Welcome to the 1500s

April 14th, 2016 Posted by Susan's Musings 14 comments

On the surface, President Obama and King Henry VIII of England have little in common. Even the most ardent conspiracy theorist doesn’t suggest that the president has beheaded one, let alone two, wives. Even those who recognize that there are gaps in what we know of the president’s history do not suspect multiple marriages as part of what has not been disclosed. While history shows that Henry VIII cut a dashing figure as a youth, by the time he was President Obama’s current age he was corpulent and physically loathsome. 

Yet, as I read a well-researched account of the king’s last few years, albeit historical fiction, I found myself thinking that there were comparisons to be made. I knew that Henry VIII broke away from the Catholic church, establishing himself as the religious authority. What I hadn’t realized was how much of the turmoil in his life reflected the tussle playing out between following closely in Rome’s path (albeit with himself as the head of the church) versus promoting the Protestant Reformation. 

The king, whether due to a mercurial nature or as a carefully plotted pattern, alternately approved of one side or the other. When he changed, his people needed to change with him. Translations of the Bible in English were promoted by the king and then forbidden, making those who had followed his actions and words traitors to the Crown. Safety was non-existent. Speaking your mind and following your conscience, even when it was consistent with Henry VIII’s past views, branded you a criminal when his proclamations shifted. Being burned to death and tortured on the rack might follow.

Thankfully, our government doesn’t have hidden torture chambers underneath the Capitol. Yet it does have the power to destroy people’s lives, taking away their livelihoods and savings. While (we hope) it doesn’t have spies circulating with the purpose of finding ways to incriminate honest citizens, it has access to our personal records and the ability to manipulate agencies such as the IRS and the Justice Department to punish enemies and reward friends. 

For years, Barack Obama alternated between supporting civil unions while declaring marriage to be “the union between a man and a woman,” to leaning more towards homosexual rights. Once he decisively chose a side, those who are not willing to betray their religious or moral beliefs are heretics. The government is unleashed to bankrupt their businesses and  harass them. Granted, that is better than having one’s eyes put out or one’s  back broken, but no one should sanctimoniously pat themselves on the back thinking this is a great advance. To the best of my knowledge, Henry VIII is not accused of personally killing any of his subjects. Yet, no one doubts that his courtiers and lackeys knew who he wanted maltreated. That  corrupt political reality hasn’t changed. 

I’ve seen a great deal written about “angry white men” during this election cycle. I’ve also seen Wall Street Journal editorials, and the utterances of John Kasich and Paul Ryan among others studiously ignore the fact that upright, religious Americans are being criminalized. Mitt Romney avoided moral issues and only wanted to discuss the economy. Yet lots of Americans of faith feel victims of a witch hunt. The Governor of N. Carolina, and the owner of  TimberCreek Bed & Breakfast in Paxton, Illinois, who is facing an $80,000 fine can tell you about that. When every day converts normal words into “trigger words” and everyday actions into “attacks” that can cause Americans to lose jobs and reputations, it won’t be long before anyone without a protector at court will be fair game.

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14 comments

Angel81 says:

Startling accurate portrayal of our current times. In our home, we’ve been finding it increasingly difficult to explain to our 12 year old son. In school he’s not allowed to put forth his ideas before the class less his grades suffer and he be interrogated for his beliefs. That includes revisionist history, traditional relationships and the defense of Israel and our country. This ever changing secular line of morality is concerning enough without the threat of repercussions for deeply held and timeless values.

That is frightening to hear. And it will only get worse in high school.

Lynn Perrizo says:

Back in the early 80s I was concerned at what was being taught in our public schools and how the Bible was being removed from our nations history. That was the impetus for my doing research on homeschooling. I knew no one who homeschooled but felt the small nudge I believe was from God to pursue it. I’ve never regretted it. It sounds like you are in a battle I didn’t have to face. I encourage everyone to consider homeschooling. Is it easy? No. Is it fun? Only sometimes. Is it worth it? Yes. A big fat yes.

Lynn, among the benefits of homeschooling that I sometimes forget to count is an independence of thinking. When my kids did go to either high school or college, their peers and teachers commented on that.

LJ says:

I just shared the following little story written by our daughter with our mutual friend, Diane M. Also, today is 15 April and it is an election year. Enjoy!
The System
By KI (age 14), November 17, 2010
Once upon a time, there was a man. His name was George. Now George lived in a quiet cul-de-sac in a quiet neighborhood where things were, as you can imagine, pretty quiet. So he was surprised when the doorbell rang one day. A visitor!
George opened the door and said, “Hello?”
Standing outside was a man who wore a suit, held a briefcase, and was generally all business-like.
“Good morning. Is this the Citizen residence?”
“Yes, in fact, it is,” George said politely.
“Ah, excellent. My name is John Government. It would be in your best interest to invite me in.”
George, a little bewildered, stepped aside and said, “Come in,” as Mr. Government pushed his way past. Mr. Government sat at the table and motioned for George to sit across from him. He unclasped his case with a loud snap and opened it, revealing towers of papers which he began to organize and reorganize as he talked.
“It has reached our notice that you need some regulating. You have two choices open to you: One, we could restrict your access to certain services and/or products based on your current status as a,” here he looked at a paper, “’thirty-five-year-old Caucasian Male’. Or two, we could take a portion of your income (to be used for the government’s expenses, but most importantly for the Social Good) based on what you buy, sell, earn, receive, and give away and your status as a thirty-five-year-old Caucasian Male.”
George stared at Mr. Government. “I– I don’t quite understand.”
Mr. Government looked up at George. “Do you want to be restricted or taxed?”
“I, uh, well…. What would be restricted?”
“Certain foods, alcoholic drinks, news publications, books, furniture, and houses that you can buy, access to public buildings, public transportation, bonuses, refunds, etc.”
“Hmm. And what would be taxed?”
“A great many things.” Mr. Government continued to shuffle around his papers but kept his dull eyes on George.
Meanwhile, George’s forehead was wrinkled in thought. “Isn’t there another choice? Perhaps one where I wouldn’t have as much stuff taken away?”
“Next election you could vote for our opponents. They won’t take as many personal objects and entitlements, but the programs that benefit your social group will have to be terminated in order to meet budgets.”
“Oh, that’s bad, isn’t it?”
Mr. Government nodded sympathetically.
George said, “I guess taxes sound the best to me. What do I have to do?”
Mr. Government smiled with grim satisfaction and straightened his papers. “Simply stay out of debt and pay the taxes and fees on time. We’ll do the math.”

LJ says:

It isn’t only our livelihoods that have been hurt by the politically left leaning direction the country is headed. This country has been compromised, it isn’t safe to voice our thoughts to our family and friends. See below.
My family and I also left our TEC (The Episcopal Church) parish located in Washington State in 1999 after exchanging several emails with our priest regarding him and the church teaching folks to celebrate sexually immoral behaviors. The priest was willing to ignore the Bible’s clear meaning, and he gladly led the children and members of his parish family astray.
It should also be noted that this church also had a priestess once deliver an American Independence Day sermon that was anti-American. It was an apologetic sermon about America’s bad behaviors. In it, she discussed the worthiness of all faiths, and especially the Buddhist & Islamic faiths.
We were subsequently, publicly disowned by a family member for suggesting the possibility privately to our parents that he did not believe the Bible. Our Episcopalian parents went along with the family member at that time. They have since left ECUSA, but still refuse to speak with us about what had happened. Though we’ve made efforts, we’ve since had no substantial relations with this family in 15+ years.

Lora says:

Not only have you provided another fantastic post, Susan, but the comments section also held my attention and gave me a great deal to think about.

I’d rather have your daughter voting than most of the eighteen year olds attending the Sanders’ rallies.

What a horrible story. And thanks for your comments on my Passover Musing.

I love reading comments.

LJ says:

I appreciate your replies to my posts. Our daughter is a young lady of 19! Woo-hoo! She has voted two times since her 18th birthday year. My husband and I both have economics degrees; we taught our young to appreciate common sense economics and many other subjects. As you know, many universities are sabotaged; critical thinking skills lack among the students attending them. Bernie sounds great to them: get things for free and charge it to the rich. Eventually, the bill will come due.

Lynn Perrizo says:

While gathering information on homeschooling, before making the decision to homeschool, I read a study from Stanford University(I think. It’s been a long time), that said children who spend more time with their peers before the age of 12 tended to be more peer dependent and children who spent more time with adults before the age of 12 tended to be more independent. That was a major factor in the decision. When their father and I were discussing if we were to go forward with this he told me he didn’t want the kids to be “different.” I said, “I do.” He said, “You’re right.” We homeschooled. My children were always complimented on their ability to converse and interact in adult situations. They listened well.

LJ says:

As horrible as it was and has been for my family and me, we since have been inspired to read our Bible and pray together daily. We’re hopeful for a bright future because of the creative endeavors we are doing in the present. We must be in control of our emotions and reactions in all situations; we have learned to have patience, and we better understand the meaning of wisdom as a result.

Diane Rinehart says:

Thank you dear Susan. We shall stand tall and firm in our beliefs. Prayerfully we will be taken to the same “re-education” camps, and continue to shine forth His Holy Light there. May Our Father richly bless you and yours, and keep us faithful to the end. Blessings, Diane

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