The Canadian Red Ensign

The Canadian Red Ensign

Friday, December 20, 2019

Fulfilment Theology

South of the border, in the secular, liberal, republic founded by deistic Freemasons almost two and a half centuries ago in the first wave of the Modern Age’s revolution against Christian civilization, their current President, Donald the Orange, besieged by the barbaric and uncivilized forces of the mainstream media and the Democratic Party, has been doing what he does best, which is to make waves. On a side note, allow me to say that although I, as a staunch royalist and monarchist, disapprove of the office of President of the United States, as I do of the offices of all elected heads of state, I am rather inclined to think well of Donald the Orange, if only because, like Ronald Reagan and Richard Nixon before him, he had all the right enemies.

One item that has recently gotten his critics’ dander up, is his having invited Dr. Robert Jeffress to speak at a White House Hanukkah ceremony in which he, that is Trump, vowed to crush anti-Semitism. Dr. Jeffress is a Southern Baptist minister, the present senior pastor at First Baptist Church in Dallas, Texas, where he occupies the pulpit that once belonged to such homiletical giants as George Truett and W. A. Criswell. This is the church of which the late evangelist, Billy Graham, was a member for over fifty years.

My question for those who say that it was mal à propos for Dr. Jeffress to be invited to speak at this event is whether or not they would say the same thing if a rabbi were invited to speak at a White House Christmas celebration.

Those who are raising a stink about Jeffress point to his having said the following “Judaism, you can't be saved being a Jew, you know who said that by the way, the three greatest Jews in the New Testament, Peter, Paul, and Jesus Christ, they all said Judaism won't do it, it's faith in Jesus Christ.” Which is, of course, the orthodox Christian view of the matter. Anyone who says he is a Christian and disagrees with this is a heretic.

While it is easy to see why Jews would find this offensive and object, therefore, to someone holding these views being asked to speak at an event honouring an important Jewish festival, let us return to the question I raised. Would it be similarly offensive to invite a rabbi to speak at a Christmas celebration?

It ought to be. Christmas is the Christian festival commemorating the nativity of Jesus Christ, that is, Jesus of Nazareth Whom Christians believe to be the Christ, the Son of God. Christ is a Greek word with the same meaning as the Hebrew Messiah. It means “anointed one” and refers specifically to the One Whom God in the Old Testament promised He would send to deliver Israel, make a New Covenant in which His laws would be written in men’s hearts rather than on tablets of stone, and establish the eternal Kingdom of God in which He will reign on the throne of David. Rabbinic Judaism rejects Jesus’ claim to be the fulfilment of these prophesies. Indeed, the suggestion that this rejection of Jesus as the Christ has for almost two thousand years been more central to the identity of Judaism than any positive affirmation, such as descent from Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, the deliverance from Egyptian bondage in the Exodus, or the Covenant made at Mt. Sinai, while controversial, is defensible. According to traditional rabbinic teaching, a Jew doesn’t necessarily cease to be a Jew if he loses all faith in God and becomes an atheist, but he does cease to be a Jew is he is baptized a Christian. Traditionally, when a Jew so converts, his family holds a funeral for him.

If Jeffress’ holding the orthodox Christian teaching that Jesus Christ is the only way to God disqualifies him from being a speaker at a Hanukkah event, then the traditional teachings of rabbinic Judaism ought to disqualify any rabbi from speaking at a Christmas event.

In saying all of this, I am, of course, breaking one of biggest taboos of the day in which we live. It is considered, by the bien pensants of the progressive age, perfectly okay to criticize Christianity and especially for ideas and attitudes, traditions and habits, words and behaviour that are considered, rightly or wrongly, to be anti-Jewish, but it is considered unacceptable to criticize Judaism and absolutely verboten when that criticism points out comparable anti-Christian elements of the Jewish tradition. I have no problem with saying that I have no respect, either for this taboo, or for the people of whatever faith – and this includes plenty of nominal Christians – who impose it upon us.

In this taboo, we see precisely what is wrong with the interfaith “dialogue” that has sprung up between Christians and Jews since 1945. I place “dialogue” in scare quotes because this word suggests a two-way conversation and the “dialogue” in question has been anything but. The talk has been entirely about Jewish grievances against Christianity. Any attempt to raise the question of anti-Christian attitudes and behaviour on the part of the Jews runs the risk of being called “anti-Semitic”.

The blame for this belongs almost entirely on spineless “Christians” who are unwilling to stand up for the faith and cower before any attack. These cowards, although there has been no dearth of respectable and scholarly Jewish leaders who have spoken out against the charge that it was the traditional teachings of the Christian Church that generated the animus against the Jews that ultimately culminated in the Holocaust (1), have no inclination to do the same on behalf of their own professed faith. Instead, they jettison essential Christian truth as they bend over backwards to accept the blame for the crimes of a regime built on an ideology that blended nationalism, socialism, Darwinism, and various other strands of the Modern revolt against Christianity and Christendom with elements of pre-Christian paganism and occult mysticism, the Fuhrer of which, ridiculed the faith among his intimate acquaintances. (2)

The truth these “Christians” wish to throw out is that spoken by Dr. Jeffress in the quotation found in the fourth paragraph of this essay. It is a truth spoken by Jesus Christ Himself. Stated positively, it is the truth that Jesus Christ is the only way to God.

“I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life: no man cometh unto the Father but by me”. (John 14:6)

What Dr. Jeffress said was the negative side to this same coin.

Then said Jesus again unto them, I go my way, and ye shall seek me, and shall die in your sins: whither I go, ye cannot come. Then said the Jews, Will he kill himself? because he saith, Whither I go, ye cannot come. And he said unto them, Ye are from beneath; I am from above: ye are of this world; I am not of this world. I said therefore unto you, that ye shall die in your sins: for if ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins. (John 8:21-24)

Earlier this year at its General Synod, the Anglican Church of Canada passed a contemptible and foolish resolution to replace the fourth prayer in the “Prayers and Thanksgivings upon Several Occasions” section of the Book of Common Prayer, with a “Prayer for Reconciliation with the Jews”. The prayer it is replacing was entitled “For the Conversion of the Jews” and reads:

O God, who didst choose Israel to be thine inheritance: Look, we beseech thee, upon thine ancient people; open their hearts that they may see and confess the Lord Jesus to be thy Son and their true Messiah, and, believing, they may have life through his Name. Take away all pride and prejudice in us that may hinder their understanding of the Gospel, and hasten the time when all Israel shall be saved; through the merits of the same Jesus Christ our Lord. Amen.

The prayer that replaces it is for the most part the same, but it replaces “Look, we beseech thee, upon thine ancient people: open their hearts that they may see and confess the Lord Jesus to be thy Son and their true Messiah, and believing, they may have life through his Name” with “Have mercy upon us and forgive us for violence and wickedness against our brother Jacob; the arrogance of our hearts and minds hath deceived us, and shame hath covered our face” and similarly alters the final petition to remove any suggestion that the Jews need to accept the Gospel to be saved.

Twenty-seven years ago, the General Synod had voted to remove the third Collect for Good Friday, from subsequent editions of the Book of Common Prayer. That Collect had read:

O Merciful God, who has made all men, and hatest nothing that thou hast made, nor wouldest the death of a sinner, but rather that he should be converted and live: Have mercy upon all Jews, Turks, Infidels, and Hereticks, and take from them all ignorance, hardness of heart, and contempt of thy word; and so fetch them home, blessed Lord, to thy flock, that they may be saved among the remnant of the true Israelites, and be made one fold under one shepherd, Jesus Christ our Lord, who liveth and reigneth with thee and the Holy Spirit, one God, world without end. Amen.

Oddly, the resolution to replace the Prayer For Conversion of the Jews has met with little outcry from those who rightly opposed the resolution, defeated at the same Synod – although one would think otherwise from the behaviour of many within the House of Bishops – to change the marriage canon to allow for same-sex marriages. Yet, it is arguably a much more serious deviation from orthodoxy. Sexual ethics and the sanctity of marriage, important as they are, occupy a lower tier in the Christian hierarchy of truth than “Jesus Christ is the only way to God.”

Not only, however, has there been little outcry over this but some have actually defended it. The Anglican Planet, for example, a generally orthodox newspaper, in June reposted excerpts from a few articles originally published by the Prayer Book Society of Canada written by the PBS National Chairman Rev. Gordon Maitland and the Rev. Chris Dow, both of whom were involved in the revision. Rev. Maitland, attempts to argue that the change does not actually deviate from the truth that Jesus Christ is the only way to God:

None of this implies that the Prayer Book Society is giving up on mission and witness to the uniqueness of Jesus Christ and his saving message of peace and reconciliation for all the world. The three prayers “For the Extension of the Church” in the “Prayers and Thanksgivings upon Several Occasions” section of the BCP (pp.40-41) are not being altered in any way, and we will continue to pray that our Lord’s Kingdom will be extended and that people will continue to be called into fellowship with Christ in his Church.

In other words “Jesus is still the only way to God, but we want to word it in universal terms, rather than singling any particular group out.” That’s all very well and good but I very much doubt that any but a small minority of those who supported the resolution interpret it this way.

Rev. Dow bases his rationale for the new Prayer upon a repudiation of supersessionism. I will explain the meaning of that word shortly. First, I will observe that at the end of Rev. Dow’s essay, which is worth reading in the full, unabridged version, he notes that the original ending of the new prayer “through thy wellbeloved Son Jesus Christ our Lord” was removed because “Our Jewish consultants for this project felt that this implied that the redemption of the Jewish people is to be achieved through Jesus Christ, thus contradicting the project’s stated aim of renouncing supersessionism.” Since the idea that the redemption of the Jewish people can be achieved other than through Jesus Christ is soul-damning heresy, the admission that the committee capitulated on this point ought to be sufficient grounds for any orthodox Christian to repudiate this project.

Rev. Dow, to his credit, goes on to say:

This raises a vitally important question: can Christian theology ever be entirely nonsupersessionist? In my view, this is doubtful. Though hard and hostile supersessionism must certainly be rejected, it would seem that a much softer, irenic and more theologically sophisticated form of supersessionism is inherent to the claims of the New Testament, which presents Jesus Christ as the long-awaited Davidic Messiah, who died for the sins of the whole world and rose again according to the Scriptures (1 Cor. 15:3-4), thus fulfilling the Law and the Prophets and inaugurating a New Covenant that emerges from the Old.

The distinction between a “hard” and a “soft” supersessionism is not original with Rev. Dow but is borrowed from Rabbi David Novak. He makes reference to Novak’s having said that the soft form of supersessionism “need not denigrate Judaism” and that Christianity cannot be truly Christian without it. Rev. Dow clearly hopes that the noting of this distinction, affirmation of soft supersessionism and rejection of hard supersession is sufficient to deal with any objections that might arise out of orthodox doctrine. In my opinion, it is not, and what is more, it avoids not only addressing the Christian truth that is being compromised here but also the real problem with supersessionism.

It is time now to define supersessionism. Supersessionism is also known as “replacement theology.” As the alternative label suggests it is the idea that God, in judgement upon the nation Israel for their rejection of Jesus Christ, has nullified His Covenant with them and replaced them as His people with the Christian Church. Those who are comfortable with affirming this idea as just stated would claim support for their position in the Parable of the Vineyard and similar passages. In Rabbi Novak’s terminology this is what would be called hard supersessionism. What he calls soft supersessionism, the idea that the New Covenant is an addition to the Old Covenant rather than a replacement for it, is actually a modified form of dual covenant theology. Dual covenant theology, while increasingly popular due to the spread of the very liberalism that William Law in the Bangorian Controversy had correctly argued was Hoadlyism taken to its logical conclusion, is unacceptable to orthodox Christianity.

There are many orthodox Christians who think that supersessionism is the traditional, teaching of the Church. I would argue, however, that there is a difference between what the Church has traditionally taught and supersessionism as defined above, and that supersessionism is something of a caricature of the orthodox doctrine. Consider again how we defined it above: the idea that God, in judgement upon the nation Israel for their rejection of Jesus Christ, has nullified His Covenant with them and replaced them as His people with the Christian Church. The problem with this doctrine, as stated, is that one could argue that it teaches that God has reneged on all of the promises He made to Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses, and David, many of which, unlike the Sinaitic Covenant itself, are stated in absolute, unconditional, and eternal terms. Taken this way, it is comparable to teaching that God is about to send another world-destroying flood because of the way His rainbow, the symbol of His promise never to do so again, is currently being misused and abused.

The orthodox Christian doctrine is that not that God has reneged on all of His promises to Israel in the Old Testament but that He has fulfilled them. He promised that He would send them a Messiah, a Saviour of the bloodline of David, and He did precisely that when He sent them – and the world - His Son, Jesus Christ. He promised that He would make a New Covenant with them:

Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah: Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was an husband unto them, saith the LORD: But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people. And they shall teach no more every man his neighbour, and every man his brother, saying, Know the LORD: for they shall all know me, from the least of them unto the greatest of them, saith the LORD: for I will forgive their iniquity, and I will remember their sin no more. (Jer. 31:31-34)

Jesus declared this promise to be fulfilled when, at His last Passover Seder in commemoration of God’s ancient deliverance of Israel from Egyptian bondage, following the supper He took up the Cup of Blessing and instituted the Sacrament of the Eucharist declaring “This cup is the new testament in my blood, which is shed for you” (Luke 22:20).

Now think that through. The passage in the prophet Jeremiah, where God tells Israel that He will make a New Covenant with them, is very clearly a promise of blessing not a warning of judgement. To declare that promise to be fulfilled, therefore, hardly constitutes bad news for Israel. Indeed, it is declared to be good news for Israel – the Good News, that is, the Gospel, which is “the power of God unto salvation to every one that believeth; to the Jew first, and also to the Greek” (Rom. 1:16). Furthermore, since the promise of the New Covenant is part of the prophetic writings of the Old Covenant, it would have been breaking the Old Covenant for God NOT to have made the New Covenant. Finally, since the promise of the New Covenant explicitly declares that it would be made “with the house of Israel” this allows for no form of dual-covenant theology in which the Jews find salvation through the Old Covenant, and Gentiles through the New.

The Old Covenant, as St. Paul’s epistle to the Hebrews (3) clearly explains, was never the instrument of salvation in the sense in which we have been using the word in this essay, that is to say, salvation from sin and its ultimate consequences, but was rather an illustration of it. The descendants of Jacob had grown into the nation Israel while they were held in slavery in Egypt. Their physical bondage in Egypt was figurative of their, and the entire world’s, spiritual bondage to sin. God delivered them from that physical bondage in the events known as the Exodus which are recounted in the Book by that name. This salvation from physical slavery was figurative of how God would save them, and the entire world, from spiritual slavery to sin when His Son, Jesus the Christ, would bear the sins of the nation and the world to the Cross and make full propitiatory satisfaction for them through His death. The Old Covenant, which God made with Israel at Mt. Sinai shortly after the Exodus, looked backward to commemorate this physical deliverance that it might look forward in anticipation to the spiritual deliverance that it signified. The sacrifices it required, of bulls and goats, while they could not take away sin in themselves, depicted the sacrifice that would effectually do so.

On the night of the first Passover, when God sent the Angel of Death to strike down the first born of each Egyptian household in the last of the plagues by which He persuaded Pharaoh to release His people, the Israelites were told to slay a lamb and to mark their doors with its blood. Those in houses so marked would be spared from the visitation of the Angel of Death. This pointed to the day – the same day, as it occurred on the anniversary – when He, Whom John the Baptist described as “the Lamb of God which taketh away the sins of the world” would become the true Passover Sacrifice. The blood of that Lamb, applied to the metaphorical doorway of one’s heart when received in faith, spares one from something far worse than the Angel of Death. It spares one from what St. John in the Book of Revelation calls the Second Death – the eternal condemnation which awaits all who meet their death bearing the guilt of their sins. The blood of the true Passover was applied retroactively to all who, before the coming of Jesus Christ, had looked forward to the coming of the Messiah in faith, trusting God’s promise that He would send a Saviour. Since He came and accomplished the salvation of the world, His blood is applied through faith to all who hear the Gospel that He has come, died for their sins, and risen again, and who believe in His name. Whatever uncovenanted mercies we may hope are available to those who through ordinary human means have never heard of Him, it is the unmistakable teaching of the New Testament that those who know His name and reject Him, will, unless they repent of this unbelief and turn to Him in faith, perish in their sins.

There is no sane and rational way in which this doctrine can be said to be unfair to the Jews. Imagine if you will, a father, who on his son’s sixteenth birthday hands him an envelope. The boy opens the envelope and inside there is a card. On the card is the picture of an automobile. Outside in the driveway, the car, which is the real gift, sits parked. The son, thinking the card is his gift, thanks his father, has the card framed, puts it up on his wall, and parks himself in his room in front of it, gazing upon it with admiration. His father tries to explain to him that it is the car, not the card, that is the gift, and to hand him the keys, but he refuses to listen. The car rusts away unused in the driveway. Who in their right mind would say that the son had been treated unfairly?

Jesus Christ was given to the nation Israel as the Messiah they had been promised and to the world in general as the Saviour that we all needed. Furthermore, He was given to Israel on the same terms as He was given to the world, not with a special set of stipulations that stood in their way. Indeed, since Jesus was born into national Israel, lived among the Israelites all His life with the exception of the flight to Egypt in His infancy, called twelve Jews to be the Apostles of His Church, and commissioned them to take the Gospel to Jerusalem, David’s capital, then Judea, once the kingdom of Judah that had remained loyal to the House of David, then to Samaria, where the schismatic northern Kingdom had been located, before finally taking it to the rest of the world, it is clear that they were given preference, first dibs if you will, at accepting the Gospel. Nor has the door ever been shut to them. To the contrary, the famous illustration in the eleventh chapter of Romans compares the covenant of everlasting salvation to an olive tree, to which the natural Israelites are the natural branches, and Gentile believers are wild branches that have been grafted in through faith, saying that while the former, excluding, of course, those of the stock of ancient Israel who actually do believe, have been cut off from the tree temporarily by their unbelief, they can and will be grafted back into the tree when they finally come to believe in Jesus as their Messiah.

It would undoubtedly be more prudent to end on that note, but there is one more point that I feel I must address. In the New Testament, after the conversion of the first Gentiles when St. Peter was sent to Cornelius with the Gospel (4), the Apostolic Church met at the Jerusalem Council as narrated in Acts 15, to debate the question of whether the Gentiles needed to become Jews in order to become Christians. Their ruling was no, and St. Paul, who had become the Apostle to the Gentiles, elaborated the theology behind this in several of his epistles. He stressed the point that the ceremonial elements of the Mosaic Law which had been a wall, setting Israel apart from other nations as a kind of object lesson, which she constantly ignored, that she should not fall into their idolatrous practices, had been removed as such a barrier within the Christian Church. As the Book of Acts makes obvious, even as the Apostles were developing the Christian style of worship – meeting on the day of the resurrection, each week, for example - they, including St. Paul, did not see their ruling that the Gentiles need not be circumcised, eat kosher, etc., as prohibiting them from participating in the worship of Second Temple Judaism. Christian liberty was the doctrine, and it went both ways. Christians were free to follow the diet of the Old Testament and keep its festivals, but they were not required to do so.

In the more-or-less useless “interfaith dialogue”, dominated by progressives from both religions, that sprung up immediately after World War II, those “Christians” who have been bending over backwards to take the blame for Hitler’s atrocities – or the Protestants who have been pointing fingers at the “Catholic”, i.e., Roman Church – it has been argued that in the Patristic period a radical reversal on this Christian liberty was brought about, and the Church began to require that Jews cease to be Jews in order to become Christians.

There is, of course, a degree of truth in this but it is incomplete with no discussion of the radical change in the nature of Judaism that took place towards the end of the first generation of Christians. Jesus, His Apostles, and all the pre-Cornelius Christians had been Jews in two senses of the word. First, they were of the ethnic stock of Israel, descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. Second, they practiced the religion that would later be designated Second Temple Judaism. (5) This was the religion established by the Old Testament – taking that term to include all the history, including the partial return from exile and the rebuilding of the Temple. This was a national religion – practiced by a people who were bound to each other and to the land in which they lived by the ties that set a people apart as an ethnos – led by the clergy established in the Old Testament, the Levitical priesthood, the national worship of which was focused on the Temple in Jerusalem. Both Christianity and what we call Judaism today began within Second Temple Judaism but Second Temple Judaism itself came to an end in 70 AD, when Titus of Rome sacked Jerusalem and destroyed the Temple, half-way through the war that would end three years later when Israel’s last besieged defenders committed suicide as their stronghold in Masada fell, and most of the nation was scattered into diaspora throughout the Empire.

As a consequence of this, the rabbis, who had not been the clergy of Second Temple Judaism but a sort of lay teacher, associated especially with the sect of the Pharisees, became the leaders of those who continued to identify as Jews. Accordingly, their interpretation of the Old Testament has been the defining element of the religion known as Judaism ever since. For this reason it is known as rabbinic Judaism or Talmudic Judaism, the Talmud being the written compilation of rabbinic commentary on the Torah, on their own commentary, on their commentary on their commentary, and so on, starting well back in the intertestamental period. Jesus had participated in this traditional dialogue, as evidenced by St. Luke’s account of the incident when He was twelve and His occasional references to the disputes which were raging between the various rabbinic schools at the time of His earthly ministry, but was also a severe critic of it. In Second Temple Judaism, as we see in the Book of Acts, the rabbis greatly differed among themselves in their attitudes towards Christianity, the most positive in the New Testament record being that of Gamaliel, who had been a mentor of St. Paul before his conversion. After AD 70, the party most hostile to Christianity gained the uppermost hand in the rabbinic school, just as it itself became the top tier of post-Temple Judaism.

The explanation for this is not difficult to find. While Christianity could hardly be blamed for Rome’s actions in the Jewish-Roman War, as it had exactly zero political influence in the Empire at that time, and indeed, for a few centuries after, Jesus Christ Himself has both predicted the destruction of the Temple – see the Olivet Discourse, His references to the destruction of the Temple do not all refer to His own death – and proclaimed it to be an act of divine judgement. (6) When these prophecies materialized, the rabbinic attitude towards the One Who had made them, Whom they had rejected as their Messiah, hardened into hatred. Today, nearly two thousand years later, it is not hard to find rabbis who take a more positive view of Jesus, although obviously not accepting His claims to Messiahship. At the time, however, their descriptions of Him were such that Christians could only describe as blasphemous and their attitude towards His disciples was hardly amicable.

It was this new, strongly anti-Christian version of Judaism, aflame with hatred towards the One Who had prophesied the destruction of their Temple, that was denounced so vehemently by Church Fathers such as St. John Chrysostom. Obviously, this in no way justifies mistreatment of the Jews at the hands of Christians. It does, however, show that negative interaction between the two faiths has hardly been the one-sided affair with Christians bearing the sole blame, that the so-called interfaith dialogue of the present day often implies. Until that is properly acknowledged, no real such dialogue can ever take place.

In the meantime, it is hardly right for Christians to compromise the truth that Jesus Christ is the one and only Saviour of the world. Nor is there any good reason to abandon our prayers for the conversion of the Jews. See what the “Anglican Billy Graham” Marney Patterson had to say about this subject in his excellent book Suicide: The Decline and Fall of the Anglican Church of Canada? (1998) From the genuine Christian point of view, it is refusing to pray for their conversion and abandoning attempts to evangelize them, which would truly amount to Jew-hatred, not loving them enough to pray that Romans 11 would finally be fulfilled and they would embrace their Messiah.

So Merry Christmas everyone. For all the Jews out there, Happy Hanukkah and may you accept Jesus Christ as your Messiah. After all, we would hate to see you go to hell.

(1) See, for example, the late Rabbi Jacob Neusner’s “Sorting Out Jew Haters” in the March 1995 issue of Chronicles Magazine. “For nearly 20 centuries, faithful Christians have maintained that Judaism died at Calvary, meaning, Jesus Christ replaced Judaism and Christianity superseded it. This is anti-Judaism. Until Vatican II (for Catholicism) and its counterparts in Protestantism, that view prevailed universally. Classify this as the quite familiar theological warfare— all against all in God's name…None of these trivialities changes the world very much. None qualifies as anti-Semitism, because, by themselves or all together, none can have led to the holocaust of World War II... But anti-Semitism is not the same thing as casual bigotry, mere dislike of the unlike, let alone theological animus or a spiteful form of politics.” The most extreme version of the accusation that the Church is to blame for the Holocaust of which I am familiar is Daniel Jonah Goldhagen’s A Moral Reckoning: The Role of the Catholic Church in the Holocaust and its Unfulfilled Duty of Repair, (2002). Goldhagen was also the author of the earlier Hitler’s Willing Executioners: Ordinary Germans and the Holocaust (1996) which displayed a Teutonophobia that fell just short of saying that the Holocaust was caused by something in the German DNA. Goldhagen’s books have been rejected as vile tripe by serious historians, foremost among them being such Jewish historians as Raul Hilberg, Fritz Stern, and Yehuda Bauer.

(2) See Hitler’s Table Talk, a compilation of his private conversations as transcribed by Martin Bormann, Henry Picker, and Heinrich Heim.

(3) St. Peter in II Peter 3:15-16 makes reference to a Scriptural epistle that St. Paul had written to the same people to whom he was writing. Since St. Peter’s epistles were catholic epistles, written to the churches in general at a time when they were majority Jewish, and all of St. Paul’s signed epistles were written either to particular churches, usually majority Gentile, or specific individuals, the only epistle that St. Peter could have been referring to is Hebrews, identifying it therefore, although it is internally unsigned, as Pauline.

(4) Those who heard the Gospel in a multitude of languages at Pentecost in Acts 2, the “Grecian widows” whose neglect led the Apostles to establish the order of deacons in Acts 6, and the Ethiopian eunich whom St. Philip led to Christ in Acts 8, were all Jews.

(5) The word “Judaism”, or rather its Greek antecedent, was already around at the time, but it was used as a cultural description and only later became the proper name of the religion of the Jews.

(6) See, for example, the Parable of the Vineyard. Note, by the way, that while this hardly leaves room for orthodox Christians to argue that AD 70 was not a divine judgement, the preterist view that it fulfilled all Scriptural prophecy, negating both Romans 11 and all New Testament prophecies of Christ’s literal Second Coming in glory is utter heresy.

Friday, December 13, 2019

Strange Bedfellows

In an essay discussing the rise of “woke capitalism” after the news about the capitulation of Chic-fil-A in the Culture War I made the point that the alliance between “conservatism” or “the Right” and “capitalism” which dates back to the rise of socialism, the mutual foe of both, in the nineteenth century was an unnatural alliance, and that those who wish to preserve or recover elements of the heritage, history and tradition of Western Civilization that predate modern liberalism need to reconsider this alliance with a force that has been a far more effective engine for the uprooting of communities, destruction of traditions, and alienation of individuals than socialism ever has. In this essay, I wish to follow up on that by looking at another unnatural alliance, that which exists between “environmentalism” or “The Green Movement” and socialism.

An alliance between environmentalism and conservatism would be much more natural. I am speaking, of course, of the unadulterated, original versions of both environmentalism and conservatism, neither of which is very recognizable in the present day movements by those names.

Environmentalism began with the concern that something valuable, which had come down to us from past generations, was disappearing and in danger of being lost to future generations. That something included both natural resources valued for their utility, their usefulness to man and his enterprises, and the beauty of our physical surroundings, especially the countryside. Environmentalism grew out of the instinct to protect these things and preserve them for generations yet to come. Hence the earliest form of environmentalism was the conservation movement.

Conservatism, which obviously shares a common root with conservation, grew out of a similar concern that something valuable, which had come down to us from past generations, was disappearing and in danger of being lost to future generations. For Edmund Burke and the original conservatives, that something included both the institutions that the Tories of previous generations had fought for – the monarchy and the Apostolic Church – and the constitutional rights and liberties for which the Whigs had professed to have been fighting. (1) Conservatism was originally the instinct to protect and preserve these things for future generations, against those who wished to bulldoze them down in the name of building a fanciful earthly paradise, on the foundation of their rationalistic, abstract ideals.

Given the very similar instincts and starting points of these two movements it is rather astonishing that they did not develop a strong and enduring alliance. There have always been outspoken advocates of ecological conservation on the Right. The reactionary, Roman Catholic philologist, poet, and novelist J. R. R. Tolkien made it rather plain what he thought about industrial de-forestation in his famous fantasy trilogy The Lord of the Rings. Michael Wharton, who for decades as the writer of the “Peter Simple” column for the Daily Telegraph was the most right-wing columnist in the United Kingdom, said in The Missing Will, the first volume of his autobiography, “I had developed, partly because of my general loathing for ‘progress’ and technology – I can claim to have been what is now called, somewhat nauseatingly, a ‘friend of the earth’ thirty years before the Environment was invented – an extreme hatred of Communism which has never left me.” Nevertheless, the environmentalist movement has long tilted left, and conservatism in response has viewed it with suspicion. This is due, in part, to conservatism’s mistake in seeing capitalism as a friend rather than a foe, a mistake which has grown over time to the point that present day conservatism, or “neo-conservatism” has little interest in preserving anything other than capitalism. The other contributing factor is environmentalism’s mistake in seeing socialism as a friend rather than a foe. Both mistakes arose through the faulty reasoning “the enemy of my enemy is my friend.” Both mistakes were magnified by the erroneous assumption, which became almost universal in the twentieth century, that if one was not a capitalist one was therefore a socialist and vice versa.

To understand why socialism is not a friend of true environmentalism, it is important that we understand the nature of socialism. Socialism is not being compassionate and charitable to the poor. Socialism is not “standing up for the working man.” Socialism is not the application of the classical idea of restraint to human greed. (2) The many different socialisms that arose in the nineteenth century all sprang out of the same common idea: that the private ownership of property is responsible for most or all human suffering and must therefore be eradicated.

One of the oldest observations that pertain to conserving resources and the beauty of our surroundings is to be found in the third chapter of Book Two of Aristotle’s Politika. This is the section of that work in which Aristotle made the case for private ownership against complete communal ownership. As translated by Benjamin Jowett, he wrote:

That all persons call the same thing mine in the sense in which each does so may be a fine thing, but it is impracticable; or if the words are taken in the other sense, such a unity in no way conduces to harmony. And there is another objection to the proposal. For that which is common to the greatest number has the least care bestowed upon it. Every one thinks chiefly of his own, hardly at all of the common interest; and only when he is himself concerned as an individual. For besides other considerations, everybody is more inclined to neglect the duty which he expects another to fulfill; as in families many attendants are often less useful than a few.

Universal experience confirms what Aristotle has written here. Take houses, as just one example. Houses that are owned by the people who live in them, whether they take care of them themselves or are rich enough to hire a staff to do it for them, are generally the ones that are kept in best repair and which are a pleasure to look at. Houses that are owned by the public, rented out at low cost, and maintained by employees of the state with no other personal interest in them, are the most likely to be run down, eyesores. Other arrangements that fall between these polar opposites also typically fall between them in terms of their level of upkeep.

Despite the fact that any one of us can confirm with his own eyes the truth of what Aristotle pointed out twenty-three and a half centuries ago, environmentalists continue to talk as if the exact opposite were the case and human societies took better care of their environment before there was private property and will do so again once socialism eliminates private property.

There is a widespread myth, that pre-civilized tribal societies, without a well-developed and defined sense of private property ownership, had more of a connection to land, nature, etc. and so took much greater care not to pollute the environment or to waste their resources. This myth, which like capitalism and socialism has its roots in the pets de cerveau of the so-called Enlightenment of the seventeenth to eighteenth centuries, and was popularized by Romantic poetry and Disney cartoons, is completely counterfactual. The societies in question hunted animals to extinction, set forests on fire to drive the wildlife out into the open where they could be more easily hunted, and were far more wasteful than property owning societies. Nevertheless, nowhere is this myth more prevalent than among environmentalists.

If it is a myth that pre-property societies were ultra-Green and eco-friendly it is laughable folly to suggest that post-property societies are so or will be so. When the Soviet Union collapsed, we learned that not only was the great experiment in Communism a failure economically – instead of elevating the living conditions of the workers it lowered them, leaving them in worse poverty and virtual slavery – but it was a disaster ecologically as well. Nowhere in the world were there dirtier cities, more depleted forests and other natural resources, more soil erosion, acid rain and polluted air and waters than in those countries unfortunate enough to have fallen behind the Iron Curtain. Nor, until relatively recently, have things been any better behind the Bamboo Curtain.

Has any of this caused environmentalists to renounce socialism?

No, in spite of it, environmentalism seems to be more in bed with socialism now than it was before the collapse of the Soviet Union.

Think, for example, of environmentalism’s present obsession with warding off a climactic apocalypse. The entire anthropogenic climate change horror story is nonsense that is easily demonstrated to be such. Carbon dioxide is the natural product of human and animal respiration and the food of vegetable photosynthesis. It is hardly a pollutant. The global climate has never been static, but has gone through cycles of warmer and cooler periods throughout known history. A myriad of factors contribute to this, the majority of which, and the most important of which, are beyond human control. Furthermore, it is a rather obvious historical fact that human life and civilization, as well as all other life, animal and plant, have thrived much more in warmer periods than in cold periods. Climate change alarmism requires one to believe the opposite of all of this. While environmentalists claim that “the science” backs them up, by “the science” they mean the kind of phony consensus that can be produced by threatening the research grants, potential tenure, and the like of those who dissent. Science, in other words, in the same sense in which Lysenkoism was once considered “science” in the Soviet Union.

Environmentalists insist that the climate crisis demands immediate action on the part of the world’s governments. Their proposals, however, from the Kyoto Protocol of 1997 to the Paris Agreement of 2015 to the Green New Deal currently being touted, are all designed to create global socialism – central economic planning, wealth redistribution, etc. on a planetary scale. Since socialism was ecologically catastrophic for the Soviet Union and its satellites on a national scale, the most likely outcome of these accords is to create a genuine global ecological crisis in the name of averting a chimerical one.

If there is any genuine concern left in the Green movement for preserving natural resources and the beauty of the countryside they will abandon their unnatural alliance with a socialism that can ultimately work only against these ends. (3)

(1) In my, unreconstructed Tory, opinion the actions of the Whigs, and their predecessors the Roundheads, did more to damage these than to defend them.

(2) George Grant, a conservative who recognized that capitalism was not the friend of conservatism, absurdly tried to define socialism this way in Lament for a Nation, showing that even the best of thinkers can be guilty of huge errors. Grant’s mistake arose out of the erroneous assumption that one must be either a capitalism or a socialist.

(3) I am not saying that everything that is objectionable in environmentalism can be traced back to its strange alliance with socialism. Volumes could be written, and have been written for that matter, about the influence of neo-pagan, earth and nature worship, on the Green movement. Further, for about seventy years now environmentalist thinking about the limits of natural resources has been informed by neo-Malthusianism. Back in the nineteenth century, the Reverend T. Robert Malthus had warned that the human population was growing at a much higher rate than was food production and that if not corrected this would lead to poverty, war, etc. He advocated correction that was consistent with Christian ethics, such as chastity before marriage and postponing marriage until one could afford to raise a family on his means. The neo-Malthusianism, favoured since the 1950s by United Nations environmental agencies, the Club of Rome, secular ecological groups, and alarmists like Dr. Paul Ehrlich, reworked Malthus’ theory into a prophecy of imminent, global, ecological collapse, not unlike the climate change alarmists’ doomsday scenario, and proposed solutions that the Rev. Malthus would have found ethically repugnant – forced sterilization, mandatory artificial birth control, abortion, quotas on family size, etc. Thus, the whole objectionable “culture of death” aspect of environmentalism which can be attributed to this neo-Malthusianism, was present even in the writings of such dissident ecologists as the late Dr. Garrett James Hardin, who had been Professor of Human Ecology at the University of California, Santa Barbara, and who was otherwise a refreshing voice of sanity in an increasingly mad environmentalist movement. He defied the environmentalist mainstream in such articles as “The Tragedy of the Commons”, Science, 1968, and his unfortunately subtitled “Lifeboat Ethics: The Case Against Helping the Poor”, Psychology Today, 1974. In the former he made the Aristotelean case that private ownership is the right choice for the conservation of resources and that collective ownership combined with universal, egalitarian access is the recipe for ecological disaster. In the latter he opposed the mainstream, environmentalist, tendency to think on a global scale and urged countries to focus on their own, national ecosystems, arguing for the metaphor of hundreds of lifeboats adrift on the sea rather than the “Spaceship earth” metaphor preferred by most environmentalists, and applied this by arguing against mass immigration and foreign aid. This year, a fifteenth anniversary edition of Ronald Wright’s 2004 Massey Lectures series, A Short History of Progress, was published. The original edition came out a year after Dr. Hardin left us, and in these lectures Wright made all of the mistakes which Hardin had avoided, as well as all of the ones he had not, thus tainting what might otherwise have been a valuable look at the problems human civilization can cause for itself, through the shortsighted pursuit of technological progress. Perhaps a new edition of Dr. Hardin’s Living Within Limits, Stalking the Wild Taboo, or The Ostrich Factor would be more in order.

Friday, December 6, 2019

That Old Egyptian River

Dougal MacDonald, an assistant lecturer at the University of Alberta, has been the subject of much controversial discussion recently over some posts he made on Facebook last month. In these posts he denied the historical reality of the Holodomor.

Holodomor, for those not familiar with the term, although it sounds like a neologism, a portmanteau coined to create a word similar to Holocaust, is in fact a Ukrainian term that means “killing by hunger.” It describes the same event that, before the fairly recent importation of the Ukrainian term, we English speakers called the Terror Famine. This was the man-made famine by means of which Joseph Stalin’s Soviet Union killed millions of Ukrainians in 1932-33. Those interested in the history of this event are advised to read either Robert Conquest’s The Harvest of Sorrow: Soviet Collectivization and the Terror-famine (1986) or Anne Applebaum’s Red Famine: Stalin’s War on Ukraine (2017).

Mr. MacDonald described the Holodomor as a “myth” that was created and spread by the Nazis to discredit the Soviet Union. These comments led to protests by the Ukrainian Students Society, calls for him to be fired, and his being denounced on Twitter by Alberta Premier Jason Kenney.

Inevitably, comparisons have been made between Mr. MacDonald’s views and those which earned such notoriety for Ernst Zündel and James Keegstra four decades ago. The contrasts, however, strike me as being more interesting than the comparisons.

First, Mr. MacDonald’s posts unquestionably deny the Holodomor. By contrast, the majority of those who are described as Holocaust deniers by progressives, the media, Jewish activist groups, and antiracist organizations are people who have only questioned elements of the conventional Holocaust narrative such as the total number killed and the means, and regard themselves as revisionists rather than deniers.

Second, while progressives maintain that all “Holocaust deniers” are admirers of the Third Reich who through some weird sort of guilt-by-association share in that regime’s culpability for the crimes they supposedly deny, this is manifestly not the case. Paul Rassinier, one of the first “Holocaust deniers” if not the first, was himself a survivor of Buchenwald having been a part of the anti-Nazi resistance in occupied France who was later captured. In the United States, the first to give Rassinier’s revisionist arguments a hearing and a degree of acceptance, were not the Hitler worshipping followers of George Lincoln Rockwell, but the old kind of American liberals who had rebranded themselves libertarian when American liberalism went statist in the New Deal, a large percentage of whom were Jewish. Such vehement anti-statist, anti-war types as Harry Elmer Barnes and Murray N. Rothbard can hardly be credibly described as “Nazis”. A number of Christian theologians – limiting ourselves to the Protestants, R. J. Rushdooney, Gary North, and Kurt Marquart are just three of the more prominent – found Rassinier’s version of events the more convincing and spoke out against the non-revisionist version as a violation of the Ninth Commandment. These men were not Nazis or Nazi-sympathizers either.

Dougal MacDonald, however, is clearly a Communist. In this year’s Dominion Election he was the candidate for the Marxist-Leninist party in the riding of Edmonton-Strathcona, and has run for that party in previous elections as well.

Third, in response to the controversy, the University of Alberta pointed out that MacDonald was not speaking on behalf of the University and emphasized the commitment of the University to academic freedom and the freedom of its faculty and staff to express different and controversial points of view. While this is exactly the position they ought to be taking, can you imagine them talking this way if one of their instructors had been accused of denying the Holocaust rather than the Holodomor?

Maybe if his name was Mohammed.

Fourth, there is not the slightest degree of credibility to MacDonald’s Communist claim that the Holodomor is propaganda manufactured by the Nazis. The Terror Famine itself began in 1932. In March of the following year, Welsh journalist Gareth Jones went to the Soviet Union, snuck into the Ukraine, and recorded what he personally observed of the famine in his diaries. At the end of that month he issued a press release informing the world of the Terror Famine. At this point in time Adolf Hitler had only been Chancellor of Germany for three months. The newspapers that carried Jones’ report, such as the Manchester Guardian, the flagship newspaper of classical English liberalism, were hardly sympathetic to the Nazi movement, much less controlled by it. Indeed, the same newspaper had published an earlier, anonymous account of the famine, which had appeared two weeks prior to Hitler’s becoming Chancellor! The author of the anonymous account was Malcolm Muggeridge who had travelled to the Soviet Union the previous year at a time when he was still sympathetic to the Communist cause. Furthermore, the work of confirming these early accounts and providing a full, detailed, account of the Terror Famine was carried out by researchers with no ties to the Third Reich or sympathy with that regime, decades after it had fallen and been utterly discredited.

Should, however, someone wish to maintain that the Soviet regime exaggerated the accounts of Nazi atrocities for its own purposes, he would have plenty of grounds upon which to base this claim.

First, the Soviet Union was a very active participant in the Nuremberg Trials. They provided a judge, an alternate judge, and a chief prosecutor to the proceedings, as did the UK, USA and France. American Senate Majority Leader Robert A. Taft observed at the time that the kind of justice being administered in these trials far more closely resembled the Soviet notion of justice than the Anglo-Saxon justice of the UK and the USA. This suggests that Soviet influence over the trials far exceeded that of its one-vote-in-four. The “confessions” portion of the evidence for the Nazi atrocities is largely taken from these trials.

Second, it was the Soviets and not the free Western Allies, who “liberated” the part of Europe in which the death camps were located and kept that part of Europe under Communist slavery until the fall of the Iron Curtain. (1) This meant that for forty years after the war, access to the places like Auschwitz that were the sites of Nazi atrocities, and hence to a major source of information about what went on there, was under Soviet control.

Third, the Soviets were demonstrably spreading disinformation about Nazi war crimes and through this means quite successfully manipulating Western governments and Holocaust victim groups to act as their unwitting agents against those the Soviet regime had marked for revenge as late as the 1970s and 1980s. It was in these decades, the last of the Cold War just prior to the Soviet Union’s fall, that the KGB began targeting Ukrainian ex-patriots in Canada and the United States by accusing them of having been Nazi war criminals. In most cases the accusation was based upon the Ukrainian in question having been forced to serve the SS in some capacity or other – translator, guard, etc. – when the Nazis overran the Ukraine. In one case, the most famous of them all, John Demjanjuk of Cleveland, Ohio was falsely accused of being a specific war criminal, “Ivan the Terrible” of Treblinka. In each case the “useful idiots” such as the Office of Special Investigations of the United States Department of Justice and the Canadian Jewish Congress, danced to the tune the KGB played. The CJC began hounding the Canadian government to revoke the citizenship of several elderly Ukrainians. Just this week the Supreme Court of Canada refused to hear the final appeal of one such man. The OSI stripped Demjanjuk of his American citizenship and extradited him to Israel, where he was charged with the war crimes of “Ivan the Terrible” and convicted. On appeal, however, the Israeli Supreme Court ruled that the evidence proved conclusively that another man, and not Demjanjuk, had been “Ivan the Terrible” and overturned the conviction. Greatly to their credit, the Israelis refused to have any part of it when the KGB’s stooges then accused Demjanjuk of having committed war crimes as a guard at Sobibor. If the Soviets were spreading false information pertaining to Nazi war crimes in order to manipulate people in the West and accomplish their nefarious purposes at the end of the Cold War, there is no good reason to believe that they had not been doing this since the beginning of the Cold War. (2)

Considering the above, it makes zero sense whatsoever that the taboo on suggesting that the Holocaust account be revised to take into consideration the likelihood of Soviet tampering remains so absolute. It makes even less sense, if there can be anything less than zero sense, a sort of sense deficit, that, with a possible controversial and unprincipled exception for members of the Muslim community, the taboo has increased in strength since the collapse of the Soviet Union. Today, someone who says that the Nazis killed only 5, 999, 999 and a half Jews, runs the risk of being labelled a "Holocaust denier" and subjected to a campaign of vilification on the part of people mercilessly determined to ruin him, his life and reputation, job and career, family and social standing. It is greatly to our shame that we have tolerated this kind of persecution in our country.

There are many today who rightly object to the form of mob mentality known as cancel culture. Somebody decides to take offence at something that another person has said, calls that other person out, using one of the many weaponized words that progressives have manufactured for precisely this purpose – “racist”, “xenophobic”, “anti-Semitic”, “sexist”, “homophobic” and more recently “transphobic” are the most common of these – and the howling hordes of the easily outraged quickly assemble to carry out the metaphorical – for now – lynching of their victim. Canadian legend, Don Cherry, who for the past four decades had provided the first intermission entertainment for views of Hockey Night in Canada, was recently and disgracefully, made the victim of just this sort of mob attack.

Those who oppose cancel culture today ought, if they were around, to have fought tooth and nail against the persecution of Ernst Zündel and James Keegstra four decades ago. That is where it all began. To paraphrase, and very appropriately if I do say so myself, Pastor Martin Niemöller, “First they came for the Holocaust deniers and I did not speak out – Because I was not a Holocaust denier.”

What began with the persecution of the Holocaust revisionists and has grown into the cancel culture of today is an outright assault on one of the most basic principles of the Canadian tradition. In the debates during Confederation, Sir Richard Cartwright said “For myself, sir, I own frankly I prefer British liberty to American equality.” In the 1930s on the eve of the Second World War, Donald Creighton, Canada’s greatest historian, declared that free speech had for generations been considered “the proudest heritage of the British peoples.” (3) In the name of that heritage, Creighton opposed both the Toronto Police’s clapping down on Communists and the provincial government of Ontario’s demands that Frank Underhill be dismissed from his position at the University of Toronto over his socialist, pro-American – at the time these would not have been considered mutually exclusive – and anti-British views. Creighton, who was an old-fashioned, ultra-conservative, pro-British Tory, had no sympathy either for Communism or for his arch-nemesis Frank Underhill, but he understood that free speech was too important a heritage to allow to be jeopardized.

Some, noting the very objectionable double standard that is applied to Holocaust revisionists on the one hand and those with views like Dougal MacDonald on the other, would eliminate the double standard by extending the taboo against “Holocaust denial” to “genocide denial” in general. To sin further against freedom of speech, however, is hardly a solution. The problem with the double standard is not that some people are allowed to “get away” with saying things some consider to be offensive, rather it is that we allow others to be persecuted and destroyed for the views they hold and the words they say. A general taboo against “genocide denial” would sin not only against freedom of speech, but against that keystone of justice as it has long been understood in the English-speaking world, the right of the accused to presumption of innocence, the importance of which right can hardly be said to decrease when the accused is no longer an individual, but an entire nation or even an entire civilization.

Those who insist that “denial” of this-or-that, whether it be the Holocaust, genocides in general, or whatever idée de rigueur such as climate change that progressives happen to be currently fixated on, constitutes a grave moral offence place upon others a moral duty to affirm each of these things. To morally require the affirmation of tenets of faith from its membership is the prerogative of a creed-based faith community. What we are seeing looks very much like the creation of a new, post-Christian, civil religion. Orthodox Christians and classical liberals who oppose any blurring of the distinction between civil society and faith community both have good reasons, albeit rather different ones, to find this disturbing.

I am beginning to develop a strong suspicion that somewhere far away, in the realms of eternal woe, Adolf Hitler is laughing at the way in which some of the countries that at such a huge cost to themselves defeated him almost a century ago are now throwing away their most treasured rights and freedoms out of fear of offending his victims. If some people have their way, Joseph Stalin will be joining him in that laugh very soon.

(1) The distinction between extermination camps or death camps and those which were merely concentration camps was not made by revisionists but is part of mainstream Holocaust history. The former, such as Auschwitz, Belzec, Sobibor, and Treblinka were never located on German soil, but rather in German-occupied Poland. Camps on German territory, such as the Dachau camp in Bavaria that was liberated by the Americans, were concentration camps. Poland was overrun by the Soviets and remained under Communist control behind the Iron Curtain until 1989.

(2) Anyone familiar with “Operation Keelhaul”, the most disgusting outcome of the Faustian compact made with Stalin at Yalta in which the Western Allies agreed to hand ex-patriots who had fled the Soviet Union and ended up in Hitler’s camps back over to Soviet tyranny, will recognize sickening echoes of it in the way Canada and the United States allowed themselves to be manipulated into doing the KGB’s dirty work for them in this. For those unfamiliar with Operation Keelhaul, I refer you to Julius – that’s Julius not Jeffrey – Epstein’s book by that title from 1973, and Count Nikolai Tolstoy’s Victims of Yalta, published four years later.

(3) I found the Creighton quote on page 149 of Donald Wright’s, Donald Creighton: A Life in History, published by the University of Toronto in 2015. Wright writes approvingly of Creighton’s stand for free speech, as well he ought. Unfortunately, he failed to live up to the principles of his subject himself, and earlier this year was one of the University of New Brunswick faculty whose signature could be found on a letter condemning their former colleague Ricardo Duchesne for dissenting from the usual academic politically correct tripe on ethno-political matters and, hence, writing far more interesting things than any of them ever dared to put out.