Banned in Boston?

All is not well in Beantown. The South Boston St. Patrick’s Day parade is the latest target in the LGBT bullying campaign to destroy freedom of expression. The Allied War Veterans of South Boston have sponsored a parade since 1901 celebrating the Feast of St. Patrick and the British Evacuation of Boston during the Revolutionary War. The veterans group won a Supreme Court battle more than 20 years ago confirming their right to set whatever criteria they please for parade participants. Nevertheless, a group which styles itself MassEquality wants to change all that.

Saint Patrick Lighting the Pascal Fire on the Hill of Slane by Victor Waldré, c. 1801

Saint Patrick Lighting the Pascal Fire on the Hill of Slane by Victor Waldré, c. 1801

Various LGBT groups have been holding their own mock parade immediately after the “official” (i.e., privately organized) St. Patrick’s procession for several years now. It is a long-established precedent that any group should have equal access to public venues for rallies and parades. Sure enough, the agitators at MassEquality are free to march the exact same route. This is not in question. Furthermore, same-sex marriage is already recognized in Massachusetts, so the LGBT groups already have what they claim they want. This sort of provocation is truly unnecessary.

Meanwhile, Boston’s nominally Catholic mayor, Marty Walsh, is getting involved to pressure the Allied War Veterans to accept the dissembling of a fictitious group called “LGBT Veterans for Equality” which apparently only has one member. This is not about celebrating Irish heritage or military service, but an obvious ploy to pervert the celebration of Lá Fhéile Pádraig into a political soapbox with a captive audience.

Ventriloquism is Not Free Speech

Ventriloquism is Not Free Speech

The Allied War Veterans are right to insist that the parade should remain a celebration of Irish heritage, military service, and the Catholic faith. This is neither pro-gay nor anti-gay, but simply an expression of the neighborhood pride of the Irish community in South Boston. The public square is a free and open forum for competing ideas. Everybody has a chance to speak his mind, not to force others to speak on his behalf like some kind of ventriloquist’s dummy.

The gay rights advocates have turned freedom of expression upside-down. The Boston Globe coverage of this story includes a disturbing quote from a lobbyist from the Massachusetts Gay and Lesbian Political Caucus, “I’ve been getting e-mails and phone calls from people sayings it’s offensive, it’s untenable, it’s analogous to ‘don’t ask, don’t tell.’” Maybe it is offensive to those who are looking for a fight, but a privately organized parade is not silencing those who are critical of it. To the contrary, the message of LGBT advocates is being broadcast loud and clear in every corner of this country. It is impossible to escape it.

Not All Bullies Are On the Playground

Not All Bullies Are On the Playground

Without fail, the word “bigot” will fly from the lips of gay rights advocates mixed with rage and spittle for all who disagree with their cause. It is reminiscent of the taunts of a playground bully, “Yeah, well you’re a mega-bigot! So there!” It can go back and forth like this with escalating variations of this tu quoque fallacy limited only by human creativity and imagination, but this only feeds into the bully’s game. Rather than face the bully head on, Catholic groups are choosing to stay home this St. Patrick’s day, which is an even worse outcome.

Now the bullies know they can silence Catholics in the public square with nuisance tactics and by poisoning public expression of our faith by turning it into a battle over free speech, even on questions of settled law. Such battles are costly, which is exactly why we need legislation like Arizona’s SB 1062 and stronger anti-SLAPP laws to at least give us a fighting chance to exercise our religious freedom without constant provocations and incessant bullying.


Categories:Culture Law Marriage Politics Religious Liberty

  • Massgopguy

    It’s not “Settled Law” until the Gays win in court.

  • cminca

    Are there gay South Bostonians? yes. Are there gay veterans? Yes. Are there gay descendants from Revolutionary War soldiers? Yes (I’m one). Are there gay Irish? Yes. Are there gay Catholics? Yes.

    You Catholics keep telling me how loving and inclusive you are. You keep telling me it isn’t the orientation, it is the ACT of homosexuality you condemn.

    Since no one is going to be actively engaged in homosexual acts during the parade–exactly why are gays being excluded by these loving, inclusive Catholics?

    Are they setting up some screening devise so that no divorced people march? No one using contraception? No adulterers?

    Of course not.

    You can rationalize all you want. This is discrimination and you are all a bunch of bigots.

    • Joshua Mercer

      There might be some in the march who have committed adultery. But are they carrying signs which identify themselves that way? Do they wear a scarlet letter and say that society should accept their sinful behavior as totally normal and ok? If a group demanded to do join the march in that way, I would hope that the Veterans would exclude them as well.

    • Brenda

      It is not too late to turn your life around and give it back to Jesus Christ. Contact your local diocese and they will more than happy to help you! Don’t wait until it’s too late. Jesus has abundant mercy and grace just for you.
      God bless

  • mike parnell

    Joshua needs to move on. This train has left the station.

  • Candace

    Unfortunately, it seems religious freedom is already gone, along with freedom to run your own business, freedom to buy property and keep it, and freedom to raise your children as you see fit (education, religion). A few small groups are removing freedom from the large majority. Who wants to take their children to a parade with homosexuals on display. Not me!

  • Christine W.

    The only Catholic group I have heard was planning to boycott the parade was an elementary school. Perhaps the school organizers were concerned about the innocence of those young children.

  • Chris

    Militant gay activists do not tolerate people who understand homosexuality to be a disordered sexual appetite and homosexual behavior to be immoral.



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