Bro. Ed King has made an online career the past eight or nine years of debunking anti-Masons and "fake" Masons. Once upon a time I considered Bro. Ed King's MasonicInfo.com a credible source of Masonic history and information. I recall it being one of the first Masonic sites I came across years ago when I became interested in Freemasonry.
Bro. King has created a large database of information, not only on Masonic heroes and Masonic history, but also anti-Masonic fundamentalists, evangelicals, and conspiracy kooks. His site is a great source of information.
But if you think that I sometimes color news and Masonic goings-on with my personal opinions, you ain't seen nothing. Lately, in almost everything he writes, Bro. Ed's anger and hostility seethes, especially at those he considers "fake Masons."
I had to laugh when I read the latest posts on his "what's new" page. He's found a new target to hate: me.
I've never met Bro. King, nor corresponded with him in any manner. As far as I know, he's never posted any comments on the Burning Taper, at least not under his name.
Several months after the fact, he has attacked me for my articles about the NASCAR-Scottish Rite deal and subsequent falling-out with promoter Frank Cicci and driver Bro. Brian Conz.
Bro. King calls me a "xenophobic racist." I don't understand the racist part at all. I'm as much a Southern white boy as any NASCAR fan. Maybe whiter, and maybe more southern.
Being called xenophobic I understand even less. Xenophobic means "an unreasonable fear or hatred of foreigners or strangers or of that which is foreign or strange." I have many Masonic friends outside the United States, so I'm cool with foreigners, and if you've read any of my posts about Eris, Robert Anton Wilson or Ron Bonds, you know I'm on a first-name basis with Strange. Need more proof? I've been friends with Grouchogandhi for over 20 years, and I've even met this guy two or three times. I've got Strange covered.
Apparently Bro. King has had a personal problem with Bro. Jeff Peace for quite a few years, resenting Bro. Jeff's Masonic activism. Because I've posted many of Bro. Jeff's articles, as well as my own articles expressing support of his and other brothers' right to have formed the RRCG and the United Grand Lodge of America, Bro. Ed feels justified in describing me as a "pretend-Mason," someone "who claims to be a 'Master Mason' but is, in reality, tied with the fake Masonry of the United Grand Lodge of America."
I assure you, Bro. Ed, I have a valid, paid-up dues card from a recognized grand lodge in my wallet, and will continue to have one unless my grand lodge chases me down with a bottle of Wite-Out®. I'm as legit and official as you are.
In a weird leap of non-logic, he goes from saying how wonderful it is that Betty Crocker and the U.S. Army advertise on racing cars to attacking my patriotism. I guess in his mind not being a NASCAR fan means I'm a communist or something.
Even more curious, halfway through his rant his writing takes on a tone as if he is an official spokesman for the Scottish Rite.
I don't get it. I don't understand his anger. Not at "fake" Masons, not at Bro. Jeff, and not at me. And it's not just at us. His "contact us" page (titled "policies") is a long diatribe with flashing red text, insinuating that anyone who wants to comment on his website is a "fool" to be "suffered."
Disagree with me all you want, Bro. Ed. No problem. Shake things up. Participate in this blog. Show me where I'm wrong about things. Differences of opinion are good for the soul, and for the Brotherhood. Nothing ever gets accomplished unless someone disagrees with the status quo and changes things, hopefully for the better.
But — and take this from someone who's had his own anger issues regarding Freemasonry the past couple of years, and who has now let them go — you gotta get past the anger, brother. It sounds like it's eating you up inside.
(Yeah, I hear you. That's okay. Denial is the first step to getting past it.)
While calling me "Blogger Boy" is cute, it's hardly respectful of a fellow Mason. We're instructed to refer to each other as brother, brother.
Oh, and thanks for the link.
UPDATE June 19, 2007: Bro. King has recently changed his "what's new" page in response to this article, relegating mention of the Burning Taper to a mere footnote and deleting the link to the Taper. His new page shows no sign of his having accepted the olive branch of peace I offered with my article; instead, he seems to have just become more bitter, saying that the above article "castigated" him. A mirror of his original May 2007 page referred to in the above article can be found here.
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