Boston Irish Commentary

“You just call on me… when you need a hand We all need somebody to lean on.” – “Lean on Me,” composed by Bill Withers. One of our town’s most treasured artists, the Irish dancer Kieran Jordan, has discovered the meaning of that sentiment from Bill... Read more
Northern Ireland today is operating as a nonfunctioning state without local government leadership. It is being administered and financed by British politicians from London on a part-time basis since the North’s political leaders have been unable to agree... Read more
Among the thousands of Irish organizations in the United States, the Irish American Partnership continues to distinguish itself as a unique organization by dedicating its resources toward education in Ireland and the long-term health of the Irish nation.... Read more
Political parties frequently undergo changes in their leadership, but rarely do they completely reverse the face of their public image. With Martin McGuinness’s death and Gerry Adams’s resignation as leader of Sinn Fein in Ireland, the party is embarking... Read more
The Boston Red Sox lost one of their most devoted long-time followers last week when former state treasurer Bob Crane died at the age of 91. Beginning in the 1930s, during the time of Moe Berg, the catcher/scholar of whom it was said, “Moe could strike... Read more
The good people of Northern Ireland have been without local assembly government for over a year now with politicians continually refusing to agree on much of anything to repair the situation. With the destructive Brexit changes looming, the citizens of... Read more
The Marine from Brighton Has Emerged as a Lightning Rod in the Immigration Battle By Peter F. Stevens BIR Staff When General John Kelly was appointed Secretary of Homeland Security, and, later ,White House chief of staff, many in and around Boston felt a... Read more
BY JOE LEARY SPECIAL TO THE BIR More confusion, anger, and misleading statements mark the continuing process to facilitate Britain’s leaving the 27-nation European Union, which would be humorous if it were not so important to the people of Ireland. The... Read more
BY BILL FORRY EDITOR Cardinal Bernard Law, the former archbishop of Boston who left our city in disgrace amid the clergy child abuse scandal that was exposed by brave victims, attorneys, and reporters at the Boston Phoenix and the Boston Globe, died in... Read more
It’s hard to tell exactly why my memory drifts into overdrive at Christmastime, but I suspect that it’s due to a yearning for the emotional warmth that enveloped me and my family and all its extensions at the year-end holidays during World War II and the... Read more
It’s all about winning. President Trump sees the world divided between winners and losers. He’s the winner-in-chief and opponents are losers incapable of recognizing his unique skills or displaying the deference to which he is entitled. He views himself... Read more
Good Tidings from a president who wrestles badly with morality As the Donald Trump era bumps and grinds toward its first Christmas and New Year’s, the season of giving has degenerated into the season of groping. For all intents and purposes, Trump – an... Read more
A Grand, Green Lie – When it comes to the Emerald Isle, President Donald Trump was the one – surprise, surprise – peddling “fake news,” which are the words Ireland’s Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, used to characterize recent comments from the White House. In a... Read more
At first, no one took the Brexit vote seriously. Few believed that the British would actually leave the European Union (EU). But the decision has become a reality and Ireland and the rest of the world could be among its casualties. The EU was originally... Read more
Four years ago, in this space, we endorsed Martin J. Walsh for mayor of Boston. The Reporter Newspapers was one of only two city newspapers (The Weekly Dig was the other) to back Walsh in the final election. This time, as Walsh seeks a second term, we... Read more
I have mixed feelings about the movement to eliminate Confederate monuments. How do we preserve our history without denying it? Can we honor the often gallant yet imperfect, misguided souls who believed they were right. While it’s true that the leaders of... Read more
Every county in Ireland has its dedicated followers. For me, the western part of Co. Cork is special. Not only have I spent a great deal of time there, but I can also trace my family roots to Inchigeelagh and Tracton Abbey, both in West Cork. My great-... Read more
As the poet Robert Frost famously penned, “Something there is that does not love a wall.” And, as experience teaches, walls can be made of stone, wire and, often, attitudes. I was recently invited to join a “Trek” involving a dozen graduating students... Read more
Organizers of Saturday’s overblown “free speech rally” on Boston Common got far more than they bargained for when they showed up to find tens of thousands of fired-up but mostly peaceful Bostonians and visitors intent on making a statement of their own.... Read more
My brother and I have a friendly dispute on the existence of an afterlife. He poetically defines the soul as “a power borrowed from the wheel of fire that animates the cosmos.” He compares it to an “ember of that cosmic fire” that one rides until death “... Read more