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Nationalism, Populism, and Catholicism – A Study on Intersectionality

Articles | March 4, 2024 | by Catholics for Catholics

In the last six weeks, I have attended two collegiate sporting events. 

The first was a basketball game at a popular Protestant school in central Texas.  The president of the university is a married woman and that, interestingly, seemed to attract the target audience.  The wealthy, predominantly white women, paid up to $600 per ticket to file into the brand new, state of the art, $200 million arena with their well-behaved husbands in tow.  The husbands were in their clean, quarter zip pullovers, fashionably purchased specially for the 2023-24 basketball season.  It had the feel of a social engagement, rather than an athletic contest.  It sounded like all of the attendees had plans afterward and left a great game early to attend.  It was like cotillion with a three-point line. 

The other event was a hockey game at a prominent Catholic school in the mid-west.  These folks were a different class of people.  While the basketball game was filled with mothers and students who had that event circled on their calendar for months, these folks seemed to have just trickled in, in their worn winter jackets covering their work clothes.  This $25 dollar ticket was a literal and figurative escape for them.  From the bitter cold awaiting them outside and wanting to forget the rigor of blue-collar life for three periods.

These people were less civilized than the other crowd.  They looked forward to a beer or two at the end of the week.  There was a clannishness about us.  There was a realism and sincerity hardened by sacrifice.  Their chapped existence was relieved briefly by the passionate distraction, as they lived and died with the boys on the ice.  The players were lifted up by the crowd, but so was the crowd by the boys, as each patron stayed until the final buzzer – in a six goal to one rout.

These were Midwest people.  These are the electricians, the plumbers and the housewives.  These blue collar, hard-working people are just different from those in New York and Los Angeles.  They are not fascinated by Hollywood activism, nor are they terribly concerned with political correctness. 

The women at this event were different.  These women know that the world doesn’t always go the way they want.  They have been the nurturer and the reassuring mother.  They are committed to being the heart of their families.  These folks seem like the type to attend Mass weekly.  There were no polish sausages eaten on this Friday night in late February. 

These folks feel as though they have not had an advocate in a long time.  Since the Eisenhower Administration have they been forgotten, except for a few years ago that seem a lifetime gone past.  Instead of a four-year mirage, when autoworkers jobs were preserved and protected, when construction projects occupied any with a trade, they have been pushed aside for the political agenda of the government class who always profit.  They know that ‘Made in America’ is an anachronism anymore. Under the banner of free trade their livelihoods have been stolen.  Endless foreign wars have sacrificed their sons, never to return the same, or at all.  Political correctness has taken their freedom to speak without fear.  They know that their ability to pray or worship is not universal.  They are not prejudiced – in fact the backs of the jerseys they were cheering for read: Plucinski, Moynihan, Janicke, Silianoff, Mastrodomenico, Graziano and Napoli.  But they recognize that there is a difference between the natural immigration of the past and the flood of politically motivated pawns that are being ushered into the country now.  It is not lost on us that these immigrants have more support from our government than we do.    

They are a disheveled bunch.  They know that.  But these people are real.  The same evangelical who looks down at us in that arena may hold their nose and vote from Trump, but these people love the Donald and he gets them.  These folks in the Midwest need Trump and Trump stood for them when no one else did.  He has inspired a slow growing revolution in the Republican party that, when completed, will remove the war mongering, globalists like Nikki Haley, Chris Christie, and Mitch McConnel, and will wrest the union vote inexorably from the Democrat Party who sees us as rubes.

The sellout crowd in attendance knows that if America was dominated by real people, with common sense, but no college degree, and if they could vote in a free and fair election, Trump would win in a landslide.  It is not beyond us that for four short years, when the country was so fed up that it put an outsider in office, he addressed or fixed every problem that it took every politician from Nixon to Obama to create.  They are shrewd enough to deduce that when the President of the United States advocates for the American people, God forbid, that two-dollar gas, milk and eggs are within their reach.  And that peace in our time is possible. 

These people are not fooled by Mike Pence fumbling with the gas pump in a contrived, condescending, campaign commercial.  They are not fooled by the traitorously corrupt Joe Biden perpetrating lies about his upbringing as a poor, black, Jewish, girl. 

There was a nationalist mood in that gym.  There was a populist mood in that gym.  There was an overwhelmingly Catholic ethic in that gym.  It was the joy of Catholicism.  And contrary to the opinion of those ‘nattering nabobs of negativism’, there is nothing wrong with that.



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