Monday, October 31, 2016

Shriners International disbands Clown Units amid nationwide clown scare

Tampa, FL - In the wake of the 2016 "Great Clown Scare" that has left hundreds of people terrified and dozens of clowns injured across the United States, Shriners International made a public announcement this morning announcing the immediate disbanding of all Shrine-affiliated Clown Units. Noble Joe Snow, Director of Corporate Communications for Shriners International, explained the events that led to this decision: "As you all are acutely aware, since August creepy clowns have been menacing Americans across the country. In some instances, violence has ensued. We stood firm when Anonymous threatened to dox us, but things have gotten out of hand. The onus is on Shriners International  to not contribute to the rising mass hysteria. As a result, effective immediately, all Shrine-affiliated Clown Units are hereby disbanded."

As expected, this news was met with great public outcry on the part of Nobles across the United States who see the Clown Units as part of an ancient, sacred tradition. In response, Units across the country have threatened to go underground, or even break away from Shriners International altogether.

While this announcement came as a shock to many, some Shriners saw it coming. Noble Jim-Bob Snowjob, from Durka Durka Shrine Temple in Bluefield, West Virginia, made the following observation: "It makes sense to me. Many 'muricans find Shriners creepy even when they don't dress up like clowns. 'Specially them Jesters folk. Billy-Joe down the street was dressed up as Bubbles the Tramp last month for the Labor Day Parade and he got chased almost outta' town when the townfolk mistook him for one of them maniac clowns that's been terrorizing the young 'uns 'cross the country."

Perhaps most unsettling was the fact that this announcement left thousands of Shriners across the country without a suitable Halloween costume this year. During his announcement, Noble Joe Snow specifically cautioned those now-former Clown Unit members against donning their costumes and attempting to take part in Halloween festivities: "Shriners International strongly encourages all Nobles to refrain from dressing in contraband [read: clown] attire this Halloween, especially if you intend to imbibe alcohol or any other substance that might lower your inhibitions and make you a target for anti-clown mobs"

While this writer of The Past Bastard seems to have his coulrophobia in check at the moment, he wholeheartedly agrees with one thing: this creepy clown situation isn't funny.

-SK Bro. Mason Burhmaster

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Report: Evangelical cartoonist Jack Chick converts to Freemasonry on deathbed

Alhambra, CA - Jack Chick, long-time evangelical Christian, anti-Semite, anti-Catholic, anti-Muslim, anti-Mason, anti-feminist, anti-rock music, anti-kitten, anti-esotericism, anti-Harry Potter, anti-New King James Version of the Bible, anti-Dungeons and Dragons, anti-homosexual, anti-snow cone, and anti-Halloween comic book artist passed away in late October, but before doing so converted to Freemasonry, sources close to the Chick family disclosed to The Past Bastard. Josephina Snow-Chick, relative of Jack Chick, explained: "Jack's final wish was for his family to tell the world that he was right about Freemasonry all along. It is a religion, albeit one with which Jack fell more in love as he got older. At the end, he wanted everyone to know the glory of GOATU [sic]."

When The Past Bastard attempted to explain that Freemasonry was not, in fact, a religion, Ms. Snow-Chick replied: "Well, of course you'd say that! As Jack always said, 'Freemasons don't learn about Baphomet until the highest degrees!' You must just not be a good enough Mason yet."

This writer of The Past Bastard wishes Mr. Chick and his family the best during this difficult time. As of this writing, Freemasons joined together with Catholics, dungeon masters, and Lutherans to mourn his loss. Bro Jonathan Doe, former Grand Secretary of the Grand Lodge of Oklahoma lamented: "...those Chick Tracts were some of the best promotional materials this organization ever had. It's sad to think there won't be any more. It's funny really--Freemasons spent decades trying to persuade Mr. Chick that Freemasonry isn't a religion. Given Jack's self-confessed 'conversion to Freemasonry,' I guess he got the last laugh."

-SK Bro. Mason Buhrmaster

Monday, October 24, 2016

Grand Lodge of Missouri removes recognition from states with Traditional Observance lodges

Six Flags, MO -- The Grand Lodge of Missouri announced that it will revoke recognition of other US jurisdictions that have adopted "Traditional Observance" lodges.
"It's right there in every Master and Grand Master's installation," said RWB Lee Wayne Stacey, media spokesperson for the Grand Lodge of Missouri. "You are not to allow any innovations into the body of Masonry. Yet we have a dozen Grand Masters, and who knows how many Worshipfuls of other lodges who try to introduce all these really cool sounding or awesome looking things that simply aren't part of any Freemasonry that I've ever seen."
RWB Stacey went on to point out that there was an inherent danger in introducing such elements into regular lodges. "Word gets around, and then there's all these expectations that the Freemasons are some kind of secret society, or some kind of new age brotherhood or something," he explained. "We're already seeing the fallout as new guys, and especially those millennial kids, join, then drop out when they don't see any of that stuff happening. We shouldn't be allowing none of that stuff in the first place." 
chambeofreflection_featWhile the Grand Lodge will vote on the resolution at the next Grand Convocation, the Grand Master has so far suspended relations with Colorado ("Yeah, those kooks were the first to go; I'm not at all surprised that they legalized that wacky tobacky."), California ("I don't see how any Grand Lodge continues to recognize anything west of the Rockies."), Washington, Oregon ("They're just California 'Lite', if you ask me."), Utah ("Mainly 'cos those Mormons are trying to become another branch of the York Rite, as if we need more snobby guys with titles and stuff."), and Massachusetts ("They're like the California of the East Coast; always trying something new and different."). 
The Past Bastard tried to point out that some of the arcane symbols, like the Chamber of Reflection or the Skull and Crossed Bones have been used in other jurisdictions for a long time. "Yeah, foreign jurisdictions," RWB Stacey responded. "That's my point. We're trying to keep Freemasonry all-American, just the way that the Great Architect intended." 

--Conte Calvino Gliostro

Monday, October 17, 2016

Disenfranchised Masons form new Arkansas Grand Lodge to right wrongs

Fayetteville, AR - A group of disenfranchised Masons sick of the horrific antics perpetrated by the Grand Lodge of Arkansas--recently dubbed the "North Korea of American Freemasonry"--have taken matters into their own hands by forming a new grand lodge to govern the grand jurisdiction of Arkansas. Tentatively named "The Regular Wheaton Grand Lodge of Arkansas," this new Grand Lodge was reportedly formed to inculcate the values of human decency and brotherly love across the state.

MW Brother Joe Snow, Grand Master pro tempore of the Regular Wheaton Grand Lodge of Arkansas spoke to The Past Bastard about his and his fellow brethren's decision to form a new Grand Lodge, and what they hope to accomplish: "The fact is we were left with no other choice. We couldn't effect change from within, and we weren't allowed to leave to promote change from without. The only choice we had left was to schism. Thus, as the Grand Lodge of Arkansas has completely departed from core Masonic values to include faith, hope, charity, and brotherly love, we have rechristened that organization as the 'Impostor Grand Lodge of Arkansas', as it clearly no longer represents Freemasonry."

When asked about the organization's name, Bro. Snow explained: "We chose the name Wheaton largely due to Wheaton's Law, as a reminder to ourselves and an admonition to impostor organizations to treat everyone with respect and human dignity. In fact, human dignity is one of our highest aims. Our very first initiative is to request recognition from the United Grand Lodge of England so that we can, in turn, offer blanket recognition not only to our Prince Hall counterparts, but also to all Prince Hall jurisdictions who are recognized by their state Grand Lodge counterparts. Our very next policy will be to extend immediate reinstatement to all former brethren of the Imposter Grand Lodge who were either suspended within the past year or elected to self-expel. Finally, we'll proudly open our doors and offer immediate membership to any current member of the Impostor Grand Lodge who wishes to heal himself by coming to our organization. We don't expect that we can right the wrongs of the Impostor Grand Lodge overnight, but we're in this for the long haul."

When The Past Bastard asked Bro. Snow about his recourse should UGLE deny his request for recognition, Bro. Snow answered calmly: "We're playing the long game here. Based on publicly available demographic data, the Impostor Grand Lodge won't have any members left inside of five years. When it collapses, we'll be there to bring Masonry back to decency."

This writer of The Past Bastard wishes the Regular Wheaton Grand Lodge of Arkansas the very best in their endeavors, and plans to pop popcorn and take a front row seat to the now-inevitable collapse of the bastion of hatred, bigotry, and idiocy that is the (Imposter) Grand Lodge of Arkansas. At this point in time, if being clandestine is wrong, this writer of The Past Bastard doesn't want to be right.

- SK Bro. Mason Buhrmaster

Monday, October 10, 2016

Grand Lodge Announces "Missionary Petitioning" Initiative; Open Doors to Atheists Who Pledge to Convert

Meridian, MS - Earlier today, the Grand Lodge of Mississippi announced its latest jurisdiction-wide initiative aimed at expanding membership opportunities to those who would normally be excluded from Masonic membership. Dubbed the "Missionary Petitioning Initiative," the Grand Lodge of Mississippi has officially relaxed the membership requirements of a belief in a Supreme Being...provided the petitioner pledges to convert to Christianity prior receiving his Master Mason degree.

Bro. Joe Snow, head of the Grand Lodge Committee on Membership (GLCoM), discussed his Grand Lodge's historic move with The Past Bastard: "We here on the Grand Lodge Committee on Membership were trying to think of ways we could expand our pool of potential members. We knew that admitting women would be a death sentence to the Eastern Star and Amaranth, but we realized that we have an untapped market in today's young Atheists. Of course we can't really go against the Ancient Landmarks of Masonry, which is why we had to leave in the conversion caveat. That, and bringing in new members to Freemasonry and Christianity is a win-win!"

When asked how the GLCoM came up with this initiative in the first place, Bro. Joe pointed back to that great fount of all knowledge--no, not The Holy Bible--the internet: "Well, we were thinking about how lost this generation happens to be, and I remembered reading something years ago on the internet about the 'Date to Save' initiative, a Missionary Dating operation in which a lovely young Christian lady set out to save young men by dating non-Christians and converting them to Christianity. The committee figured we could use her example to help turn Mississippi Freemasonry and the world around at the same time!" When Bro. Joe was asked why the Grand Lodge was emphasizing conversion to Christianity in particular vice simply pledging to profess a belief in a Supreme Being, Bro. Joe explained: "Look, everyone here in GAOTU's country knows that Jesus is God. There's no sense in leaving things ambiguous."

Bro. Joe was gracious enough to explain his plan to execute the Grand Lodge's initiative: "Well, we're already working on a very Christian-centered curriculum to add to our Entered Apprentice and Fellowcraft education programs. If they want their third degree badly enough, they'll sign an affidavit of conversion and we'll welcome them into the fraternity and friends and brothers! If not, well, I guess that Master Mason degree will just never get scheduled now won't it?"

-Exalted Patron Dr. Dorian Dalton

Monday, October 3, 2016

Freemasons nationwide laud moon landing 47 years late

Wapakoneta, OH - Over the past week, Freemasons nationwide have taken to social media to celebrate the first successful moon landing about 47 years late. What began as a simple nostalgic "Freemasons and the moon landing" post on an unassuming Freemasonry-related Facebook group soon blossomed into a full-on celebration of Masonic achievement noted on both Chris Hodapp's blog and the news portion of the Masonic Roundtable podcast, all because no one checked the date of the article being shared to assess how current the events described therein happened to be.

Posting on the popular Masonic Facebook group Almost All Things Masonic, Bro. Joe Snow announced: "Huge news! I can't believe we've actually made it to the moon! Maybe one day they'll make a movie out of these events and cast Matt Damon as Buzz Aldrin? I've heard he's a Freemason. We'll all be sitting around one day saying 'I remember where I was in 2016, the day that man (and a Freemason, no less!) first landed on the moon.'"

Sources close to The Past Bastard who spoke on the condition of anonymity asserted that this misunderstanding had reached Grand Lodge levels. "I just got out of a meeting with the Grand Master of Ohio," the source explained, "who has decided to extend an honorary membership to Neil Armstong for his efforts. In addition, our Grand Master is now deciding whether or not to charter an affinity lodge related to space travel to mark the occasion. He is thinking about naming the lodge after the Sea of Tranquility, the location on the moon where the astronauts landed."

While this writer for The Past Bastard believes that man's space achievements should most certainly be lauded, he exhorts his fellow brethren to check the dates of the articles they intend to share before passing them off as 'breaking news.'

- SK Bro. Mason Burhmaster