Saturday, November 24, 2012

Follow Freeman!

     The world is dominated by an oppressive, atheistic regime. It rules through a combination of incessant propaganda, a charismatic figure-head, oppression, and terror. Its methods include enforced sterilization, torture, mechanized warfare, and the swift and vicious suppression of any dissenters. Its supporters willingly condone and encourage brutal crimes in the name of a future utopia that is ever more clearly a lie.
But enough about the Obama administration.

I kid, I kid; everyone knows the Obama administration doesn’t dominate the world. Obviously, I’m talking about the Combine; the inter-dimensional alien empire that conquered the earth in a 7-hour war and now rules the once-free world with an iron fist as it strips it clean of its precious resources (just to be clear: still talking about the Combine.
I knew it!
                  Against the cruel hand of these usurping monsters (the Combine) has arisen a rag-tag resistance group fighting to reclaim their world. In every conceivable way they’re outclassed, yet they fight on bravely, with or without hope, using whatever weapons they can find or cobble together.

                  Now, why do I bring all this up? Because Half-Life 2 is a great game? Well, that’s true, but it’s not my point. Because I’m still bitter about the 2012 election? I am not bitter; I take solace in my sarcasm (and faith. You know what, let’s just go with faith; forget what I said about sarcasm). Because I’m trying to justify the picture of Gordon Freeman that serves as the site’s banner? Actually, yes.

                  Gordon Freeman, you see, is the supremely nerdy and badass de-facto leader of the resistance. A theoretical physicist who was caught in the middle of the experiment-gone-wrong that allowed the Combine to invade in the first place (don’t you hate when that happens?), Gordon’s wholly improvised escape from the Black Mesa Research Facility (defeating a separate alien invasion and a Marine death squad in the process) has made him a legend to the futuristic freedom-fighters. So, when he returns after a twenty-year absence, he’s immediately taken as a sign to begin the uprising.

                  A couple weeks later, the city’s been leveled and the Combine is re-strategizing.

"Okay; in Phase One we break his glasses..."
                  Now, why is Gordon our unofficial mascot?

                  Because in many ways, we’re in the same position he is.

                  The world we live in is dominated by the Enemy. I don’t just mean the secular culture that tells us to shut up, go say our silly prayers, and buy them birth control like good little boys. I don’t even mean the increasingly-oppressive governments of major countries like China, the UK, and the United States. I mean the Enemy: the Emperor to whom they are just puppets and deluded quislings. I mean the Devil.

                  The Devil is the ‘Prince of this World.’ He’s assumed control and demanded we all pledge allegiance to him and go along with his attempts to make us less human. We live under an occupying force.

                  Christians are the Resistance, working to undermine the Empire from within. This involves telling people the good news; the True King has landed in secret and hamstrung the Enemy. Victory is now assured; the forces of the King are gathered and they delay only long enough to give us a chance to join in on the right side. It is our job to do what we can to bring as many people in on the right side as possible, and to work to hasten the Empire’s overthrow. Holy Scripture is our strategy and manifesto; the Sacraments are the smuggled supplies that enable us to fight. The Church Hierarchy is the underground government-in-exile; the duly-appointed representatives of the King. When we attend Mass we are assembling for duty to hear our orders and receive strength for the battle ahead. When we go to Confession or the Anointing of the Sick we are being healed of our wounds. When we are Baptized and Confirmed we are sworn into service. When we are Married or Ordained we are volunteering for special duty.

                  Like Gordon and his friends, however, we’re outclassed; we can’t defeat the Empire alone. But, also like them, we aren’t alone. They have the mysterious and probably-sinister G-Man on their side; we have the King of Glory and Creator of the Universe on ours (much more reassuring than the G-Man). Our job is to prepare the way for the King’s forces by raising hell for the…er…forces of Hell.

                  To be Catholic is always to be a rebel. There are no more daring or scandalous words than “I believe in one, holy, Catholic, and Apostolic Church.” To attend Mass is an act of subversion; to pray is to claim your freedom. Because in doing these things we are utterly rejecting all that the Devil tells us: that this world is all there is, that we are the center of the universe, that to love another is to compromise oneself. To all these we Catholics, we members of the Resistance say “lies and propaganda! We shall not be tricked! We are free subjects of the King and bow to no foreign ruler!”

                  Follow Freeman: join the Resistance!

                  Vive Christus Rex!
                  Long Live Christ the King!

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