We must understand that the fight over these GSAs, while valiant, is going to be an uphill battle.  If – and it’s a really big “IF” – the Catholic Church is able to stave off McGuinty’s attacks, the writing is still on the wall.  Why? Because we are effectively fighting over the equivalent of “same-sex civil unions” and “gay marriage”.  It’s a distinction without any substantial difference.  Likewise with these GSAs.  In the event that we win “legally” (and again that’s a big “IF”), what does this have to do with what eventually gets into our schools?  The Gay Jackboot will simply rev up “Plan B” which is to start to chip away at the reality of these clubs in the Schools.  They’ll encourage their recruits to engage in “civil disobedience” and play the victim card.  They’ll be a host of different tactics, all aimed at forcing acceptance.   The media and other anti-Catholic bigots will chime in, too.  Eventually, under the sheer weight of it, everyone will simply have to admit that the law doesn’t reflect the cultural reality in these schools, and it too, will have to fall…just like it did in Quebec and Newfoundland.

To believe otherwise is really to frolick in a legal fantasy land.  To believe otherwise is to believe that the law will somehow miraculously stave off a cultural shift.  That’s absurd. It’s simply not going to  happen.  At best, we can only hope to delay what is inevitable.

This is the narrative that is playing out, and our opponents know this.  In fact, our opponents are pretty slick and smart.  They’re already two steps ahead of us. The current GSA “battle” that we are fighting against them is already filed in their “conquested” file.  In their minds, they’ve already won and they are already currently planning the next great assault which will be to punish the Churches, financially.  We, of course, are completely oblivious to this because we’re stupid and dull, like a slow-moving predictable jackass, clopping down the road which they’ve already constructed for us.

Well, the only thing that is going shake things up is for us to cause a “turnover”, as they say in Football, so we can get the ball back.  If our opponents can read our defense, they will pick us apart, time and time again.  And that’s what’s been happening for the past 40 years.  They’ve created a narrative for us and we’ve not disappointed them in reading it.  We do predictable things and think predictable things.

1. We always assume the good intention of our opponent.  That’s stupid and lethal. This is not Shangrala.  This is a war zone.

2. We’re slow to act.  Our opponents are always at least 2 steps ahead of us.  In fact, the game is already over by the time we take our first step.  Our opponents are already into the next game.

3. We don’t organize in any substantial way because we don’t understand the urgency of what’s going on, and once we do know what’s going on, we still don’t get it or sacrifice to put up the necessary resistance.

4.  And finally, we rely on legal paths to fix what is essentially a cultural problem.

And so why do I say this?  Because to really hit back at our opponents is to first and foremost, stop reading the narrative that they’ve placed in our playbook.

One way to call McGuinty’s bluff is to refuse any more public funding.  Sure, the proverbial crap will hit the fan, but that’s what will get everyone’s attention.  Money talks and you all know what walks.  The way it’s going now, no one is waking up.  Parents will really wake up when they find out that junior will no longer be permitted to go to St. Joe’s Catholic school anymore because McGuinty is forcing GSAs on Catholic Schools and the Cardinal is not going to permit it.  What do you think will happen under that scenario?  Lots of things could happen, which is great. Because now the playing field is even.  We’re not reading from the same narrative anymore.  The Ontario “Catholic” Teachers Union will be screwed because money will have to come from private funds and the teacher’s will have to be directly accountable to the parents and the Church…and there will be steep salary cuts…which is another good thing because the “professionals” will bolt.  There will be  a downsizing, no doubt, but who cares?  Cut your losses, sell some of the buildings to McGunity’s school system, and re-orient diocesan affairs away from eco-worship and social justice to actually doing something the Gospel demands like instructing our children in the Catholic Faith.

The way it’s going, it’s a dead-end and we’ll have nothing to show for it at the end of the day. Shake things up NOW and we have a launching pad and some leverage to go it alone.  Wait and keep treading water?  Might as well drown now and save everyone the sad spectacle.

This is not that different from what goes on in the business world.  Divest before the crash and you can live to see another day.  Hold on to a dying investment, and most of the Catholic kids on the bus today become tomorrow’s roadkill.

3 Responses to “Changing the script…”
  1. Brilliant analysis!

    We cannot think in terms of holding on to immediately obvious material interests, but be willing to take a slam in a big way in the short term, so that long term good can be secured.

  2. Bob Smith says:

    Your take on the issue reminds me of a question Msgr. Dennis Murphy voiced a number of years ago: Was full funding for Catholic education in Ontario a ‘poisoned chalice?’ Perhaps it was. But even in the best catechetical efforts in our leading Catholic high schools are falling flat. Students may learn the faith in the classroom, but it is not supported in the home, and they forget it. Many see the Bible as another book of poetic tales; many haven’t a clue as to who Jesus is. The wider culture has been so polluted and stripped of its Christian values and vision that it’s become unsupportive and toxic to their spiritual needs and aspirations (and those of their parents) If Catholic shepherds and pastors take to heart Pope BXVI’s Apostolic Letter, Porta Fidei, on the Year of Faith, who knows what might happen under the guidance of the Holy Spirit. (see http://www.vatican.va/holy_father/benedict_xvi/motu_proprio/documents/hf_ben-xvi_motu-proprio_20111011_porta-fidei_en.html)
    But then again, maybe it’s the remnant of a dissolved Catholic school system that will carry authentic Catholic Education forward, and maybe we are its pained witnesses, watching it like a train wreck in slow motion. Either way, we need God’s help. Thanks for the insightful article.
    Bob

  3. Steve G says:

    Bob,

    You raise some very good points. I also really like John’s perspective.

    Personally, I don’t see how the existing school system can be salvaged. It’s maybe 75% compromised from the inside and being subjugated to dissent from the outside by the politicians that hold the purse strings. It’s untenable. The longer we wait, the more kids are lost.

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