Praised be Jesus Christ! Bullying is sadly a part of human existence for which there seems to be no complete and lasting cure. And even though there is a bit more awareness of this reality these days, people still get picked on and pushed around and hurt by the antics of bullies. While some bullies are obvious enough, it’s the bullies they fail to warn us about that I’d like to discuss today. For example, every time I see a parade sponsored by Susan G. Komen for the Cure I wonder if people know the truth about their not-so-hidden agenda. Before anyone reading this gets upset, please know that I’m all for research that will either cure or preclude breast cancer. My sister survived breast cancer but my cousin Tricia did not – I know this is a terrible scourge and I believe we have a duty to do all we can to find a cure. But Susan G. Komen is being victimized right before our very eyes and little is said about this today. Arguably the most prominent and pernicious bully, Planned Parenthood, has done all it can to use Susan G. Komen to clean up its otherwise despicable reputation for preying on women and taking advantage of them during so-called unwanted pregnancies. Five years ago Karen Handel, then Senior Vice President for Susan G. Komen, was fired because she had the audacity to suggest that Komen was really not interested in abortion. Though most Komen employees supported abortion, it was not the work that they took to be their primary mission; finding a cure for breast cancer was their focus. When Komen began the process to untangle itself from Planned Parenthood, initially all seemed tranquil and acceptable. However, Planned Parenthood had merely lulled Handel and others into a false sense of security before pouncing on them in the press and bullying them into basically admitting it was horribly egregious of Komen to consider leaving Planned Parenthood. Heads had to roll and Handel was the most prominent to be fired: her book Planned Bullyhood is well worth a read as it gives a play by play account of Planned Parenthood’s penchant for power plays. Planned Parenthood is a bully and has been for years; our job is to expose these things so that more people will pray for conversion and reconciliation with God. Such conversions are happening and you only have to watch the excellent film “Blood Money” or read the book Unplanned by Abby Johnson for proof. One other bully that gets off easy is the one commonly found at many universities. Many times this bully masquerades as “tolerance” and as long as you agree, all is well. The interesting thing about tolerance is that the people who preach it most vehemently become decidedly intolerant when you disagree with them. Professor Paul Griffiths found this out when he suggested that his university’s method for eliminating racial inequity would be ineffective at best and agenda-driven at worst. For expressing his opinion Griffiths immediately found himself accused of harboring corrupt and dangerous ideas, all because he had the temerity to suggest that the university’s “diversity-and- inclusion industry” is “a disciplinary enterprise meant to herd us toward predetermined goals.” And although he was a tenured professor, the team of tolerant tyrants triumphed: Griffiths retired from the university. Bullying is real and while one might expect to see it in our youth, it’s even more discouraging in our adults. 100 years ago the Blessed Mother taught Lucia, Francisco and Jacinta a simple prayer that would do great good in such situations: “O my Jesus, forgive us our sins, save us from the fires of hell. Lead all souls to Heaven, especially those in most need of Thy mercy.” I can think of no better response to the bullies of our time and place.
May God show us how to pray for our persecutors and so win grace for their souls!
Your friend in Christ, Father Martin