Tuesday, January 31, 2017

Even In Church

The Most Reverend Manuel A. Cruz, Auxiliary Bishop of the Archdiocese of Newark, was attacked during Mass last Saturday by a man who got up from his seat at the service. The Bishop needed 30 stitches in his mouth as result of the punch. The thug who assaulted the Bishop was arrested, though no motive has been released. I'm assuming that unless the goon turns out to be a Trump supporter, we probably won’t hear much more about a motive.

We now have video of the assault.

The recording leaves me wondering why the attacker was allowed to calmly walk up to the altar. During that part of the Mass people are standing, but there is no reason for anyone to be approaching the altar. An Essex County Sheriff's Officer can be seen calmly following the guy, but makes no attempt to stop him until AFTER he sucker punches the Bishop. Inexcusable in my eyes.

Frankly, I am a little surprised the Bishop didn’t react sooner. It just goes to show that one can be blind to a threat when you have no reason to believe there is any danger.

Unfortunately this assault occurred in New Jersey, where good people are defenseless and told to rely on the police to keep them safe. How'd that work out for the Bishop? I am confident that someone approaching the altar in my church here in Virginia would be stopped before he hit the first step.

For my Virginia readers, I will remind you of the Virginia statute which vaguely states that carrying a weapon "without good and sufficient reason" in a church is not lawful. I will also remind you that former Virginia Attorney Cuccinelli offered an opinion that "carrying a weapon for personal protection constitutes a good and sufficient reason under the statute to carry a weapon into a place of worship while a meeting for religious purposes is being held there."


  1. I'm amazed that I had not been aware of this until I checked your blog. This, surely, is real news.

    I'm also stunned that the law enforcement personnel, there appears to be two, are just sort of walking up behind the assailant until he assaults the Bishop. The Bishop, no doubt viewing this whole thing as wholly out of context, doesn't react. That's understandable as people taken out of the familiar often don't react, but it's difficult to grasp why the police failed to do something, particularly as the individual had walked completely up to the front of the Church.

    I'll finally note, and I know that this is going to sound wrong, that while I hate to second guess the police, and I know that very often there are things they are doing that we don't appreciate, that your police on the East Coast often seem rather ill equipped to do their jobs. Again, I know that sounds awful, but even just considering their use of firearms, they don't compare very well with police in the West.

    I'm not second guessing here and I don't feel that I dare comment on people carrying in a Church outside of a region that I'm familiar, with, but I would note that an assault on a Bishop seems newsworthy.

    1. It would be news if it was another "faith" as the victim.

      I am not familiar with West Coast cops, but I did see a lot of 1911's in leather among law enforcement in Montana. :-) In general I think the new breed of LEO comes from a different background; not mil, not even gun owners. We are on our own when it comes to self defense.

    2. One thing I've noticed is that in bigger East Coast cities the police do not seem to know their way around the use of their firearms. In the West, they do.

      In the East, you'll sometimes get a massive amount of ammo expended with poor results, sometimes with the innocent hit. We don't tend to see the same in the West.

      Which is one reason why I think the concept that you can depend on the police, at least in the East, is flawed. Concealed carry folks back there, in my view, are more likely to know their way around their firearms.

      I can't comment on carry in Churches, however, which is not allowed without permission even where I'm located.

  2. He had it coming 'cause...Crusades...


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