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Showing posts from December, 2022


  Antisemitism                Gerry OShea Peter Hayes, a history professor in Northwestern University who specializes in Nazi Germany and the Holocaust, is amazed and shocked that celebrities with massive followings are spewing antisemitic tropes that have been considered taboo for decades. Police records reveal a substantial and disturbing increase in hate crimes against Blacks, gays, Asians and Jews. A few months ago, former President Donald Trump welcomed Kanye West, now known as the rapper Ye, to Mar-a-Lago.  In a recent interview Mr. West expressed his admiration for Adolf Hitler. Also present at that gathering was Nick Fuentes, a belligerent racist leader of white nationalism. He has publicly bemoaned the prominence of Jewish leaders in America and suggested that they should be replaced by Catholics. This brings to mind the rabble-rousing preaching of Fr. Charles Coughlin who hosted a huge radio audience in the late 1930’s. He enlisted the help of a well-known Irish theolog

A Hundred Years of Irish Independence

  A Hundred Years of Irish Independence          Gerry OShea An outsider looking at Ireland’s hundred years of independence would surely be astonished by the gradual transition from rags to riches. The country started off in dire circumstances: the treasury was very low and business activity was stagnant. Lenders were hard to find for a nascent economy among European countries or in Washington where what came to be known as the Great Depression was already beckoning. Even worse than the economic challenges political differences loomed dangerously large. The vote to accept the terms of the Anglo-Irish Treaty showed a major cleavage in the Dail with almost half of the TD’s, led by the president of the assembly, Eamon de Valera, condemning the deal as a sellout of Republican principles. In particular, they strongly resented the requirement that members of the new Free State parliament would be compelled to sign an oath of fealty to the English monarch. This was the driving issue of

Poverty in America

  Poverty in America            Gerry OShea The wisdom of Oliver Goldsmith’s powerful lines in his moving 18 th century poem The Deserted Village resonates today at a time of flagrant inequality and increasing child poverty in America: “ Ill fares the land to hastening ills a prey where wealth accumulates and men decay.” These words are particularly appropriate while the lame duck Congress is considering restoring the generous Child Tax Credit (CTC) program abandoned at the end of 2021 because of outright opposition by Republicans aided by the cantankerous Democrat, Senator Joe Manchin. Between July and December 2021, the Internal Revenue Service as part of President Biden’s enhanced Child Tax Credit paid out monthly family subventions of up to $250 per child, aged six to seventeen, and as much as $300 for infants under six, positively impacting 61 million children and over 36 million households. An important addition to this program centered on the delivery of the family sub

LGBTQ Issues

  LGBTQ Issues                      Gerry OShea Some readers may remember the Stonewall riots that took place in Greenwich Village in June 1989. The Stonewall Inn was one of a number of bars, mostly owned by the Mafia, located in the Greenwich Village area in Lower Manhattan that were frequented by members of the gay community in New York. Police visited these places regularly to disrupt their partying and generally conveyed a hostile attitude to members of that community. On the night in question the members of the NYPD became very assertive and used physical force against patrons in the Stonewall. The gay men and their friends in the community fought back and violent altercations took place during the next few days. Village residents, especially homosexuals, joined with activist groups in asserting their right to live openly and without threats of being arrested by the police. Three newspapers were started to promote the logic of their demands and to urge the members of the NYP