Well I am new Mason in CO, so I still have a lot to learn. First off I’d like to point out that CO has NO issues recognizing PHA and vice versa.
As for those southern states, they are the only ones in the list that DO claim any ritual differences. Do you say that BECAUSE they are southern states and racism is why? I’m reading tons of confusion variances all over the world, all over the country and especially with differences in PHA and Blue Lodges. Not that I have the experience to know these differences (again I’m just a youngling in masonry)... but I can read the statements of others plainly enough and their experiences.
I can tell you personally I didnt think it did the Craft any favors at all to learn Shaq was made a mason on sight, while I am struggling to get down my first proficiency. I have a long ways to go to get the same level of respect and access he was handed instantly. I also know and understand that Shaq isnt the only person to ever be made a Mason on sight but he didnt even care enough for the honor to try to put on any presentable clothes.
It seems some PH lodges like to “try” men on the street who claim to be Masons, while most Blue Lodge members don’t approve of the practice. I myself was tried by a PH supervisor when I revealed to him I was new and “studying” for my first proficiency. I’m thinking I just told him I was brand new, surely he should understand I don’t know what he asking me to prove. Additionally there is a practice in some PH lodges to take Masonic “light” or jewelry and clothes from men who can’t pass these random trials.
Things like these are conflicts that can add fuel to any other perceived problems in those lodges.
I it possible that SOME of these southern lodges are not overall racist and are just being lumped in with some others that are racist?
These are only a few things that can easily be found scratching the surface as a new Mason. I am sure if I were a seasoned “traveler” and actually lived through some of the issues that divide recognition I’d know more.
I would very much like to see WHATEVER the problem is, racism, ritual or other disputes, settled, and done away with permanently. Making all PH Lodges recognized and vice versa.
Now for a moment of personal opinion, I don’t see a need for PH Lodges. I think whatever needs to be done, should be done to convert them on over to Blue Lodges and MAYBE later combine. I do understand the honoring of PH Tradition as an observance. But personally I see this form of CHOSEN segregation as part of the contribution to the problem itself.