Do you ever wonder how our world has gotten so upside down in just the last few years? Men in girls’ bathrooms, same-sex “marriage,” racial strife, political correctness, rampant abortion, divorce and promiscuity, hatred of religious ideas, and of America itself?
One of the reasons is very old. You might be surprised to learn that it is part of a plan that comes right out of the Marxist playbook. It was sent over from Europe in the 1920’s, 30’s, and 40’s to bring down America. In the new docudrama on EWTN, A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing, we see the story of Saul Alinsky, one of the biggest players in this stealth revolution.
A Wolf in Sheep’s Clothing
I consider the film monumental because I have a fascination for the subject. Being a former pro-communist in my hippie days in the 1970’s, I am now extremely anti-communist and I want to help others avoid the mistakes that I have made.
The film will be rebroadcast on EWTN throughout the month of October, so please try to watch it.
While the film is not political, I think it is vital to know that Hillary Clinton was an Alinsky acolyte. She wrote a 92-page senior thesis on him in 1969 and continued a correspondence with him.
The film is a riveting masterpiece, brilliantly written with vignettes by some of my EWTN favorites Fr. Mitch Pacwa, Fr Andrew Apostoli, Ven. Archbishop Fulton J. Sheen, and Dr. Alice von Hildebrand. These are interspersed with actors playing Alinsky, Polish martyr to Communism Bl. Fr. Jerzy Popiełuszko, Pope Leo XIII, and Pope Saint John Paul II.
Alinsky was born in Chicago in 1909 and was tremendously influential in the leftist movement. Today there are 800 organizations throughout the US that stem from his.
He grew up in an Orthodox Jewish family but at the University of Chicago he became an agnostic and was fascinated with Socialism, and strangely, the mob. As part of his field work he befriended Al Capone’s gang and became friends with Frank Nitty, Capone’s successor. “I called him the professor,” says Alinsky, “He took me under his wing and I was his student.”
Not most people’s first choice for a teacher.
Alinsky then started an organization to help the poor in Chicago, although his main agenda was the fundamental transformation of America into a Marxist “utopia.” “To achieve an end it is right to justify almost any means,” he says. “All life is warfare. You do what you can and clothe it in moral garments.” He used the Marxist conflict theory of dividing people by racial, ethnic, income, or other categories into groups, picking some as enemies, and attacking them, thus empowering his organization. He cloaked his quest for power under “a false humanism.”
The Catholic Church teaches that we are all one, children of God.
“I pray that they all may be one; as thou, Father, art in me, and I in thee, that they also may be one in us” (John 17:21).
To serve one another, to love one another.
“Don’t hate Saul Alinsky; pray for him,” says Richard Payne the film’s narrator, writer, and producer.
“While he tried to achieve a good end, helping poor people reclaim their dignity, but it is his tragedy, and our inherited tragedy, that he tried to do it by an evil means.”
A Faction in the Church Was Duped
Alinsky built a powerful organization. He is considered the father of community organizers. He befriended a faction in the Catholic Church who wanted to assist helping the poor. A few in the clergy wised up to him but unfortunately some did not. Former Communist Party official Bella Dodd who defected (and was reconverted back into the Catholic Church by Bishop Sheen), said that in the 1930’s she personally placed 1100 men in the seminaries to try to destroy the Church from within. “Many advanced to high places,” she added.
Alinsky’s tactic was to create conflict. “The struggle is the victory itself.”
He threw away morality following Marx’s dictum “Communism preaches absolutely no morality.”
“Truth is relative and changing,” says Alinsky. “Put moral issues in the irrelevant department.”
“It’s the anti-Christ’s theory of relativism and will to power,” Payne calls it.
Three Marxist Factions
His group allied with others “from the great tsunami wave of European Cultural Marxism” that was inundating the US. One group was the Frankfort Socialists who were a group of German Jews who came to the US in the 1920’s, 30’s, and 40’s to flee Hitler. They saw that their communism could not defeat the West militarily or economically so they tried, and are still trying, to defeat it culturally. They were heartily welcomed at Columbia University by its “academic celebrity,” leftist professor John Dewey.
“Culture, culture, culture,” was their motto says Dr. Paul Kengor in his ground-shaking book Takedown: From Communists to Progressives, How the Left Has Sabotaged Family and Marriage
“Higher Ed, higher Ed, higher Ed. And sex. Now we can bring these ideas into the West to take down the West, they said. We’ll saturate the culture with a miasma of sex.”
“They developed a critical theory where they tried and are still trying to bring down America by promoting criticism of it. They also invented what is now called ‘political correctness.’ They developed theories of sexual revolution based upon Sigmund Freud’s pan-sexualism—the search for pleasure. They exploited the differences between the sexes to incited gender conflict. They exploited their commonalities to incite gender confusion.”
It’s easy to see how well they have succeeded.
Another group of comrades, the Fabian Socialists, tried and are still trying, to topple the US by stealth. Avoiding open conflict they wield their destruction subtly, a wolf in sheep’s clothing, always chip, chip, chipping away to give more power to the state. They try to subvert morality, religion, the family, and beliefs in private property and free enterprise. They act on Marx’s statements,“The family must be destroyed. Religion must be destroyed.” Why? Because these are the two things that obstruct a person’s allegiance to the state. “The two things a person is willing to die for,” says Al Kresta, “are his family and his God.”
While not in the film but I think a vital fact is that shortly after the Russian revolution in 1917 widespread abortion and divorce were championed. These were essential tools for the Marxist government to destroy the family—a major resistance, along with religion, to the state.
Fifty years later the US would get “up to speed.”
“America will never adopt socialism,” says Norman Thomas Socialist Party presidential candidate in the 1920’s, 30’s, and 40’s, “the name has been speared too much, but under the name of liberalism, or progressivism, will adopt all of its programs and will become socialist without even knowing it.”
The third group is the Gramsci Socialists who tried, and clearly are still trying, to bring down religion. “Their chief target was the Catholic Church. They are trying to change the Christian mind to the anti-Christian mind.” Some of their ways are taking religious groups out of schools and charities.
Let those geniuses in the almighty government do it.
They are also insidiously trying to take the voice of religion out of the public square.
We had a socialist presidential candidate this year who was a genuine contender, something which would have been unheard of just a decade or so ago. He just bought his third home; Alinsky had three homes.
It appears there is money to be made in denouncing wealth and private property.
Alinsky: “I Will Choose to go to Hell”
The problem is that communism/socialism started with a bad seed. Philosophically, if you start with a wrong premise, you can logically arrive at an incorrect conclusion. Marx and Alinsky were bad seeds. To push God out of the discussion and think that man’s flawed mind is the sole arbiter of the good is a catastrophic error.
I’ll let them speak for themselves about what evil force they were working for:
Mr. Payne characterizes this poem by Marx as “a satanic poem that reveals his Gnostic plan”:
“I wish to avenge myself against the one who rules above.
I will wander godlike and victorious through the ruin of this world.
Thus heaven I forfeited, I know it well.
My soul once true to God is chosen for hell.”
Alinsky begins his influential book Rules for Radicals with an acknowledgment to Lucifer:
“Lest we forget at least an over the shoulder acknowledgment to the very first radical… known to man who rebelled against the establishment and did it so effectively that he at least won his own kingdom – Lucifer.”
Didn’t he read the Bible? Satan loses in end. Big time.
He says about the afterlife:
“If there is an afterlife I would choose to go to Hell. Hell would be heaven for me. All my life I’ve been with the have-nots. Over here, if you’re a have-not, you’re short of dough. If you’re a have-not in hell, you’re short of virtue. Once I get into hell, I’ll start organizing the have-nots over there. They’re my kind of people.”
The Marxist playbook is one of the factors behind what Pope Saint John Paul II called the Culture of Death. They try to divide us by race, sex, country, ethnicity, income, or anything that is divisive. This destruction of family, religion, and morality is an abyss.
Jesus and Mary are Our Hope
But are we hopeless? Absolutely not!
The film offers three antidotes to save our society:
1. Reclaim in our culture the sacred dignity of the human person made in the image and likeness of God. “Thus at the root of modern totalitarianism,” says Fr. Popiełuszko,
“is to be found the denial of the transcendent dignity of the human person who is the visible image of the invisible God. Who by his very nature is the subject of rights which no one may violate.”
Right to life, all life, from conception to natural death.
2. Reclaim the principle of solidarity. All of us are members of the body of Christ. “The foundation of this society rests,” says Pope Leo XIII, “first of all in the indissoluble union of man and wife according to the necessity of natural law. And as completed in the mutual rights of parents and children.”
3. Reclaim the principle of subsidiarity which is grassroots decision making, not by an aloof federal government, but in our towns, in our communities, and in our families. Let’s do things on the local level, helping each other.
And, yes, pray to the Blessed Mother for assistance. She is the one who crushes the head of the serpent.
Fr. Andrew says, “You shalt strike at her heel but she will crush your head” (Genesis 3:15).
Pope Francis put it clearly and simply in his very first homily in 2013:
“When one does not profess Jesus Christ – I recall the phrase of Leon Bloy – ‘Whoever does not pray to God, prays to the devil.’ When one does not profess Jesus Christ, one professes the worldliness of the devil.”
As our new priest Fr. John Gribowich who does much work with the homeless tells us, again and again, “Our job is to love people, all people.” Not criticize, or feel superior, or attack, or condemn, but to love them.
The homeless have taught him so much.
Tradition tells us that John the Apostle, the beloved disciple, at the end of his life when he was too weak to walk, was carried about by his followers. All he would say to everyone he met was, “Little children, love one another.”
The Gospel in five words.
Photography: See our Photographers page.