Monday, July 4, 2016

‘Don’t Be a Sucker’

Listening to the radio for some Independence Day rock & roll, the program currently tuned in mixes an occasional odd sound bite amid the tunes, including a minute or so of a U.S. War Department film titled “Don’t Be a Sucker.” Released in 1943, and revised after the war, this short partially explains how the Nazis rose to political power in Germany and drove the country to ruin in the Second World War. The story is told by a Hungarian-born university professor (Paul Lukas) who had fled Europe for the United States in the nick of time, and became an American citizen.

After an introductory segment explaining how political rabble rousers are akin to con men in their common strategies for duping the public, the film uses one character’s membership in Freemasonry to make the emotional connection for the viewer to realize that bigot demagogues typically are talking about them when blaming society’s ills on members of ethnic, racial, and religious minorities. “What’s wrong with the Masons? I’m a Mason,” the startled onlooker wonders before reappraising his opinions on American society.

Freemasonry is an odd choice of vehicle to cross that bridge, but that’s how it is in “Don’t Be a Sucker.”

It has been a number of years since Bro. Sal Corelli was mentioned on the Magpie, and I figure these photos he sent me five days ago would be perfect to share on Independence Day.

Sal was in Queens, New York and visited the site of the 1964-65 New York Worlds Fair, which boasted an impressive Masonic pavilion, some of which remains standing.

I close this Independence Day edition of The Magpie Mason with a look at Bro. George Washington: General of the Continental Army, President of the United States, and Freemason.

Courtesy Sal Corelli

Courtesy Sal Corelli

Courtesy Sal Corelli

If the likeness of Washington looks familiar, it is because the sculptor who created it was a prolific replicator of Washington in bronze. New York artist Donald De Lue’s other Washingtons stand at the New Orleans Main Public Library; the George Washington Masonic Memorial in Alexandria, Virginia; Valley Forge, Pennsylvania; George Washington Memorial Park in Paramus, New Jersey; the Masonic museum in Lexington, Massachusetts; Mariners Church in Detroit; the Masonic Home in Indianapolis; and elsewhere.

Gotta go! The Nerds are playing some little suburban town soon, before the fireworks.

1 comment:

Collingswood Cloud said...

Sightings of the ever elusive Bro. Sal Corelli in the tri-state have been scarce as of late, but I recently did have the pleasure of seeing him at the Collingswood Cloud Lodge annual picnic last Thursday. :-)