Sovereignty or Worse than Fascism by Ernst Hoffman
Thomas Aquinas recognises that a nation has a right to determine who lives in that particular nation. However, this Catholic stance is mitigated by the needs of others, as well as the consideration of the needs of a nation.
The problem and debate regarding immigration looms large in Europe, where I live. There is a concern, of course, that the Christian roots of Europe are being destroyed by the influx of immigrants. One must look at the entire picture to see the reality of the issue of immigration. Of course, in a blog post, an author such as myself, cannot cover all the intricacies of national politics and global problems.
As a Catholic, and being an obedient Catholic, conscious of the teaching of the Church that refugees from wars and that even economic refugees, which made up the vast majority of immigrants to the United States, that is those, who were impoverished in their homelands in Europe, getting to and settling into America to find stability from war and penury, the story of pioneer America, I stand with our religious leaders who ask us to be compassionate. I assume that the readership of this blog are made up of the descendants of millions of immigrants to the United States and Canada.
I want to help my fellow Christians in the United States and Canada understand what is happening in Europe, especially in Great Britain, where I have relatives, and where I know the political system well.
First of all, however, I want to address the huge problem of immigration from the Middle East and Africa, a problem which is changing the culture of Europe. As most of you readers know, the influx of people from Somalia, Libya, Syria, and other countries has to be addressed. As a person who has seen the changes first-hand, I can assure you that immigrants from the war-torn countries are made out of the same old. No, indeed! Mothers with babies fleeing starvation as well as young men fleeing bombed out towns and villages rest on the edges of Catholic countries waiting for help. Hundreds have died in ships unworthy of seafaring, having been scammed by those who take a year’s wages for safe passage to a safe continent, only to die at sea. The recent years have seen death ships. One only thinks of the hundreds of people desperate for freedom from fear and penury not achieving their goals, but dying either from ships sinking, or from starvation and dehydration. That our pope has asked for compassion on these people is a call to be open to those who are truly suffering in their own countries, destitute and hoping for life. Can there be too many immigrants? Yes. But, to be anti-immigrant is not a Catholic position.
Sadly, some of these immigrants have come from places ruined by the last decade of warfare in the Middle East. I remind my readers that, again, Thomas Aquinas writes that all pre-emptive wars are not only illegal, but immoral. One cannot attack with being attacked first—that is part of the just war theory. Therefore, the West has to take some responsibility for creating the unmanageable numbers of refugees and immigrants from those areas. Even this past week, the world witnessed more destruction. This problem and the problem of a certain religion believing that their members have the duty to take over areas which they once held, a part of their own false religion belief, causes friction across Europe.
This preamble to the second part of my article is necessary to understand why people in Great Britain voted for Brexit. The parties which supported Brexit played on the fears and biases of many who do not want anymore foreigners in their nation. I must add that I also disagree with the quotas enforced by the EU. But, this point does not address the real problems behind the Brexit vote. In the next paragraphs, before I look at the Windrush Scandal, affecting the present government of Great Britain.
Second, I must stress that the EU was not created primarily as an economic union. The Common Market existed. Why the original twelve nations began the EU was to insure that there would never be another war among European nations. No more war, was the cry of those wanting a strong, united, almost federal system of government. By the way, before the end of this article, I shall share the real meaning of the EU flag. It is Our Lady’s flag.
To avoid war, the continental nations came together, to create a strong union of peace and freedom of movement. This union enabled the best and the brightest to move about freely for employment, as well as the poorest seasonal workers, who could move from country to county picking fruits and vegetables, without harassment and with hope of better opportunities.
Europe thrived under the EU, but, yes, too many laws were enforced over certain areas of national interest. A price to be paid for peace, and for prosperity. European wealth grew like no other area of commerce. May I remind readers that the last three popes supported a continental grouping, with the provision that the nations would not forget their Catholic roots. They were warned to return to the real reason for European unity, Catholicism, not merely Christianity. This is an important distinction when one comes to understand Brexit.
Third, the nation of Great Britain was once a colonial power, covering the maps of the world with pink, as one journalist in Great Britain noted, a status still lusted after by many British “Little Englanders”, who, by the way, do remind me of Hobbits, unaware of the larger world around them which now protects them. This imperialist attitude, which included a sense of superiority among the people of Britain, still exits today. This may seem hard to believe, but when I describe the Windrush Scandal and the deportation of professional Europeans, my readers must realise that the parties which supported Brexit appealed to this innate sense of superiority. More tragically, is the underlying bigotry of the British people against Catholics and against those of colour. Yes, these biases and hatreds still exist. At Christmastime, in 2017, Polish communities in London witnessed bricks thrown through windows and signs put on lawns stating, “GO HOME.” And this is not the only exhibition of bigotry against Catholics. Recently, two order of religious, one including priests, told me that Brexit is now affecting their ability to have seminarians and nuns within their orders move freely about Europe. This anti-Catholicism is institutionalised in Great Britain. So is racism.
Yes, people in the towns and cities of England felt threatened by the influx of foreigners who they claim took their jobs. I need to stress that the British could have worked those same jobs. Why? Why do the British youth not want to work in the fields picking apples, or in the hospitals as nurses and doctors? The fact that European and Asian people have found jobs here is that the British people have not wanted to do those jobs. I visited Dublin and London and saw the Polish young people at the check-out counters, working hard, in store after store. Where were the Irish youth? The English youth?
They do not want to stay at home and work for low wages.
But, what about the professional jobs., like those in medicine and research?
Again, many youth and those slightly older do not want to work in the service industries or in the medical fields. It is a rare girl who wants to be a nurse, serving others.
As to the service industries, which get paid much better than they do in many other countries, again, those positions are filled with French, Polish, Spanish, Greek, and other nationalities who come to Great Britain to do work the locals do not want to do.
Those in the towns and cities who saw this movement of peoples felt threatened. As a Catholic, I believe both abortion and contraception have emaciated the populace of of the Britains to the point where they need immigrants to thrive.
Which brings me to the Windrush Scandal.
In 1948, almost 500 Jamaica people were brought to Great Britain to fill jobs left empty after the horror of World War II, which caused a shortage of workers. The British government, then still a power over Jamaica, invited these people in to work and help re-establish the infra-structure of Britain. They were welcomed to take on the lower paying jobs, which they did readily and willingly. All were members of the Commonwealth.
70 years later, this scandal has erupted. For several reasons, including the Home Secretary Theresa May’s famous statement, and remember, she is now the Prime Minister, that she wanted to make Great Britain, and I quote, “a hostile environment for foreigners.”
The scandal is that the government has begun to deport people of this generation and their descendants. Already, a grandmother of 75 was sent back, a woman who has lived in Great Britain her entire life. The descendants are being told they cannot get British passports. Some have been declared “stateless” and put into prison. Many have been deported, as they have no papers. Why?
Because the immigration department destroyed ALL the documentation of boarding and landing on Windrush in 2010. Why?
The department claims is was for “data protection.”
It was for one reason—racism.
The grandchildren of this generation now include doctors, lawyers, merchants, students, all contributing, as their forefathers and foremothers did from 1948 on, paying taxes, buying houses, having children, adding to the richness of British society.
Brexit did not cause the Windrush Scandal, but the same attitudes which narrowly pushed the referendum through, caused this horrific misuse of power. Brexit has legitimised hatred.
Fascism is worship of the State, and historically, fascist governments hated minorities. Remember Hitler’s hatred of not only the Jews, but Blacks, Gypsies, and Czechs, minorities considered inferior to the superior Arian Race, a false distinction, and not of God, but from the evil one.
That Britain has institutionalised bigotry is not a new phenomenon. Anti-Catholicism was legally enshrined in penal laws in Great Britain until the Catholic Relief Act of 1829. And, to this day, a Catholic cannot sit on the throne, or marry a heir to the throne.
The Test Acts were not repealed until 1828, and the freedom of the Catholic Church to create dioceses and build churches did not occur until 1850, when the Pope created the new dioceses. A seminary followed in 1869. The Irish immigrants buiilt up the Catholic Church in Great Britain between 1841 and 1851. Today, the Catholic Church is Great Britain is an immigrant Church. The Catholic Church has no national boundaries.
Catholics must read Rerum novarum by Pope Leo XIII to learn the Catholic teaching on social justice.
Pius IX’s Quadragesimo anno, St. John Paul XXIII’s Mater et magistra, and St. John Paul II’s Centesimus annus all refer back to the Catholic teaching on social justice, the rights of workers, and the rights of those who suffer injustice.
The tragedy is that institutionalised anti-Catholicism and racism move hand-in-hand in Great Britain.
Can you imagine being told you owe the NHS over 50,000 pounds for cancer treatment because the health system was informed by the immigration department that the man could not prove he was a citizen? The man’s story is here, followed by Windrush stories.
Two academics were to be deported, but public feeling against this injustice changed the government’s mind.
The vulnerable are what are called “coloureds” in Great Britain, a nomenclature which should never be used, as it is a bigot’s terminology. The vulnerable are the old and the poor European citizens, as Brexit guidelines may be enforced to send away those making under 15,000 pounds, if single and under 18,500 if married, in addition to a possible cut off age of 75. Imagine a French woman living here all here life being sent away at age 75 to go back to France. This can happened as these scenarios have been leaked from government documents.
Worse than fascism is hatred of the other. This hatred is the anti-thesis of Catholicism’s identity as the universal Church. Of course, the Anglican Church is the national church of Great Britain and it was created out of hatred of Rome.
Hatred will destroy Great Britain and make it a second class country, as those who are talented will no longer want to live in a hostile environment. Those who are seasonal workers will not want to travel from Eastern Europe and be subjected to harassment, as some were facing. Fruit rotted in the fields in Great Britain because seasonal workers, protected by law, did not want to face the now obvious and brutal harassment.
Let me end this posting with the story of the European Union flag.
This is a true story, but the details of the place may be different from other such stories.
I was told this story by someone whose name I have forgotten.
Now the EU flag is one with a blue background, twelve gold stars in a circle. The stars represent the twelve nations which formed the European Council in 1955, the precursor to the EU. The circle represents unity, and the blue background, peace.
Those symbols are not the real reason for those symbols. No, the symbolism is truly Catholic.
One day, a Spanish diplomat, Salvador de Madariaga y Rojo, was thinking of a statue of Our Lady or the Woman of the Apocalypse. He looked up at the crown of twelve stars, representing the twelve tribes of Israel as well as the twelve apostles and a reference to the Book of Apocalypse 12:1. Salvador was thinking of the need for a flag for the European Council. He was inspired to draw up the design of the flag using Mary’s colour blue as the background and the twelve starred crown belonging to her alone.
His design not only was adopted by the European Council, but by the European Union. Salvador admitted to this inspiration for his design in 1987. By then, the flag flew over all the nations belonging to the EU.
It is not an accident that Our Lady with the crown of stars is a prominent statue in Strasbourg Cathedral, a city which houses the European Union Parliament.
There is another story that a man named Arsène Heitz was the designer of the flag. He told a priest that the flag design was accepted by the European Council on the Feast of the Immaculate Conception, December 8th, 1955. Whether the flag came from the diplomat or a simple working man from Belgium is debatable, but the connection to Our Lady is the same. She reigns over Europe.
A great portent appeared in heaven: a woman clothed with the sun, with the moon under her feet, and on her head a crown of twelve stars.
From the Collect of the Feast of the Immaculate Conception.
Now, there has been an abuse of power in the EU chambers of government. Those errors could have been corrected by the members, not by the outsiders. Russia waits for the weakening of Europe, like a vulture watching a dying animal in the field.
When Great Britain leaves the EU, that nation will no longer be under the protection of Mary, whose Dowery England is. The Woman of the Apocalypse who appeared at Walsingham cannot reign where there is institutional hatred.. The fact the the evil one is now allowed to reign over bigotry and hatred in the hostile environment of Great Britain and the fact that the Catholics will be the next targets of such bigotry, seems to delight those who think the imperialistic grandeur of Great Britain should still live on. Such imaginative views will lead to more and more people being displaced by those who have not had the courage to face their own sins, such as abortion and contraception. I speak as an outsider myself. Sovereignty has been comprised in many cases by EU laws, which could have been changed from within. From without, only rabid nationalism, which caused two world wars, will take over this island nation of Great Britain, no longer great, and forgetting it’s own past, made up of the blood of Anglo-Saxons, Celts, Picts, Icenis, Belgae and dozens of other peoples from other places, including the Romans and the French.
The Windrush Scandal is the tip of the iceberg. Catholics, beware.
If I had time, I would also add paragraphs on the rudeness and contempt shown by the present government in Great Britain towards the real problem of Ireland facing Brexit. The peace of the Good Friday Agreement is now jeopardised and the May government simply does not care. The British do not care about the troubles of the Irish. That is another post.
JMJ, pray for us.
God is good,