Letters – March 20, 2023


Did Jesus say ‘kill your enemies’?

I found it interesting that the only letter published in the Feb. 20 edition of the CV was from a misguided gun fanatic writing about his “right” to own and use weapons without limits on “type, capacity, or form.” How can a newspaper that otherwise promotes “the right to life” justify promoting the writer’s advocacy for the use of deadly weapons “for self-defense” by citing “Luke 22:36” and the “Catechism of the Catholic Church 2265”? Did Jesus say, “Love your enemies”? – or was it “Kill your enemies”?

Obviously, Luke was writing about swords, and perhaps their future use in the Garden of Gethsemane, and not about modern weapons. But the more relevant misinterpretation made by the writer was in his reference to the catechism, which addresses “legitimate defense.”

The USCCB has consistently supported sensible regulations on the sale and use of firearms, and recently sent a letter to all members of Congress urging lawmakers to “unite in their humanity to stop the massacres of human lives” and to advance life-saving legislation to address gun violence.

When gun advocates ignore the “well-regulated militia” part of the Second Amendment, they jeopardize “the right of the people to peaceably assemble” part of the First Amendment. The only reason this country has hundreds of mass killings by gun each year and thousands of suicides by gun each year is that we have more guns than any other country – more guns than people.

When I go out to “peaceably assemble” in marketplaces, churches, theaters and schools, I am more worried about gun zealots like the writer than I am about my own “self-defense.” – Donald Jakob, Moneta

Criminals do not care about gun laws

Using my experience and train- ing as a now-retired professional law enforcement officer (LEO), I
can promise you that most of those alleged “common sense gun laws” do not address any causes of any violence. They smack of the “Jim Crow” laws that once forbade people of color from possessing firearms. Our National Rifle Association, as a civil rights organization, helped quash some of those bad laws to allow Black people an opportunity to defend themselves against attacks by domestic troublemakers.

Any experienced LEO can tell you violent criminals are not affected by “gun laws.” They steal, buy and sell firearms at will because laws are of no concern to them.

Stopping violence will require a change of mindsets. Some politicians and some “prosecutors” oppose arresting, trying and convicting violent criminals, and want them roaming the streets killing decent people. This has got to stop.

Our decent citizens must get angry at criminals and rogue politicians and demand better arrests and prosecutions and sentencing to put violent criminals behind bars where they belong. Former Gov. George Allen proposed this, got the legislation passed, and reduced violent crime in the Commonwealth. – C.S. Kessler, Henrico

Why the FBI memo should alarm all Catholics

I wish to applaud Bishop Knestout for his strong defense of Catholics in response to the leaked FBI memo targeting traditional Catholics. There is no place for racism or bigotry in our Church. The Catechism of the Catholic Church explicitly condemns this (CCC 1935). We are all one body in Christ as Paul teaches to the Galatians.

Since 2020 I have been attending St. Joseph Parish which is administered by the Priestly Fraternity of St. Peter (FSSP). I have visited several other of their apostolates. I do not know anyone who rejects Vatican II, espouses anti-Semitism, or supports violence in any way. I see a community bound by reverence for the Real Presence in the Eucharist and committed to living a fully Christian life in continuity with Catholic tradition.

Our Church has been the target of hate groups throughout U.S. history. But search the news and you will see unrest caused by Catholics is men and women praying outside abortion clinics, not committing real violence.

This memo must alarm all Catholics! The subtext in the memo is that family values, traditional views of sexuality, and opposition to abortion are real threats that need to be investigated. These are normal Catholic views, upheld by the magisterium. What starts with an investigation of fringe groups can only engulf regular parishes as well. Will there be FBI moles in the cathedral as well?

Thank you again to Bishop Knestout for standing up for religious liberty and supporting the truth of our faith. – Benjamin Chopski, Richmond

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