The Swan-Song Continues, 600 Years After the Goose was Cooked

Honoring the Sexcentenary Anniversary of Den Upálení Mistra Jana Husa :

A Texas Czech Perspective, 600 Years After the Goose was Cooked

James J. S. Johnson

 hus-martyr-movie-reenactment

July 6th is not just another day in the Czech Republic, nor was it 600 years ago. 

Milovaní, nedivte se té zkoušce ohněm, jež na vás přišla – není to přece nic divného.

1.list Petrův 4:12  

[Beloved, think it not strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened unto you

1st Peter 4:12]

On that day (the official Czech holiday is called Den Upálení Mistra Jana Husa), in AD1415, the Bohemian Reformer, Jan Hus (also known in English-speaking circles as “John Huss”), was burned at the stake, for teaching the Christian faith as he understood it to be.

The upheaval that immediately followed, in Bohemia (and eventually elsewhere), included what became known as the Hussite Wars, led by the famous Bohemian general, Jan Žižka – but that is another piece of history, to be studied another day.  It is that 6th day of July, in AD1415, that Bohemians have ever remembered, and Czechoslovakians thereafter, and now Czechs.  It was 600 years ago that “the goose was cooked” – and that “goose” was Jan Hus of Husinec [literally “Goose town”], southern Bohemia.

But why do we say that “the goose was cooked”?

Jan Hus was a Christian Bible scholar and teacher, in Bohemia (e.g., Prague), a land that today is called the Czech Republic. Jan Hus was a Roman Catholic priest whose studies of the Holy Bible led to him to protest against various unbiblical doctrines and practices that dominated the ecclesiastical politics of his generation. Until he was stopped, Jan Hus taught the Holy Bible’s doctrines (like John Wycliffe, whose writings Hus had studied) to the Bethlehem Chapel congregation (of about 3000 worshippers), in Prague. Hus also taught as a Bible professor at Univerzita Karlova (i.e., Charles University) in Prague.

The persecution and trial (for “heresy”) of Jan Hus, applying an inquisitorial process at odds with today’s Due Process standards, ended in the execution (by burning) of Jan Hus, as an enemy of the Roman Catholic Church.  Hus was burned to death on July 6th of AD1415 – 600 years ago.  Since his family name was “Hus”, which means “goose” in the Czech (i.e., Bohemian) language, it was said that the Church of Rome had “cooked a goose”.  [See the detailed summary given by church historian Ken Curtis, “John Hus:  Faithful unto Death”, posted at http://www.christianity.com/church/church-history/timeline/1201-1500/john-hus-faithful-unto-death-11629878.html , and this historian’s added perspective posted at http://leesbird.com/2014/12/10/a-bohemian-goose-and-a-saxon-swan/

In Texas we often say “what goes around comes around”, and this historic part of Czech-Bohemian history is no exception, genealogically speaking, because there is a “reverse migration” (or sorts) to this history of transplanted “seeds”.  In short, Bohemian ancestors provided biogenetic “seed” that descended to John of Gaunt, the political protector-benefactor of England’s John Wycliffe.  (More on that documentation below.)  Next, some of John Wycliffe’s Bohemian disciples took his theological teachings back to Bohemia, where Jan Hus adopted and taught them.  So the biogenetic “seed” from Bohemia emigrated to England, leading to the birth and life of John of Gaunt, whose political influence facilitated John Wycliffe’s  intellectual “seed” becoming transplanted in Prague (Bohemia).

The genealogical connection, from Bohemia to England’s John of Gaunt is documented in a prior issue of České Stopy – specifically in my “Czech into Texas, at Last! From Bohemian Roots, to a Moravian Log Cabin, to the Lone Star State” in České Stopy, 13(1):15-22 (spring 2011).  Specifically, Vratislav I, king of Bohemia (as of AD1086), was the P12 ancestor of England’s John of Gaunt.  (In other words, John of Gaunt was the great11-grandson of King Vratislav.) That same John of Gaunt (who for a while was King of Castille, in Spain) was the royal protector of John Wycliffe.  Jan Hus, in Prague, taught that Wycliffe was a wise Bible scholar whom Hus himself aspired to copy.

So where is the Texas-Czech connection here?  As noted before (in my above-cited article “Czech into Texas”), some of the progeny of John of Gaunt (himself descended from both Bohemian and Moravian bloodlines) have arrived in Texas, so there is an immigration-into-Texas aspect to this providential history.

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James J. S. Johnson, JD, ThD, MSHist, MSGeog, CPEE, CNHG, has taught history in Texas  for LeTourneau University, Concordia University–Texas, Dallas Christian College, and ICR-SOBA, and has served as a history/geography lecturer for 9 different cruise ships (f/b/o Norwegian Cruise Lines, Royal Caribbean, and Orient Lines).  The above commemoration of Jan Hus, appreciating his martyrdom for Christ, 6 centuries ago, was first published as “Honoring the Sexcentenary Anniversary of Den Upálení Mistra Jan Husa: A Texas Perspective, 600 Years After the Goose was Cooked,” České Stopy [Czech Footprints]. 15 (2): 20-21 (summer 2015).

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Bogus Brachyurans and Counterfeit Creationists

Blue-Crab-ChesapeakeBay.jpg

Bogus Brachyurans and Counterfeit Creationists

Last summer, in Baltimore, I enjoyed eating “Chesapeake Bay blue crab”—but was that what I actually ate? Why am I suspicious?  Blue crab, the Chesapeake Bay’s most iconic edible species(1), also appears to be its most impersonated.

A report released April 1 [2015] … found that 38 percent of crab cakes labeled as local on menus in the region were made of an entirely different species of crab, predominantly one imported from the Indo-Pacific region.  In Annapolis and Baltimore, nearly 50 percent of “Maryland” and “Chesapeake Bay” crab cakes were mislabeled.(2)

Before getting crabby about such false advertising (a type of bait-and-switch deception), such crustacean counterfeiting should be verified.  How can portunid pretenses be proven?

“I’ve put a lot of seafood in my purse over the last few years,” said Dr. Kimberly Warner, author of the report(3) … [referring to] crab cake samples that she and other testers collected [and] shipped to a lab in Florida that determined whether the cakes contained blue crab, Callinectes sapidus, and, if not, which species were used instead.  Warner said the fraud rate of 38 percent is a conservative estimate. … Mislabeling “is being done because it’s easier to sell a Maryland crab cake than one from the Philippines or Vietnam” [said Steve Vilnit, of Maryland’s Department of Natural Resources].(2)

Dr. Warner lamented that bogus brachyurans are part of a treacherous trend of tricking taste-buds:

Maryland’s favorite seafood dish is not safe from a bait and switch. When diners are expecting the fresh, distinctive flavor of the Chesapeake blue crab, they may instead be served a completely different species, shipped from as far away as Indonesia. … This mislabeling rate is consistent with Oceana’s previous studies on fish and shrimp. In 2013, Oceana found that one-third of more than 1,200 fish samples were mislabeled according to [USDA] guidelines. We also found 30 percent of shrimp samples to be misrepresented to consumers in a similar study in 2014.(3)

Many restaurants, buffets, and sushi bars are swimming in similar seafood scams.  Piscatorial masquerades include pollock playing cod, icefish as anchovies, tilapia as grouper, rockfish as red snapper. Customers, who eagerly eat what is falsely advertised as “albacore” (or “white tuna”), may experience a digestive insult: the look-alike meat of escolar fish (a/k/a “snake mackerel”) is wax-loaded and promptly produces a blasting vermillion diarrhea.

So, buyer, beware seafood mislabeling.

Yet there are worse bait-and-switch scams to warily watch out for, such as “creation apologetics” ministry mislabeling. Not all that is called “Biblical” origins science is genuinely true-to-Genesis.

Some unfaithful-to-Genesis organizations overtly disclose their “creation-by-evolution” doctrines. However, most do not conspicuously admit it, when compromising the Bible’s record of origins.

But you can recognize real messages, of ministries or “experts”, by their compatibility with Genesis.

Does the advertised “creation” teaching follow the uniformitarian dogma (and eons of “deep time”) of deists Charles Lyell and James Hutton?  Is it closed-Bible deism, wedged under another name, such as “Intelligent Design Movement”?  Embracing millions/billions of years means sacrificing Genesis truth – a “huge loss – the high price for listening to a “wolf-mouth.  Does the so-called “Christian apologetics” teaching, like the syncretism of William Lane Craig and Norm Geisler, incorporate Monsignor Lemaître’s “big bang” theory?  Does it presuppose death before Adam, like Alexander Winchell (or William Dembski), within some kind of pre-Adamite “hominids-morphing-into-humans” scenario?  Or, does it promote the animistic “natural selection” idolatries of Charles Darwin and Thomas Huxley?  Or does it do the equivalent, defensively, by trying to shield “natural selection” sophistry from debunking, proffering “genes-in-magic bluff-and-bluster substitutes for real-world genetics?  (See 1st Timothy 6:20.)

Amazingly, as some atheists whisper their doubts about the bait-and-switch mantra “natural selection”, de facto theistic evolutionists(4) zealously defend “natural selection” as if it were a Hindu’s sacred cow or Roman Catholicism’s “sinless” Mary (Isaiah 8:20).  Where are the Berean creationists?

So how should we then live – and discern between true and false?  When scrutinizing the true ingredients—crab or shrimp or tunafish—in seafood cuisine, forensic genetics can detect the telltale DNA of the seafood actually sold. However, when scrutinizing whether an “apologetics expert” is truly a Biblical creationist, compare what those “experts” teach, specifically, with what the authoritative text of Scripture teaches (Acts 17:11).

><> JJSJ

References

(1)William W. Warner, Beautiful Swimmers:  Watermen, Crabs and the Chesapeake Bay (Boston: Little, Brown & Co., 1994, Back Bay edition), 394 pages.  This classic introduces the Chesapeake Bay’s Blue Crab and the people whose livelihoods depend upon those “beautiful swimmers”.

(2)Whitney Pipkin, “Nearly 40% of Blue Crab Mislabeled in Chesapeake Area Eateries”, Chesapeake Bay Journal, 25(3):7 (May 2015).

(3)Kimberly Warner, Beth Lowell, et al., “Ocean Reveals Mislabeling of Iconic Chesapeake Blue Crab” (April 2015), 15 pages, posted at http://usa.oceana.org/sites/default/files/crab_testing_report_final_3.27.15.pdf .

(4)For example, in an ongoing (and  tragic) argument with an under-educated “natural selection” defender/advocate, on September 4th of AD2012, I wrote the following: “At the risk of being misinterpreted as simplistic, please note that a further complication of the peer review process [which all-too-often amounts to only a veneer-review process] is the simple fact that neither you [as an astronomer] nor [your cell biologist ally] have a forensic science expertise background.  Neither of you have served as a trial judge, making what are called ‘Evidence Rule 403 calls (mentioned below], i.e., to critically reject — or to approve — the usage of ‘conventional’ terminology as to its communication accountability when describing evidence, as I have since AD1996.  In other words, if we compare the creation-vs.-evolution debate to an ongoing courtroom contest, — and at times it can be educationally helpful to do so, — it makes sense that an advocate’s deceptive usage of terminology should be spotlighted and labeled for what it is, deceptive, — such as when a party tries to use bait-and-switch wordplays on the jury.  (It’s not just evolutionists who do this; e.g., Emergent Church pastors use misleading terminology all the time.)  Thus, the specific jargon at issue (i.e., ‘natural selection’) does involve biologists, to be sure, — but the thrust of the apologetics perspective is that how conventional terminology is used often indicates truth-vs.-falsity reliability (regarding the information or concepts being represented).  It is the accurate-vs.-misleading communication accountability issue that benefits from a forensic perspective, in order to expose how evolutionists use terms that are confusing and likely to mislead.   . . . Ironically, my main problem with the specific phrase ‘natural selection’ is linked to instances when I was required, as a judicial officer of the State of Texas, to make ruling that applied Evidence Rule 403, which is a rule that is used (inter alia) to bar otherwise-admissible evidence (including well-established professional jargon) if the tendency of that specific jargon is to be so inherently misleading that whatever communicative value that it may have, as industry-accepted terminology (to “insiders”), is outweighed by its semantic tendency to confuse communication about the relevant underlying facts to outsiders, — rather than to transmit accurate, relevant, precise information.  Typically a jargon objection is sustainable, under an ‘Evidence Rule 403 call’, when the objectionable term itself does not clearly match the underlying reality that it is supposed to represent, such that usage of the jargon (even though it may be ‘accepted’ jargon in the industry) is likely to mislead and confuse the evidence presentation.  An example of this is the case of Godard v. Alabama Pilot, Inc., 2007 WL 1266361, *1 (S.D. Ala. 2007), where the federal judge disallowed the use of the professional jargon “seaman” because its semantic ambiguity was interfering with the inquiry’s analysis of the core evidence.  . . .   [please review and show due respect for my earlier article posted at http://www.icr.org/article/dna-rna-providential-coding-revere/ ).”