Oh Lord My God Is There No Help For The Widow's Son ?

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John The Reformer

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Feb 6, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/6/99
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I am not an anti-mason.

I am anti - special treatment for the few or privledged.

Now you folks no I never claimed to be an expert on your hobby.

I apologize for using such unfraternal suggestions that a mason
who denys that the Grand Hailing Sign Of Distress exists is a Liar,
that particular line was unnecessary.

That being said I have an interest in your organization from a political,
and historical perspective.

This is an open forum, I would assume you would not only want to dialogue
with masons.

If only to get some practice in at defending your organization. Believe
me in the responses I have seen so far I should say you are all quite
capable of defending yourself in an intelligent and thoughtfull manner.

Some of you stated that there was a Grand Hailing Sign Of Distress.

Some of you didn't respond to that point and took me up on another.

Some said my understanding of the exact method of using this sign
was wrong or warm or in the ballpark ( I got some e-mails directly
which surprised me quite a bit).

So as I was just going off of memory and maybe having a bit of fun I looked
up a reference.

No I know that rituals have changed over the years and there are concordant
bodies and rites that have differences as well I suppose as regional and
national variations.

But Here Goes Again.

Another phrase (or gesture) used in extreme situations is the Grand
Masonic Hailing Sign of Distress.

A Masonic defendent in court might bury his hands at some point and cry," Oh
Lord My God, is there no help for the widow's son? "

Although that might sound a bit odd to the average listener, it could be
understood as a cry of anguish.

If a masonic judge or juror heard it, they would be honor bound (by a blood
oath) to acquit such a person, or at least fight for a hung jury.

The gesture which accompanies this (or it can be given alone, if necessary)
is for the person to raise his arms over his head (almost as in a hands up
position and then lowering them in three stages, pivoting the forearms at
the elbow until they are perpendicular to the floor, palms down.

Any Mason, seeing that gesture, or hearing the above words would be
oath-bound to do anything possible to save the other Mason from danger,
up to, but not including, the loss of his own life.

DUNCAN, MALCOLM C., DUNCANS RITUAL MONITOR

Now the above I took from the source stated above, and it does differ
slightly from the way I initially stated it from my rather poor memory.
The main difference I see is that it says up to but not including, the
loss of life. Perhaps I read that elsewhere or got it mixed up.

The important points are as It are Thus :


1. The Grand Masonic Hailing Sign of Distress Exists.

2. The Above Sign must obviously exist for some purpose or
other wise it wouldn't exist - if anything Masonic Rituals are
detailed and everything has some logical purpose.

3. If it has a purpose what might that be?

4. I would surmise that it is to get Masons out of trouble.

Now although some of you stated that a Mason would never get himself
into trouble or do anything untoward - they are still human.

Additionally the above mentioned distress might have occured during
some sory of "mission" as it were so Masons might think that getting
the brother "off the Hook" was justified as he was serving some sort
of higher purpose.

5. This however doesn't excuse the fact that it is in this land one law
for all, no special treatment or favours.

Thank-you

JOHn

P.S. I am most interested in getting an answer to my point number 3 if
my conjecture is wrong.

-----------== Posted via Deja News, The Discussion Network ==----------
http://www.dejanews.com/ Search, Read, Discuss, or Start Your Own

Jack Hickey

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Feb 6, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/6/99
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On Sat, 06 Feb 1999 10:07:40 GMT, John The Reformer
<gnos...@hotmail.com> wrote:

>This is an open forum, I would assume you would not only want to dialogue
>with masons.

Quite so. There is another, very good, newsgroup for that purpose.

>If only to get some practice in at defending your organization.

I don't happen to believe that it needs a defense.

>Some said my understanding of the exact method of using this sign
>was wrong or warm or in the ballpark

My objection was to your statement that "if any Mason denies that it
is done EXACTLY..." (your capitalization) "this way, he is a liar."

Since it is NOT done EXACTLY that way, and you STILL are misquoting
the line (as done in my jurisdiction), then my objection was, and
still is, valid. You still don't have it right, and I have no
obligation to correct you.

>If a masonic judge or juror heard it, they would be honor bound (by a blood
>oath) to acquit such a person, or at least fight for a hung jury.

There IS no "blood oath" as such. The symbolic penalties of
Freemasonry are explained as just precisely that -- symbolic. No
Mason anywhere swears to perform them, and no Mason anywhere swears to
allow them to be inflicted on himself.

There is in the U.S. today, such a thing as a "jury consultant,"
a specialist in helping lawyers pick the best possible jury for their
case. Defense lawyers use them, as do prosecutors.

Any prosecution jury consultant that allowed a jury member to be
empanelled, when a member of the same fraternal organization as the
accused, should hang up his hoodoo bag. The juror could be challenged
and dismissed for cause.

A Masonic judge, knowing the accused to be a member of his own
Fraternity, would likely recuse himself or face mistrial and reversal.

>DUNCAN, MALCOLM C., DUNCANS RITUAL MONITOR

If you are depending on Duncan's for your information, this explains
quite a lot.

I often refer people to Duncan's when they ask me about the "secrets"
of Freemasonry; since you can buy a copy for just a few dollars, or
get it out of a library, it rather gives the lie to the idea that
everything about Masonry is "secretive." On the other hand, I've
never told anyone that Duncan's is authoritative, either.

I don't know of any jurisdiction that actually uses the ritual as
given in Duncan's, though it is quite close in some respects; and
widely divergent in others.

>1. The Grand Masonic Hailing Sign of Distress Exists.

Didn't deny that, obviously.

>2. The Above Sign must obviously exist for some purpose or
>other wise it wouldn't exist - if anything Masonic Rituals are
>detailed and everything has some logical purpose.

The ritual sign exists largely for the purpose of the ritual.

I imagine that, if one is in sincere distress, one would want to use a
sign or signal that would be recognized by as many people as possible.
Since the GHS would only be recognized as such by Masons, and since we
are a small (and dwindling) part of the population, it would seem to
defeat its own purpose to use it in a life-or-death situation.

>3. If it has a purpose what might that be?

It is traditional. It has a purpose within the body of that
tradition.

>4. I would surmise that it is to get Masons out of trouble.

Of course you would, since you don't know any better.

>Now although some of you stated that a Mason would never get himself
>into trouble or do anything untoward - they are still human.

Thank you for the polite qualification.

>Additionally the above mentioned distress might have occured during
>some sory of "mission" as it were so Masons might think that getting
>the brother "off the Hook" was justified as he was serving some sort
>of higher purpose.

Getting a little outre, there, I think. What sort of "mission" do
you have in mind?

>5. This however doesn't excuse the fact that it is in this land one law
>for all, no special treatment or favours.

What planet are you posting from, John?


Jack Hickey, MM
Senior Deacon
Isaiah Thomas Lodge
Worcester MA

ri...@my-dejanews.com

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Feb 6, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/6/99
to
John,

For someone with an unprejudiced interest in Freemasonry, your accusation
about Masons getting out of legal trouble by using the Grand Hailing Sign of
Distress is suspiciously anti-Masonic like. I'll play the straight man,
however. To save bandwidth, I will snip those lines except the ones I am
answering.


In article <79h499$k89$1...@nnrp1.dejanews.com>,


John The Reformer <gnos...@hotmail.com> wrote:

> I am not an anti-mason.
>
> I am anti - special treatment for the few or privledged.
>

> That being said I have an interest in your organization from a political,
> and historical perspective.
>


> This is an open forum, I would assume you would not only want to dialogue
> with masons.
>

Indeed. Masons founded this forum and left it unmoderated for that purpose.
It has remained unmoderated.


>
> 1. The Grand Masonic Hailing Sign of Distress Exists.
>

It does.

> 2. The Above Sign must obviously exist for some purpose or
> other wise it wouldn't exist - if anything Masonic Rituals are
> detailed and everything has some logical purpose.
>

I will give you a very personal time when the GHSof D was used by one Mason to
me. My Father, a Mason, and I spent all night standing beside my Mother's
deathbed. After twelve very long hours, and forty-three years of marriage, my
mother passed from this Earth with Dad and I holding her hands. Before we
called the nurses in, Dad looked at me, and could not speak. He gave me the
GHSofD and I responded in turn. Until that moment, I never realized the full
import of the sign. His pain and distress was so great, his need so acute,
that nothing else could express it. A Mason would not use the sign unless the
need were such. It would not be used as you have described, and I personally
take offense at the suggestion.

> 3. If it has a purpose what might that be?
>

> 4. I would surmise that it is to get Masons out of trouble.
>


See the above.

> Now although some of you stated that a Mason would never get himself
> into trouble or do anything untoward - they are still human.
>

> Additionally the above mentioned distress might have occured during
> some sory of "mission" as it were so Masons might think that getting
> the brother "off the Hook" was justified as he was serving some sort
> of higher purpose.
>

> 5. This however doesn't excuse the fact that it is in this land one law
> for all, no special treatment or favours.
>

> Thank-you
>
> JOHn
>
> P.S. I am most interested in getting an answer to my point number 3 if
> my conjecture is wrong.
>
> -----------== Posted via Deja News, The Discussion Network ==----------
> http://www.dejanews.com/ Search, Read, Discuss, or Start Your Own
>

Your whole assumption is wrong. To begin with, Freemasonry is not about
gaining priviledge, but gaining inner improvement and fellowship. If you
read Masonic literature not printed by anti-Masonic sources and converse with
Mason, you will find that it is the internal qualities of a man which qualify
a man to be made a Mason.

Sure, Masons are human. There are Mason who have undoubtedly broken the
law. I think you will find that they are a much, much , smaller
percentage of the population of prisons than any other group. Not
because they receive a special advantage in court, but because they
simply do not do the type of things to get them there in the first place
with the same frequency other populations in our society do.

As a Mason, one of the lessons taught me that I had an obligation to be a
peaceful and law abiding citizen. If I were ever to break the law in a
manner which caused me to have a court trial, I would not want to have
Masons in the jury. If there were, I would definitely not want them to
know I had been a Mason at one time. Masons tend to be hard where
law-breakers are concerned. Even more so if a criminal was a Mason.
Notice I said *was* a Mason. In all likelyhood, If I committed a crime
and my Lodge knew about it, I would face a Masonic Trial in that Lodge.
If found guilty, I would receive the ultimate penalty of Freemasonry,
expulsion from the Fraternity.

Yes, that is correct. The "blood oaths" you refer to are symbolic parts
of the Ritual. In themselves, the actual penalties of the Obligations
(not oaths) sound horrible. Masons know that they are part of a teaching
lesson. They are a play, if you will, designed to teach the values of
Freemasonry. The actual penalties of breaking the Obligations of
Freemasonry are suspension, or expulsion. They can be invoked in Texas
for such things as drunkeness and being a libertine. If a Mason in this
jurisdiction is found guilty of a crime in a court of law, he is
automatically expelled from Freemasonry. The reality is that before he
committed the crime, he expelled himself by thought and action.

Does this answer your question?

Richard Jackson, PM
Corrigan Masonic Lodge #1103 AF&AM
Corrigan, Texas
newsgroup article copyright 1999, all rights reserved by Richard Jackson

JunDec735

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Feb 6, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/6/99
to
John:

I have never read the document, "DUNCAN, MALCOLM C., DUNCANS RITUAL MONITOR",
to which you have referred, so I cannot speak on its veracity. But in my
travels I have visited lodges in several jurisdictions in the US, and
elsewhere, during which I witnessed ritual degree work that included the
versions of the statement and actions that you have desribed.

In none of those meetings were there wordings exactly like you wrote. This is
very understandable as there is NO Universal body that controls all Freemasonry
and dictates its exact ritual. Each Masonic Jurisdiction establishes its own
ritual and, although the allegory used is the same in most jurisdictions,
differences in wordings and actions do vary.

But I can refute the statement of Masons reacting in a favorable manner towards
its use in a criminal case. In every jurisdiction that I witnessed this degree,
where the words and signs, that you refer to, are taught, there is also an
obligation taken which specifically excluded criminal activity as a reason to
support a Brother Mason.

Mike Beltzer
Senior Deacon
Cuyahoga Falls Lodge #528. Ohio

John The Reformer

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Feb 7, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/7/99
to
In article <79hjih$utc$1...@nnrp1.dejanews.com>,

ri...@my-dejanews.com wrote:
> John,
>
> For someone with an unprejudiced interest in Freemasonry, your accusation
> about Masons getting out of legal trouble by using the Grand Hailing Sign of
> Distress is suspiciously anti-Masonic like. I'll play the straight man,
> however. To save bandwidth, I will snip those lines except the ones I am
> answering.

JOhn : Maybe they don't use the sign, maybe they know each other already
or they have someone contact that official and let them know that brother
so and so is in "distress" and please help him out. It is only natural
for any outsider to be suspicous of this sort of thing, and I did go
to the trouble to reference some Masonic Literature rather than relying
on conjecture.

> In article <79h499$k89$1...@nnrp1.dejanews.com>,
> John The Reformer <gnos...@hotmail.com> wrote:
> > I am not an anti-mason.
> >
> > I am anti - special treatment for the few or privledged.
> >
>
> > That being said I have an interest in your organization from a political,
> > and historical perspective.
> >
> > This is an open forum, I would assume you would not only want to dialogue
> > with masons.
> >
>
> Indeed. Masons founded this forum and left it unmoderated for that purpose.
> It has remained unmoderated.

John : Thank-you I won't abuse that privledge as I have many questions.


>
> >
> > 1. The Grand Masonic Hailing Sign of Distress Exists.
> >
>
> It does.
>
> > 2. The Above Sign must obviously exist for some purpose or
> > other wise it wouldn't exist - if anything Masonic Rituals are
> > detailed and everything has some logical purpose.
> >
>
> I will give you a very personal time when the GHSof D was used by one Mason to
> me. My Father, a Mason, and I spent all night standing beside my Mother's
> deathbed. After twelve very long hours, and forty-three years of marriage, my
> mother passed from this Earth with Dad and I holding her hands. Before we
> called the nurses in, Dad looked at me, and could not speak. He gave me the
> GHSofD and I responded in turn. Until that moment, I never realized the full
> import of the sign. His pain and distress was so great, his need so acute,
> that nothing else could express it. A Mason would not use the sign unless the
> need were such. It would not be used as you have described, and I personally
> take offense at the suggestion.

JOhn : condolences.


>
> > 3. If it has a purpose what might that be?
> >
> > 4. I would surmise that it is to get Masons out of trouble.
> >
>

JOHn : See the above.


>
> > Now although some of you stated that a Mason would never get himself
> > into trouble or do anything untoward - they are still human.
> >
> > Additionally the above mentioned distress might have occured during
> > some sory of "mission" as it were so Masons might think that getting
> > the brother "off the Hook" was justified as he was serving some sort
> > of higher purpose.
> >
> > 5. This however doesn't excuse the fact that it is in this land one law
> > for all, no special treatment or favours.
> >
> > Thank-you
> >
> > JOHn
> >
> > P.S. I am most interested in getting an answer to my point number 3 if
> > my conjecture is wrong.
> >
> > -----------== Posted via Deja News, The Discussion Network ==----------
> > http://www.dejanews.com/ Search, Read, Discuss, or Start Your Own
> >
>
> Your whole assumption is wrong. To begin with, Freemasonry is not about
> gaining priviledge, but gaining inner improvement and fellowship. If you
> read Masonic literature not printed by anti-Masonic sources and converse with
> Mason, you will find that it is the internal qualities of a man which qualify
> a man to be made a Mason.

John : gaining privlege is undoubtabley secondary however I intuetively
think it is still there especially in employment and business arrangements.


>
> Sure, Masons are human. There are Mason who have undoubtedly broken the
> law. I think you will find that they are a much, much , smaller
> percentage of the population of prisons than any other group. Not
> because they receive a special advantage in court, but because they
> simply do not do the type of things to get them there in the first place
> with the same frequency other populations in our society do.

JOhn: Although I don't reside in the U.K. I recently read some info
on the U.K. Offical site of the Grand Lodge or some such. It discussed
the new legislation passed in Parliament where all judges, prosecuters,
and Police now have to declare whether they are members. The reasons
given where evidently some cases that came to the forefront where this
happened. Anyway it was just recently passed, have a look.


>
> As a Mason, one of the lessons taught me that I had an obligation to be a
> peaceful and law abiding citizen. If I were ever to break the law in a
> manner which caused me to have a court trial, I would not want to have
> Masons in the jury. If there were, I would definitely not want them to
> know I had been a Mason at one time. Masons tend to be hard where
> law-breakers are concerned. Even more so if a criminal was a Mason.
> Notice I said *was* a Mason. In all likelyhood, If I committed a crime
> and my Lodge knew about it, I would face a Masonic Trial in that Lodge.
> If found guilty, I would receive the ultimate penalty of Freemasonry,
> expulsion from the Fraternity.

see above


>
> Yes, that is correct. The "blood oaths" you refer to are symbolic parts
> of the Ritual. In themselves, the actual penalties of the Obligations
> (not oaths) sound horrible. Masons know that they are part of a teaching
> lesson. They are a play, if you will, designed to teach the values of
> Freemasonry. The actual penalties of breaking the Obligations of
> Freemasonry are suspension, or expulsion. They can be invoked in Texas
> for such things as drunkeness and being a libertine. If a Mason in this
> jurisdiction is found guilty of a crime in a court of law, he is
> automatically expelled from Freemasonry. The reality is that before he
> committed the crime, he expelled himself by thought and action.

JOhn : they couldnt have always been symbolic, I fail to see what getting
some 18 year old Lewis apprentice to memorize cutting someones throat and
ripping their tongue out by the root then burying their body at high tide mark
does for their moral betterment. Sounds kind of nasty and Occultish to this
PROFANE.

> Does this answer your question?

JOHn : Not entirely, perhaps you could address some of the reservations
I raised above, also I understand in the U.K. they have removed the blood
oaths from the ritual. Is this the case, if so then why not on this side ?


>
> Richard Jackson, PM
> Corrigan Masonic Lodge #1103 AF&AM
> Corrigan, Texas
> newsgroup article copyright 1999, all rights reserved by Richard Jackson
>
> -----------== Posted via Deja News, The Discussion Network ==----------
> http://www.dejanews.com/ Search, Read, Discuss, or Start Your Own
>

-----------== Posted via Deja News, The Discussion Network ==----------

ri...@my-dejanews.com

unread,
Feb 7, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/7/99
to
In article <79k1gm$q44$1...@nnrp1.dejanews.com>,

John The Reformer <gnos...@hotmail.com> wrote:
> In article <79hjih$utc$1...@nnrp1.dejanews.com>,
> ri...@my-dejanews.com wrote:
> > John,
> >
> > For someone with an unprejudiced interest in Freemasonry, your accusation
> > about Masons getting out of legal trouble by using the Grand Hailing Sign of
> > Distress is suspiciously anti-Masonic like. I'll play the straight man,
> > however. To save bandwidth, I will snip those lines except the ones I am
> > answering.
>
> JOhn : Maybe they don't use the sign, maybe they know each other already
> or they have someone contact that official and let them know that brother
> so and so is in "distress" and please help him out. It is only natural
> for any outsider to be suspicous of this sort of thing, and I did go
> to the trouble to reference some Masonic Literature rather than relying
> on conjecture.
>

What literature? I have researched Freemasonry from the inside out and never
seen what you mentioned. I do know of one instance in my home town where a
defendant in a criminal case made himself known as a Freemason to the
prosecuting attourney (who was a well known Freemason). That attourney
immediately indicated a side-bar. He asked for and received peremission to
withdraw from the case, giving it over to an assistant. His explanation was
that he wanted no reason for the case to be overturned due to a conflict of
interest. The accused was convicted of wrongful death and given the maximum
sentence possible under the law. The district attourney continued to advise
his assistant in the case and the jury's decision (one of whom I know to be a
Mason) voted guilty is less than an hour.


> >
> > Indeed. Masons founded this forum and left it unmoderated for that purpose.
> > It has remained unmoderated.
>
> John : Thank-you I won't abuse that privledge as I have many questions.
> >
> > >
> > > 1. The Grand Masonic Hailing Sign of Distress Exists.
> > >
> >
> > It does.
> >
> > > 2. The Above Sign must obviously exist for some purpose or
> > > other wise it wouldn't exist - if anything Masonic Rituals are
> > > detailed and everything has some logical purpose.
> > >
> >
> > I will give you a very personal time when the GHSof D was used by one Mason
to
> > me. My Father, a Mason, and I spent all night standing beside my Mother's
> > deathbed. After twelve very long hours, and forty-three years of marriage,
my
> > mother passed from this Earth with Dad and I holding her hands. Before we
> > called the nurses in, Dad looked at me, and could not speak. He gave me the
> > GHSofD and I responded in turn. Until that moment, I never realized the
full
> > import of the sign. His pain and distress was so great, his need so acute,
> > that nothing else could express it. A Mason would not use the sign unless
the
> > need were such. It would not be used as you have described, and I
personally
> > take offense at the suggestion.
>
> JOhn : condolences.

Thank you. This has been some years ago. The reason I told the story was to
emphasize the real use of the Grand Hailing Sign of Distress. When a Mason is
in such distress that he can not speak, when the circumstances are dire in the
extreme and he is among strangers, the sign can bring the friendship of a
Brother to his side to relieve him and share his pain.


> > Your whole assumption is wrong. To begin with, Freemasonry is not about
> > gaining priviledge, but gaining inner improvement and fellowship. If you
> > read Masonic literature not printed by anti-Masonic sources and converse
with
> > Mason, you will find that it is the internal qualities of a man which
qualify
> > a man to be made a Mason.
>
> John : gaining privlege is undoubtabley secondary however I intuetively
> think it is still there especially in employment and business arrangements.
> >

I've been a Mason for quite a few years now and not found it to give me any
advantage in buying an automobile. Nor has Freemasonry guaranteed me
promotion within my profession. This in spite of the fact that for twenty
four of the last twenty-five years, my immediate supreriors at the school
district where I teach have been Freemasons as well as some members on the
Board of Trustees.

It is a natural thing to purchase from those people you know, and like. I
have purchases, for example, automobiles over the years from Brother Masons.
I have also purchase automobiles from non-Masons when they had the same unit
and sold it at a better price. Friendship is one thing, business another.
Everything being equal, I would rather do business with a Mason. Everything
being equal, wouldn't you rather do business with someone you know and trust
rather tan a stranger?


> JOhn: Although I don't reside in the U.K. I recently read some info
> on the U.K. Offical site of the Grand Lodge or some such. It discussed
> the new legislation passed in Parliament where all judges, prosecuters,
> and Police now have to declare whether they are members. The reasons
> given where evidently some cases that came to the forefront where this
> happened. Anyway it was just recently passed, have a look.
> >

There have been alledged cases where there is collaboration or corruption. I
personally have nothing against all public servants disclosing their Masonic
membership. I do think it is wrong to only single out Freemasonry. If you
wish to make every public servand disclose every aspect of their private
business as concerns organizations, then let us have the pubically proclaim
their church affiliation (or lack there-of), all clubs and organizations they
belong to, their full business interests (including stock market
investments), etc. etc. What is good for the goose is good for the gander,
wouldn't you say?

> >
> > Yes, that is correct. The "blood oaths" you refer to are symbolic parts
> > of the Ritual. In themselves, the actual penalties of the Obligations
> > (not oaths) sound horrible. Masons know that they are part of a teaching
> > lesson. They are a play, if you will, designed to teach the values of
> > Freemasonry. The actual penalties of breaking the Obligations of
> > Freemasonry are suspension, or expulsion. They can be invoked in Texas
> > for such things as drunkeness and being a libertine. If a Mason in this
> > jurisdiction is found guilty of a crime in a court of law, he is
> > automatically expelled from Freemasonry. The reality is that before he
> > committed the crime, he expelled himself by thought and action.
>
> JOhn : they couldnt have always been symbolic, I fail to see what getting
> some 18 year old Lewis apprentice to memorize cutting someones throat and
> ripping their tongue out by the root then burying their body at high tide mark
> does for their moral betterment. Sounds kind of nasty and Occultish to this
> PROFANE.
>

As far as I know, there has never been a case where anyone has been found
guilty of carrying out the symbolic penalties of Freemasonry. There have
been several instances where imposters, for some idiots have injured and
killed people claiming do so in Masonic Initiation, but no substanciated
evidence. If you only take the last three hundred years or so, considering
there are so many Masons, don't you think that speaks for itself.

You call yourself Profane. I assume you are using the same meaning that
Freemasonry does, unknowledgable. I agree, it does sound nasty and
occultish. So do many of the Initiations used by college fraternities and
sororities. As I stated, it is part of a teaching lesson in a play.

> > Does this answer your question?
>
> JOHn : Not entirely, perhaps you could address some of the reservations
> I raised above, also I understand in the U.K. they have removed the blood
> oaths from the ritual. Is this the case, if so then why not on this side ?

There are no blood oaths. There is an Obligation taken for each degree. The
reasons the Obligations are the way they are is one word. Tradition. Masons
have many traditions. We enjoy the traditions of Freemasonry. Personally, I
don't think we should change our Ritual because a few conspiracy theorists
and ultra-conservative people calling themselves Christians don't like the
wording. We do not ask you or anyone else to become a member of our
Fraternity. You have to ask for yourself, and then pass inspection before
being accepted to become one of us. If you don't like the wording, don't
apply. No one is asking you to. If I enter a business in a mall which has
nothing I wish to purchase, I don't stay there and complain, I leave and go
somewhere that has what I want. Those who attack Freemasonry are welcomed to
do the same.

eas...@redriverok.com

unread,
Feb 7, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/7/99
to
In article <79h499$k89$1...@nnrp1.dejanews.com>,

John The Reformer <gnos...@hotmail.com> wrote:
> I am not an anti-mason.
>
> I am anti - special treatment for the few or privledged

Well then I agree with you on that. As Sr. Warden of my lodge, past patron
of my OES chapter, 32d Scottish Rite, Shriner, and Sr. Demolay, I would
always appose special treatment for the few or privelaged. That is why
masonry actually demands that its members hold to a HIGHER standard of moral
conduct. That is why our charity is open to all. I am currently working with
my lodge to raise money for the liver transplant of a women who has NO
connections to masonry whatsoever.


.
>
> Now you folks no I never claimed to be an expert on your hobby.

Well you claimed knowledge of something of which you had no knowledge.

>
> I apologize for using such unfraternal suggestions that a mason
> who denys that the Grand Hailing Sign Of Distress exists is a Liar,
> that particular line was unnecessary.

Apology accepted. It does take a big man to apologize in a newsgroup.


>
> That being said I have an interest in your organization from a political,
> and historical perspective.
>
> This is an open forum, I would assume you would not only want to dialogue
> with masons.

Then ask your questions, don't make unfounded accusations.


>
> If only to get some practice in at defending your organization. Believe
> me in the responses I have seen so far I should say you are all quite
> capable of defending yourself in an intelligent and thoughtfull manner.
>

I did, yet you never responded to my post.

> Some of you stated that there was a Grand Hailing Sign Of Distress.
>

> Some of you didn't respond to that point and took me up on another.


>
> Some said my understanding of the exact method of using this sign

> was wrong or warm or in the ballpark ( I got some e-mails directly
> which surprised me quite a bit).
>
> So as I was just going off of memory and maybe having a bit of fun I looked
> up a reference.
>
> No I know that rituals have changed over the years and there are concordant
> bodies and rites that have differences as well I suppose as regional and
> national variations.
>
> But Here Goes Again.
>
> Another phrase (or gesture) used in extreme situations is the Grand
> Masonic Hailing Sign of Distress.
>
> A Masonic defendent in court might bury his hands at some point and cry," Oh
> Lord My God, is there no help for the widow's son? "
>
> Although that might sound a bit odd to the average listener, it could be
> understood as a cry of anguish.
>

> If a masonic judge or juror heard it, they would be honor bound (by a blood
> oath) to acquit such a person, or at least fight for a hung jury.

That is simply not true. I gave you a case of a masonic judge who gave a
mason from his own lodge the maximum punishment allowed. We had a mason in
my town 10 years ago, also the president of the local university, who was
accused of embezzlement. The lodge had a masonic trial and he was convicted
and expelled by us, before the state court even had gotten started. Any
mason trying to use masonry as a cover for his crimes will be prompltly
expelled from the order.


>
> The gesture which accompanies this (or it can be given alone, if necessary)
> is for the person to raise his arms over his head (almost as in a hands up
> position and then lowering them in three stages, pivoting the forearms at
> the elbow until they are perpendicular to the floor, palms down.
>
> Any Mason, seeing that gesture, or hearing the above words would be
> oath-bound to do anything possible to save the other Mason from danger,
> up to, but not including, the loss of his own life.
>

> DUNCAN, MALCOLM C., DUNCANS RITUAL MONITOR

Duncans ritual has been shown to be in error many, many times. Why do anti's
keep quoting it???


>
> Now the above I took from the source stated above, and it does differ
> slightly from the way I initially stated it from my rather poor memory.
> The main difference I see is that it says up to but not including, the
> loss of life. Perhaps I read that elsewhere or got it mixed up.
>
> The important points are as It are Thus :
>

> 1. The Grand Masonic Hailing Sign of Distress Exists.

Yes that is correct.


>
> 2. The Above Sign must obviously exist for some purpose or
> other wise it wouldn't exist - if anything Masonic Rituals are
> detailed and everything has some logical purpose.
>

> 3. If it has a purpose what might that be?
>
> 4. I would surmise that it is to get Masons out of trouble.
>

No it is not. At least not the kind of trouble you mention.


> Now although some of you stated that a Mason would never get himself
> into trouble or do anything untoward - they are still human.
>
> Additionally the above mentioned distress might have occured during
> some sory of "mission" as it were so Masons might think that getting
> the brother "off the Hook" was justified as he was serving some sort
> of higher purpose.
>
> 5. This however doesn't excuse the fact that it is in this land one law
> for all, no special treatment or favours.


And I have given you now too cases where masons where given STICTER
punishemnts by their fellow masons. And yet you still ignore them.

>
> Thank-you
>
> JOHn
>
> P.S. I am most interested in getting an answer to my point number 3 if
> my conjecture is wrong.
>

I keep answering your questions and you keep ignoring my answers.

John The Reformer

unread,
Feb 7, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/7/99
to
In article <79kaum$vf$1...@nnrp1.dejanews.com>,
--------------------------------------------------------
Johns Reply: Your explanation is a reasonable one, I'm sure there are
always rotten apples in any barrel. Do you think this may be more
common among masons in higher positions in society ? Politicans and big
wheels always seem to get off entirely or just lightly when they are in hot
water. Maybe they just have better counsel, dunno.

----------------------------------------------------------

-------------------------------------------------

JOhn reply : Must be nice.

-----------------------------------------------


> > > Your whole assumption is wrong. To begin with, Freemasonry is not about
> > > gaining priviledge, but gaining inner improvement and fellowship. If you
> > > read Masonic literature not printed by anti-Masonic sources and converse
> with
> > > Mason, you will find that it is the internal qualities of a man which
> qualify
> > > a man to be made a Mason.
> >
> > John : gaining privlege is undoubtabley secondary however I intuetively
> > think it is still there especially in employment and business arrangements.
> > >
>
> I've been a Mason for quite a few years now and not found it to give me any
> advantage in buying an automobile. Nor has Freemasonry guaranteed me
> promotion within my profession. This in spite of the fact that for twenty
> four of the last twenty-five years, my immediate supreriors at the school
> district where I teach have been Freemasons as well as some members on the
> Board of Trustees.
>
> It is a natural thing to purchase from those people you know, and like. I
> have purchases, for example, automobiles over the years from Brother Masons.
> I have also purchase automobiles from non-Masons when they had the same unit
> and sold it at a better price. Friendship is one thing, business
another.
> Everything being equal, I would rather do business with a Mason. Everything
> being equal, wouldn't you rather do business with someone you know and trust
> rather tan a stranger?

--------------------------------------------------------

John : It certainly makes life a little more difficult for non-masons
who may be decent people themselves. If it is simply a case of private
business to private business or merely frequenting an establishment that
you were familiar with then it is not problematic. If however there are
instances where public institutions are involved, which are of course paid
for by everyone then If there was some favouritism in bidding for contract
tenders or hirings, that would be another matter entirely.

--------------------------------------------------------


> > JOhn: Although I don't reside in the U.K. I recently read some info
> > on the U.K. Offical site of the Grand Lodge or some such. It discussed
> > the new legislation passed in Parliament where all judges, prosecuters,
> > and Police now have to declare whether they are members. The reasons
> > given where evidently some cases that came to the forefront where this
> > happened. Anyway it was just recently passed, have a look.
> > >
>
> There have been alledged cases where there is collaboration or corruption. I
> personally have nothing against all public servants disclosing their Masonic
> membership. I do think it is wrong to only single out Freemasonry. If you
> wish to make every public servand disclose every aspect of their private
> business as concerns organizations, then let us have the pubically proclaim
> their church affiliation (or lack there-of), all clubs and organizations they
> belong to, their full business interests (including stock market
> investments), etc. etc. What is good for the goose is good for the gander,
> wouldn't you say?

-------------------------------------------------------

John Reply : I would concur with you completely. If something is
implemented in North America following the U.K. Legislation then it
should apply to every one. I am personnaly put-out when I see businesses
or yellow page ads displaying those fish signs. Of course this fish
sign nonsense is now a war with many people sporting fish signs with Darwin
in their midst. I don't see why masons would have a problem with this, in
fact I think it would be good p.r., and clear the air quite a bit.

----------------------------------------------------------

-------------------------------------------------

John Replys : Quite. However I am sure you like to "kick the tires a bit"
and may be "think it over", and then "shop around" , before making
your "purchase". That really is the dilemma if you are the type of person
who wants to thoroughly research something before making up their minds
or taking a position. A Secret Society or a Society with Secrets
does not lend it self well to the "budget concious" shopper.

Hopefully your a patient salesman.

-------------------------------------------------

Brian Elliott

unread,
Feb 7, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/7/99
to
Just a short note. One of the things that is hardest to grasp, for the
person first researching Masonry, is that there is no central Masonic
authority. You mention UGLE and then "this side" (of the ocean). There
are, probably, more than 1000 Grand Lodges. Each one is sovereign unto
itself. My Grand Lodge (Grand Lodge A.F. & A.M. of Canada in the Province
of Ontario) can set and interpret ritual and make rules regarding the
Masons and Lodges belonging to it. If my Grand Lodge decides that there
should be no blood oaths, then there will be no blood oaths, in the
jurisdiction of Ontario. We cannot tell the Grand Lodge of New York, next
door to us, that they should not use blood oaths. It is not in the
jurisdiction of GLO -- it is none of our business. All my Grand Lodge can
do is to withdraw recognition of GLNY. All that means is that GLO members
cannot sit in GLNY lodges or have Masonic commmunications with members
there (and vice-versa). There are more than 100 Grand Lodge jurisdictions
in the U.S. There is no one person, or body, which can speak for any two
of these bodies -- each speaks for itself. You cannot accuse Masonry in
general of something unless you are sure that all of these bodies subscribe
to that thing. To discover the gestalt of the brotherhood, this venue is a
valuable resource to you and to others. Ask questions. The brothers will
answer from the perspective of their own learning. You have seen that the
Grand Hailing Sign is different between jurisdictions. I'm not even sure
that "hailing" is how it is spelled in GLO, I don't think so .. I will have
to look it up.

You got a rocky start with this group, none of us likes to be attacked,
especially by information which is incorrect to at least some of us.

For some background information, start at a site such as
http://freemasonry.org and follow the web-ring to visit as many sites as
you like. Specific questions on specific sites or bodies will be easiest
to get replies to. They will also probably bring comparative answers about
other jurisdictions and can be very interesting.

If I can help, e-mail me or another brother and I am sure that we will try
to help to the best of our abilities. My ability is less than many others,
but I will do what I can.

Best wishes

Brian Elliott
Defenders Lodge #590


John The Reformer <gnos...@hotmail.com> wrote in article
<79k1gm$q44$1...@nnrp1.dejanews.com>...

ri...@my-dejanews.com

unread,
Feb 7, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/7/99
to
In article <79kjmi$7pe$1...@nnrp1.dejanews.com>,

John The Reformer <gnos...@hotmail.com> wrote:

> --------------------------------------------------------
> Johns Reply: Your explanation is a reasonable one, I'm sure there are
> always rotten apples in any barrel. Do you think this may be more
> common among masons in higher positions in society ? Politicans and big
> wheels always seem to get off entirely or just lightly when they are in hot
> water. Maybe they just have better counsel, dunno.
>
> ----------------------------------------------------------


I think it is common among all societies that those in power or those with
the money have more influence and more of the ability to defend themselves in
court or other circumstances. The saying "might makes right" was more than
likely around in some form many years prior to modern Freemasonry. If a man
is a Freemason and a millionaire, is his ability to hire good lawyers and
aviod conviction because he is a Mason, or because he is rich? I suspect
that money is more a factor. So is position.


> > Thank you. This has been some years ago. The reason I told the story was
to
> > emphasize the real use of the Grand Hailing Sign of Distress. When a Mason
is
> > in such distress that he can not speak, when the circumstances are dire in
the
> > extreme and he is among strangers, the sign can bring the friendship of a
> > Brother to his side to relieve him and share his pain.
>
> -------------------------------------------------
>
> JOhn reply : Must be nice.
>
> -----------------------------------------------


All men need friends. One of the rocks upon which the foundation of
Freemasonry is founded is Brotherhood. Being a Brother means sharing
someone's hard times as well as good. Regardless of where I go, I nearly
always meet Brothers. They may not know me, but they and I know we have
common values or we wouldn't be Masons.

Some years ago, one of my uncles had the misfortune to have an annurism (sp?)
rupture in the back of a knee. He and my aunt were in Las Vegas at the time.
His situation was touch and go for a while and he had to stay in the hospital
there for some weeks recovering from the near loss of life and the loss of his
leg. My aunt's funds quickly started running low in the first week.

One of the staff in the hospital was the wife of a Mason. Noticing my
uncles's Masonic ring, she asked my aunt if she could help. This lady and
her husband who had never met my aunt and uncle took my aunt into her house
as a guest until my uncle could travel. They befriended my relatives based
totally upon the need of a Brother and his wife. They took a total stranger
in their house based solely upon the Fraternal bond.

Nice? That word hardly describes it.


> John : It certainly makes life a little more difficult for non-masons
> who may be decent people themselves. If it is simply a case of private
> business to private business or merely frequenting an establishment that
> you were familiar with then it is not problematic. If however there are
> instances where public institutions are involved, which are of course paid
> for by everyone then If there was some favouritism in bidding for contract
> tenders or hirings, that would be another matter entirely.
>

I don't know about Canada, but here there are proceedures which ensure fair
practices in governmental business. In schools, anything over a certain
ammount has to be bid by vendors. The best bid wins.

As I said before. Friendship is friendship. Business is business. All
things being equal, I will do business with a friend first. Since most of my
friends are Masons, that means I deal with other Masons. That does not stop
me from buying from a total stranger is he or she offers the same service or
material at a substancially lower price.


> John Reply : I would concur with you completely. If something is
> implemented in North America following the U.K. Legislation then it
> should apply to every one. I am personnaly put-out when I see businesses
> or yellow page ads displaying those fish signs. Of course this fish
> sign nonsense is now a war with many people sporting fish signs with Darwin
> in their midst. I don't see why masons would have a problem with this, in
> fact I think it would be good p.r., and clear the air quite a bit.
>

I invite you to go to the web site http://www.grand-lodge.org/ and read about
the Grand Lodge of England. There are many links there to UK Freemasonry
which include lodges, the degrees and rituals used at the Lodges, etc. It
may surprize you a bit.

> John Replys : Quite. However I am sure you like to "kick the tires a bit"
> and may be "think it over", and then "shop around" , before making
> your "purchase". That really is the dilemma if you are the type of person
> who wants to thoroughly research something before making up their minds
> or taking a position. A Secret Society or a Society with Secrets
> does not lend it self well to the "budget concious" shopper.
>
> Hopefully your a patient salesman.
>


I understand completely. Prudence is always a good virtue. You should also
be aware that we have many people who come to this newsgroup posing seemingly
innocent questions who have only one agenda regardless of the answers. Antis
are well known here for posing as knowledge seekers when their ultimate
agenda is to discredit and/or defame Freemasonry in any way possible. All of
us who post here have been bitten. Pessimism has become a trait of many
Masons who didn't start out that way on alt.freemasonry. So far, I have
found nothing in your post to indicate a hidden agenda. I am very patient
when dealing with anyone who has a honest desire to learn, if it be
Freemasonry or any other area.

Richard White

unread,
Feb 7, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/7/99
to

John The Reformer wrote in message <79h499$k89$1...@nnrp1.dejanews.com>...

>I am not an anti-mason.

Glad to hear it.

>I am anti - special treatment for the few or privledged.

I am sure the Freemasons who were selected by the German and Austrian Nazis
would rather have done without being "selected for special treatment" !!
Being put in a Nazi concentration camp was indeed special treatment. It
doesn't necessarily mean more favourable treatment.

>I apologize for using such unfraternal suggestions that a mason
>who denys that the Grand Hailing Sign Of Distress exists is a Liar,
>that particular line was unnecessary.
Apology accepted.

[.......snipped............]
>Another phrase (or gesture) used in extreme situations is the Grand
>Masonic Hailing Sign of Distress.
I repeat my previous statement in reply to your previous post: "The name
you give does not match any that I was given when raised to the
degree of a Master Mason".

You need to be aware that each masonic jurisdiction has its own ritual,
including its own variation of masonic signs and names for them - mine does
not have the sign you refer to.

Looks like there won't be any "help" for me in an American court ??? :-)

>A Masonic defendent in court might bury his hands at some point and cry,"
Oh
>Lord My God, is there no help for the widow's son? "

He may try this. He would undoubtedly be asked by the Judge to explain his
remark. A failure or refusal to do so would be contempt of court. As we
say: 'Go straight to jail, do not pass Go, do not collect £200'.

>Although that might sound a bit odd to the average listener, it could be
>understood as a cry of anguish.

I doubt it - I have never heard a cry of anguish like that, or even a report
of one.

>If a masonic judge or juror heard it, they would be honor bound (by a blood
>oath) to acquit such a person, or at least fight for a hung jury.

A Judge or Juror who was a Freemason would be DUTY BOUND to REFUSE the
request for assistance, the Freemasons conditions for "helping" others are
very clearly defined:-

1. to help a friend or brother in time of need WITHOUT detriment to one's
self or connections

2. murder, treason, felony and all other crimes contrary to the laws of God
and the ordinances of the Realm being at all time most especially excepted

In other words a Freemason is told specifically not to help another in an
illegal or immoral way.


>The gesture which accompanies this (or it can be given alone, if necessary)
>is for the person to raise his arms over his head (almost as in a hands up
>position and then lowering them in three stages, pivoting the forearms at
>the elbow until they are perpendicular to the floor, palms down.

This question is a non-sequitur bearing in mind my previous answer.

>Any Mason, seeing that gesture, or hearing the above words would be
>oath-bound to do anything possible to save the other Mason from danger,
>up to, but not including, the loss of his own life.

Likewise, see my points on limitations

> DUNCAN, MALCOLM C., DUNCANS RITUAL MONITOR

>Now the above I took from the source stated above, and it does differ
>slightly from the way I initially stated it from my rather poor memory.

I believe Dunan's is outdated, and no longer fully applicable.

[......snipped.....]


>3. If it has a purpose what might that be?

>P.S. I am most interested in getting an answer to my point number 3 if
>my conjecture is wrong.


It seems an interesting perspective of your mentality that a sign requesting
assistance (i.e. a distress signal) must automatically relate to evading
justice in criminal cases. What if the brother were being robbed? Or
was suffering some other form of distress other than the risk of being found
guilty of a crime? After all, when the Titanic sent a distress signal,
no-one assumed that it had been used/sent for an improper purpose. So why
should this assumption be made of Freemasons?

Just to keep you happy, yes there is a "distress" sign - but "not as you
know it Jim".

Regards,

Richard White
PM
Addington Lodge No. 5080
Old Olavians Lodge No. 5758
UGLE

Jim Bennie

unread,
Feb 7, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/7/99
to

In <79kjmi$7pe$1...@nnrp1.dejanews.com>, John The Reformer <gnos...@hotmail.com>
wrote:

> Johns Reply: Your explanation is a reasonable one, I'm sure there are
> always rotten apples in any barrel. Do you think this may be more
> common among masons in higher positions in society ? Politicans and big
> wheels always seem to get off entirely or just lightly when they are in hot
> water. Maybe they just have better counsel, dunno.

Two things here seem to be more a perception than reality, at least
locally. Just who are these Masonic "politicians and big wheels"
anyway? There isn't a single Mason who is an MLA in Victoria. Not a
single Mason in the federal cabinet. I can think of one mayor, one
councillor and one school trustee from West Vancouver to Hope.
That's got to be somewhere around one percent of the elected
municipal politicians in the Lower Mainland.

Of all the politicians in our province that have gotten into hot
water legally, I can think of only one .. and this goes back a couple
of decades .. who was a Mason. He was a municipal politician who
booted out of his Lodge by his fellow Masons *before* his case came
to a court trial (where he was convicted). So much for "privilege"
and "Masons protecting their own". It's a myth.

> If however there are
> instances where public institutions are involved, which are of course paid
> for by everyone then If there was some favouritism in bidding for contract
> tenders or hirings, that would be another matter entirely.

Agreed.

Jim Bennie
PM Nos. 65 & 44, Vancouver

Eugene Goldman.·.

unread,
Feb 8, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/8/99
to
On Sat, 06 Feb 1999 10:07:40 GMT, John The Reformer
<gnos...@hotmail.com> wrote:

*I apologize for using such unfraternal suggestions that a mason
*who denys that the Grand Hailing Sign Of Distress exists is a Liar,
*that particular line was unnecessary.

Apology accepted.

*Some of you stated that there was a Grand Hailing Sign Of Distress.

Yes there is.
Not at all like you described, and of little consequence to anyone not
a member of the fraternity, but there is, indeed, such a sign.

*If a masonic judge or juror heard it, they would be honor bound (by a blood
*oath) to acquit such a person, or at least fight for a hung jury.

No, not really. You see, in each and every degree ceremony, the
Candidate is admonished several times that NOTHING in Masonry should
take preference over the duty he owes to his Creator, his Country, his
Neighbor or himself. In an example such as you mention, the Judge's
of Jurror's duty to his country would, for any Mason, preclude showing
any favoritism to any litagant on the basis of any fraternal or social
association. The Oaths a Judge and Jurror make take presidence over
any obligations made by Masons.

So, in actual fact, If a masonic judge or juror heard it, they would
be honor bound (by a blood oath) to **do their best job as Judge or
jurror, irrespective of their personal feelings, or fraternal
associatioons**, including (if appropriate given the facts of the
case) conviction and arguement FOR appropriate penalties to be
imposed.

*Any Mason, seeing that gesture, or hearing the above words would be
*oath-bound to do anything possible to save the other Mason from danger,
*up to, but not including, the loss of his own life.

Unless a higher priority precluded his assistance, such higher duties
include those to his Creator, his Country, his Neighbor and himself.
In those cases, the higher duties must prevail.

*Now the above I took from the source stated above, and it does differ
*slightly from the way I initially stated it from my rather poor memory.
*The main difference I see is that it says up to but not including, the
*loss of life. Perhaps I read that elsewhere or got it mixed up.

But you missed the important admonitions made to the Candidate earlier
in the ceremonies that NOTHING in his Obligations, or in Masonry
should EVER preclude those he owes to his DIety, his Country, his
Neighbor or himself.

*The important points are as It are Thus :
*
*1. The Grand Masonic Hailing Sign of Distress Exists.

Yup, sure does.

*2. The Above Sign must obviously exist for some purpose or
*other wise it wouldn't exist - if anything Masonic Rituals are
*detailed and everything has some logical purpose.

Yup.

*3. If it has a purpose what might that be?

The purpose is to teach the wisdom of caring for one's fellow man. To
teach that, as a Mason, he has an obligation to assist those in need,
particularly those who have made a similar obligation to him, so long
as doing so would not interfere in any way with the Important Duty he
owes to his Creator, and those to his Country, his Neighbor and
himself..

*4. I would surmise that it is to get Masons out of trouble.

An interesting, if invalid assumption.

*Now although some of you stated that a Mason would never get himself
*into trouble or do anything untoward - they are still human.

True.

*Additionally the above mentioned distress might have occured during
*some sory of "mission" as it were so Masons might think that getting
*the brother "off the Hook" was justified as he was serving some sort
*of higher purpose.

It might have, but likely didn't.

*5. This however doesn't excuse the fact that it is in this land one law
*for all, no special treatment or favours.

Absolutely, and such principle (along with the governments which
expouse it) is supported, repeatly, in the ceremonies.

*Thank-you

My pleasure.

*P.S. I am most interested in getting an answer to my point number 3 if
*my conjecture is wrong.

It is, and I hope I have done so.


|O| Be well. Travel with a light heart.
Who said that?

Brother Gene .*.
www.blackmountainlodge.net
www.freemason.org
MBBFMN #387
And in case I don't see ya' - Good Afternoon, Good Evening and Good Night!

Internet newsgroup posting. Copyright 1999. All rights reserved.
Any Mason may use the contents for any valid Masonic purpose, permission may be granted to others upon request.

John The Reformer

unread,
Feb 9, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/9/99
to
In article <79kgqt$5fu$1...@nnrp1.dejanews.com>,

eas...@redriverok.com wrote:
> In article <79h499$k89$1...@nnrp1.dejanews.com>,
> John The Reformer <gnos...@hotmail.com> wrote:
> > I am not an anti-mason.
> >
> > I am anti - special treatment for the few or privledged
>
> Well then I agree with you on that. As Sr. Warden of my lodge, past patron
> of my OES chapter, 32d Scottish Rite, Shriner, and Sr. Demolay, I would
> always appose special treatment for the few or privelaged. That is why
> masonry actually demands that its members hold to a HIGHER standard of moral
> conduct. That is why our charity is open to all. I am currently working with
> my lodge to raise money for the liver transplant of a women who has NO
> connections to masonry whatsoever.
------------------------------------------------

> JOHn reply : well done

-------------------------------------------------


> >
> > Now you folks no I never claimed to be an expert on your hobby.
>
> Well you claimed knowledge of something of which you had no knowledge.

-----------------------------------------------

John reply : incorrect. I claimed knowledge of something of which
I had knowledge. I quoted from Duncan's ritual Monitor, a Masonic
source. You said duncan's is inaccurate, please provide me with a
quotation on the Grand Hailing Sign of Distress from a Masonic
reference which is accurate or your claim is simple conjecture
(by the rules of evidence).

----------------------------------------------------------------


> >
> > I apologize for using such unfraternal suggestions that a mason
> > who denys that the Grand Hailing Sign Of Distress exists is a Liar,
> > that particular line was unnecessary.
>
> Apology accepted. It does take a big man to apologize in a newsgroup.
>
> >
> > That being said I have an interest in your organization from a political,
> > and historical perspective.
> >
> > This is an open forum, I would assume you would not only want to dialogue
> > with masons.
>
> Then ask your questions, don't make unfounded accusations.

----------------------------------------------------------

JOHn reply: the accusations were not unfounded as there has been examples
where masons have used this in a courtroom or with enforcement authorities
successfully or Unsucessfully (please review some of the responses from you
collegues in this forum ).

----------------------------------------------------------------


>
> >
> > If only to get some practice in at defending your organization. Believe
> > me in the responses I have seen so far I should say you are all quite
> > capable of defending yourself in an intelligent and thoughtfull manner.
> >
>
> I did, yet you never responded to my post.

-----------------------------------------------------

JOhn Reply : I received at least a half dozen lenghthy replys to my
post and I answered half of them which covered the same ground as
yours. Am sorry am only getting around to yours now, no slight
intended.

-----------------------------------------------------------

expelled from the order.
>
> -------------------------------------------------------------------

John reply: what is simply not true ? The quote I gave was DIRECTLY from
Duncan's Ritual Monitor. The responses given by your collegues indicated
that this had happened on occasion but was excedingly rare and usually
unsuccessful. NO Arguement. However is this the case in all areas of
the country or planet ? Are there some backward areas in smaller locals
where this is still going on ? I DON'T KNOW.

There does appear to be some instances of this happening recently in the U.K.
as the British Parliament has recently passed legislation requiring all
Judges, Prosecutors, and Police to sign a statement declaring whether they
are members of masonic lodges or not.

In the debates in Parliament the reasons given for the necessity of this
legislation by the GOVERNMENT where that this sort of thing has gone on
including cases of officers and officals engaging In malfiesence to protect
reputations and careers.

Please contact the Grand Lodge web site in the U.K. to verify this for
yourself. I have no axe to grind, I am not an anti-mason, every one and every
organization can use some improvement, none are perfect.

-----------------------------------------------------------------

> > The gesture which accompanies this (or it can be given alone, if necessary)
> > is for the person to raise his arms over his head (almost as in a hands up
> > position and then lowering them in three stages, pivoting the forearms at
> > the elbow until they are perpendicular to the floor, palms down.
> >
> > Any Mason, seeing that gesture, or hearing the above words would be
> > oath-bound to do anything possible to save the other Mason from danger,
> > up to, but not including, the loss of his own life.
> >
> > DUNCAN, MALCOLM C., DUNCANS RITUAL MONITOR
>
> Duncans ritual has been shown to be in error many, many times. Why do anti's
> keep quoting it???

---------------------------------------------------------------------

JOhn reply : Huh ? It's your ritual monitor, you tell me. If it is in
error why does it exist, why is it on the shelves in public library's?

Who was this Duncan anyway, a senior Mason or official one would assume.

Therefore he obviously had some approval given to his publishing it by
higher authority within your organization.

Maybe there is some disagreement within Masonry on what is and what isn't
the correct interpretation of Ritual.

Ancient vs Antient ? What's that all about anyway ?

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

---------------------------------------------------------------------
JOhn reply : I have probably answered some of your points (to my way of
thinking anway) in this post and if you review the responses I made to
your collegues in other posts you may find some more "reasonings" from
me.

Regardevoux

--------------------------------------------------------------------

John The Reformer

unread,
Feb 9, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/9/99
to
In article <01be52d0$73956b80$7731f8ce@default>,

---------------------------------------------------------------

JOhn reply : agreed I did get off to a rocky start with this group.

ON first reviewing some of the postings and seeing the foul language
that some where using against some people who where quoting from the
bible I perhaps didn't feel in a particularly "fraternal" mood.

My first posting WAS confrontational, as most of the replys I have
received have been measured I no longer feel the necessity to take
this tact.

Merci

JOHn

-------------------------------------------------------------------------

John The Reformer

unread,
Feb 9, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/9/99
to
In article <36bf0977....@news.pacbell.net>,
br_...@pacbell.net (Eugene Goldman.·.) wrote:
> On Sat, 06 Feb 1999 10:07:40 GMT, John The Reformer
> <gnos...@hotmail.com> wrote:
>
> *I apologize for using such unfraternal suggestions that a mason
> *who denys that the Grand Hailing Sign Of Distress exists is a Liar,
> *that particular line was unnecessary.
>
> Apology accepted.
>

------------------------------------------

JOhn reply : Yes you have, very nicely reasoned.

Regardevoux

----------------------------------------------------
>----- Be Well. Travel with a light heart.


> Who said that?
>
> Brother Gene .*.
> www.blackmountainlodge.net
> www.freemason.org
> MBBFMN #387
> And in case I don't see ya' - Good Afternoon, Good Evening and Good Night!
>
> Internet newsgroup posting. Copyright 1999. All rights reserved.
> Any Mason may use the contents for any valid Masonic purpose, permission may
be granted to others upon request.
>

-----------== Posted via Deja News, The Discussion Network ==----------

John The Reformer

unread,
Feb 9, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/9/99
to
In article <79l15m$iff$1...@nnrp1.dejanews.com>,

-----------------------------------------------------------

JOHn reply : yes thank-you, it is very hard to get to the nub of the matter
on this subject. I'm really not interested in the signs of recognition,
I have been doing some reading on the History of the "Craft" where it
came from it's origins etc.

The only reason I started on this G.H.S.D. business was I was a little put out
by some of the language used in the responses to some of the supposed
"anti's", my impression was this was a highly confrontational venue
so I mistakenly took a highly confrontational tact.

REgardevoux

--------------------------------------------------------------------

John The Reformer

unread,
Feb 9, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/9/99
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In article <79l447$cs4$1...@uranium.btinternet.com>,

"Richard White" <whi...@btinternet.com> wrote:
>
> John The Reformer wrote in message <79h499$k89$1...@nnrp1.dejanews.com>...
> >I am not an anti-mason.
>
> Glad to hear it.

>
> >I am anti - special treatment for the few or privledged.
>
> I am sure the Freemasons who were selected by the German and Austrian Nazis
> would rather have done without being "selected for special treatment" !!
> Being put in a Nazi concentration camp was indeed special treatment. It
> doesn't necessarily mean more favourable treatment.
>
> >I apologize for using such unfraternal suggestions that a mason
> >who denys that the Grand Hailing Sign Of Distress exists is a Liar,
> >that particular line was unnecessary.
> Apology accepted.
>
> [.......snipped............]
> >Another phrase (or gesture) used in extreme situations is the Grand
> >Masonic Hailing Sign of Distress.
> I repeat my previous statement in reply to your previous post: "The name
> you give does not match any that I was given when raised to the
> degree of a Master Mason".
>
> You need to be aware that each masonic jurisdiction has its own ritual,
> including its own variation of masonic signs and names for them - mine does
> not have the sign you refer to.
>
> Looks like there won't be any "help" for me in an American court ??? :-)
>
> >A Masonic defendent in court might bury his hands at some point and cry,"
> Oh
> >Lord My God, is there no help for the widow's son? "
> He may try this. He would undoubtedly be asked by the Judge to explain his
> remark. A failure or refusal to do so would be contempt of court. As we
> say: 'Go straight to jail, do not pass Go, do not collect £200'.
>
> >Although that might sound a bit odd to the average listener, it could be
> >understood as a cry of anguish.
> I doubt it - I have never heard a cry of anguish like that, or even a report
> of one.
>
> >If a masonic judge or juror heard it, they would be honor bound (by a blood
> >oath) to acquit such a person, or at least fight for a hung jury.
> A Judge or Juror who was a Freemason would be DUTY BOUND to REFUSE the
> request for assistance, the Freemasons conditions for "helping" others are
> very clearly defined:-
>
> 1. to help a friend or brother in time of need WITHOUT detriment to one's
> self or connections
>
> 2. murder, treason, felony and all other crimes contrary to the laws of God
> and the ordinances of the Realm being at all time most especially excepted
>
> In other words a Freemason is told specifically not to help another in an
> illegal or immoral way.
>
> >The gesture which accompanies this (or it can be given alone, if necessary)
> >is for the person to raise his arms over his head (almost as in a hands up
> >position and then lowering them in three stages, pivoting the forearms at
> >the elbow until they are perpendicular to the floor, palms down.
> This question is a non-sequitur bearing in mind my previous answer.
>
> >Any Mason, seeing that gesture, or hearing the above words would be
> >oath-bound to do anything possible to save the other Mason from danger,
> >up to, but not including, the loss of his own life.
>
> Likewise, see my points on limitations
>
> > DUNCAN, MALCOLM C., DUNCANS RITUAL MONITOR
> >Now the above I took from the source stated above, and it does differ
> >slightly from the way I initially stated it from my rather poor memory.
>
> I believe Dunan's is outdated, and no longer fully applicable.
>
> [......snipped.....]
> >3. If it has a purpose what might that be?
> >P.S. I am most interested in getting an answer to my point number 3 if
> >my conjecture is wrong.
>
> It seems an interesting perspective of your mentality that a sign requesting
> assistance (i.e. a distress signal) must automatically relate to evading
> justice in criminal cases. What if the brother were being robbed? Or
> was suffering some other form of distress other than the risk of being found
> guilty of a crime? After all, when the Titanic sent a distress signal,
> no-one assumed that it had been used/sent for an improper purpose. So why
> should this assumption be made of Freemasons?

-----------------------------------------------------------

Yes, yes, yes. The criminal example was the one that was given to me.

As for being robbed or on a sinking ship I would hope that you would
respond equally for assistance whether one used the g.h.s.d. signal
or not.

NOn-masons are people too.

Regardevoux

-------------------------------------------------------------

>
> Just to keep you happy, yes there is a "distress" sign - but "not as you
> know it Jim".
>
> Regards,
>
> Richard White
> PM
> Addington Lodge No. 5080
> Old Olavians Lodge No. 5758
> UGLE
>
>

-----------== Posted via Deja News, The Discussion Network ==----------

TYC45

unread,
Feb 9, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/9/99
to
I have read the submissions made to the House Of Commons Home Affairs Select
Committee and no one has suggested that a Mason used the sign of Grief and
Distress in the courtroom recently.

According to the Select Commitee's report the recent Mason Register has been
introduced to allay public fears about Freemasonry.

I am aware of only one case when a Freemason inadvertantly let it be known in a
courtroom that he was a Freemason, the Judge announced that he was aware that
the defendant was a Freemason and immediately withdrew from the case.

I suspect that most Freemasons would not dare to use a sign of distress in a
courtroom because Masonic rules specifically prohibit lawbreaking, if a Mason
would be stupid enough to use the sign of distress in the courtroom then he
would run the risk of receiving a stiffer sentence than if he did not.

The majority of journalists who report court cases are not Freemasons and as it
is not difficult to find out what the Masonic sign of distress is then a
journalist who recognised the sign of distress being used would certsainly find
it a good story to run, probably on the front page.

In addition sentences are fixed within a scale and a judge who was unduly
lenient would find his decisions overturned in the court of appeal, if a judge
regularly showed favour to Masonic defendants then senior judges would soon ask
the judge why he was giving unduly lenient sentences.

In the legal profession a reputation is everything and any corrupt judge would
soon find himself doing the judicial equivalent of directing traffic or being
forced to resign.

John The Reformer

unread,
Feb 9, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/9/99
to
In article <19990208224039...@ng39.aol.com>,
> -------------------------------------------------------------

JOhn Reply : I doubt if many "journalists" have even heard of freemasonry,
or if they have have heard of it know anything at all about it, certainly
not any means of recognition.

I am constantly amazed when I go by the MaSONIC tEMPLE IN MY TOWN HOW NO ONE
KNOWS WHAT THAT BUILDING IS FOR, MANY THINK IT IS A SYNAGOGUE- I'M NOT
KIDDING.

Freemasonry is almost completely unknown by people under 40, I should
say 90% of the populace of that age know zilch about Masonry and you
can carry that forward into "journalists".

The legislation in Britain was not brought forth because of mass public
outcry, it was brought forth as a result of an internal Government Inquiry
looking at a number of criminal investigations, prosecutions, and internal
police and crown personnel matters. It was the recomendations of this
internal, confidential Government Inquiry Report that led to the legislation
being introduced and passed.

The fact is that in the United Kingdom today, the Birthplace of Modern
Freemasonry all Freemasons who are employed as Police Officers, Judges,
Prosecutors or other Legal officials must now REGISTER with the GOVERNMENT.

Pretty serious stuff, wouldn't you say ?

---------------------------------------------------------------------

Michael B. Buck

unread,
Feb 9, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/9/99
to
John, The ?

I thought that I explained all of this to you once before! Why do you persist?

What part did you not understand? Duncan's is only good for 1845 to 1864 and
only in one part of the U.S. and covers at least eight degrees, some of which
don't even exist in some places and, but not inclusive of, in others are
required! Some of this stuff changes from year to year and from place to place.

All those who have replied to you have told you what they can and none will
tell you how to be recognized as a Mason unless you are one and if you are one
then you already know. Some times it is as simple as showing a dues card.
Something that you will find for almost any club or church or whatever. All
have modes of recognition. (See my Elk ears, or was that mouse ears, I am
getting confused by your nonsense.)

Let me give you an example of the kind of grief that you might have from
knowing signs of distress. I was working on a black project, the B-2 Bomber
to be exact. In an area where the U.S. Government didn't even allow radios.
The Emergency PA system came on (for the first time in the history of Northrop
in a black area) and announced that the Space Shuttle had crashed and for all
Northrop employees that had worked on the Space Shuttle to standby.

When I got home, I turned on the news and saw the Shuttle go up in flames and
heard a Mason call out in distress with his last breath.

Trust me, you don't need this grief. You don't have a need to know, you are
not qualified to know, you have not proven a right to know our modes of
recognition and no Mason will give you what you are trying to pry from our
keyboards. In addition, we would have to give you, not one sign of distress
but one for every degree that has one. Let's see that amounts to
approximately sixty or better. How long do you have here?

Mike, MM

--
Live long and prosper.

eas...@redriverok.com

unread,
Feb 9, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/9/99
to
In article <79o2mr$14a$1...@nnrp1.dejanews.com>,

Well allow me to correct you. After several postings you revealed that your
only source of knowledge was Duncan's. At first you did not indicate that.
As to giving you a reference, I will not. Masonry, like every organization
in thw world, has some private matters.

> ----------------------------------------------------------------
> > >
> > > I apologize for using such unfraternal suggestions that a mason
> > > who denys that the Grand Hailing Sign Of Distress exists is a Liar,
> > > that particular line was unnecessary.
> >
> > Apology accepted. It does take a big man to apologize in a newsgroup.
> >
> > >
> > > That being said I have an interest in your organization from a political,
> > > and historical perspective.
> > >
> > > This is an open forum, I would assume you would not only want to dialogue
> > > with masons.
> >
> > Then ask your questions, don't make unfounded accusations.
>
> ----------------------------------------------------------
>
> JOHn reply: the accusations were not unfounded as there has been examples
> where masons have used this in a courtroom or with enforcement authorities
> successfully or Unsucessfully (please review some of the responses from you
> collegues in this forum ).


I have given you examples expressly to the contrary.

>
> ----------------------------------------------------------------
> >
> > >
> > > If only to get some practice in at defending your organization. Believe
> > > me in the responses I have seen so far I should say you are all quite
> > > capable of defending yourself in an intelligent and thoughtfull manner.
> > >
> >
> > I did, yet you never responded to my post.
>
> -----------------------------------------------------
>
> JOhn Reply : I received at least a half dozen lenghthy replys to my
> post and I answered half of them which covered the same ground as
> yours. Am sorry am only getting around to yours now, no slight
> intended.

I can understand that. This is a really busy newsgroup.

It is simply not true that a mason can give some sign or phrase and get off
from a crime. That is what my cases are too illustrate. As to smaller
"locals" I live in Bryan County Oklahoma on the OK/TX state line, I don't
think it gets more backward than that:) Yet we still don't excuse masons for
criminal conduct. In face we demand a higher standard from masons. Any
mason attempting to use masonry to cover crimes is likely to get a STIFFER
penalty.

>
> There does appear to be some instances of this happening recently in the U.K.
> as the British Parliament has recently passed legislation requiring all
> Judges, Prosecutors, and Police to sign a statement declaring whether they
> are members of masonic lodges or not.
>

Well I have no knowledge of masonry in England and cannot comment.


> In the debates in Parliament the reasons given for the necessity of this
> legislation by the GOVERNMENT where that this sort of thing has gone on
> including cases of officers and officals engaging In malfiesence to protect
> reputations and careers.
>

Of course it could be some antimasonic conspiracy theories gone amok... But
again I don't know the situation in England and cannot comment.


> Please contact the Grand Lodge web site in the U.K. to verify this for
> yourself. I have no axe to grind, I am not an anti-mason, every one and every
> organization can use some improvement, none are perfect.
>
> -----------------------------------------------------------------
>
> > > The gesture which accompanies this (or it can be given alone, if
necessary)
> > > is for the person to raise his arms over his head (almost as in a hands up
> > > position and then lowering them in three stages, pivoting the forearms at
> > > the elbow until they are perpendicular to the floor, palms down.
> > >
> > > Any Mason, seeing that gesture, or hearing the above words would be
> > > oath-bound to do anything possible to save the other Mason from danger,
> > > up to, but not including, the loss of his own life.
> > >
> > > DUNCAN, MALCOLM C., DUNCANS RITUAL MONITOR
> >
> > Duncans ritual has been shown to be in error many, many times. Why do
anti's
> > keep quoting it???
>
> ---------------------------------------------------------------------
>
> JOhn reply : Huh ? It's your ritual monitor, you tell me. If it is in
> error why does it exist, why is it on the shelves in public library's?


It is not my ritual monitor. No masonic monitor includes the esoteric work.
And if you are asking why an book with errors would exist or be in the public
library, then I suggest you take a closer look at libraries. This is the
United states any person can write and publish anything they wish. Libraries
carry many different books, some of which espouse opposing views. Not all can
be correct.

>
> Who was this Duncan anyway, a senior Mason or official one would assume.

NO.


>
> Therefore he obviously had some approval given to his publishing it by
> higher authority within your organization.
>

No, he had no approval to publish anything. This is the United states any
person can write and publish anything they wish.

> Maybe there is some disagreement within Masonry on what is and what isn't
> the correct interpretation of Ritual.
>

Well that is true.

Well then let me state again: THERE IS NO DEATH PENALTY IN MASONRY.

eas...@redriverok.com

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Feb 9, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/9/99
to
In article <79p9nt$lr$1...@nnrp1.dejanews.com>,

John The Reformer <gnos...@hotmail.com> wrote:
>
(huge snip)

> > -------------------------------------------------------------
>
> JOhn Reply : I doubt if many "journalists" have even heard of freemasonry,
> or if they have have heard of it know anything at all about it, certainly
> not any means of recognition.


Really? IN the U.S. there are 4 million + masons. I rarely meet anyone who
does not know that masonry is a fraternity.

>
> I am constantly amazed when I go by the MaSONIC tEMPLE IN MY TOWN HOW NO ONE
> KNOWS WHAT THAT BUILDING IS FOR, MANY THINK IT IS A SYNAGOGUE- I'M NOT
> KIDDING.
>

then your local lodge is slacking. My lodge is constantly involved in charity
work and is well known in our community.


> Freemasonry is almost completely unknown by people under 40, I should
> say 90% of the populace of that age know zilch about Masonry and you
> can carry that forward into "journalists".

Hmmm Must be different in your part of the world.

>
> The legislation in Britain was not brought forth because of mass public
> outcry, it was brought forth as a result of an internal Government Inquiry
> looking at a number of criminal investigations, prosecutions, and internal
> police and crown personnel matters. It was the recomendations of this
> internal, confidential Government Inquiry Report that led to the legislation
> being introduced and passed.


What constitutes "mass public outcry"/???

>
> The fact is that in the United Kingdom today, the Birthplace of Modern
> Freemasonry all Freemasons who are employed as Police Officers, Judges,
> Prosecutors or other Legal officials must now REGISTER with the GOVERNMENT.
>
> Pretty serious stuff, wouldn't you say ?


Yep, pretty similiar to Germany in the late 1930's just before Hitler tried to
murder all the masons.


>
> ---------------------------------------------------------------------

Eugene Goldman.·.

unread,
Feb 9, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/9/99
to
On Tue, 09 Feb 1999 12:29:56 GMT, John The Reformer
<gnos...@hotmail.com> wrote:

*The fact is that in the United Kingdom today, the Birthplace of Modern
*Freemasonry all Freemasons who are employed as Police Officers, Judges,
*Prosecutors or other Legal officials must now REGISTER with the GOVERNMENT.
*
*Pretty serious stuff, wouldn't you say ?

I would agree. We went through two similar situations here in the
USA. One in Salem, Mass. a generation or two ago, and one in
Washington headed up by a paranoid politician named McCarthy. Both
were complete embarrasments to the nation as a whole, as they clearly
illustrated that (despite the fact that we are granted certain
freedoms in our Constitution) rule of law, normal human decency and
common sense often take a back seat to political ambition and bigotry.

Sad periods in our national history, and a sad one in the history of
England.

|O| Be well. Travel with a light heart.

Eugene Goldman.·.

unread,
Feb 9, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/9/99
to
On Tue, 09 Feb 1999 01:46:18 GMT, John The Reformer
<gnos...@hotmail.com> wrote:

*JOhn reply : Yes you have, very nicely reasoned.

Simple truth, sir.

John The Reformer

unread,
Feb 9, 1999, 3:00:00 AM2/9/99
to
In article <36BFEB83...@home.com>,

------------------------------------------------------------

JOhn reply : There seems to be a pattern of you folks answering the questions
you want to answer (whether I asked them or not ), or responding to points
(whether I made them or not), I believe in Rhetoric it is called begging
the question or building a strawman.

1. Where did I ever say I wanted to know the means of recognition ? I didn't.

2. I don't want to know the means of recognition.

3. I don't care what the means of recognition are.

4. Please don't tell me.

5. The only reason I used the G.M.H.S.D. was to point to the larger issue
of general concerns of the criminal justice system. Re: Masons giving
other Masons special or preferential treatment. Which I AND MANY OTHERS,
consider to be a LEGITIMATE question.

6. Duncans Ritual Whatever - This is the first I have seem of this 1845
business, it's br