Doubling Down

Despite a tremendous outcry of protest over the last week and a half, the Knights of Columbus Supreme Council has confirmed and doubled down on the decision to move forward with new Fourth Degree uniforms.

According to the K of C website, the board made the decision because of:

the aging of our Fourth Degree membership, the slow growth of the fourth Degree, (fewer than 20 percent of Knights are Fourth Degree members, and only a fraction of that number even serve as honor guards), and consistent reports that the old regalia presented a barrier to Fourth Degree membership, especially among younger men.

Further down, they say:

For years, supreme officers and directors have received comments from members and prospective members that the old regalia was a barrier to membership overall, or to membership in the Fourth Degree.

Of course they have. I’m sure they’ve received all kinds of comments, from all kinds of people. But as someone who has been a professional public opinion researcher for over twenty-five years, I’m not convinced by anecdotes. Everyone in my line of work remembers what that one focus group participant in Omaha (or wherever) told us that one time.

The question is: Where are the numbers? What kinds of comments have they received or solicited from current members? How many of those members joined precisely because of the traditional regalia? And let’s not forget another important group: what does the average Catholic in the pew think about the traditional uniforms, and the proposed new ones?

There’s a more fundamental question that’s not being asked, however: Why is the Color Corps disproportionately composed of older men? This question is critical for understanding why it will be so difficult to grow the ranks with younger recruits. And you don’t need survey data to answer it.

Participating in the Color Corps requires two essential resources: money (for the regalia), and also time (to actually participate in call-outs). Both of these can be in short supply for younger men, especially full-time students, those struggling with education debt, those establishing themselves at a job, and fathers of young families with small children still at home. To the extent that young men have some additional time or money, there are a thousand priorities for these resources more pressing than the Color Corps.

It is when men grow into middle age, and their prime earning years, that more disposable income for “extras” such as CC regalia becomes available. Just as importantly, with children growing and leaving the nest (or, at a minimum, preoccupied with their own activities and not so much needing or wanting Dad’s constant attention), more time becomes available for volunteer activities of all kinds — including the Knights of Columbus in general, or the Color Corps in particular.

Retirees have the most time of all, and it shouldn’t surprise anyone that they show up for the most events. Though they now may be living on a fixed income, the treasured regalia was usually purchased long ago. Now they’re putting that investment to good and regular use, and have grown deeply attached to it.

Older guys are especially critical for mid-week events. Last month, we received a call-out for honor guard duty at a deceased Knight’s Friday-morning funeral. One by one, I watched the emails, all with variations of “Sorry, wish I could, but have work commitments,” go back to the Color Corps Commander from middle-aged guys who do come for a lot of weekend call-outs. Their unavailability was completely understandable. They have jobs.

When that Friday arrived, almost everyone working the funeral, except me and my son, was a retiree. My son was only able to come because he’s on summer break from college. I only came because I’m self-employed, have a lot of control over my schedule, and had a light week. If this had been during the school year (for my son), or an election season (for me) … forget it.

with cyprian in regalia

During the reception, the family told us how greatly they appreciated the presence of the Color Corps, and how much it meant. I was so glad we were able to be there for them.

But what happens when the retirees on fixed incomes get priced out of the new regalia? Or feel so alienated and betrayed by the way this decision was handed down (and, yes, I’ve heard it first-hand from some of them) that they decide they’ve “had enough” and wouldn’t continue even if the new regalia were free? Where are the hoards of young men who will presumably love the new uniforms so much, they will rearrange their work schedules so they can wear those uniforms to a mid-week funeral?

I should add that I don’t doubt young men prefer the new uniforms. My own twenty-one-year-old son says he is fine with the new look. He likes the current uniform well enough to wear it, but wouldn’t have a problem moving to the new. As he explained, in words only a millennial computer science major would use, “If the new uniform were a free downloadable update [i.e a software patch], I would do it.”

fourth-degree-uniform-sword

However, that’s the problem: it’s not free. It’s a $510 Italian wool suit (plus tailoring, and likely plus shipping). In my own most recent blog post, I explained why the cost of the new uniforms will likely have exactly the opposite effect for younger men who might otherwise be inclined to serve as Color Corps honor guards.

Even with the 25% discount that K of C is offering for orders placed before the end of September, that’s still nearly $400. If we hadn’t spent over $300 on a tuxedo for him two months ago … maybe. But certainly not, given what we’ve just spent. When you add the $300+ that I spent on a tuxedo last year, and the nearly $550 for regalia earlier this year, we’re tapped out for now.

In addition to the 25% early bird discount, the K of C is also offering a $200 credit for those who purchased a regalia set recently; they seem to have heard the outcry from new honor guards like me. However, the purchase must have been made after May 1, 2017. Guess when I bought mine? March 21, 2017. Six weeks too soon.

I will say this about the new uniform: the suit is probably more versatile than a tuxedo. I could see swapping a different tie, and removing the Fourth Degree emblem from the jacket, and being able to wear that suit to all kinds of non-K of C events that I’ve never been able to wear my tuxedo to. Business meetings. Weddings. Funerals.

So… if they were giving me the $200 credit, plus the 25% discount, would I order the new uniform? Maybe. If for no other reason, $200 for a quality Italian wool suit is a good deal.

Still, even with the discount, I’m not sure I would want the new uniform. And I’m not sure I want to wear it as an honor guard, after the old uniforms are officially retired on June 30th of next year. The money is certainly a consideration, but it’s becoming about more than that. The way this whole change was sprung on the membership, without widely consulting those who have been serving faithfully up till now, and ignoring extensive blowback from those who were attracted to the CC precisely because of the traditional uniform, strikes many as a serious breach of trust.

As a result, many of us are going to have trouble trusting Supreme going forward — or motivating ourselves to spend time attending Assembly meetings or serving as officers in the Fourth Degree. This whole kerfuffle has created an “us versus them” mentality out here. It just doesn’t seem the “thems” care about the concerns of the “us”. It makes me (and Mrs Yeoman Farmer as well) wonder, what’s next?

I’m far from alone in this. Just read the comments on the K of C’s latest social media post, confirming the new uniforms. (This comment in particular is typical of the “trust issues” I’m describing.) Yes, I realize I’m appealing to anecdotal comments which are not necessarily representative of the whole membership, and that I criticized such an approach above. Lacking any formal scientific survey research, however, it’s the best I can do right now. And I think the number and intensity (not to mention the lopsidedness) of the responses on social media do tell us something.

I’d also add that there is an online petition at Change.org, urging Supreme to keep the traditional uniforms. When I signed it on Sunday night, I was #917. When I checked on Monday morning, the signatures had nearly doubled.  As I type this, on Tuesday evening, it’s at 3,346.

Last Friday evening, my son and I served in full CC regalia at a local minor league baseball game. It’s the annual “family night to celebrate vocations,” when tickets are distributed through parishes across the diocese, and the overwhelming majority of the crowd is Catholic. It’s a terrific event, and the Color Corps serves as an honor guard during the national anthem.

My son and I arrived early, and spent quite a bit of time hanging out in the clubhouse and behind home plate, mingling with the more experienced CC members. Everyone’s mood was dark, and I heard many negative comments about the regalia change. Not a single person voiced support for the new uniform. Only a handful said they would consider buying it, at any price. The atmosphere wasn’t quite like a wake, but it was close. It was more like the scene at a hospital waiting room, just after a doctor has delivered a dire prognosis for a beloved family member.

And then the 27 of us lined up in formation, drew swords, and marched onto the field in a double line behind the District Marshal. I felt a sense of being part of something magnificent, and timeless. Viewers in the stands told us later what a spectacular sight it was, the long double line of us in our traditional regalia, standing at attention and saluting with swords as the Anthem was sung.

As we marched on and off the field, grouped in line by color of cape and chapeau, the sense of order and hierarchy was immediately recognizable. This will be much less obvious with the new uniform. The only differences between members will be the color of a patch on the beret, behind the K of C emblem.

Rank and hierarchy are important for men; we like to know where we fit within the unit, and to be recognized for our achievements. It’s easy to spot the Color Corps Commander, or the Marshal, because they wear purple or green (respectively). Those who wear the white capes, indicating they are current or past Faithful Navigators (top officer in the Assembly) do so proudly; it’s a mark of honor. Even more so for the gold cape and chapeau worn by current and past District Masters. These signs of office will now be much less distinctive. I can’t see this change helping morale any.

I honestly have no idea how this will play out as the June 30 deadline next year approaches. This controversy may draw a lot of attention to the Fourth Degree that it otherwise wouldn’t have received, and inspire many young men to join up and serve the Assembly in all sorts of capacities.

I fear it’s more likely that we’ll see mass retirements from the Color Corps, especially among older men who decide they’re frustrated and have had enough (and have spent enough). As they retire from the CC, they may withdraw from leadership in the Assembly itself, and these retirements could come too quickly to be replaced. Offices may go unfilled. Call-outs may go unanswered. Lacking a critical mass of experienced members, Assemblies could wither.

As for us, assuming nothing changes, it’s highly unlikely that my son or I will be serving in the CC after June 30. That said, we’re certainly not resigning from the Fourth Degree, or the Order. If anything, I’ll redouble my dedication to serving my local Council.

And, dim as it may seem now, I’m still holding out hope that Supreme will reverse this decision, so my son and I can continue serving together in the traditional regalia for years to come.

42 thoughts on “Doubling Down

  1. Brother as I read thispost, it is as if I had written it myself. You touched on every talking point I had thought of myself. My sense of hope has faded in the last 24 hours. However, I am also starting to feel as if the New Coke syndrome is starting to take hold in New Haven. They do not have a unified front up there I believe. As an officer in my assembly I receive emails directly from the District Master. He sent one yesterday explaining it would be 2 year phase for the new uniform. Less than an hour later Supreme put the 30 June 2018 deadline. Are they confused and discombobulated in New Haven?

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    • As a prior member of the military, I have an appreciation of the esprit de corps a uniform brings to an organization. The fondness I have for my current Color Corps Regalia is, like none before or none to come, very close to the fondness I have for my Dress Blues. As an officer of the Assembly, I am keenly aware that it would be an affront to the principles of Charity, Unity, Fraternity, and Patriotism, to be part of the Assembly and not possess and fully embrace the official uniform.
      Since the new uniform would be required at Exemplifications for new candidates, participants, degree teams, and Color Corps alike, and also for the installation of new Assembly officers and participants, Conventions, and Assembly Social events, I will be forced to tender a letter to the Assembly resigning my officer position and my membership at the end of this year’s membership term because I cannot afford the new uniform. Many in my Assembly are also on a fixed income and cannot afford, and so do not intend to purchase the new uniform.

      I know it is in my nature to rebel, and not buy the new uniform and stay in the Assembly, or continue to use the current Regalia in defiance of the Supreme Masters, but I must cut ties from any religious club or organization that breeds this environment of disobedience. It may feel good to disobey, but it could metastasize into the motives of my good works, and if left to fester, could ultimately cause my damnation.

      I’m thankful for my time with the Knights of Columbus. The experience has helped formed me into a better disciple of Jesus Christ. I know I will continue to help Sir Knights, just not as a paying member.

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  2. Thank you for writing this with the clarity that I lose due to the anger I feel from what I feel is a betrayal of the hard work and sacrifice I have given as an Assembly Officer and Color Corp member. To spring this on us with no input or notice is not an acceptable way to make change. This is especially true for a group that has never worn the Regalia themselves. My Brothers were in a state of morning when the announcement came out but are now in full out fight mode. We will defend our Order and will not go down quietly. We will take back our rights. We a Fraternal Order with an Insurance Company not an Insurance Company that happens to have a Fraternal Order to feed it clients. We now call our Brothers to tell them United we “Just Say No” for The Good of the Order. Spread the word to all others in your contact list.

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  3. I am a new 1st degree. I was asked 30 years ago to join, but my life had other priorities and I didn’t take up the offer. My grandfather was a 4th degree and Faithful Navagtor of his Assembly. I saw him many times in full CC regalia.

    Now that I have joined, I did do with the aspertion of service in the 4th degree, assisting with honor guard. I am also on a American Legion Honor guard for funeral details. I don’t need another military uniform, thank you.

    The Chapeau of our order is very distictive. It separates us from the rest of the pack. And that is a noble and honorable thing. From what I have read on this subject, the Supreme Councils stated justification is to lower costs to attact younger membership to honor guard and color guard.

    But the new uniforms are just as much money and have put the standing membership into almost open civil war. This idea does not seem to be a great move from our leadership.

    Just the opinion of a new kid who has been around service organizations for a while…

    Peace out from the grumpy old engineer drill sergeant

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  4. I am new to the knights and although I feel the nostalgia of the old uniform I prefer the new. I just ordered it and I am not even yet a 4th degree. I think that the new uniform gives a sense of “we are soldiers of Christ.” It’s not always about pomp and circumstance. Seems like that’s all I read about in justifying the “no change” philosophy. I can’t wait to get my Italian wool suit with Italian buttons no less. lol. Change is always hard.

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    • You should have waited until you made your 4th Degree and worked with my Brother Sir Knights. The Regalia we wear is far more meaningful than parading around for the sole benefit of the pomp and circumstance. You have yet to truly embrace what it is to be a Sir Knight. I am sorry that you wasted your money. You will be lonely in your new outfit. ( No its not a uniform .) The current Color Corp will not accept anyone who is not willing to give the commitment and respect that is required for this important duty. If forced we will simply resign and you will still be alone. The new outfit will not be accepted and for the few that like it, price will prohibit its adoption. ($800 – when you add the outfit + sword + gloves + baldric + shipping+ tax + tailoring. ) Brother while I don’t question your desire to serve, I do question your real understanding of what you wish to be part of. When you get that Call to Colors for a fallen Brother, many times out of your region by an Assembly that needs assistance and stand at a coffin you will first understand that’s its not about pomp but about comfort and respect. The Frat boy outfit will never past muster. If you can, cancel now. When it is rejected and becomes just something to wear at social events, I bet it will be deeply discounted to get rid of the inventory. Wait for then to make your purchase and then you can play Knight in the mirror.

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    • I am not distracted. I am focused on Christ. I love the Knights of Colombus and will never agree to the regalia ban. He’s coming. It’s almost “that” time! Whattaya gonna do? Tic tock.

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  5. All of you have said it better then I could have. I am with you. I have looked up to the men in regalia. And like most was asked as a young man to join. But family , job and so many other things at a younger age held me out. I became a Knight at 50 and a Sir Knight at 51. I am proud of my regalia. I stand out as part of a group of catatolic gentlemen. Ready to support the priesthood and my bishop. The old regalia marks me as a defender of my Catholic faith. I too have signed the petition and do not want the new uniform. The high school uniform without the sword. I wanted to be a CC member, but have not as of yet. Looks like I will not be doing so either. I will remain a forth degree, without wearing the new suit. Thank you for giving me an outlet for my feeling. And I will add that I have spoke to many forth degree Sir Knights and have not found a single SK who likes the new uniform. Many as myself are talking of leaving. And I do not feel as highly as i had of Supreme beforehand. This was handled poorly. Why was this thing pushed on us. We’re they concern we would not go along with it. Supreme Grand Knight will go down in history as the man who closed the door on our founder and lost the forth degree. I disagree on their handling of this matter and their design.

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  6. As a Past Faithful Navigator for Assemblies 809 and 2900, I would like to express my disappointment in the changes being made to the current regalia. I have the utmost respect for our Military, but our use of a beret is outrageous and demeaning to the military. We are NOT a military outfit, we are a ceremonial unit and the visible arm of the Knights and nothing says that more than our current regalia!

    The Regalia is patterned after historical naval themes, celebrating the most famous MARINER of history. The new uniform gives no recognition to that fact. This “Army” look takes away from the man, whom this organization is based upon.

    As to the following statements from our Supreme Knight Carl Anderson:

    “The new uniform is part of a comprehensive and necessary effort to keep our Order relevant and attractive to men, particularly younger men”

    WOW pandering to the younger members and alienating the current members. I have issues with Supreme mandating a change of regalia without full participation of the membership.

    “We have been testing the new uniform over the past year with key groups of Knights, including those brother Knights who participate in our annual Warriors to Lourdes Pilgrimage. The feedback we received from these groups has been very positive.”

    Really? No negative feedback received, that is until Supreme mentioned it to the general membership and by that time it was too late. Guess you really would not want to know how the general membership feels! And your “key” groups never had any negative remarks. Also for something that was being used, not one picture of this in public realm.

    “The cape and chapeau, while popular among some Fourth Degree members, have become dated and are increasingly cited as a reason that eligible Catholic men, especially young men, do not join the Knights of Columbus.”

    Dated in whose mind? Because again I don’t remember being asked. And last time I looked both our Council and Assembly memberships were increasing…so I think Supreme is very off base on that point. And last time I looked you did not have to advance past the 1st degree to be a member of the Knights of Columbus, if someone is saying you have to join the 4th degree to join the Knights…they need to be corrected. See my pandering to the youth while alienating the current membership comment above…

    “Today there are nearly 2 million members of the Order, but only 358,000 of them are Fourth Degree Knights – less than 20 percent. The old regalia was one reason often given by brother Knights for why they did not want to advance to the Fourth Degree.”

    Well apparently our Supreme Knight has no idea that 20% is the magic number in any organization. Out of any group only 20% do the work and you can see that in any Church, Council, Assembly and other organizations. Also who is selling that regalia is mandatory to join the 4th degree? If anyone is telling a potential 3rd degree member that, then they need to be corrected…you only need a tuxedo!

    “We understand that some Fourth Degree members are fond of the old regalia. The cape and chapeau regalia will still be allowed, for a time, in those assemblies and districts that wish to use it, though the preference is for the new uniform.”

    We are not “fond” of the current regalia, we are “PROUD” of it! Since I went to the Knightgear website (run by Supreme) and I could not believe the price (and the monopoly, since they are the only place it can be purchased from!) I notice that my size was not available, so Supreme has basically told me that I am not needed. I also have the following issue with the imported “blazer/sport coat” and pants, which by definition are separates, it is not even a suit! Then let us talk about the outrageous price from Supreme $510, plus shipping and then alterations … you are close to the $600 plus range. Now let us talk about a tuxedo that can be purchased for a sixth of the price (and yes you can get at tuxedo for $100). And remember you never have to buy regalia, as the Assembly has loaners available. So to enter the 4th degree you just need a tuxedo and the rest, if you choose to procure it, can be spread out over a couple years. Not now, you have a $600 plus outlay! If cost was part of the issue, then Supreme has destroyed that argument by themselves.

    “The new uniform is designed to be much more versatile than the older regalia and can be worn at a much wider range of functions.”

    REALLY!!! More versatile then a tuxedo that I can wear to 4th Degree functions, black tie affairs, my daughter’s wedding and other formal occasions? This new military looking “uniform” that can be worn only to 4th Degree functions, it’s a “uni-tasker”, unlike our tuxedos which are “multi-taskers!”

    I also understand that this will be an all or nothing deal, no mixing of the “uniforms”, thus alienating those who “do not”, “will not” or “cannot” purchase the new military “uniform.” While I will not drop my membership in the 4th Degree, I will not actively promote joining the group, since the mission/meaning seems to have changed. I am also saddened that I will not be able to participate in any 4th degree functions when the current regalia is banned.

    SK Jesus V Garcia III, PFN, PGK

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  7. I can’t help but feel a sinister element is at play here to effecuate a response that resolves in a permanent change to the core values and traditions of good Catholic men with conservative Catholic values! The supreme wants the old guys off the train because we are for the most part. Core. Conservative traditional Catholic men who are resistant to manipulation ! If all the 4th degree quit or become less active in the order new influences can mold a different Knights a less prominent one! This is social engineering from the top ! They will at some point provide the 4th degree outfit. At no charge because their won’t be a 4th degree. It makes no sense to demoralize your troops . it’s part of a plan . the question is what’s their real plan???

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  8. Recently I attended my Assembly meeting where this was a hot topic both before and during the meeting. One aspect that was brought to our attention from the Faithful Friar was that he, along with most all the priests he has spoken with will refuse to allow the Color Guard into the Church wearing the new uniform as they feel it represents a paramilitary appearance. The current regalia is traditionally rooted into the church as it carries a semblance to the Vatican’s Swiss Guard. This said, Supreme is it’s own entity and not required to do as the clergy or church wants however if enough dissatisfaction is known by them or voiced by them there may be some potential recourse. I have been a 4th Degree member for just over a year. I love my Assembly members and enjoy spending time with them. I hate the idea of leaving this portion of my K of C Life over a uniform. If the current course is followed it means that I will be an active member that never attends formal events or joins the Color Guard. I was already holding off on buying regalia due to price. With one child starting college and one still in school I felt my money had other priorities however I was slowly saving. I cannot justify replacing the tuxedo that I purchased just 18 months ago with something that will be far more. I do hope that our clergy makes their position on this matter known. I also urge all Assemblies to contact their clergy members to make their voice heard to Supreme. At this time they have ignored the voices of the Assembly members. I am not sure they will be so willing to do so with the Clergy.

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  9. I just completed my exemplification 5 months ago and was intending on purchasing kit so I could participate in the colour corps before heading off to seminary. Supreme has taken this away from me, from all the other young knights who have all alays wanted to do this. I’m firmly convinced that the only thing Supreme cares for is money. Look at how much Carl Anderson makes… myself and a few other knights I know just might leave and form our own groups dedicated to service and brotherhood without a parisitical leech of Supreme. Very frustrated with this, many such cases of this. Sad!

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  10. Brother, let me know when your finished with the Seminary. I love to hear someone who speaks directly without equivocation. Thank you for your service to us and the Lord

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    • I will! It won’t be for quite some time yet, I’ll be starting Fall of 18, God willing, and we’ll see what He has in store from there.

      I cannot be anything but direct here, I’m so frustrated that Supreme claimed my generation as justification for this.

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  11. What is bothersome to me is the Supreme Council waited until the Supreme Convention announced the change. It was a done deal without a vote from the convention delegates, which usually in the past would have been put a vote. This was the desire of Supreme Council, that is a sign of dictatorship and not fraternalism. I join the K of C approximately fifty years ago at age twenty-four and was very active until an older brother gave me and several other younger brothers the following advice ” God first, family second, career third and K of C and other activities last.” I heeded that brothers advice when my wife became pregnant with our first child and my participation became less until I reached middle age when my family was raised and my career to an almost end. I have been very active in my council, state council, and fourth degree. Participation in the color corps has been a passion to me especially doing casket guard and funerals.

    I feel Supreme Council has done the membership an injustice, just like politicians they know what is best for constituents and Supreme knows what best for the membership. The only good I can say about the Supreme Board is they know how to run an Insurance Company, they should separate their selfs from the fraternal aspect of the organization and let it be run like other fraternal organizations and vote annually for a Supreme Knight. I believe it would benefit the KC that the present board to resign or retire.

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  12. Brothers, have you noticed the lack of comments from Supreme. Most organizations would respond especially in the face of posts that they believe are inaccurate. What does this tell you? Is it that they can’t even begin to defend this decision because it was so flawed from development through implementation? Is it that even those who have been ordered to defend this decision cant bring themselves to betray the Color Corp? While the above are all good reasons and true, I believe they are not commenting because they hope we will talk ourselves out get bored and stop posting. If they comment they will only spur us on. Let them know that we will not go away that easily. Don’t be afraid of retribution. Knights through the centuries have put their lives on the line for the good of those they defended. Have we become so weak that we will not put our positions on the line FOR THE GOOD OF THE ORDER, We will need support if we are to continue to defend our Fraternal Order from the Decree of the self selected Corporate bureaucrats that have never put the Regalia on themselves. United we stand in defense of our Order.
    “But we in it shall be rememberèd-
    We few, we happy few, we band of brothers;
    For he to-day that sheds his blood with me
    Shall be my brother; be he ne’er so vile,
    This day shall gentle his condition;
    And gentlemen in England now a-bed
    Shall think themselves accurs’d they were not here,
    And hold their manhoods cheap whiles any speaks
    That fought with us upon Saint Crispin’s day”

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  13. Any other former Scouters might feel the similarities here in terms of the decision making style to how the BSA committed seppuku on the gay scout issue…

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  14. Brother George I’m with you. I have noticed the posts and comments have started to wanethe last couple of days. I’m hoping it is because the Brothers are tired of talking about it and are ready for action. My first Assembly meeting after the Day of Infamy takes place this Tuesday. Should be interesting.

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  15. Unfortunately we have pretty much said it everyway we can without really getting into the conspiracy theories. The fact that Supreme has not answered is starting to make me believe that some of them may have validity. I don’t want to go there yet but will keep monitoring, commenting, spreading the word and making sure my guys will be sending in resolutions. We have not begun to fight and we have not ruled out any theory yet. If Supreme was smart they would put an end to this now before things really get out of hand.

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  16. The new uniform lacks the dignity of the older one. If they want to change it, I’d suggest they keep most of the old one but perhaps replace the cape with a simpler one, maybe one similar to that used by the TFP (Society for Tradition, Family, and Property). Not sure what I’d do about the hat, but there has to be something better than a beret, which speaks only of casual and/or bohemian!

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  17. They cant give us firearms. Its too risky. Anyone who has a weapon, looks into a mirror wearing this mess would most likely shoot themselves out of embarrassment.

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  18. Ok, so they will not be able to shoot themselves but they will cry themselves to sleep when they get their bill and realize there is no one to play with in their new clothes. Don’t stop here. Let your voice be heard by contacting every Knight on your contact list. Send resolutions to the State as well as Supreme. Flood them with calls, emails and letters. Do not retire silently. Stand up for what you believe for THE GOOD OF THE ORDER.

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  19. The traditional uniforms are majestic. The new offerings are sterile. Use donations to reduce the costs. And, BTW, are we defending life as strongly as this issue is being vocalized? I’m reading more of various groups across the country have become a bit whishy washy about speaking up regarding abortion.

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  20. One Statement from Supreme, The new outfit was tested at the Warrior to Lourdes Pilgrimage. What is this? Well the KC sponsor to send Military to Lourdes, this is a great program. Who tested it Current and prior Military Service members. Of course they are going to like it, they are used to “uniform” and many were sponsored by the Knights of Columbus. Is this really an accurate test group?

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  21. In research you establish a hypothesis then you test and make a conclusion. They started with a conclusion that fit their narative and developed a limited test to prove their hypothesis. A failure then and a bigger failure now. This is why they are not realising their research. They can only give data on the problems we are facing. Nothing has been given to even partially support that their actions are a solution. The membership clearly by its 99/1 no/yes while not statistical due to the “n” seems to support putting a hold on the new uniform until a real study can be conducted. It’s time for them to put up or withdraw.

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  22. I join the Knights on 1968 at the age of 22, I used to love the members of the 4th degree, but I could not join them, not because the uniform but first because I was not ready and later because I needed to support a wife and 3 children I had no time to be a part of the ceremonies, it wasn’t until I retired from the company I used to work at the age of 57 that I was able to join the color guard and use the Regalia, actually it was a gift from my 3 sons on a fathers day, now at the age of 72 living on a fix income I’m told I can’t be a color guard anymore because I can’t afford the cost of the new uniform, I guess I’ll ware it one more time when I’m in a coffin, sad very sad

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  23. This is not a Wake yet. In the words of John Paul Jones “We have not yet begun to fight” Let’s double are efforts. We need to get to the bottom of this for THE GOOD OF THE ORDER.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. I to will give up my position of commander and leave the fourth degree. I will not be dictated to wear this rediculis so called uniform which. I have received hundreds of positive comments of how great we look in our regalia, which makes us stand out from every other organization. As commander l know we draw new members for the colors, young and old, because of our unique uniform period. So wake up and listen to the members who built this organization for you to govern.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. ALERT – CALL TO COLORS! I have just been alerted that one of the two supplies of our Regalia will be closing in the next few weeks unless Supreme reverses its policies. Lynch & Kelly who has loyally supplied and severed the Knights of Columbus as one of the 2 Authorized Vendors will be shutting their doors for good. They were given no advance notice despite their impeccable service. They are stuck with more than $100,000 of materials and merchandise $30,000 purchased recently . They had to lay off their staff 2 weeks ago and now will be forced to close their doors due to the policy of deceit conducted by Supreme as they hid their plans from our members. We talk about Charity but is it charitable to mislead your loyal supplies just to keep a secret that should never have perpetrated? BROTHERS NOW MORE THAN EVER GET ON YOUR PHONES, EMAIL’S AND LETTERS. DON’T LET THIS VALUABLE FRIEND OF THE ORDER CLOSE. WE WILL WIN THE FIGHT BUT IT WILL BE TOO LATE IF WE DON’T GET ACTION NOW. THIS LOSS OF LOCAL JOBS AND SUPPORT OF FAMILIES WILL LAY ON THE FEET OF THE SK AND BOARD WHILE THEY COUNT THEIR VIRGIN ITALIAN WOOL UNIFORMS THAT WILL NEVER BE WORN BY ANY SELF RESPECTING MEMBER OF THE ORDER. For the GOOD OF THE ORDER AND OUR FAITHFUL FRIENDS. RISE UP!

    Liked by 1 person

  26. Sacred Heart Council 4937 in Sidney, NY unanimously passed the following Resolution that they ask be shared with all so that it may give other Councils, Assemblies, Chapters, Districts and other Knight gatherings inspiration. Please feel free to use any or all of our Resolution.

    Whereas, the new uniform is costly and would be an extreme financial burden to Color Corp Members and;

    Whereas, the new uniform has been overwhelmingly rejected by members across social media and;

    Whereas the new uniform is foreign made and will lead to the closing of our trusted, loyal suppliers and;

    Whereas, the new uniform lacks the uniqueness that our current Regalia commands be it;

    Resolved, Sacred Heart Council #4937 go on record to request restoration of the Traditional Regalia by Supreme as the only Uniform of the Color Corp and;

    Resolved, We direct our Representatives to State to send a request that NY as a State request Supreme to reinstate the Traditional Regalia and;

    Resolved, We direct our Representatives to State to submit a Resolution to adopt the Traditional Regalia be the only accepted Uniform of the Color Corp and;

    Resolved, We send a letter and request the State to similarly send a resolution requesting a comprehensive report be drafted by Supreme detailing: 1) Evidence (including specific data ) why a change in uniform was necessary to improve membership 2) Data which proves the new uniform would be more accepted 3) Data demonstrating the willingness of potential Color Corp members to purchase the new uniform at a cost of well over $500 4) Data on the acceptability of the design 5) A detailed list of all staff and consultant costs in the development and roll out of the new uniform as well as any financial return for sale, licensing, advertising or other fees for the sale or distribution of the new uniform and;

    Resolved, that we encourage Supreme to take advantage of its vast access to social media and direct mail to give opportunity for comment and consideration of any decisions that would alter the traditions and standards of the Order.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I would just copy it, paste it into Word, and clean up the formatting. I’m planning to do the same, then change some details and introduce it at our next meeting.

      Liked by 1 person

  27. Pingback: Betrayal and a Way Forward | The Yeoman Farmer

  28. Having recently been diagnosed with Early Onset Dementia I decided to announce to all Sir Knights in attendance my feelings about the new rags… aka the Uniform…. I very clearly stated the Uniform was under no circumstances to be worn at my funeral or wake. One of the Sir Knights in attendance was Sir Knight Mike Wills who is past everything including Past State Deputy and is currently a member of the Supreme Board of Directors.

    Like

  29. This uniform is a insult to Veterans. Makes the 4th degree look like a paramilitary organization NOT a religious organization. It is interesting how no one knew of this change. Must be nice for Carl Anderson to make $3 million a year, have a self appointed board of directors, and screw the rank and file!

    Like

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