Monday, March 7, 2016

One Sin At A Time

 The Vatican II sect didn't develop overnight. Similarly, a notorious mortal sinner doesn't start out that way. No one leading a decent life suddenly wakes up one day and decides to become a cocaine addict or rob a bank. Semi-deliberate venial sins, if not checked, can lead to deliberate ones. As you get desensitized to venial sin, you fall into mortal sin. Mortal sins can become habitual and lead to worse and worse deadly sins. Suddenly, that good Traditionalist Catholic is gone, replaced by a life of sin and soon will find himself a practical atheist---if not an actual one. Morals and faith go hand in glove; lose the one and the other leaves with it.

 In January, Mr. Pat Harrington, Jr. died at the age of 87. He was best remembered for his role in the TV situation comedy ("sitcom") One Day At A Time, where he added comic relief to often serious plots as building superintendent Dwayne Schneider. The show depicted things heretofore taboo. It centered around the character of Ann Romano, a Catholic woman who decides to divorce her caring husband of 18 years to "find herself." She drags her 17 and 16 year old daughters with her to a shabby apartment building where they meet Schneider. The show dealt sympathetically with divorce and remarriage, premarital sex, contraception, feminism, and a host of other sins portrayed as desirable.

 A few years ago, it was revealed by Mr. Harrington that his character was originally meant to be a married man who would make excuses about needing to repair items in order to enter the apartments of women (both married and single) for the purpose of committing adultery. To Mr. Harrington's credit, he refused to take the role from demonic producer Norman Lear unless his character was changed. Lear wanted him in the show, so he became a bachelor wannabe playboy instead.  It was still quite risque for 1975.

 Just ten years prior, in 1965, the top ten rated TV shows in America were:
1. Bonanza
2. The Beverly Hillbillies
3. Gomer Pyle
4. The Lucy Ball Show
5. Red Skelton
6. The Andy Griffith Show
7. Get Smart!
8. Saturday Night At The Movies
9. The Ed Sullivan Show
10. Petticoat Junction

 The traditional values in these shows were commented upon by Arnold Harris in the December 26, 1965 edition of the New York Times Magazine:

"In Bonanza we meet Ben Cartwright and his grown sons, Hoss and Little Joe. Ben is a widower; Hoss and Little Joe are bachelors who live with their Pa. Except for Little Joe's occasional dalliance with an innocent town girl--which the other two men view with a mildly chiding air--these men lead no sex lives whatsoever. Andy Griffith is a widower; he has no visible woman friends. Gomer Pyle, in the marines, is a bachelor; he definitely has no women friends. His boss, Sergeant Carter, is also unmarried, and he does date girls---but he's the villain of the piece...of the Beverly Hillbillies, Jed Clampett, the patriarch, is a widower; his grown son Jethro is unmarried and is very wary of girls; his nubile daughter Elly May is equally chaste...Certain themes recur. Naughty children will be punished. Rebellious children will be put down. Elders will be respected. The family--even these oddly broken, sterile units---must be honored." 

Of course, Harris is disproving of traditional morals, yet it shows TV as it truly was at the time before it became an agent for societal corruption. Ed Sullivan wasn't allowed to show Elvis Presley swaying his hips, and the word "pregnant" was banned, needing to be replaced by words or phrases like "expecting," "with child," etc. An episode of The Smothers Brothers' show was censored because it contained a skit about Adam and Eve featuring a booming voice saying, "That's a no-no." The National Association of Broadcasters would not let the episode air because the voice "can only be interpreted as the voice of God and as such must be considered irreverent..."

 So how did it get to where Satan is now a TV "hero" (on Lucifer--see my post of June 1, 2015). The answer is two-fold: (a) Vatican II and (b) Norman Lear. The Legion of Decency was formed in 1934 to combat immoral movies. Around the end of the 1950's, once Modernists had sufficiently infiltrated the Church,  things began to change. The emphasis was taken off condemning bad movies, and a deliberate effort was made to make The Legion of Decency more "positive." The pledge of the Legion, designed to keep people away from bad movies gradually faded out of use, until it was finally completely forgotten.

  I remember being in a Vatican II high school (I became a Traditionalist at age 16) where bad movies were encouraged, and anything on TV was fine! This advice was endorsed by a priest and two brothers at the school, as well as all the other religious instruction teachers. The TV miniseries The Thorn Birds (based on the novel of the same name) was watched by the teachers. This filth portrays a priest who breaks his vows and sires a bastard child. By 1975, the Legion of Decency had ceased to exist. It was replaced by the "Bishop's" new "Catholic" rating system. The Vatican II sect had no more influence in movies or TV; an influence they didn't want.

 Along comes Norman Lear, a Jew who will turn 94 years old this July. He started the group "People for the American Way"--where "the American way" is ostensibly in favor of atheism, abortion, sodomites, and every other perversion of which you can think. With the Church gone, Lear and his cohorts began to produce shows that would chip away at people's morals. The first two shows listed below are not from Lear, but from his allies. The rest are from Lear himself.

The Odd Couple-- showed two divorced men in a positive light for the first time (under the guise of comedy).

M*A*S*H---Full of anti-American propaganda, this show about a mobile surgical hospital during the Korean War makes the North Korean Communists no different from the U.S. The doctors are womanizers, and one is married and happily commits adultery. They had to remove his portrayal as a "devout Christian" who prayed the Our Father before his sins.

All in the Family--This show depicts Archie Bunker, a man who stands for God, country and family, as an uneducated bigot. His son-in-law, who is an atheist, is seen as upstanding and college educated.

The Jeffersons--This show just heaped fuel upon race relations. Unlike Archie Bunker, who never used the n-word, George Jefferson, a self-made African-American millionaire who owns a chain of cleaning stores, routinely calls Caucasians by the racial epithet "honky." There's an interracial couple, wherein the white man is a complete idiot, a white British neighbor is portrayed as a buffoon, and a white doorman is always looking for a payoff with his hand outstretched.

Maude--An out an out feminist, divorced and remarried several times. It was the first time on TV that a character had an abortion, and it was shown as a "good choice" (not for the baby her character murdered).

I could go on and on, but the point is clear: slowly but surely, TV has been made a medium to change people's traditional moral views. Now the heroes are a meth dealer (Breaking Bad), a sociopath who kills other killers (Dexter), and Satan himself (Lucifer).  We would all do well to remember the incremental way sin creeps into our lives.If you think there's no harm in letting your teenager listen to songs with objectionable lyrics because "it's only one or two bad words," think again. If you think letting them watch a show where the characters routinely have one night stands is OK because "it's reality," don't be surprised when a loathing of sin is replaced by acceptance, followed by emulation. We would all do well to have ourselves, and all in our household, take the discarded Pledge of the Legion of Decency (and add the TV to its condemnation).  I have reprinted it below with my suggested additions.

+ In the name of the Father and of the Son and of the Holy Ghost. Amen. I condemn all indecent and immoral motion pictures and television shows, and those which glorify crime, criminals, as well as sins against the sixth and ninth commandments. I promise to do all that I can to strengthen public opinion against the production of indecent and immoral films and TV shows, and to unite with all who protest against them. I acknowledge my obligation to form a right conscience about movies and TV shows that are dangerous to my moral life. I pledge myself to remain away from them. I promise, further, to stay away altogether from places of amusement which show bad movies as a matter of policy, and from all homes that show indecent TV shows as a matter of accepted practice. Amen.

By doing the above, the soul you save may very well be your own.


  1. Our priest recites the pledge of decency annually after the Leonine prayers on Dec.8.(Feast of Immaculate conception of the Blessed Virgin Mary)
    I was born n bred Novus Ordo and didn't know this pledge existed until 2 year's ago!!!
    This is 1 of your finest entries.Thank you for posting this,may the Lord Jesus Christ bless you and your loved ones.
    I myself am guilty of letting things slide once in a while if the show or movie is "interesting."
    On judgement day the Lord will only care if I obeyed his commands instead of satisfying my entertainment demands.
    Thank you for writing this,it is a wake up call.
    Dominus Vobiscum

    1. Thank you for the kind words, my friend! As an elderly Traditionalist once reminded me, "There's only one thing that counts---gaining Heaven---nothing else really matters."
      God bless you and your family.

  2. Congratulations on this timely and very important article. I never knew there was an actual pledge of decency. I canceled my TV provider in 2008, just before Obama became president - he has never been in my living room! I rent movies at the library, but not "R" rated as a rule; PG-13 can be just as bad. May the Lord grant you to skip Purgatory and go straight to heaven for this post.

    1. Thank you Frank! You're a wise man for dumping the TV. May God keep you and bless you.


  3. A great essay. My thoughts exactly.

  4. I'm always so called radical and puritan among other things when I criticize the tabernacle of the devil, the tv. But when the vices are already jammed them into the pit of hell, they will repent for it all!

    1. Around here if I criticize the TV,I am told the Internet is no better.
      Actually,if you possess no desire to sin and a firm purpose of amendment,the Internet can help you discover and learn the True Roman Catholic Faith pre-1950.(which it did for me in 2011)
      Deo Gratias Laus tibi Christie!

    2. I agree that discernment is the key, and I make that clear in my post. There are still good shows and good websites. However, when dealing with these forms of entertainment/education you must be careful. They do more harm than good overall. Consider that 34% of all websites on the Internet are pornographic! Be wise, discern and make sure what you watch is pleasing to God.


  5. Prayer is work and T.V. is so much easier after a hard day.Its an excuse to stare into oblivion and appeals to our most common base desires.
    I myself am guilty of watching garbage on T.V instead of praying or reading the bible,catechism,and Lives of the Saint's.
    Please pray for final perseverance and a firm purpose of amendment.
    (Prayer is work but like anything in life that is rewarding,it takes dedication,persistence,discipline,and selflessness)
    Also,someone uploaded the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass celebrated by Fr.DePauw on Youtube.
    Would watching that everyday count as attending the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass?

    1. If you have no Traditionalist church or chapel near you, it would satisfy your obligation to "Keep Holy the Sabbath."


    2. We do have a chapel 30 minutes away but my work schedule keeps me from assisting at the Holy Mass on a daily basis.
      I attend on Sunday but through the week it's literally impossible to attend.

    3. Since there is no obligation to go to Mass during the week, your intention coupled with spiritual Comminion is most pleasing to God!


  6. Thank you for this post.
    As a wise man said a few years ago, the
    te levi sion was only 'given' to us so that we could go under its spell.
    The 'good' broadcasts in the beginning were to disarm us. It's like all prior and subsequent technologies; those who truly own them use them as tools to ensure they become sufficiently inexpensive where everyone can purchase them. They are made to appeal to everyone. THEN, the indoctrination can be more overt--as it has been since the early 1970s.
    This holds true for the telephone (an early way to listen in on 'private' conversations) down to the 'personal' computer, the I (eye) phone, and all manner of gadgets in circulation today.