R.T. Neary
Post-mortem -- The loss of Irish pride
By R.T. Neary
June 15, 2015

A century ago, when Irish immigrants left their homeland to board ships that transported them across the Atlantic to these shores, there was one strong admonition

"Keep the Faith" were those simple but powerful words, and it was a rarity if they did not follow them. Cobh in County Cork to Boston in the U.S.A. was a rough, but well-traveled route, as they left their simple rural life behind.. Maids, common laborers, landscapers, and police officers could be heard in America often speaking with a brogue, as these transplants gained employment in their new land.

The No Irish Need Apply signs became fewer, as the Irish had built a reputation for a willingness to work in order to support their large families. From the gardens around the mansions in Newport to the locks on the Erie Canal and all the way to San Francisco, escapees from the Great Potato Famine had left their mark. Those earlier Irish immigrants in the 1800s had made a presence, even to having had a large number of the last defenders of the Alamo Irish-born.

Despite having a propensity to re-fuel on alcoholic beverages, the lads and lassies from the ould sod were seen as being a tough lot. They had sinew.

The Roman Catholic Church's growth in the United States was largely due to the dogged adherence and loyalty of Irish immigrants and their American-born progeny. Until the 1960's, the Church was a powerful institution in this country. It was despised by some, while grudgingly admired by others. Within these parameters, it became a force in many aspects of American life.

Politics would provide the English-speaking Irish with a vehicle to rise in power – and in society. It also increased the Catholic Church's influence. Boston and the Commonwealth of Massachusetts were perfect examples. As we moved into the new century and millennium, however, the concept of a Boston Irish-Catholic had changed – if not totally disintegrated.

One may hear the media bandy names such as Walsh, O'Malley, McGrory, Connors, Leahy and, of course, Kennedy as they report on the news, but while these individuals have family roots in the Emerald Isle, any connection with its past history is now remote. The irony of it all is that "the Faith": the Irish were admonished to keep has not only been seriously crushed here in this new century, but it no longer prevails in the country which issued this clarion admonition to those departing that cherished land.

"Erin Go Braugh" was cast into Gehenna at the ballot box by the Irish people on May 22, 2015. They removed the cornerstone of their great history and broke it into pieces

Ireland and Massachusetts had a tandem connection because of the political success of Irish-American politicians. They had ascended the ranks of the Democrat Party, and together with being Catholic, the party itself became a powerful force in their own lives. As time went on, however, it became evident to others that the Catholic religion became subservient to the political party. Eventually, the Democrat Party would become their religion – and the Catholic Church their politics.

Although not immediately evident to many loyal Catholics, Roe v Wade and the legalization of a procedure to dissect and suction out a developing human being from the womb, would eventually become sacramental in the lives of these politicians. They could sell their souls for political capital, and the overwhelming number eventually did.

Roe v Wade's effect revealed much of the sub-surface composition of the Catholic Church in the U.S. There was a soft underbelly. Seminaries were over-flowing, but few Catholics were willing to point out a feminization which had started to take place in the clergy. Rock-ribbed pastors were becoming less evident, and the sermons, now homilies, became more folksy. Stories about the influence of a priest's mother on him became more common. Mention of the influence of his father was a rarity.

In reality, a small but very influential element of homosexually-oriented men had moved up in the ranks and ultimately formed a powerful cadre. It was not too difficult for them to recognize each other. They became a powerful, sub-surface force, ultimately controlling the 2nd level of the hierarchy in the Archdiocese of Boston. They gradually became more daring and many of them predatory.

After the so-called "clerical abuse scandal" was exposed in 2002 in the Boston area, it became evident that homosexual priests were creating problems in many dioceses in the country. In reality, many of the other urban dioceses were worse than Boston, and academic areas were no better. Sadly, too many upstanding, committed priests stayed silent, unaware of the full extent of it – and the ultimate damage it would do to their beloved church.

Despite the media's determined commitment to label it differently, homosexuality – not pedophilia – was the nature of this cancer. It metastasized – and eventually became widespread. This outright lie, devised very early by the media to protect a much-favored element by them, is the lynchpin which has caused the marked decline in Catholic influence in Boston, in Massachusetts – and around the United States.

Had the scandal been correctly labeled for what it was "a homosexual predator priest scandal" – ephebophilia, for those who understood its meaning – that would have been journalism. The result to the Church and to society would have been markedly different! This egregious lie has caused enormous damage to Christ's gift to His people. The fact that the Roman Catholic Church carefully uses similar labels, however, raises the question as to whether the roots of the cancer were ever excised. Visitors of Irish descent to Ireland, as the last century came to an end, relished viewing the country's great natural beauty, but could not help but see the decline of that country's once rock-solid Catholic life. The family structure and agricultural past of their forebears had been replaced by "The Celtic Tiger," with its new industrialization, a "ballooned" banking system, and the Irish seemed much more Anglicized culturally.

The people were better-educated, but were not anything like the stereotypical Irish who came to the American shores. Mention of the accomplishments and the determination of these immigrants to America had little resonance. Even the great traditional music, reflecting the history and character of the country, had changed to a more universal, modern style. Ireland seemed to have lost a great deal of its soul. Perhaps that was a portend of what was to come.

The country incurred a severe blow in 2013 when Ireland approved "life-saving" abortion, as the result of the death of an immigrant woman in an Irish hospital. While the circumstances were different, it was an Irish Roe v Wade breakthrough for the world- wide abortion industry.

The Culture of Death has always made its strides incrementally, and this was another battle they had won. Ireland's Day of Infamy, however, would occur on May 22nd of this year, when the Irish voters, by a 62 per cent vote would be the first country in the world to approve Same-Sex Marriage (SSM) by popular vote. The people, not the government, raised an act of sodomy to the level of the millennia-old conjugal act. This was the country's coup de grace, and it placed a shroud on a great Irish history.

The swift acceptance of SSM world-wide, and by the Irish people is mind- boggling to many – but in reality it reflects the decline of the power of organized religion in the Western world. The message of traditional Christianity no longer resonates. Roman Catholics in Ireland had now by popular vote decided to ignore the complementarity of the marriage union. Sodomy is now a symbol of an act of love, equal to the act which consummates the sacrament of matrimony in a Roman Catholic marriage.

What we have seen in Ireland is an outgrowth of the 60s in the U.S. First the secularists gained control of the court system, and then they constructed a game plan that is silky smooth. Having co-opted the news industry from the daily papers to the radio and TV networks, the U.S. is now a Media-ocracy with the vast majority of citizens being no more than educated lemmings.

Truly independent, honest thinking – in pursuit of objective truth – is so rare, it does not even gain attention in the media. Truth is not objective to most people today; it is relative. The docility of society has led to political correctness, ad nauseum.

U.S. Cardinal Raymond Burke, a traditionalist cast in the mould of Saint John Paul II and Pope Benedict XVI, was formerly head of the equivalent of the Catholic Church's Supreme Court. He has been replaced and basically assigned to a ceremonial position since the elevation of Pope Francis to the papacy.. While not acknowledged as such, one can only interpret the move as a demotion.

Now basically in a titular position, he has been the object of attacks by the homosexual/lesbian element because of his outspoken defense of Church teaching. The Cardinal makes no apology for defending the Church, and this infuriates those who are pursuing "progressive" changes in doctrine.

While the Vatican spokesman called the Irish vote for SSM a "defeat for humanity," the major criticism has been leveled at the comments of Cardinal Burke. The Cardinal said that it was "a defiance of God." He called it "just incredible" and cited the fact that even while pagans had tolerated homosexual behavior, they never went so far as to say, "this was marriage."

Archbishop Eamon Martin, the president of the Irish bishops conference, displayed the palpable weakness of the Irish hierarchy throughout the entire campaign. He said, "I wouldn't have used those words." in an obvious attempt to continue their soft approach to the entire issue.

He added that "the whole debate had helped us to understand the great sense of alienation and isolation that many gay people have felt, perhaps even at the hands of the Church." After their own "sexual abuse scandals" it is interesting to note that the Archbishop of Dublin had refused even to recommend a "no" vote by Catholics.

The Church's catechetical approach is not to condemn the individual, but the acts which are called "intrinsically disordered" and "contrary to natural law." Once again, it was Cardinal Raymond Burke who was expressing the official Roman Catholic teaching as to what transpired on May 22nd.in Ireland. He continues to be demonized in the vilest terms, as this is the tactic most used by an element operating worldwide under an alphabet soup of titles.

There is obviously a strong movement of non- traditionalists throughout the Church – and all the way to the Vatican in Rome -who are gnawing away at the underpinnings of its doctrine. They have been fueled by the snippet, "Who am I to judge?" taken from an hour and 20 minute, somewhat rambling talk, to reporters on a trip back from Rio de Janeiro by Pope Francis.

It is not coincidental that the down-sizing of the influence of Cardinal Burke is inversely proportionate to the rise in power – right to the inner circle of the Vatican – by the Cardinal Archbishop of Boston.

Another change in Massachusetts politics occurred when long-time U.S. Representative Barney Frank, who had succeeded Robert Drinan S.J., decided he would not run for another term. Having survived scandals, including the revelation that his former "partner" and Aide had been running a homosexual brothel out of their Washington D.C. residence, Barney was re-districted with the state losing one seat in the House. With the new district excluding affluent and heavily-Jewish Newton and Brookline, polls showed him to be in trouble this time with re-election.

With the family name still having voter appeal, newcomer Joseph P. Kennedy III ran and easily won election to Congress. This member of the clan had now made it into national politics, and he was positioned to the left of recent clansmen. Recently he was headlined on a CBS, Channel 4 Boston segment on his drive for transgendered rights. Specifically, a major concern was open restroom usage.

While receiving the favorable media treatment any Kennedy expects, his Washington office does not even return calls for a discussion of his stand on pro-life and pro-family bills when they come before the new Republican-majority House of Representatives.

Ironically, another Kennedy has become the central figure as this country awaits the U.S. Supreme Court's decision on the constitutionality of SSM. The Obergefell v Hodges ruling is expected by month's end.

The decision, once again, hangs on his role as the swing vote in a divided court. Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy, a Roman Catholic, could be the single person to decide whether this country makes a major turn from its Judeo-Christian roots.

During the lengthy hearing on April 28th, Kennedy revealed that his vote will not be without aforethought. "The word that keeps coming back to me is 'millenia,'" said Kennedy, "Is the court to now say, 'Oh well, we know better.'"

While Justice Kennedy shows a serious approach with moral underpinnings, the failure of Justices Kagan and Ginsberg to recuse themselves from voting on this case is a glaring issue. They have both, in their judicial powers, already performed same-sex ceremonies under state law! The unchallenged power of justices individually and collectively, as well as the entire scope of Judicial Review poses serious questions. Clearly, both Justices are expected to side with the plaintiff.

This decision could be cataclysmic as regards the make-up of a "family" and the legal ramifications of the sacrament of matrimony in Catholicism. It cuts a wide swath across many aspects of our lives, religion and society at large.

Thomas P. "Tip" O'Neill, who represented Cambridge in the U.S. Congress, became the House Majority Leader and 2nd most powerful figure in Washington. He served the district continuously from 1953 to 1987.

O'Neill was unable to get Cardinal Bernard F. Law to soften the Archdiocesan leader's steadfast opposition to Roe v Wade and abortion. The elitist academic element and wealthy Democrat donors were solidly behind the Roe decision, but O'Neill could not satisfy them in softening the Church's stance. Catholic Church opposition.was strong and vocal during the Cardinal's leadership.

"Politics is the art of compromise." O'Neill would say, in effect displaying his willingness to cast principle adrift. Cardinal Bernard F. Law was unswerving, however, and he was targeted by the media establishment. Unfortunately for him, his supporting structure would eventually display its weakness. The revelations of the homosexual predators within the clerical ranks would eventually bring the Cardinal down.

The Culture War has been raging for a half-century in this country, and the result of the victories by the secularists is becoming more evident. Secular fundamentalism now reigns, and its influence is becoming all-pervasive.

The polarity in society has widened, as we display sharp differences in protecting the sanctity of all human life, and what constitutes a marriage – or a family. While unable scientifically to find a genetic basis of homosexuality, a multitude of labels are employed to identify what is basically a behavior separating a group in our society.

Ireland's voters have placed sodomy in the category of a love act. We are pursuing the same road, awaiting the Obergefell decision. If we go the Irish route, soon adultery will be seen as a therapeutic need, and what follows is left to one's imagination. Roman Catholicism is displaying some deep cracks, and many of the faithful are confused by Synods and statements emanating from the Vatican. Secular forces have their sights carefully set, are actually operating within the structure, and are relaxed by their confidence. Francis II is in the wings, the Axis having hired the campaign manager from the first run. World-wide contacts are being groomed, and everything is in place. Surely the authors of the 14th amendment which was added to our constitution in 1868 to give black former slaves full citizenship, would find its use by the courts today as mind-boggling. It is now the route being used to destroy "millennia-old" narruage.

Just as pre-Roe v Wade, the act of terminating a developing human life in the womb, was a crime of manslaughter in Massachusetts, a homosexual act has been defined in state law as an "abominable and detestable crime against nature." After Roe v Wade, we now have the former known as "reproductive health" and the latter could in weeks be known as a "marital act of love." The enormous power of language! A few decades ago the theme song of a Broadway play often filled the airwaves, and seemingly stopped people with its all-encompassing Irish lilt. Whether from stars such as Julie Andrews or Bing Crosby, "How Are Things In Glocco Morro?" captured the very best qualities of Ireland and life closest to us across the Atlantic.

Unfortunately, today in light of recent events, one could substitute for these lyrics: How Are Things In Sodom And Gomorrah? ... Somehow it does not have the same ring!

© R.T. Neary


The views expressed by RenewAmerica columnists are their own and do not necessarily reflect the position of RenewAmerica or its affiliates.
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