[Square & Compasses]

Letter of the month: March 1997

From: dryfoo@MIT.EDU Message-Id: <9703190112.AA12459@thelonious.MIT.EDU> To: castle@tnp.com Subject: Re: Masonic Visitors Guest Book In-Reply-To: Your message of "Tue, 18 Mar 1997 16:46:07 EST." <199703182146.QAA16943@dns.tnp.com> Date: Tue, 18 Mar 1997 20:12:33 EST } > } >} ------- } >} } >} Name:: Pat Cooper } >} E-mail:: castle@tnp.com } >} Location:: Brooklyn, NY } >} Lodge:: } >} Lodge Loc'n:: } >} Office:: } >} RQFC?: No } >} RQFC-topic: } >} Message:: Is it true that you guys killed Kennedy?? } >} } >} ---- } >} sent by: castle@tnp.com } >} } > } >Who? Me personally? Yes. } > } } I heard that the masons had something to do with the death of Kennedy. JFK } was the only president that was not a mason. } } } Pat Cooper

Dear Mr. Cooper,

First of all, on this "only president not a Mason" stuff:

I'll bet you $500 American that JFK was not the only president who wasn't a Mason. In fact I'll bet you YOUR $500 APIECE for each president who WAS NOT a Mason, against MY $500 EACH for every president that WAS.

It's not a bet you want to take. There were maybe a dozen or so presidents who were, and I'll even throw in William McKinley (records not conclusive) and Lyndon Johnson (made an Entered Apprentice, but never came back for the 2nd and 3rd degrees).

Can't include Reagan (made an honorary 33rd Degree Mason by the Southern Jurisdiction of the Scottish Rite, but that was strictly honorary -- he never took a Masonic degree, never joined a lodge, never learned a thing about Masonry). (Unless you're the kind of person who gets an honorary degree from a college somewhere and then insists on having everyone address you as "Doctor" from then on. I'm guessing you're not, and that's the same situation with an honorary 33rd.)

Can't include Bill Clinton, who joined a boy's auxilliary organization called DeMolay.

Here's the list of Presidents who were Masons:

01) George Washington 02) James Monroe 03) Andrew Jackson 04) James Polk 05) James Buchanan 06) Andrew Johnson 07) James Garfield 08) William McKinley (?) 09) Theodore Roosevelt 10) William Howard Taft 11) Warren G. Harding 12) Franklin D. Roosevelt 13) Harry S. Truman 14) (Lyndon B. Johnson) 15) Gerald R. Ford

That's 15 out of what? 42? 43? I make that out to about $13k in my favor.

So you want to be careful about that "only president" stuff, eh?

Next, if you're the kind of person who believes that "the Masons" secretly had something to do with the Kennedy assassination, why in God's name would you believe anything a Mason said regarding the truth or falsehood of the assertion?

Also, I don't really know who killed Kennedy, but even if whoever did it was a Mason, would that be the same to you as "the Masons did it"? In other words, suppose the guy who shot Lincoln was a Baptist. Would that mean that "the Baptists" had it in for him?

Or if you think that the Kennedy assassination was ordered by some authoritative group of superiors within "the Masons", then what makes you think that the rest of us Masons would even know that such an order had been given. Of course this last assumes that there are secret hierarchies within Freemasonry that can or would give orders like that.

Speaking from my own experience, lodge masters often aren't even successful at getting their members to pay their dues on time, and Grand Lodge Grand Masters can't even send out letters about the proper white shirt to go with an officer's tuxedo without getting arguments about it.

In short, there just isn't anything going on in Masonry like you're imagining...

...Well, in Italy, a criminal gang with influence in finance and the Church (RC) decided to disguise themselves as a "Masonic" order, but I should point out that they weren't really Masons at all, and none of the actual Masons believed them to be so. They did manage to steal a bunch of money and kill a few bankers and maybe a Pope, but that's about par for the rare well-organized bunch of crooks in Italy. (Compare, say, the Borgias, Medicis, Sforzas, the Mafia, the Lombard Kings, and the Fascists. For a look at a more typical bunch of dis-organized Italian crooks, I highly recommend the charming movie _Big Deal on Madonna Street_ (1958) with a small appearance by the delightful Neapolitan comedian Toto')

Does that help any?

-- G

P.S. Are you the Pat Cooper who recorded the comedy album "Spaghetti Sauce and Other Delights"?

+--------------------------------------------------------------------------- | Gary L. Dryfoos <dryfoo@mit.edu> | http://web.mit.edu/dryfoo/Masonry/ | P.O.Box 505, Cambridge, MA 02142 | Brotherhood of the Blue Forget-Me-Not | ofc: 617.253-0184 fax: 253-8665 | PM: Ocean Lodge, Winthrop, MA (2nd Mon) | | & Mt. Scopus Lodge, Malden, MA (4th Wed) | "...one sacred band, or society of Friends and Brothers, among | whom no contention should ever exist, save that noble contention, | or rather emulation, of who best can work and best agree." +===========================================================================

Maybe he has us confused with The Stonecutters?

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