The Fight to Own St. Patrick’s Day Parade: No More Shilly-Shallying or being Willy Nillies

(`) Joe BltzI’m telling you if the Organizers of the St. Patrick’s day parade don’t start getting more courage their parade will turn into a parade celebrating the Wonderful Witch of the Wiccam  or the Beneficent Rule of  Beelzebub. Don’t they know there will always be others wanting to tell them what to do.?

A group of guys fought for the Organizers taking a case all the way to the Supreme Court to give them the right every other parade organizers have in the nation which is to decide who will march in their parade. Having won that right in a 9 – 0 opinion in the Supreme Court, it sometimes appears that they want to give it up.

I know Mayor Walsh in a cowardly move tried to take it away from them by cutting their route in half. They fought that. Judge Richard Stearns of the Federal District court in Boston was a little too wise to be tricked by the public safety excuse and stopped that with the help of Attorney Chester Darlilng.

I’m not talking about that. I read that another group who was kept out of the parade is using the Boston Police Commissioner William “We Are All Muslms” Evans and others to pressure the Organizers into including them in the parade. I read that “Evans “personally went before the Allied War Veterans Council, which organizes the parade, to argue their case.” 

It’s time for the Organizers to stop opening up the door for people to argue they should be included in the parade. The Organizers should make their decisions on their own and decide what message they want the marchers in their parade to convey. They should do it without outside interference.  It should be clear to them that they have that right and  that they don’t have to offer an explanation to anyone why they are making a decision,.

A columnist wrote to say he knows better than the Organizers by saying their decision was an outrage.”  He went on:”This parade might well be the most litigated in American history, and much of that litigation has been about the right to keep people out of it. Organizers have won those battles, but at the expense of reinforcing a reputation for intolerance and insularity that much of South Boston desperately wants to shed.”

True, it may be the most litigious but is it any wonder since it has constantly been under attack by others who want their message included rather than that of the Organizers. To please these others and their supporters, the Organizers have stepped back as each attack continued hoping they would end. Now they should see the more they retreats the more they will be attacked.

Think of the gall of that columnist writing that South Boston’s reputation is that of “intolerance and insularity” when it is he, and many of his cohorts at his newspapers, who have falsely labeled South Boston as such. Those are the people who will beat up on Southie at each and every opportunity. Stop trying to please them.

The group being kept out this year are the Veterans for Peace. Their message is that our wars are wrong. The Organizers believe that diminishes the value of serving in the armed forces, causes hurt to the many families who have sacrificed loved ones in the defense of this nations, and injects a negative tone into what should be a day of celebration. The columnist calls this absurd.

It is time for the Organizers to stand tall and protect your message. There are enough parades in Boston for everyone who has a message to sneak into. Here are six that come to the top of my head: the First Night’s People’s Parade, the Dorchester Day Parade, the Boston Pride Parade, the Caribbean Parade, the Columbus Day Parade, the Veteran’s Day parade.

Why is it every group barred from the Southie gets a media platform for its beef? Why is it only the St. Patrick’s Day parade that causes such angst at the Boston Globe? Why is it you never hear about excluded groups at any other parades in Boston?  

Don’t tell me it’s because it is associated with the Irish and South Boston. Nah, wouldn’t be that. Must be something to do with the arrival of spring.

Happy St Patrick’s Evacuation Exclusionary Day parade. May it travel in peace.

9 thoughts on “The Fight to Own St. Patrick’s Day Parade: No More Shilly-Shallying or being Willy Nillies

  1. That is an interesting use of “shilly-shally” and “willy-nilly”. Perhaps, because this is the City of Boston demanding that the First Amendment means that you have the right to express what someone else wants you to say, the correct response is “Hubbub!”?

    Will the Boston Globe now promptly publish whatever I have to say on the editorial page without editing, reserve or restriction?

    “hubbub (n.)
    1550s, whobub “confused noise,” of uncertain origin; according to OED generally believed to be of Irish origin, perhaps from Gaelic ub!, expression of aversion or contempt, or Old Irish battle cry abu, from buide “victory.””

    “shilly-shally (v.)
    “to vacillate,” 1782, from adverbial expression to stand shilly-shally (1703), earlier shill I, shall I (1700), a fanciful reduplication of shall I? (compare wishy-washy, dilly-dally, etc.). From 1734 as an adjective, by 1755 as a noun. Related: Shilly-shallying (1816).”

    c. 1600, contraction of will I, nill I, or will he, nill he, or will ye, nill ye, literally “with or without the will of the person concerned.” See nill + will (v.1).

    nill (v.)
    Old English nylle, nelle “to be unwilling,” from ne “no” (see no) + will (v.). Often paired with will; the construction in nill he, will he, once common, attested from c. 1300, surviving principally in willy-nilly, which, however, reverses the usual Middle English word order. Latin expressed a similar idea in nolens volens.”

    1. Ed:

      I can always depend on you to give more texture to my posts. Perhaps hubbub would have been appropriate.

  2. Matt, the South Boston Veterans should keep their traditional parade “traditional” and exclude liberal political groups, anti-war groups, and radical leftists. If people want an “all inclusive parade” let them apply for a permit and run it elsewhere. Remember, Cambridge once hosted ” an alternative inclusive St. Pat’s Parade” for a few years (mid-1990s). It was a rip roaring flop, a colossal failure. Remember, too, when in 1996 the Boston Globe called for a boycott of the Veterans traditional parade, over one million spectators showed up in Southie defying the narrow-minded boorish bigots at the Globe. Celebrate American history and America’s brave fighting forces. Celebrate the Irish and Irish-Americans. Celebrate traditional values. Up the Republic! Down with the Globe!

    1. Bill:

      As one who fought and won the rights for the parade organizers to make their own decisions on the parade your post is well received.

  3. Why not a parade of everyone? That would make it more Irish.

    The parades in Ireland are multi-cultural, multi-sexual, multi-national. Drag queen floats are the usual, along with Chinese dragons and marching school bands behind waving politicians. Puppets galore and the street pageant ‘Laura goes to Mars to see if aliens are real!’

    Here it is a part of a ‘festival’ :

    The ‘festival’ has little if anything remotely religious to it.

    I’d like to see the Boston Schoolboy Cadets’parade brought back. That was more fun but I suppose the rifles might really upset The Boston Globe folks.

    1. Henry:

      Ireland may require inclusiveness while the US gives people the right to choose their message. The Irish may have tossed religion in the bin but some here still like to keep in mind the deeds of St. Pat’s. The parade is the most popular one so many want to intrude. A few years back the American Nazis believing they would find kindred souls in Southie wanted to march. They were excluded. No one complained. As for Chiniese dragons, I believe there is a parade in Chanatown for them and they have yet to ask in on St. Pat’s parade. I’d like to say I see little problem giving everyone a chance to march but then you may have the Nazis, or Reds, or ISIS supporters, or the naked men’s club or things like that. Perhaps Ireland doesn’t have those groups.

      Yes, the Schoolboy Parade would be something to bring back but the boys (and I suppose girls now) would not be able to carry guns which do offend the eyes of the purists at the Globe who only like veterans for peace. I was going to suggest that perhaps they can carry palm branches but that would get too close to the religious Palm Sunday. Better yet they should all carry flowers in their hands.

      1. St Patrick’s Day is Holy day of obligation in Ireland, but that seems forgotten, just like 19 March is one also throughout the Church but never mentioned. We have no Nazis here now that I’m aware of, but plenty of ISIS supporters. They hate Christians, I’m told, and would avoid anything with Saint in the title.

        Yes, it is a conundrum. What would Cardinal Cushing have done?

        1. Henry:

          Cushing was the speaker at my high school commencement. All I remember about it is that he called it an “auspicious” occasion. I had no idea what that meant (shows you how much reading I did in high school) but I did go home and look it up. Whenever he is mentioned I think of that. As to what he would have done, perhaps, said it was an auspicious occasion to avoid controversy and kept quiet.

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