Grand Master

Discussion in 'General Freemasonry Discussion' started by Adam Saline, Jun 28, 2014.

  1. Adam Saline

    Adam Saline Registered User

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    I have a question and need some light. My Lodge has a Past Grand Master who will not let the Brothers run the Lodge, he manipulates every decision to his will. What can be do so we meet on the level?
     
  2. MarkR

    MarkR Premium Member

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    Look to your Lodge by-laws. If the brethren wish to do something, and vote it to be so, I don't see what he can do about it as long as you're not violating any Grand Lodge Code. Now, if he's getting people to vote his way, that's the breaks of the game.
     
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  3. Brother JC

    Brother JC Vigilant Staff Member

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    That PGM apron and two-bucks can get him a cup of coffee...
    The sitting Master has the power to gavel him down if he's being disruptive. As Brother Mark said, check the by-laws. I'm pretty sure the WM holds more immediate power within the lodge.
     
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  4. Bro. Stewart P.M.

    Bro. Stewart P.M. Lead Moderator Emeritus Staff Member

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    Sounds like you have had several slates of Master's who allow this Brother to influence their decision making process... And, no one brave enough to say "no" to him.

    Unless there is a constant rule or edict of the local GL that is being broken, the Worshipful Master rules and governs the Lodge. Not this PGM. You just need enough folks to do the right thing, and make this honorable Brother take his appropriate sideline seat.

    I suggest consulting with your local DDGM, that is unless he is also dipping into this PGM's kool-aide. The DDGM should give you a unified and correct course of action towards a resolution.
     
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  5. dfreybur

    dfreybur Premium Member

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    It takes brass (copper/zinc alloy) balls to gavel down a brother but doing so on need really helps get a lodge in line with a WM's program. It takes stainless steel (chromium/nickle/iron alloy) balls to gavel down a PM. To gavel down a PGM would take titanium/tungsten alloy balls.

    Start teaching your stewards about how it works as it may take years of preparation to build a stock of these alloys.

    Having made images using metals, I refer to Plato's Republic. He referred to classes of men by elemental metal not by alloy as elements were not known to his era.
     
  6. pointwithinacircle2

    pointwithinacircle2 Rapscallion Premium Member

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    I find that the solution to any perceived or expected instance of dissent by a Brother is to talk to him ahead of time and solicit his co-operation. Some Brothers just want to feel like their opinion is heard and valued. Some just want to express their dissent to someone. Most will agree to work for the good of the Lodge if it is put to them in that way.

    I see far too many good ideas being simply "thrown out on the floor" with out first taking the time to build a solid base of support among the Brothers. Building a consensus, what modern management consultants call "soliciting buy-in" is an important part of leadership. A former Grand Master seems like a powerful ally if approached correctly.
     
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  7. Glen Cook

    Glen Cook G A Cook Site Benefactor

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    Hmm.
    You use the term manipulate. I think that an important choice. It appears he is violating no rule, and the majority of the brethren agree with him. It appears you are "meeting on the level." I agree that a PGM has only an equal footing in the decisions of the lodge and, to that extent, you meet on the level. But that works both ways: as a member of the lodge, he is entitled to participate and even sway opinion, as are you.

    .
     
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  8. Angus

    Angus Registered User

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    Thanks Brothers for your imput, I think Brothers dfreybur and Bro. Stewart have hit the nail on the head. This has turned into the PGM's personal Lodge. I did speak with the Grand Lodge, the answer was to put a group of Brothers together and vote out the entire Line. Easier said than done. I'm not one to back away from a fight so to speak, but it think the prudent move is to find a new Lodge.


    Sent From My Freemasonry Pro App
     
  9. Warrior1256

    Warrior1256 Site Benefactor

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    I'm a new MM and I have not run into this type of problem before as it pertains to lodge politics. Interesting and informative.
     
  10. Glen Cook

    Glen Cook G A Cook Site Benefactor

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    Welllll, we tend to use the word "politics" in a pejorative sense, when, in my experience, it is often just an issue of brethren committed to different courses of action. The loser decries the "politics" and/or "manipulation" without any indication of immoral or wrongful activity: no allegation of favor trading, blackmail or the like. The "winner" simply persuaded more people of the correctness his position.

    In the instant matter, think of it from the other side: a brother (the PGM) believes a proposal is not the better idea. He goes to other brethren whom he has known for decades and explains his position and, being a respected, experienced member of the craft, the majority of the brethren agree with him. The proposer is so bitter about this he goes outside the lodge to complain in a manner which appears to be harshly critical of the PGM. Indeed, he even voices his complaints in a public forum, making allegations against the senior brother who disagreed with the proposal.

    On which end lies the "politics?"
     
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  11. Rick Carver

    Rick Carver Premium Member

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    Remind him that PGM is short for Power Gone Mister
     
  12. Glen Cook

    Glen Cook G A Cook Site Benefactor

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    There are different types of power. While de jur power may no longer exist, there may still be the power to persuade; the power of respect. Again, as a member of Lodge, he is certainly entitled to exercise those powers. He is not divested of his rights as a member of the Lodge.

    As an aside, the quip as to the PGM acronym may or may not be accurate, depending on the jurisdiction and committee assignments.
     
  13. dfreybur

    dfreybur Premium Member

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    To me that depends on whether the story posted in public is an accurate, even though one sided, reporting of the events.

    Cronyism and using privacy to separate "us" from "them" is one of the bad faces of classic politics in action.

    To me the test of any of these situations is simple - If any brother was ejected *without trial by the local lodge or civil authorites* then that's a problem with the grand line being out of control and abusing its power (power and authority are NOT the same thing). No matter whether I agree or disagree with the expulsion I will consider it a political act.

    To me moving back into respectability is equally simple - Restore any brother who was expelled without trial and have their issue handled by their own lodges. Or retire in disgrace as happened in Florida in 2013 when the then GM violated the landmarks and started ejecting brothers based on religious membership. His edict got voted down and he moved up and out of office, but I don't recall mention of anyone reinstated.

    I wonder what I'd do if I were to be expelled without trial. In every case I've read the brother attempted within the fraternity first and only turned to the public after that. That's not an automatic qualification to be political. Brothers have been ejected for blatantly violating the landmarks. Brothers have also been ejected for swearing at a lady at a non-Masonic event.
     
  14. Glen Cook

    Glen Cook G A Cook Site Benefactor

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    @Br. Freyburger: We must be talking about different issues. I thought this was about "I have a question and need some light. My Lodge has a Past Grand Master who will not let the Brothers run the Lodge, he manipulates every decision to his will. What can be do so we meet on the level."
     
  15. dfreybur

    dfreybur Premium Member

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    Yep. Sorry for expanding outside of this particular discussion. I thought the topic had wandered to a wider scope.
     
  16. Glen Cook

    Glen Cook G A Cook Site Benefactor

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    Oh, I can wander with the best of them.

    I would differentiate between expulsion without trial and expulsion without recourse or appeal. Some GL's give the power to the GM to summarily expel, but then allow an appeal to be held. There are cases where some type of action is imperative for the protection of the Craft. I can think of particular separate cases of accusations of child sex abuse and possession of child pornography, both resulting in convictions. In Utah, we first approved of a GM's action to prohibit those accused of felonies or other crimes of moral turpitude from entering a Masonic building until the matter was resolved. We have now allowed the GM to suspend an individual with the concurrence of certain other GL elected officers in some cases. This has only occurred once to this date (as the matter is still in the courts, I will not disclose the details).

    Anyone who is been around Masonry a couple minutes is of course aware of abuses of the power. If there is no right of appeal in that GL, I agree it is not a system with which I agree <G>. Luckily, I am not a member of a GL with that system.

    In the instance of FL, I do not recollect the edict resulting in expulsions and, showing the system worked, it was reversed. As one who is a member of a minority faith which was excluded from full participation in the Fraternity until recently in our history, I am sensitive to such declarations. But, again, the system worked and wise Brethren prevented the excess of one Brother.
     
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  17. dfreybur

    dfreybur Premium Member

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    I included "or civil authorities" in my comment about trials for that reason.

    Illinois has a rule that the GM is required (he does not have an option) to expel any member who is convicted of a felony. I don't recall if the rule lists what class of felony. If the member has an appeal pending he is suspended until the appeal is resolved, then expelled if the conviction is upheld at (first) appeal. I suspect many states have very similar rules. I've upgraded Acrobat and how I can't open my California book - Note to self down load a new copy some time.

    At Illinois GL there are anonymous descriptions of these actions required by the GM. Sometimes the list of crimes is unique enough that anyone who reads the news would recognize who it was. Perhaps a former governor who went through a very public prosecution during the years I attended Illinois GL regularly ...

    I didn't think of the issue of recourse. Every year I've attended GL there have been votes on expelled men who wish to be reinstated. They range from drunk driving convictions where the sentence has been served and the man has stopped drinking through convictions for hurting children. The votes tend to be very predictably who the representatives are generous towards and who they are not.
     
  18. Plustax

    Plustax Registered User

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    Is it considered "grounds for moral turpitude" if a mason(s) knowingly push to admit a known Felon in to a lodge? IMO it is, but just don't know how the GL would see it.
     
  19. dfreybur

    dfreybur Premium Member

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    Keeping the fact hidden, it probably is.

    Being open about it on the petition and trying anyways, nope. Just questionable form. Some lodges in some jurisdictions are more forgiving than others.
     
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  20. Glen Cook

    Glen Cook G A Cook Site Benefactor

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    Many GLs do not forbid membership on this basis, it's simply one factor. Some may not even ask. Therefore, I would suggest that issue needs to be answered before your direct question can be answered.
     

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