"Freedom" And "Censorship" As Defined By Roman Catholicism
The history of the Roman Catholic Church is replete with cases wherein the freedom of thought, freedom of expression and freedom of worship have been denied even forcibly, to those who dared to think, speak and worship in a fashion other than that decreed by the Popes.
In our modern day, we are told that the strictness of Catholic censorship was required during the Middle Ages, but that the progress of civilization has modified such a need. However, the fact remains that Catholic thought-control exists in a very real sense, and if circumstances permitted, such thought-control and regimented religion would once again become the order of the day. The 'circumstances permitting' such a condition are simply those of shifting the Roman Catholic population from a minority to a majority in any given nation or state.
Quotations From Catholic Publications
Pope Leo XIII published an encyclical on 'Human Liberty' in the year 1888 which contains the following statement: ". . . IT IS QUITE UNLAWFUL TO DEMAND, TO DEFEND, OR TO GRANT UNCONDITIONAL FREEDOM OF THOUGHT, OF SPEECH, OF WRITING, OR OF WORSHIP, AS IF THESE WERE SO MANY RIGHTS GIVEN BY NATURE TO MAN..."
This same Leo XIII considered the 'Index of Forbidden Books' to be of such a desirable use that in 1897, he instituted new general decrees concerning the placing of publications on the Index. The Index was reformed by him in the year 1900.
The Catholic Encyclopedia states: "In our own days (The 20th Century, LWM.) the danger caused by bad books has risen to a degree never thought of before. Unrestraint of intellect and will is the real cause of this increase. THE SO-CALLED FREEDOM OF THE PRESS OR THE ABOLITION OF PUBLIC CENSORSHIP IS LARGELY RESPONSIBLE FOR THIS UNRESTRAINT. (Emphasis mine, LWM.) All the more the Church (Catholic Church, LWM.) is bound to put an end to the evil by wise and just laws. The highest ecclesiastical authority, Leo XIII himself, has done so in the most solemn way by the aforesaid Bull 'Officiorum ac Munerum" (25 January, 1897) which obliges very strictly all the faithful." (Vol. III, page 523.)
"It is, of course, absolutely impossible for both the pope and the Congregation of the Index to watch over the press of all countries in order to SUPPRESS AT ONCE EACH AND EVERY PERNICIOUS WRITING.." (Emphasis mine, LWM., Vol. III, page 524.)
"It is universally granted that especially in our days there exists hardly a greater danger to faith and morals than that which we may call the literary danger. From the greatness or rather indispensableness of the good at stake, the opportuneness and even necessity of preventive and strictly binding measures undoubtedly follow. In other words, the object in view of the law, that of safeguarding and keeping pure religion and morality (As defined by Catholicism, LWM.), is absolutely necessary; now this object is at the present time more than ever endangered by a bad press; consequently those authorities whose principal office it is to protect the faith and morals of their subjects, must needs make suitable provisions against that press. Hence the moral necessity of such laws ...." (Cath. Encyc., Vol. III, page 526.)
"IT MAY BE ADDED THAT PROHIBITION OF BOOKS AND PREVENTIVE MEASURES AGAINST A BAD PRESS ARE INDISPENSABLE EVEN WHERE IN APPEARANCE, AND ACCORDING TO THE LETTER OF THE LAW, ABSOLUTE FREEDOM OF THE PRESS PREVAILS. (Emphasis mine, LWM.) The truth of this is established by the political history of the last century no less than by the civil legislation of more recent years. During the past decades the freedom of the press, sanctioned by the laws, has degenerated in so many places into absolute lawlessness, that on all sides and from all parties has arisen a demand for legal protection. The Catholic Church was therefore bound to adhere all the more firmly to her system, (of censorship, LWM.) though in its practical application she was able to introduce many opportune mitigations." (Cath. Encyc., Vol. III, page 527.)
Let us summarize the foregoing statements:
(1) Catholicism teaches that it is QUITE UNLAWFUL to demand, defend or grant unconditionally, the FOUR FREEDOMS . . . . FREEDOMS THAT AMERICAN CITIZENS HOLD SO DEAR!
(2) Catholicism teaches that FREEDOM OF THE PRESS and the ABOLITION OF PUBLIC CENSORSHIP is very EVIL!
(3) Catholicism would IF SHE COULD .... in ALL NATIONS . . . . SUPPRESS AT ONCE, EACH AND EVERY WRITING . . . . that SHE considers to be 'pernicious.'
(4) The "BAD PRESS" of our Nation is dangerous to 'faith and morals' according to the Catholic Church, due to its enjoyment of FREEDOM!
And (5) Catholicism teaches that "PROHIBITION OF BOOKS" and "PREVENTIVE MEASURES AGAINST A 'BAD PRESS"' are INDISPENSABLE even where according to the LETTER OF THE LAW . . . absolute freedom of the press prevails. Thus, even in the United States where freedom of the press does prevail, Catholicism claims that CENSORSHIP is INDISPENSABLE in the accomplishment of her aims and intentions!
Although our feelings are in sympathy with the Hungarian peoples who are being mis-treated by the Communists, yet we must not lose sight of the fact that over 70% of the Hungarians admitted to this country, are sincere but deceived members of the Roman Catholic Church.
It is a known fact, that wherever Catholicism is in the majority, freedom of worship disappears. Both Communism and Catholicism are philosophies that thrive upon thought-control and denial of freedoms. The principle is the same, whether it originates in Rome or Moscow, the Kremlin or the Vatican.