by Yaffah Batya daCosta
In order to understand what happened in the early days of the American “republic” – at the time of the colonies and leading to the Revolution and Declaration of Independence – we must first delve a little bit into the concept of “heresy”. The new immigrants had all come to the New World to be able to practice their faith in a free and open society.
So, actually, there are two very important words here: orthodoxy and heterodoxy. The former means the “right” or correct belief, doctrines, dogma, practices of a religion, or a sect, as defined by that group. And the latter word means deviation, dissent, doubt about, or disagreement with those so-called “right” views. The word heresy comes from the word heterodox. Most religions have done this over history – defining what is within (and therefore acceptable) among their ranks. And also defining what is considered to be the opposite, or outside of their definitions, and therefore unacceptable to them. Even groups do this!
From the standpoint of world religions, the Roman Imperial Cult made a point of being very specific in terms of what would be viewed as Orthodox by them, and the discrimination (if not outright persecution) of dissenters and those who disagreed. Romanized Christianity therefore, which became the religion of the Roman Empire in the 4th century C.E. did exactly the same.
The earliest form of Christianity (I call Antioch Christianity which was based on the 1st century writings) had been persecuted for almost 250 years (off and on from 64 C.E. to about 313 C.E.) by the Roman Imperial Cult. Once the changed (Romanized) form of Christianity was declared the only religion of the Empire (and called the Roman Catholic Church) the persecution throughout most of Western history has been of the Christian church’s persecution of Jews. But those were not the only people persecuted by the Roman Catholic Church. Later Protestants (who for the Roman Church were heretics) were also persecuted starting with Martin Luther. But low and behold, this custom of vilifying people who disagreed in matters of faith and belief was then carried on by the people of the colonies in the New World.
The immigrants from Europe to the USA, 270+ years prior to the founding of the American Republic, were “refugees” mainly from the opposition they had faced in the countries of their origin. They were Pilgrims, Quakers, Friends, Anglicans (Church of England), Congregationalists, Huguenots, and later other Protestant sects (Presbyterians, Methodist, Lutherans, Pietists, Baptists, etc.) as well as very small numbers of Roman Catholics, Jews and Muslims. Their most pressing desire, in crossing the Atlantic Ocean to the New World, was to escape discrimination and persecution. When they went about building their colonies, and little towns and villages, they had started to discriminate (or outright persecute) the people of other sects and denominations. This happened all over the 13 colonies – until the succession from the British Crown.
Because the cost of the passage (by ship) from Great Britain and Europe was high – some people sold themselves into “indentured servitude” until that debt could be paid off. This is called debt bondage – many of the illegals coming across the USA southern border today are doing the same thing. Their debt is to the cartels of human traffickers and drug smugglers.
The Africa Americans, on the other hand, were brought over as slaves. That means they were property (chattel) owned by their masters, after having been kidnapped (stolen) within Africa. And there was no debt that could be paid off for them to become freed (that is, until the American Revolution). Kidnapping a human (in the Hebrew Bible) is THEFT.
So, the Founders of the United States of America were trying to deal with both of these situations. They were educated men, some were not Christian (they were called Deists) and others were fully Christian but deplored both the sectarian persecutions of people, and also the enslavement of human beings by other human beings. This went all the way back to Roger Williams (who had been exiled from the Massachusetts Bay Colony in 1635). Mr. Williams was a huge promoter of the concept that all the people should be free from any kind of regulation of religion by the state.
Finally, what historians call the Great Awakening arrived in the 18th century. A major preacher by the name of George Whitefield travelled within the colonies (outside of New England) explaining to his audiences the concept of “eternal salvation” by being what he called “born again”. What had been normal, with everyone in a community going to the same church, was then transformed into the acceptance of the freedom of “individual choice”.
Just before the American Revolution (Revolutionary War of 1775 – 1783) the “diversity” of religious faith and practice in the Colonies was extreme. It is said that no more than 20% of a colony’s members were from any particular Protestant sect. And what became Episcopalians (derived from the Church of England after they broke free of it) was no more than 15%.
The leading founders were nominal Christians and they were not in favor of strict doctrine. And some historians believe that the Revolution itself was an extremely secular event – as some of the founders were outwardly Deists, people who were openly against Church orthodoxies and Thomas Paine himself was against Christianity.
After the American Revolution, the colonies had become states. And while it was enshrined in the Constitution that there would be NO Federal designation of a National Religion (i.e., due to the Jeffersonians idea of the separation of Church and State). Still, some of the States (like Massachusetts) did have a state-level religion for some period of time.
In closing, and in stating the “bottom line” as we say, we have the 1st Amendment of the US Constitution. “The First Amendment provides that Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion or prohibiting its free exercise. It protects freedom of speech, the press, assembly, and the right to petition the Government for a redress of grievances.” It was highly influenced by the history of the 250 years of the early days of the colonies and the religious discrimination and persecution of the colonialists one against another. And that was the exact kind of “cancel culture” that the majority of colonists had witnessed and/or experienced in Britain and Europe and from which they had fled to the New World.
For the last few years, we have witnessed the exact opposite in the USA. People being “cancelled” from their social media account due to their political opinions (or other opinions disliked by the elite). People losing family relationships, or losing friends, because of being Conservative (now thought to be a dirty word).
Cancel culture of the Greco-Roman Church was successful in “cancelling”” their opposition (in its formative years) by the fear of the sword, and via other forms of persecution. Now, in 2022, we see that fear of being cancelled is being used to silence the opposition of parents (regarding what is being taught to their children in public schools) and in many other areas of our society.
And with the up-coming election … we see the USA people being split down the middle. Not between “right” versus “left”. But rather it comes down to a contest between the Globalists – those who are against the US Constitution and instead are aligned with the New World Order (Davos), the One World Government (World Economic Forum) and the One World Religion (under the Vatican) as well as the Green New Deal (alternative energy) and Climate Change that encourages with wide-open borders. Only the Globalists are using cancel culture to defeat their opposition. Contrasted with the Nationalists (or Patriots) – people who are aligned with the US Constitution (and with all the freedoms granted – by GOD – therein). They’re also in agreement with the policy of America 1st, with American energy independence, and with closed borders, with independent religious groups and American “exceptionalism”.
The Globalists (for short) will not give up. They will use all that the ancient Greco-Roman Cancel Culture has to offer to them in subduing the Nationalists (Patriots). We shall see who wins this debate (at this moment in time) with the upcoming US Election on Tuesday Nov, 8th.
The current midterm elections in the United States are going to serve as a barometer of how much the general population will sustain a government that is destroying the country by SILENCING as best they can any and all opposition and dissent about their domestic policies through their partners in the mainstream media. And they know full well – silence means consent. Silence in these elections will mean that the majority of the population is willing to go along, to get along, to prevent being cancelled and publicly humiliated. It will also mean that not enough people are willing to utilize their voice (through their vote and later in other ways) to bring about the needed changes.
But at some point, every adult learns that if they (for any reason) do not like a situation, their choices are to 1) change the situation with their voice/vote, or 2) change their mind about the situation by accepting it.
Excerpts from a new book (to be published later this year) by Yaffah Batya daCosta called “The Riddle of Calling a Dog’s Tail a Leg: Cancel Culture from Ancient to Modern Times”. She is a descendant of Portuguese Crypto Jews (Bnei Anousim). She returned to the faith & traditions of her Sephardic Jewish ancestors (by halakha) in 2000. She is also the founder and CEO of an Israel International non-profit (Ezra L’Anousim in their 18th year) who helps the returning Crypto-Jews, worldwide. Their website is bneianousim.org