberator, of the poor.
This year he published his book —Poor for Poor: The Mission of the Church to clarify his controversial views. It is a collection of his writings on Liberation Theology and contains an introduction by Pope Francis.
Müller affirmed, poverty in Latin America oppresses children, the elderly and the sick, to such an extent that many are driven to contemplate death as the only way out. He sees the body of Christ in the poor, as Pope Francis does.
In his defense the Cardinal cited a secret document prepared for President Reagan in 1980—4 years before the Vatican’s first Instruction on the Liberation Theology movement—requesting that the U.S. government take aggressive action against the movement, which was accused of transforming the Catholic Church into a political weapon against private property and productive capitalism by infiltrating the religious community with ideas that are less Christian than communist.’
So the pope condemns materialism, money, capitalism and all the accruements of wealth. But without wealth where would the church be? Who would give to the poor? Who would take the risks of starting millions of new businesses to employ out-of-work people who will join the ranks of the poor?
What has big government ever done to really enhance anyone’s lives? Deliver our mail…give us health care… Waste, corruption, inefficiency and flagrant spending have become the hallmarks of Social Democracy. Our lives are devalued and our national future imperiled!
I believe the redistribution of wealth, irresponsible spending and waste is a form of stealing. I hope the 7th Commandment of the Catholic Church is still valid in the 21st century and taught in our Catholic schools.
Is the pope a closet liberationisti?
In September 2013, he held a meeting with Fr. Gutiérrez. This prompted Michael Lee, associate professor of theology at Fordham University in New York, to say that with the pope’s Latin American heritage…what only makes sense is, then, a reopening of the door to this theology that emerged from that context.
In practice Big Government with its enlightened philosophy is doing the devil’s work and liberation theology has been one of his most effective tools in undermining the principles of our civilization that have fed and clothed the faith and millions of its faithful for centuries.
Personally I think that the pope’s love of the poor and his seeming inability to sift through political rhetoric bodes well for the future of LT.
In researching a past Mindszenty Report I tried to find some expression of his belief on this subject. All I could muster was that its penchant for violence had kept him from fully embracing it.
If the pope fully adopts LT as a teaching principle of the church it could mark the end of Western Civilization. We have to continue to preach the evils of this ideology because that becomes a reality!