More Controversy Over the NYC St. Patrick’s Day Parade

The Irish are a people known for their pithy proverbs. Well, here’s one the committee that organizes the New York City St. Patrick’s Day parade should take to heart: There’s nothing so bad that it couldn’t be worse.

As part of a well-publicized “compromise,” the committee has said it will allow both a gay advocacy group and an explicitly pro-life group to march in this year’s parade. The gay advocacy group was selected back in September. The 2015 parade is five weeks away. As of this writing, the identity of the pro-life group remains a mystery.

Last fall, the parade gave the world a master class in rank appeasement. After decades of principled opposition to the braying demands of groups like the Irish Gay and Lesbian Organization and its offspring, Irish Queers, the committee caved under pressure from its broadcast partner and announced OUT@NBCUniversal would be allowed to march under a banner identifying the sexual orientation of its members. Beginning in 2016, according to parade officials, other gay groups will be “free to apply” to march in the parade under banners proclaiming their predilections.

The parade committee called its decision “a gesture of goodwill to the LGBT community in our continuing effort to keep the parade above politics.” But the gay groups were not satisfied. The executive director of Empire State Pride Agenda called the announcement “disappointing and self-serving,” since the application and selection processes were not open to the public. Irish Queers has said, “There is no change. This is not progress. This is a farce.” The group continues to call on New York City mayor Bill de Blasio to forbid NYPD and FDNY officers to wear their uniforms while marching in what Irish Queers calls an “explicitly anti-gay parade.”

Make no mistake: It’s not an ineffable longing to march up Fifth Avenue to the sound of fife and drum that motivates these groups. They are propelled, rather, by a deep desire to tar Catholics as bigots, and so to make them, their views, and their Church completely unacceptable to polite society.

For years, the parade’s policy on the matter of banners was elegantly simple: Nobody marches under a political banner. This gave parade organizers something like plausible deniability against the charge that they were deliberately discriminating against anyone. Gays were never prohibited from marching in the parade. They could march—and they did—but as members of one or another of the approved organizations. In other words, gays could march under a banner reading “County Donegal Association of New York” or “Westchester County Firefighters Emerald Society Pipe Band” but not “Irish Queens of Western Queens.”

The lone exception to the banner policy was for banners that read “England Get Out of Ireland.” It seems everyone associated with the parade—gay or straight—could agree on that.

Significantly, the no-political-banners policy also covered pro-life groups. Last year’s announcement of the change in policy lifted the hopes of such groups that they would also be given an opportunity to march. In an interview with in September, parade vice chairman John L. Lahey appeared to shoot that notion down. “That won’t be happening,” he said. Catholic League president Bill Donohue promptly announced that his organization, which had marched in the parade for 20 years, would not participate in 2015. Donohue claims he was told privately that the change in policy would, in fact, cover both gay and pro-life groups.

Then, lo and behold, a few days later, parade spokesman William O’Reilly claimed that Lahey had erred, and a pro-life group would indeed be allowed to march. It was starting to seem as if the parade committee was making it up as they went along. Not a good sign for those who supported and defended the old policy at the urging of steadfast Catholic leaders like John Cardinal O’Connor and Edward Cardinal Egan. One can only wonder how Timothy Cardinal Dolan, this year’s Grand Marshal, is taking all of this. Is he on board with the policy to placate the Church’s critics while vexing her natural allies?

Shortly after the changes in policy were announced, Elizabeth Rex of the Children First Foundation filed an application to march in the 2015 parade under a pro-life banner. Children First promotes adoption and has for years lobbied New York State to allow the issuance of a “Choose Life” license plate. The group says it has always wanted to march in the parade, but never bothered to apply because of the no-banners policy. In a letter dated January 22, 2015, parade chairman John T. Dunleavey informed Rex that her application had been rejected. “The committee has selected a Right to Life group which will be lead [sic] by the 4th Degree Knights of Columbus Honor Guard,” he wrote. “Cardinal Dolan has been made aware of this.”

Oddly, no one seems to know the name of this “Right to Life group.” I called O’Reilly, who told me he was no longer working with the parade.

Joe Zwilling, Dolan’s spokesman at the Archdiocese of New York, punted. “Any decisions and statements about who is marching in the Parade are from the Parade Committee,” he wrote in response to an e-mail request for comment. “The archdiocese is not involved in that process, and we would let them make any announcement they wish to make before making any comment of our own.”

A spokesman for the Supreme Council of the Knights of Columbus told me he didn’t know the specifics of this case, but, that as a general rule, honor guards march representing the Knights of Columbus specifically, rather than under the banner of another organization.

A number of other sources with deep knowledge of the New York pro-life scene told me they hadn’t heard of a local group being selected.

Multiple calls to Dunleavey at the parade committee’s headquarters in the Bronx were not returned.

So what gives? Has the New York City St. Patrick’s Day parade committee selected a pro-life group or not? And will the group that marches be a previously banned group, like the Children’s First Foundation or New Yorkers for Life? Or is the parade committee hoping to pass off an outfit that has always been allowed to march—such as the Ancient Order of Hibernians or the Knights of Columbus—as its token pro-life organization?

The parade is in the midst of a leadership change. Lahey—who is president of Quinnipiac University—will take the reins from Dunleavey after this year’s parade. The new boss evidently sees little profit in keeping faith with the parade’s Catholic roots. But if the policy now is to allow gay groups to march, while giving pro-lifers the runaround, it’s hard to see how the parade will succeed in staying above politics.

Matthew Hennessey


Matthew Hennessey is a writer from New Canaan, CT, and a graduate of Hunter College and Fordham University. You can follow him on Twitter @matthennessey.

  • Macy’s Thanksgiving Day parade had been sullied by subverise agenda groups, and the St Patrick’s Day parade is also now dirty. There is no meaningful reference to St Patrick: just a middle finger in the face of God and His Holy Church.

    Well, you can count on precisely zero Church leaders to take a public stand there.

    Just waiting for the LGBTQ supporters to show up with rainbow banners at mosques. Oh that’s right, they have no interest in tearing down Islam, only Christianity.

    • Objectivetruth

      Agreed. Time to abandon any trace of Catholicism from the parade. Don’t go to the parade, don’t watch it on TV. Go to Mass instead, praying to Saint Patrick to once again rid the Church of the slimy LGBTQ vipers and serpents that are currently slithering through Christ’s body.

      And pray to St. Patrick to give Cardinal Dolan a backbone.

      • phranthie

        Why not, privately, just call the whole thing off and leave the LGBT lot wondering where everyone is. Anyway, there’s little left of old Ireland, that’s for sure — would you believe that, here in London, I recently met a man from Athlone who’d never heard of the great John McCormack!

      • What? And give up a chance to get stinking drunk on green beer?

        • Objectivetruth

          I’m finding more and more fellow Irish Catholic Americans are embarrassed by that and are staying away from the bars on St. Patrick’s. Thankfully, it’s a nice movement. Sadly, from a country that has given the world incredible writers, music and culture, many think Ireland’s greatest export is Guinness and Irish pubs.

        • Glenn M. Ricketts

          I don’t need a parade to do that. But if they march this year, I’ll need a few extra pints to calm my soul.

          • Howard

            Not a pint of Guinness, though; they are fully backing these changes.

            • Glenn M. Ricketts

              Never thought I’d come to the point where I’d gag on it, but I would now.

            • Objectivetruth

              I’ll enjoy one of Pottsville PA’s best, a Yeungling Black and Tan…..

              • The Porter is good too. Now that Dick Yeungling is a sworn enemy of Ten Million Dollar Tom Wolf, I will seek out his products.

                • Objectivetruth

                  Agreed…wolf’s a one term guy.

                  • I hope so, but until his predecessor, the rule since two terms were allowed was two terms.

            • More Tea Vicar?

              I decided to boycott Guinness when I read they were backing this farce… I found a nicer, tastier alternative to their porter: Irish Breakfast Tea.

      • MrRightWingDave

        Well said!

      • schmenz

        Pray to Saint Patrick to give him a brain, too.

      • FreemenRtrue

        let’s pray that Dolan hasn’t had too many back bones.

      • More Tea Vicar?

        Good advice! Mass and prayers to the great saint!
        Why don’t the New Yorkers go the whole hog and change the parade to the ‘Annual Celebration of the gods Narcissus and Bacchus’?
        As for Cardinal Dolan, it’ll take the combined elbow grease of St. Anthony of Padua to help find Cardinal Dolan’s backbone and St. Jude to do the impossible – put it back where it belongs.
        Just like St. Valentine’s Day, St. Patrick’s Day has also been hijacked.

      • A1Lady

        The St. Patrick’s Day celebrations in New York and Boston are permitted by each city but run by private organizations, a distinction that allows parade organizers to ban gay groups from marching. A 1993 federal-court decision upheld the right of New York’s parade organizers to exclude groups marching under gay-rights banners. Two years later, a 9-0 Supreme Court decision held that gay groups couldn’t force their way into the Boston parade. Gays Unlikely to March in St. Patrick’s Day Parades Despite Push From Mayors. What I found interesting through my research though, are the Parades in Ireland allowing this? Ummmmm Also I read the Cardinal Dolan has no problem with this? Am I wrong? When the Priests and the Cardinals become weak and become liberals like the Politian’s at the cost of Gods Laws there will be consequences with God I fear.

    • asmondius

      Ironically, by undermining Christianity in America, Islam is exactly what they may one day get.

      • Jacqueleen

        And Sharia Law right behind it that kills gays…probably will behead them in more places than one.

        • The Truth

          That’s the idiocy of the whole thing. Every left-wing nutcase condemns Christianity when Islam will imprison them or worse for their behavior. Go figure.

          • More Tea Vicar?

            They’re too up their own crevice to do just that!

        • Kimo

          Now they are into throwing them off buildings. Nice folks, Muslims.

          • Objectivetruth

            I saw that, also. I believe not only ISIS, but Muslim’s in Other parts of the Middle East have been tossing homosexuals off of the tops of buildings. Why aren’t “we love everything gay” CNN, MSNBC, CBS, NY Times reporting on this?

            I’m guessing The reason we haven’t seen Polish Bear and slowlyboilingfrog much on this website lately because they’re fighting the fight against such atrocities on ISIS’ website. What brave fellas, they are.

            • PB renamed himself.

              • Objectivetruth

                Yes….I thought he should have stayed with Bear vs. Chuck.

          • Jacqueleen

            Sorry that none of you readers got the gist of what I wrote. Since homosexuality is not allowed in Islam, they will cut off you know what besides their head.

        • More Tea Vicar?

          Or do what Islamic State has done – throw them from a dizzying height to their deaths!

    • TERRY

      IMO they have ”no interest in tearing down Islam” because they have lots of interest in staying alive.

    • Michael

      No actually I don’t think they’ll mess with Islam because they’ll get stoned.

      • Good point. They secretly hate Islam (for similar reasons they hate Christianity) but have to keep the front up because they know it’s a direct challenge to the (once) dominant Christian culture. Nobody said liberalism is a rational ideology, it’s just a scheming one.

  • Nel

    The new slogan for St Patrick’s Day in New York: ‘Sodom and Begorrah to ye.’

  • lifeknight

    Seems like you have answered your own question.
    “Or is the parade committee hoping to pass off an outfit that has always been allowed to march—such as the Ancient Order of Hibernians or the Knights of Columbus—as its token pro-life organization?”

  • St JD George

    Saint Patrick would be so proud to know his likeness is being prostituted the way it is today. If he could rise from the grave again I’d hate to feel the wrath of his scorn marching in that debauchery. I don’t have to worry, our modern celebration of his earthly ministry has come to mean little to me today.

    • asmondius

      I’m sure George Washington and Abe Lincoln would feel the same way.

      • St JD George

        True enough, and relevant to next week no less, but though good and Godly men … not saints, recognized by the church anyway.

    • Today? For decades his day was marked with gross intemerance annd oher “acts of pervsion, so profound and disgusting; that decorum prohibits..”.

      • St JD George

        Grant you. However, if it is even possible, the level of debauchery has sunk yet to another level with the inclusion of those who worship their genitalia more “pridefully” than ever before.

        • John200

          An observation: The level of debauchery has sunk below the worship of genitalia.

          These fine and worthy characters worship both ends of the alimentary canal more “pridefully” then ever before.

          • TERRY

            “Abandon hope all ye who enter here.”

  • Keith Cameron

    Is there not one parade, festival or public gathering into which Gays and in particular militant ones don’t feel the need to imprint themselves? I think not. And quite honestly I’m sick to death of it. There exists no part of society where we don’t have to be exposed to the incessant narcissistic rantings of these people. I’m done supporting any group, event or company that caves to these folks.

    • asmondius

      You can’t recruit if no one knows you are present.

    • Scott W.

      It is a deliberate policy of what I’ve heard called over-sharing. In time I think we will see a modern version of England’s Test Acts that were designed to ghettoize Catholics. Hope for the best, but expect the worst; meaning NOW Catholics need to “count the cost” and decide if they can endure loss of job, status, and even freedom or their lives, because it is going to get worse before it gets better.

    • Samuel63

      This is organized revolution against anything and all things catholic. Dolan, Quomo and others are just the modern day version of Judas Iscariot. Now you can probably guess who the real enemy is. Consider the Stonewall riots in ~ 1968 and someone named Saperstein. This is where it started. It ended in the same state when Dolan became the bishop and the state rolled over to gay “marriage” about one or two months later. Come on! This is not a St. Patricks Day parade. It stopped being anything to do with a saint long ago.

    • Iowa10

      Depravity is not gay. I fear God, not man. They are living a lie because they mock God and his truth.

    • Don Lond

      Gays and Climate are the two most prominent secular weapons against western civilization

  • ROB

    It wasn’t the parade that gave the master class in appeasement, the Cardinal conducted this charade.
    Lahey, President of a fifth rate college, and Dunleavey, an elderly bus driver, wouldn’t have dared going against the wishes of the Powerhouse, however feeble it’s current output. How does Dolan feel? Just fine.

  • samnigromd

    Gays are a cult…a sub rosa political party and should be governed by laws for political parties. They promote a disease: a persistent abnormal functioning of a body organ. They parade with 6 feet penises and other phallic gadgets. They are genital maniacs. They prey on developing youths. They become agent provocateurs to harass and file complaints against those who disagree with them. They are intolerant of other views. They abuse and perpetrate violence. They will try to seduce you if you happen to blink the wrong way. They have support of the liberal press so will be sanitized as the public and politicians are manipulated. This is a social psychosis.

    BOOK REVIEW OF Who Killed The American Family

    Phyllis Schlafly, WND Books, Washington, D.C.

    by copyright c Samuel A. Nigro, MD February 2015.

    This is an astonishing comprehensive
    well-documented describing of the demise and misery of any culture without the
    traditional “father-mother” family and virtuous men. Schlafly begins describing “the American
    family we once knew” and then proceeds with its destruction. First, selfish feminists disavowed the
    family. Then, it was outlawed and
    “family courts” with “fatherphobia” rendered fathers unneeded,
    irrelevant, obsolete, replaced and discriminated against by government programs
    and government money. Next education,
    psychological, and medical experts began repeating the liberal “art is any
    indecency we can think of” nonsense of the press and media which fundamentally
    demean virtuous boys and men. Then
    fraudulent science became commonplace completing the mockery of moms and dads
    trying to live “trinity-like” as the “two or more persons in the
    ONE creature of the home.” Finally, medicine refuses to identify the gay
    cult’s body dysmorphic disorders with the long standing definition of
    disease: “the continuous abnormal
    functioning of a body part.” Naively
    deferring, sort of “women first”, men mostly “made nice”
    passively to the new sub rosa bigoted community pressures and let selfish feminists
    get away with their “two wrongs make a right” (as they do over and
    over what they claim was done to them) slick anti-virtuous male sexism. Basically,
    virtuous men have been discriminated against and replaced by the government so
    much so that men as virtuous men are deprived from home, women, and children.

    removes any doubts about “respect for the law,” as anti-male and
    anti-family totalitarianisms are confirmed.
    So-called “respect for law” must be replaced by FEAR (long
    known as a sign of tyranny), carefully hidden by the ritual obsequiousness so
    loved and demanded by judges and other government Iagos ever since they learned
    well the pseudo-judicial emperor-state “how great the law is”
    propaganda from all law school classes. The laws involvement in the
    destruction of the family were never so clear as in this book. Power corrupts especially without morality,
    philosophy, virtue, tradition and transcendence. It seems as though the law sanctions “art”
    to reign by so-called “free speech”–just as long as the
    “art” is not against feminists, the law, judges, the press, editors,
    atheists, violence, scatology, and unnatural sex.

    approaches but does not conclude, as I have for some time, that the most
    fundamental cause of family deterioration is mankind’s removal of itself from “nature” by the change
    of human sexuality into an excretory act rather than consistent with
    reproduction (The Church does not know how right it is about contraception and
    sexuality). Shlafly confirms the unnatural sexualization
    of females–what I have called the turning of American women into the world’s
    first community harem–by masturbation education as from Planned Parenthood. No other creature has females seeking
    ejaculation as such, which is therefore another totally human contribution to
    planetary pollution. With
    “jaculasis” (1), “ejaculation as culture,” sex is for
    “relief”–“sexcretion” rather than for reproduction as in
    the rest of the animal kingdom and nature.
    Subhuman animals copulate (unless biochemical abnormality) at a time
    consistent with reproduction by two opposite sexed adult members of the same
    species because of pheromones (Get a cat if in doubt). Nature obviously knows best because without
    pheromones, animals would likely do nothing except try to ejaculate all the
    time as do humans in today’s masturbatory culture. For humans, “marriage” has been the
    psychosocial pheromone helping mankind remain sexually in reproductive concert
    with nature and the planet (If humans had biochemical pheromones controlling
    them, there could be no love). But with
    contraception and abortion, non-reproductive ejaculation has taken over with
    anyone, anything, anytime, anywhere with marital love discarded as natural sex
    for humans. Still, meaningless (not
    consistent with reproduction) sex is pollution–sexcretion–rather than nature
    defined reproduction-consistent sex. Without
    traditional family and virtuous men (and with unnatural selfish feminists and
    gay cult genital maniacs), mankind cannot be more out of touch with the planet. All pollution has its adverse consequences,
    readily confirmed by the obvious social problems due to loss of traditional
    family and virtuous men because sex is not based on factors of natural humanbeingness.

    The book
    stimulated my definition of “family”:
    The family is the head of a male/female household, living with one or
    more related individuals, in a process of mutual growth, reciprocal commitment,
    shared responsibility, persistent desirablity, and self-sacrificing performance
    on transcendental behalf of themselves, extended family, neighborhood, and
    community in the pursuit of Life first, gentle Liberty second, and then the
    peaceful Pursuit of Happiness (2).

    What is
    obvious from Schlafly is that a society is basically miserable if it does not
    contain a minimum of Catholicism, overt or covertly, something I concluded long
    ago. “The family” (“traditional” family, that is) is
    the basis for civilization and decent living–and the Church is the only major
    organization continuously committed to genuine sexual nature and nature’s God.

    At, I offer my thoughts on the death of virtuous men and
    several book reviews which give glimpses of what Schlafly’s book is all about.
    But BEST TO GET Who Killed the American Family…AND


    1. Nigro, Samuel A.:
    “Family” definition from several of my books: Everybody for Everybody and
    Soul of the Earth.

    2. Nigro, Samuel
    A.: “Jaculasis: Behavioral
    Pollution and Sex Abuse by Priests”, Social Justice Review,
    September/October 2002, pp 133-138.

    Readers may email ( me for attachments “Thoughts on American
    Anti-virtuous-Male-Sexism” and of book reviews of It Takes a Village; Domestic Tranquility; Victim’s Revolution; and
    of articles on males and feminism.

    • Can’t you post without shillling for this author? Give it a rest, already.

      • I think he’s trying to generate interest and a readership base. The style is overbearing, unpoetic, and garrulous. Some folks are not fit for popular publication, intellect or zeal notwithstanding.

        That said, I would read every post of his if they were more concise.


    May I make this suggestion – if you must go to the parade, when the (self-described) queers appear, simply do an about face and refuse to acknowledge them. That will upset them because they want to cause chaos, etc.

    Then go to St. Patrick’s and say a Rosary for them.

    • fredx2

      They will just follow you there and shout obscenities at you from the sidewalk, I know. I was there when they did it to Cardinal O’Connor every week.

      • Can you borrow a phrase from an old political debate?

        I knew Cardinal O’Connor, Cardinal O’Connor was a friend of mine, and you [Cardinal Dolan] are no Cardinal O’Connor.??

        Wolsey, maybe.

      • TERRY

        Good point but I stand by what I said.

        I don’t like to sound holy-go-pious but it strikes me that the phrase “Blessed are you when they utter calumnies against you because of me” applies here.
        I know I didn’t get the exact quote right but I think you know what I mean.

  • Scott W.

    Better to scrap the parade altogether and go to Heaven than approve the glorification of sexual perversion and be cast into Hell.

    • Jude

      A shame no one explained it to Cardinal Dolan in those terms. One more wolf in shepherd’s clothing.

  • fredx2

    Is it still legal not to be gay in New York?

    • asmondius

      Never stop to pick up loose change in Manhattan.

      • TERRY

        “stop” or “stoop”?

        • asmondius

          Heh heh

    • St JD George

      It is only illegal to not be pro-gay in NY, because sodomy is a choice and a state given right after all, so celebrate.

    • bonaventure

      It is illegal to not celebrate homosexuality.
      If you go the St. Pat’s parade and do not cheer the “gays” when they walk under their banner, you may get arrested for a hate crime.

  • JERD2

    Isn’t it just so, so, so tiring. Everything, everything, everything must be diverse, inclusive, and non-judgmental. The result is that everyone everywhere is tarred with political argument and pressure from all directions by all forms of “interests.”

    Can’t we just leave each other alone sometime!

    • St JD George

      That is a form of appeasement, and not reflective of Christ’s cry to us to carry the burden of his cross. That is a rallying cry for the tired and the weak, and that is what the dark prince would have us take comfort in thinking “if only we had our a little niche and be left alone in our sanctuary”. Rest assured that his mission is not to peacefully “Coexist”, but rather to destroy Christ’s mission on earth. His cunning disciples are never at rest, and nor should we, no matter how tiring.

      • Rest assured that his mission is not to peacefully “Coexist”, but rather to destroy Christ’s mission on earth.

        Those “coexist” bumper stickers are the indicia of fools. They demonstrate intellectual paucity and do nothing but make a vain declaration of same.

        • The Truth

          I’ve seen “catholics” with those bumper sticks. I’m terribly confused.

          • bonaventure

            They are liberals, not Catholics.

          • Oh well probably the same ones that had “hope and change” on the other side.

          • Objectivetruth

            A devout Catholic came out with an opposing bumper sticker that says “Contradict.” That the religions on the “coexist” sticker all contradict each other, and does the liberal realize that?

        • henhill

          I think I read that the artist of the “coexist” symbol was recently murdered

          • That’s a terrible way to have a delusion punctured.

  • maineman

    I’ve always seen the idea of marching in public to announce what one likes to do with one’s genitalia to be the ultimate in bad boundaries.

    • RufusChoate

      What an odd standard of decency you adhere to, it is almost like you are attempting to be a civilized Christian Gentleman. Good Show.

    • TERRY

      Not to mention bad form.

  • Jamodus

    Is it not obvious that a Catholic Cardinal should not be seen at such disgraceful parades?
    Some people are attempting to put God to the test. They will get what they deserve if they don’t cancel this abominable plan.

  • Joe

    Maybe there needs to be a large group of faithful Catholics, including K of C, religous in habits, and clerics who demand to march in a gay pride parade whilst praying the rosary for the conversion of the many troubled souls. I wonder how that would go over with the tolerant gay community

    • JTLiuzza

      Good idea but I wouldn’t count on the “Knights” of Columbus. They don’t have the stomach for a good fight.

  • Florian

    Feb. 11…so we equate a group that promotes sinful, deviant behavior with a group that promotes the sanctity of life? Our country – and many in the Church including Church leaders, are compromising for the sake of political correctness. Next we will make compromises with NAMBLA when they demand to be included in the parade. Don’t forget…if our country can legalize the killing of human babies in the womb, why would they not legalize pedophilia?

    • Because for now pedophiles are the designated deviants.

    • Joe

      Maybe you should pick a boogeyman who’s current membership number is “Not Applicable”
      Like, a group that still exists as more than three or four guys on an FBI watchlist.
      Also maybe pick a boogeyman that hasn’t been more thoroughly excoriated by the group you imply is supporting them than by anyone else.

      • Joe

        *isn’t “Not Applicable”

        Typed too fast. Oops.

  • ColdStanding

    Hey, if you are wondering why the top-tier of the One, Holy, Catholic and Apostolic Church is mum on the issue, just seek out the German Cardinal Marx’s recent address to Stanford University.

    Remember that, while the 2/3’s majority wasn’t reached at the recent synod on “the Family”, an absolute majority was. I wonder which “family” they are talking about.

  • conbabe

    Was the original intent of the parade to tell the Protestant Establishment that the Irish had arrived? Is it relevant still?

    • Catholic First,American Second

      It was to celebrate Saint Patrick the holy Bishop missionary as well. Many Protestants still hate Catholicism. (Heck, some white American Catholics even hate Hispanic Catholic immigrants, who are today’s Irish Catholic immigrant equivalent.) Look up “Saint Patrick’s Battalion” about Irish Catholic Americans who joined Mexican Catholics in their fight against Protestant USA (during 1846 Mexican-American War).

    • John Albertson

      The original intent of the parade – we can look back to 1747 – was to honor Ireland and Saint Patrick without religious sectarianism. It was in fact the brainchild of Irish Presbyterians, although Catholics were welcome. Before the Revolution, most marchers were members of the 16th and 47th Regiments of Foot, who were mostly Irish. The parade ended with toasts of loyalty both to the King, and to Ireland. Only in the nineteenth century did it become heavily politicized and identified as a Catholic manifestation, but often the Grand Marshall continued not to be Catholic, as in the later instance of Theodore Roosevelt, who was Dutch Reformed. The price for turning it into a political parade is that, since Ireland is forsaking its Catholicism, it has become a vehicle for political groups opposed to the Faith. In recent years homosexual groups have marched in the parade in Dublin. The Church should detach herself completely from the parade and celebrate Saint Patrick with religious ceremonies. Through drinking and other excesses, the parade has become an insult to Saint Patrick.

  • I don’t know about the NYC parade, but where I come from, the St. Patrick’s day parade was long ago corrupted from a celebration of a Catholic Saint to political one, filled with bacchanalia. This year will just be one more nail in the coffin.

    • ROB

      New York has always been political. The 69th, rows upon rows of Catholic college women in caps and gowns, cops firemen, civil servants of every stripe, multitudes of high schools, judges in top hats, the mayor, the alderman each stopping to kiss the ring on the steps of the Cathedral. Political power of the highest order. A hundred thousand votes reviewed by the Archbishop of New York, the Powerhouse. To borrow a phrase, gone with the wind. This year Dolan will be chased inside by a howling mob of gays, who has the power now?

  • “But the gay groups were not satisfied. ”
    Are they ever?

    • Objectivetruth

      And that is the main point. Even if SCOTUS this spring makes gay marriage the law of the land, very few homosexuals will take advantage of it. I’ve quoted the stat from Canada that after 11 years of federal law approving gay marriage, only 17% of homosexuals actually get married, vs 78% of their heterosexual countrymen and women. Gay’s really don’t want marriage, they want some type of moral approval on their lifestyle from the other 97% of us. Ain’t gonna happen, even if they have some type of stamped certificate from a judge, no one will see it as a true union given the thumbs up from above.

  • Ruth Rocker

    Do you think that a group supporting traditional marriage values would be allowed to march in a homosexual parade in the name of fairness?? Don’t hold your breath unless you look really good in blue!!

  • RufusChoate

    Dolan has allowed the corruption and vilification of a secularized celebration of a Catholic Saint and is showing that the faithful pro-life Catholic are less than welcome. It is a case of accepting evil and rejecting the good.

    The Saint Patrick Day parade in New York is now an event that I will restrict my Children from watching or ever attending because of the unnecessary insertion of a bizarre sexual minority and propagandizing agenda deserving of only ridicule in the public celebration of Catholic Saint.

    I don’t want or need to discuss the nature of such an aberrant lifestyle.

    Why does it seem that only groups that are most frequently described as a Community are frequently the least rational and unnatural vision of a Communal experience and never based on a normative ideal of a Two Parent family?

    The welfare matriarchy of the American Urban Landscape and Homosexual collective are destructive and irrational counterfeits of the basic building block of a sane and moral society: the Family and therefore can never be a community, tribe, collective, hive or herd: yes. community: no.

  • Jacqueleen

    Only those so-called lukewarm Catholics (The ones that Our Lord said He would spew from his mouth!) and other so called tolerant protestant faiths will attend the parade….All good faithful Catholics…STAY HOME! SEND A STRONG MESSAGE THAT GAYS DO NOT BELONG IN THE PARADE TO DEFILE THE NAME OF ST. PATRICK. Let us see if the lukewarm Bishop attends or says home! Actions speak louder than words.
    It takes a “MAN” to stand up to the disordered bunch!

  • César Pozuelos

    St. Patrick, for patron of Sodom …?

  • ForChristAlone

    I would suggest that Catholics who believe all that the Catholic Church teaches and professes boycott this and all future parades. Instead, put the call out to simply attend Mass at St. Patricks and then afterwards visit homeless shelters in NYC resulting because of leftist statist economic policies.

  • John O’Neill

    As a one thousand percent Irishman, my parents really did come to Amerikay in a boat I refuse absolutely to attend any St.Patrick’s day observance in the modern American State. As a young boy we went to the parade in Philadelphia with my father and mother; usually the parade was heavy on religious significance. Proud Irishmen marched with suits and overcoats in parish groups and a small St. Patrick’s day button. Nowadays the parade in Philadelphia is a joke, religion has been driven out of it and replaced with drunken hoods with tasteless “kiss me I am Irish buttons”; no religion here. Let Cardinal Dolan have his totally secular parade and let those who designate Irishness as drunken ribaldry have their day. I prefer to attend early mass and enjoy some tea and scones at home. John Patrick O’Neill.

  • James Scott

    I’m wearing Orange on St Patrick’s day or plaid.

    I just don’t care anymore.

    • I think the preferred color is pink.

      • James Scott


        or lavender.

        • You may have topped me.

  • Pat

    Move the whole St. Patrick’s Day Parade to Russia. That will settle the issue.

  • Catharine

    We live in the near SW suburbs of Chicago; I am not Irish, but my husband is South Side Irish (they don’t consider Irish from the north side or other parts to be true Irish!). They have 2 St. Patrick’s Day parades in Chicago: one in the Loop for the Irish politicians and Democratic party hacks. The other in the South Side Beverly neighborhood, which is where an awful lot of South Side Irish actually live.
    Both parades degenerated long ago into major displays of public drunkenness, public urination (and worse), mostly committed by non-Irish outsiders. There was a lot of extreme racism (anti-black) as well.
    No one I know in the South Side Irish community will go near either parade unless they are required to (police required to be present, etc.). One lady I know saw a shadow outside her front door one year; she opened the door and it was some young white college-age male relieving himself by urinating on her front door. Another lady was woken up early on Sunday morning (7:00-7:30 a.m.) only to find her college-age daughter and 45-50 of her “best friends” carousing in the house, including a lot of total strangers who only wanted to use the bathroom. It never happened a second time, I am told. .
    The entire South Side Irish community feels that this sort of hooliganism and trashy goings-on, esp. on Sunday morning, has gotten out of control. The event has been hijacked by the politicians, the mass media, and the special interest groups.
    I recommend a total boycott on any and all of these events. If enough people stop attending, this thing will hopefully die a natural deah.

    • mitch64

      Catherine, I live in the SW suburbs and have lived in Beverly. I was part of the South Side Irish community and we thought it was all fine and dandy when we were in our 20s (and 30s sad to say) You are right, however, the parade had gotten out of control especially to the people who live within three blocks of Western (where the parade takes place) where they had the delight of having their front lawns and alleys used as urinals and quickie sex..however, It wasnt just “non-Irish,” as you say, even not the Irish from the north side (South Side Irish people are really oddly cliquey clannish…) it was EVERYBODY who was causing the problems (but I do agree that people not from the neighborhood dont’ have to deal with the clean up..the 111th train station was especially delightful on the Monday morning after the parade.) However, Beverly, after taking a few years off, revived the parade with more cops present, more families and the bars closing earlier.

      Though the Beverly parade was full of political hacks too, (it was Chicago) I think the key to saving St. Patrick’s Parade (I am leaving out the gay argument) is to keep it smaller, keep it local, and try to keep the politics out of it..period.

  • robo14

    It’s time for a separate parade…

  • robo14

    Homo-Fascism and the continuing assault on religious liberty need to be issues brought to the fore…

  • bonaventure

    Mr. Hennessey,
    You should have done more efforts to shame Cardinal Timothy Dolan. After all, Dolan explicitly declared his pride to be this year parade’s Grand Marshall, when asked about the parade’s new promotion homosexuality. Dolan has a very heavy load of responsibility to share in all this.

  • joe colletti

    If this has been a CATHOLIC ROOTED PARADE IN HONOR OF ST. PATRICK AS THE GLORY OF IRELAND, then it should remain so, without any doubt; therefore, anything uncatholic and against the Catholic Church Teachings should be dismissed at once, such as: abortion and same gender “marriages.” AMEN

    • Romulus

      Saying “gender” when you mean “sex” is a pathetic genteelism. Unless you’re promoting gender ideology, which is even worse.

  • PJD1992

    Being a homosexual has nothing to with a St Patrick’s Day. Why not let “Islamist jihadists for sharia in Ireland” march as well? This would make at least as much sense. Isn’t the local annual gay pride parade enough to convince the public that every horrendous stereotype about homosexuals has some solid basis in fact? If people are blind to this fact then they aren’t paying very close attention. It’s a televised conga line nightmare miles long – isn’t that more than enough public self-humiliation for any self identified group?!?

    • Tell Brendan Behan. Tell Oscar Wilde and Colin Toibin and Nell McCaffery and Nuala Faolain.

      • PJD1992

        Really?!?! The crucial Irish part about them and how they relate to Ireland and its catholic patron saint is where they put there wee wees? That is some fascinatingly deep thinking -exactly the level of critical thought that one might expect from a “queer, feminist, or modern day English” studies major. Bravo. My expectations have been met perfectly.

        Next this guy will be arguing for a special gay section to the local Boy Scout parade on 4 July. Perhaps we can add homosexual grandmothers who like to knit as a section to the local quilting bee parade. Perhaps gay farmers can will go ahead and prance about their gayest sheep at the 4-H parade! Homosexuality is so very crucial to all of these endeavors as well.

        Again, trying to jam homosexuality down people’ throats in utterly out of context ways is completely asinine as most people hate such nonsense. Many in the public have, for some inexplicable reason, simply become too afraid of hysterical idiocy to tell people to take their bizarre social agenda and shut the hell up. You have your own parade dummies. It is a nightmare – go fix that. Stop trying to make everything else about your reactionary psychological complexes.

  • Kimo

    The United States is dying — from corruption and immorality.

    • The US may be in decline but from waste, overspending, political gridlock and military overreach.

      Just like the Romans. It wasn’t gay sex that brought down the empire, it was external threats, internal political chaos and financial debt.

      • Objectivetruth

        Over a 100 year period, 75% of the Irish population left Ireland to come to America so we wouldn’t have to endure the embarrassment of possibly being associated with someone who calls themself “lil nephew.”

      • Kimo

        Why? Because their men became weak and effeminate, and most of their leaders were homosexual, mainly concerned with s promoting their own sexual escapades, and not being willing to sacrifice and lead.

  • irishsmile

    Good, solid Catholics need to join together and walk away from the ‘pretend’ Catholics in politics and the church. Good help us but the Democratic party has become the party of abortion, euthanasia and homosexual interests! The Bishop’s fund and CRS has allowed themselves to be tainted with pro-gay and pro-abort groups. When the bishops clean up their acts and the St. Pat’s Day Parade represents solid Catholic teachings then perhaps we will see some improvement! I am not holding my breath.

  • Gay have been marching under their own banners in the St Patrick’s Day parade and festival in DUBLIN IRELAND since the early 90’s.

    You’re not even really Irish.

  • This sure isn’t controversial in THE REPUBLIC OF IRELAND.

    Full gay marriage this year, everyone.

    • cestusdei

      St. Patrick was a British saint. He would not approve of his parade being taken over by those who flout the teachings of the Catholic Church.

      • I thought he was from France.

        • cestusdei

          Nope, the border area of England and Wales.

      • What about his parade being taken over by brutal sectarian drunks, like the ones in Boston and Manhattan?

    • Neither was violence for a long time, so what?

      • Joe

        Violence was absolutely controversial there. Still happened, sure, but it certainly didn’t go uncriticized.

  • ethelagnes

    Being a lifelong Roman Catholic and New Yorker I am disgusted with the cardinal who will be proudly marching up Fifth Avenue followed by homosexuals. It may be the first time in my adult life that I do not either participate or go to the parade. By the cardinal not withdrawing he has given the parade over to those living public scandalous lives. God help us.

  • The hilarious thing about outraged American Catholic ‘faithful’ is that their solution to their dissatisfaction with what they see as progressivism in the church is the ONE THING that is absolutely forbidden, which is schism. Americans (protestants in particular) have made their faith into a supermarket, with infinite little sects and divisions: your pastor does something you don’t like, you just shop around until you find another one who does things more to your taste.

    And this is what American Catholics are advocating. The break-up of their church into fragments and sects. Which is one thing that the church has resisted with all of its power since the beginning. You think being more accepting of gays is dangerous to the church but what you suggest is something a million times more dangerous and destructive.

  • schmenz

    May I ask, for the thousandth time and for the love of God and simple right order, that writers on this site stop using the word “gay” to describe sexual perversion. Please stop. There is nothing gay about one man placing his generative organ into another man’s excretory one. Thank you.

    • May I ask, for the thousandth time and for the love of God and simple
      right order, that writers on this site stop using the word “gay” to
      describe sexual perversion.



    • Joe

      The word “gay” has had sexual connotations (albeit originally heterosexual ones) as early as the 1300s. Even 300 years ago a “gay woman” meant a prostitute.

      It’s been a vaguely derogatory term for people perceived to be licentious for longer than America has existed. Definitely longer than it ever meant just “happy” for.

      • Joe

        In fact, upon researching it I discovered just now that it only took 100 years for it to start being used in the “uninhibited sexually” sense from when it entered English. Then 800 years of having double meanings.

      • schmenz

        If you could cite reliable sources for that, I would be interested. But just an fyi: wikipedia is NOT a reliable source.

        • Joe

          Oxford English Dictionary, Dictionary of Phrase and Fable by E. Cobham Brewer, Online Etymological Dictionary,, Historical Dictionary of American Slang, and, to name a few.

          • schmenz

            Needless to say I was asking for evidence of the historical usage of that word to describe sodomite behavior. Consulting my 1941 edition of the Oxford, and my 1903 edition of the New Century Dictionary, and even my trusty Roget’s Thesaurus from the 1930s I find no reference whatsoever of the link between the word “gay” and homosexuality, bestiality, effeminacy etc. It’s kind of like the political morphing of the word “inflation”: it was always described as an increase in the money supply causing existing currency in circulation to lose its value. But if you look at modern “edited” versions, we find that description strangely missing, I suspect the same thing is at play here.

            Film historian Leslie Halliwell writes that he suspects the modern bastardization of the perfectly innocent word “gay” could have started some years after the release of the famous Cary Grant comedy “Bringing Up Baby”. He refers to the very funny sequence when Grant’s clothes were taken away from him and he had to put on a lady’s dressing gown to keep his modesty His subsequent irritated line about suddenly going “gay” was a reference to his suddenly becoming light-headed, not sexually perverted.

            • Joe

              I didn’t even say it was describing “sodomite behavior” but sexual connotations of a specifically heterosexual nature.
              So you’re essentially asking me to prove something directly contrary to what I claimed.
              Maybe next time you should actually ascertain what I’m saying before you start demanding proof of something.

              On the other hand, I did already show several sources that showed specifically that the word “gay” has been used to refer to heterosexual out-of-wedlock proclivities for centuries.

  • My I point out that the police HATE St Patrick’s day duty wherever it is.

    Because St Patrick’s Day, in NYC or Boston or New Orleans, is a public order nightmare of drunkenness and vandalism and violence and even murder.

    The US police conversely LOVE Gay pride. It is famous for being one of the cushiest festival duties for police officers, with almost no public order offenses of any kind.

    This is a matter of police record.

    St Patrick’s Day is a disgusting drunken disgrace. Gay Pride is a day out for the civilized. This is why record numbers of straight people and families go to gay Pride now. Because it’s safe and fun.

    • John Albertson

      Not in New York where the “Gay Pride” parade features obscenities and nudity, and often vulgar demonstrations in front of St. Patrick’s Cathedral.

  • American family values. Don’t make me laugh, bitterly.

    The USA has the most pathetic family values in the developed world. It’s a nation and a culture that is actively hostile to children’s well-being. And you know why?

    Financial anxiety. You can’t build a house on sand. and you can’t build a home on a swamp of debt and financial uncertainty.

    CATHOLICS? You are the ONLY country in the industrialized world that doesn’t guarantee paid MATERNITY LEAVE for new parents!

    THE ONLY ONE. You know that is UNTHINKABLE anywhere else?

  • FW Ken

    The parade is now another political event. Not civic. Not religious. Political. Eventually, Catholics, and other Christians, will be forced to create, more properly, tree-create or community apart from the larger culture.

  • RooforLife

    Last year when this came out I left this coment on Cardinal Dolan’s facebook page ~
    I was hoping that Cardinal Dolan would take Msgr. Charles Pope’s advice
    “Wear the purple of Lent and if there is going to be a procession, let
    it be Eucharistic and penitential for the sins of this age.”
    of being apart of the St Patrick parade Cardinal Dolan should have a
    Eucharistic procession from The Church of Our Saviour
    59 Park Avenue at 38th Street
    New York, N.Y. 10016
    to Saint Patrick’s Cathedral

    Once you get to the Saint Patrick’s Cathedral also preach about St
    Patrick and what the Saint was all about. Well since your not I hope you
    have one heck of a homliy on the teachings of the Catholic Church in
    regards to God’s idea of marriage and that’s a sin to engage in
    homosexual acts!
    Maybe some other priest can lead a Eucharistic procession from The Church of Our Saviour to St. Patrick’s Cathedral this route is not as far as The St Patrick Parade but its the next street over if you go down Madison Ave.

  • Margaret

    The people of New York have learned what the people of Milwaukee did about then Archbishop Dolan. He has no internal convictions about any of the teachings of the Church. He can be both for an against something in the same sentence. What is so mystifying is that so many supoposedly “educated” people fall for this.

  • Agathos Zoe

    Wasn’t Patrick a Roman Catholic? Thus, the Roman Catholic’s position on gays and lesbians should be the guiding principle for who participates or not. Of course, if the parade is purely secular, then fair representation is a reasonable compromise.

  • accelerator

    Just punt the parade. You can’t evangelize a fallen culture and Dolan smiling and nodding ‘Brovao” anyway.

  • Don Lond

    Those who would be appeased with the diabolical “equal time” concept ought to recall the sermonon the Mount

  • 00gagt

    Honestly I wouldn’t mind seeing both Boston and NYC stop the parades only because of the stupid politics people want to ruin them with. Both parades should not allow politics into the parade. No political views. Only two flags should fly, one being the Irish flag and two being the American flag. That’s what we live under. Nothing else. Take your views else where. This parade was meant to be about Irish heritage now it’s about sexuality as well. There was no need for it and look what happened. Stained both parades and cities. Good job.