Irish fighters have been celebrated over several centuries because they were seemingly without fear. Some will say that’s just because they’re hard headed but certainly every tyrant knows that a man with nothing to lose is the most dangerous. Here in Chicago we’ll all be able to celebrate that Irish fearlessness in the upcoming mayoral election.
Last Sunday Chicago Tribune columnist John Kass implored the people of Chicago to vote against Mayor Rahm Emanuel and force him into a runoff. On Tuesday, Election Day, that’s just what happened. On Wednesday Kass thanked the voters in his column and relished the idea of the coming six-week campaign for Mayor of Chicago.
“In the six weeks to come in this new, extended campaign, Chicago will see some amazing sights.
Like Rahm in the South Side Irish Parade, waving to the crowd and begging for votes, carefully stepping around the clown cars driven by 19th Warders in green hats like the Joyces and the Sheahans.”
One of the amazing sights Kass didn’t envision was delivered to him the next day. On Thursday Kass was abruptly fired from his job on the radio at WLS, which he’d been doing every morning since 2012.
We can draw our own conclusions of how that came about and WLS had plenty of cover by announcing the return of legendary radio jock Jonathon Brandmeir for Kass’s timeslot on their station. Rahm had nothing to do with it. Sure he didn’t.
Do you believe that?
Cynics might say it was payback for Kass’s attacks on “the nine fingered ballerina”, the pejorative nickname given our current Mayor by city workers, cops and firefighters. Cynics might think that Rahm called his brother, the big shot Hollywood agent, and told him, “I need you to deliver a message for me.”
Cynics might think the best way to keep the malcontents in line is through fear. Fear for your job, your livelihood, or your family if you dare to question the motives of a Mayor with a Napoleonic complex who rules by fear and fiat.
Irish Americans ruled Chicago for decades. Some of them may have even helped install the current Mayor. But history shows us that the true Irish character in crisis never can be conquered, whether by Cromwell, bloody Maggie, or Paisley. 800 years of oppression forged the Irish character to always stand up to bullies.
So our sympathies to Kass for the guillotine he faced this week. He’ll land on his feet and he’s still got the Tribune gig. Let’s show our solidarity with him and provide some amazing sights of our own.
The best place to start would be the parade.