LETTER TO GOVERNOR
June 24, 2022
His Excellency, Charlie Baker
Governor of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts
Office of the Governor
Massachusetts State House
Boston, MA 02133
Since the leak of the Justice Samuel Alito opinion in the Dobbs case on May 2nd, there have been multiple attacks, nationwide, on Catholic churches, on Catholic worship, and on Catholic religious iconography.
These assaults have included the smashing of statues, the desecration of the Blessed Sacrament, the disruption of Catholic Masses and religious processions, and various incidents of vandalism and graffiti.
Chapter 265, Section 37 of the Massachusetts General Laws—Violations of Constitutional Rights, states No person, whether or not acting under color of law, shall by force or threat of force, willfully injure, intimidate or interfere with, or attempt to injure, intimidate or interfere with, or oppress or threaten any other person in the free exercise or enjoyment of any right or privilege secured to him by the constitution or laws of the commonwealth or by the constitution or laws of the United States.
Chapter 272, Section 38 of the Massachusetts General Laws—Disturbance of Assembly for Worship, states Whoever wilfully interrupts or disturbs an assembly of people met for worship of God shall be punished by imprisonment for not more than one year or by a fine of not more than one thousand dollars.
Since 1991, constitutional rights violations and disturbances of assemblies of worship have been classified as hate crimes under Massachusetts law.
The U. S. Department of Homeland Security has now warned of a credible threat of “extreme violence” against Catholic churches in the wake of the Supreme Court’s decision in the Dobbs case.
I respectfully urge you, therefore, to deploy all the necessary law enforcement resources of the Commonwealth, including the Massachusetts State Police, to protect Catholic churches, and to ensure the safety of Catholic worshippers in the peaceful exercise of their constitutional rights.
C. J. Doyle
Catholic Action League of Massachusetts
PO Box 112
Boston, MA 02131