Catholic League Condemns FBI Attack on ‘Traditionalist’ Catholics

FBI investigators arrive at the home of suspected nightclub shooter Ian David Long on November 8 2018, in Thousand Oaks, California. - The gunman who killed 12 people in a crowded California country music bar has been identified as 28-year-old Ian David Long, a former Marine, the local sheriff said …
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Catholic League president Bill Donohue has denounced recent attacks by President Joe Biden’s FBI on what it calls “radical-traditionalist Catholics.”

Dr. Donohue cites a report by the FBI’s Richmond Field Office titled “Interest of Racially or Ethnically Motivated Violent Extremists in Radical Traditionalist Catholic Ideology Almost Certainly Presents New Mitigation Opportunities.”

The report, leaked by an FBI whistle-blower, was published this week by Kyle Seraphin, who was a special agent at the bureau for six years before he was indefinitely suspended without pay in June 2022.

In his accompanying article, Seraphin notes that the report proposes that “a preference for the Catholic Mass in Latin instead of the vernacular and a number of more traditional views on other world religions can amount to an ‘adherence to anti-Semitic, anti-immigrant, anti-LGBTQ and white supremacist ideology.’”

As Donohue observes, as its prime source, the FBI report cites “the far-left and scandal ridden Southern Poverty Law Center (SPLC),” cutting and pasting a direct copy of the SPLC list of “Radical Traditional Catholicism Hate Groups” as an appendix to its report.

In 2018, Attorney General Jeff Sessions called out the SPLC by name at the Religious Liberty Summit of the Alliance Defending Freedom (ADF), a successful Christian public interest law firm that the SPLC designates as a “hate group.”

The SPLC had dubbed the ADF an “Anti-LGBT Hate Group” after a string of Supreme Court victories, particularly the successful defense of a Christian Colorado baker who refused to adorn a cake with phrases condoning homosexual marriage.

“We have gotten to the point where … one group can actively target religious groups by labeling them a ‘hate group’ on the basis of their sincerely held religious beliefs,” Sessions declared.

When I spoke to ADF last year, “I learned that the Southern Poverty Law Center had classified ADF as a ‘hate group,’” Sessions said. “Many in the media simply parroted it as fact. Amazon relied solely on the SPLC designation and removed ADF from its Smile program, which allows customers to donate to charities.”

“They have used this designation as a weapon, and they have wielded it against conservative organizations that refuse to accept their orthodoxy and choose instead to speak their conscience,” he continued. “They use it to bully and intimidate groups like yours which fight for the religious freedom, the civil rights, and the constitutional rights of others.”

In his essay, Donohue notes that the SPLC also calls the Family Research Council and the Ruth Institute hate groups, “which is a scurrilous lie.”

“Tony Perkins, who runs the former group, and Jennifer Roback Morse, who runs the latter, are both outstanding social conservatives. They are anything but hateful,” he adds.

In 2018, after the FBI admitted to working with the SPLC, Rep. Matt Gaetz, R-FL, called the development “surprising and worrisome” since “the SPLC is known to use its platform in order to denigrate and disparage certain groups by labeling them ‘hate groups.’”

Gaetz said the SPLC has labeled organizations like the Christian Family Research Council (FRC) hate groups, while not bestowing this label on members of “Antifa.”

He also noted that Floyd Corkins, who shot an FRC employee, later said he targeted the group since the SPLC had labeled it an antigay group.

“The SPLC’s conflation of mainstream political advocacy groups with legitimate hate groups and domestic terror groups is absurd, frequently indiscriminate and dangerous,” Gaetz said.

Using lists from the SPLC, the FBI has now decided to target sincere Christians.

“The FBI as an organization has joined in the hunt for Christians; we have proof of it” Fox News host Tucker Carlson stated on his show Thursday evening.

“The FBI tried to manufacture crimes against sincere Catholics. The FBI’s Richmond field office recently published an internal document promising to punish ‘radical traditionalist Catholics’ and their ideology,” Carlson stated.

“The FBI has decided that if you are too sincere about your Catholicism, you are a criminal,” he added.

Appearing as a guest on Carlson’s show, Kyle Seraphin, himself a Catholic, said the recent FBI report is “appalling,” adding:

I have friends with people who love the Latin Mass. I went to a traditional school where I actually learned Latin in the 5th and 6th grade and all the way through high school, and it doesn’t seem reasonable but it is the state of the FBI at this point that they are so desperate to find white supremacists that they are going to look at the Catholic Church.

“They have found a gateway in what they think is fringe Catholicism in order to move into Christians in general and to declare them to be the actual criminals in this country or the potential terrorists,” Seraphin said.

“The whole document basically is written from the perspective of somebody who thinks there are significant abortion rights that need to be defended and also an LGBTQ agenda that has to be pushed down the American people’s throats and these are antithetical to Catholicism,” he added.

Related — Watch: Catholic Priest at March for Latin Mass: The Pope Is “Absolutely” “Pushing a Globalist, Leftist Agenda”

Thomas D. Williams is Breitbart Rome Bureau Chief and the author of The Coming Christian Persecution.


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