Category Archives: InCity Voices

The Vietnamese Secondary Language (VSL) 2017 Summer Session is Here!

By Boa Newgate

The purpose of the South East Asian Coalition’s Vietnamese Secondary Language (VSL) class is to bridge the gap between different cultures and generations, as well as between children and their parents.

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Learning together! photos: Boa Newgate

In today’s world, many Vietnamese-American kids are not really fluent in their second language, which hampers their ability to communicate with their parents and elders who may not find it easy to speak English.

When the previous Vietnamese generation came to the United States, they joined the workforce immediately, hoping to achieve the American dream and to build a better future for themselves and their children. Because they were working such long days, though, they didn’t normally have the time to enroll in ESL classes and improve their English.

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Boa leading a group at SEAC, based in the Denholm building, downtown Worcester

When they have children, they spend even more time providing them with the best opportunities they can offer them, leaving little time to impart the culture and language of their motherland to their offspring. Because of this, their children have trouble clearly conveying their thoughts and opinions to their elders, resulting in a lot of misunderstandings and hurt feelings.

My mission was to create a bridge for children and their parents to meet each other half way in establishing good communication and learning more about their culture. Even though most people here are Vietnamese, other people who are interested in Vietnamese culture and want to pick up a second language are very welcome, too!

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Learning Vietnamese to better communicate with parents and elders

We’re looking forward to another great session for the summer of 2017. Last year’s summer session was a huge success! We have gotten a great reaction from the Worcester community: classes are packed, and we often don’t have enough volunteers to help out with teaching!

The success of our VSL program has also reached the ears of National Public Radio (NPR)! Recently, they came to Worcester to do a story on us and our program! We decided to make the VSL a year-round program in response to all the community interest!

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Go, VSL, go!!!

This year, we’re also introducing a new pen pal program for the VSL program. During my trip to Vietnam in the spring, which was the inspiration for the Youth Effect International program, I collected handwritten letters from the Vietnamese youths in the schools that I visited. I plan to give these letters to the VSL students in our classes and have them write back to the kids in Vietnam – in Vietnamese!

Next year, when I go back to Vietnam, I’ll be giving the students there the letters from the Worcester youths, and I’ll be collecting their responses in English. I hope we’ll be able to create a community that spans oceans and generates many meaningful relationships, all the while helping everyone improve their second language.

If you’re fluent in Vietnamese and would like to be a part of our growing community, we hope to see you as a volunteer in our VSL program!

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If you want to help with the program, all of us greatly appreciate any and all donations.

If you’d like to donate specific items, we’re also currently looking for school supplies.

Thank you for your time!

Please visit our website to learn more: www.seacma.org

Turtle Boy hate-blog (Aidan Kearney’s) former lawyer, booster, and frequent “poet” Margaret Melican says she loves this city and wants to be on the ZBA…

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What’s really battin’ around in old Margaret Melican’s heart? pic: R.T.

By Rosalie Tirella

Why would the City of Worcester appoint Margaret Melican to a City of Worcester board when she’s been such a big supporter of hater Aidan Kearney and his hate-spewing, fact-denying Turtle Boy blog? Turtle Boy – that putrid blog that has ushered in an era of political ugliness, divisiveness and racism in our city that can only be compared to the hate-filled, fact-denying Trump White House!! TB – a blog that has worked tirelessly from day #1 to ruin the lives of Worcester’s prominent people of color: Melinda Boone, Sarai Rivera, Brenda Jenkins…the list goes on. And TB’s supporters cheer Aidan on – “ride the turtle” in glee! They say and act on the racist thoughts in their hearts, the ones they used to keep a lid on. Turtle Boy/Aidan Kearney is all about freaking out over and hating a diverse, multi-cultural Worcester. Melican is in that camp. Besides being the “poet laureate” of Turtle Boy, she was Aidan Kearney’s lawyer, represented him in court where she poked fun at a visually impaired Black guy! Ha ha! She is NOT the meek lovely lady she pretends to be in the video below. What a phoney! She has called other lawyers screaming into the telephone – they have had to hang up on her. She is beyond Republican or Religious Right – she is vindictive-friggin’ nasty!

Melican is someone WHO DOESN’T SEE THE NEW WORCESTER. She can’t and won’t – like Turtle Boy – accept it!

So how can she represent it?

If Melican supports Aidan Kearney’s racist, classist, woman-hating Turtle Boy blog that is her American right.

But the City of Worcester does not have to appoint her to the ZBA.

The City of Worcester is looking for the right fit.

In 1950-Worcester, Melican may have been a good fit.

In 2017 Worcester, she is definitely NOT!

Why should Melican be given the chance to represent Worcester on any level – a city whose schools are majority-minority?, a city that grows more diverse by the day?, a city where 1 out of 4 of our kids goes to bed hungry? In other words: A COMPLEX CITY.

Why does Margaret Melican support Worcester City Councilor/Senator Joseph McCarthy act-alike MICHAEL GAFFNEY, a sneaky cynical Woo pol who is as nasty and divisive as his buddy, Turtle Boy?

Why would Margaret Melican expect the diverse people of this city to trust her judgement?

Watch the tape of the meeting/her interview…She is flaunting her old Woo Irish aristocracy roots and EXPECTS THEM TO GET HER THE ZBA GIG!

BUT IT IS 2017, Margaret! A NEW WORCESTER, ONE WHERE a member of THE OLD IRISH CATHOLIC WOO GUARD like you CAN NOT EXPECT TO BE HANDED THE KEYS TO POWER just because you feel entitled to them! And from your behavior, I think you’re a pretty shitty Catholic!

Watch Melican’s interview below! Click on the link and hit top-left box. … It’s at around 2 hr 8 min into the meeting.

And P.S. The Mayor of Bizarro Worcester is Brendon MELICAN!

Brendon, a guy who has been hating us from day #1. Another … Melican … a nasty guy who felt entitled (for 15+ years) to destroy ICT because it belonged to a poor working class Polish-Italian-American gal from Green Island and not someone … like him.

I say: THANK YOU, JESUS!

Worcester HAS changed!

The prigs and priglettes are on the way out!!!

http://ec4.cc/fgfd4f75

All lives have meaning

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Imalay Guzman photo submitted

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Homeless kids under the Green Street bridge, Canal District … Kids are always there, resting, eating, asking for donations. Photos taken June 11, 2017: R.T.

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By Imalay Guzman

There are things we as adults, parents or even siblings have to be aware of; we truly don’t realize what it is to lose someone. Once they are gone, we are left with so many unanswered questions.

Suicide is a mental health issue that people need to become more educated on. This topic should be discussed in any family setting, especially if anyone has a history of mental illness. Suicide is the third leading cause of death in young adults from ages as early as 10 years old to 24 years of age.

I remember being a teenager and feeling unaccepted, invisible and confused. Whether it’s your first day in a new job or attending any level of education, you have to admit it can be intimidating. Being the new person can go either way – good or bad – and that alone can be stressful. In today’s society you can either fit in or be completely isolated. Imagine being judged by rumors and ridiculed in front of other people, being harassed by someone or even feeling unaccepted. Feeling like there’s no way out or that people will not understand can result in an attempt of suicide.

We all know someone who has suffered because of bullying. Believe it or not, your child’s behavior reflects the type of parenting that is provided; everything starts at home. In any case of bullying, the aggressor and victim have similarities in backgrounds; their only differences are the personalities in each individual. Often children from abusive or broken homes are the ones who lash out because they don’t know how to express their emotions in a healthy manner.

It is always up to the parent or caregiver to educate the child on how to express or communicate their feelings the right way. I understand that as adults, we carry many responsibilities and forget that our children need attention, too. They also go through personal issues that can be hard to talk about.

In the Netflix series “13 Reasons Why,” the main character commits suicide because she had gone through a sequence of traumatic events. In the show, she reached out for help in her own way, and it seems like no one could see or hear what she was going through. In the series, she felt like suicide became the only option because she did not want to bother her parents with her problems. Her parents were already going through their own problems. In the character’s eyes, the decision to commit suicide was the best solution for everyone. She even thought her parents wouldn’t be bothered by her actions because, ultimately, she believed their marital problems were because of her.

In the end, every individual in this world matters. Every human being should be able to live a full, experienced life. No one should ever think that their existance doesn’t have purpose. Every man or woman in this world has a reason to live or a reason for living. My recommendation is that we teach our kids to communicate with us, to understand that they are our legacy. Let’s do this by actually attempting to put the electronics down and spending personal time with our families.

Chef Joey is enjoying his first Memorial Day🇺🇸 weekend with Gigi!!💗💗 …

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Chef Joey and his lil’ girl!😊💚😊

… So here’s something short and not-so-sweet from our takin’-it-easy, Webster-Square epicure!😉

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Chef Joey

French Vinaigrette and “Ailoli”

Text, recipes and photos by Chef Joey

This is the best salad dressing recipe ever! Add fresh tomato and cucumber to the dressing and you will be hooked for life – or “Pour la vie!”

French Vinaigrette:

Olive oil

Red wine vinegar

Dijon Mustard

Garlic – 1 large clove

Egg Yolk (optional)

Salt

Mince the garlic fine, fine on a cutting board …

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.. and sprinkle with salt.

Using the back of your knife like spreading peanut butter, go back and forth, making a paste until soft.

Scoop into your bowl.

Add 1 tablespoon of the mustard. Mix. Add the egg yolk (optional) and about ¼ cup vinegar. With a whisk mixing quickly pour SLOWLY ½ cup oil into the mix so it thickens into a mayo like consistency.

… Add more oil for a looser dressing. Enjoy!

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“Ailoli”

Ailoli is a homemade mayonnaise made of eggs, oil, mustard and an obscene amount of fresh garlic!

The dinner? Poached fish, vegetables or meats, served with steamed potato, carrots, broccoli, cauliflower, ripe tomato and a hardboiled egg.

You spread the garlic mayo on your protein and whatever else you want, actually, and it is seriously the BOMB.

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The BOMB.💗💗💗💗💗💗💗

McGovern, Conyers, Lee lead 64 House Democrats rebuking President Trump’s erratic North Korea Policy

But first …

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Congressman Jim McGovern

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editor’s note: I’ve made some sentences bold. – R.T.

U.S. Representatives Jim McGovern (D-MA), John Conyers, Jr. (D-MI), and Barbara Lee (D-CA), led a letter signed by 64 House Democrats to rebuke President Trump’s inconsistent and dangerous statements regarding U.S. policy towards North Korea, notify him that military strikes without Congressional approval would violate the Constitution, and urge him to instead adhere to the diplomatic approach recently articulated by his Secretary of State Rex Tillerson.

The 64 signers represent the 64 years since the Armistice Agreement was signed to end hostilities in the Korean War.

“The U.S. and the international community must deal with North Korea and negotiate a tough agreement that freezes further nuclear development and tests and, ultimately, takes their nukes off the table,” Congressman McGovern said. “That requires cool heads and hard-nosed diplomacy. Erratic tweets and saber-rattling with nuclear weapons are not solutions, they’re a fast-track to catastrophe.”

Congressman John Conyers, Dean of the House of Representatives and one of two remaining Korean War Veterans serving in Congress, said “President Trump’s irresponsible statements on North Korea endanger our troops, our regional allies such as South Korea and Japan, and global security more broadly. As someone who has watched this conflict evolve since I was sent to Korea as a young Army Lieutenant, it is a reckless, inexperienced move to threaten military action that could end in devastation instead of pursuing vigorous diplomacy.”

“As a daughter of a veteran of the Korean War and a member of the Military and Veterans Appropriations Subcommittee, I will continue to demand that President Trump provide Congress with a comprehensive strategy for deterring North Korea that puts diplomacy and non-military strategies first,” said Congresswoman Barbara Lee. “This letter reinforces the constitutional responsibility of the President to consult and receive authorization from Congress before ordering any use of U.S. military force.”

Responding to Trump’s recent comments that appeared to threaten military action against North Korea, the letter states that “While both the Constitution and the War Powers Resolution of 1973 provide the Office of the President with the authority to act in cases of emergencies, both require an affirmative authorization from Congress before our nation engages in military action abroad against a state that has not attacked the U.S. or our assets abroad.”

The letter notes that “Military action against North Korea was considered by the Obama, Bush and Clinton Administrations, but all ultimately determined there was no military option that would not run the unacceptable risk of a counter-reaction from Pyongyang.” The letter says that debate over any potential military action against North Korea is crucial, as the North Korean reaction to such a strike “could immediately threaten the lives of as many as a third of the South Korean population, put nearly 30,000 U.S. service members and over 100,000 other U.S. citizens residing in South Korea in grave danger, and also threaten other regional allies such as Japan.”

The letter urges Trump to “adhere to the diplomatic approach recently articulated by Secretary Tillerson,” who recently stated that the Trump Administration’s sole goal is to “seek a denuclearized Korean Peninsula” without pursuing a regime change that could potentially risk a devastating conflict. The letter instead calls on the Administration to engage directly with North Korea and explore the possibility of a negotiated resolution to the nuclear issue.

An Economist/YouGov poll conducted from April 29 to May 2, 2017 found that 60 percent of Americans support “direct negotiations between the United States and North Korea” to end North Korea’s nuclear program, while 10 percent were somewhat opposed and 8 percent strongly opposed. 63 percent of Democrats and 65 percent of Republicans support direct negotiations with North Korea, while 70 percent of Hillary Clinton voters and 68 percent of Trump backers were supportive.

The letter also urges the Administration to “address humanitarian issues of mutual concern such as the reunification of Korean and Korean American families as well as the repatriation of the remains of US servicemen left in North Korea following the War.”

“Last fall, traveling to Pyongyang to discuss the return of US Korean War servicemen’s remains collected over the years by the North Koreans, I flew over where my father’s plane went down. It was the closest I’ve been to him since I was three years old,” said Rick Downes, Executive Director of the Coalition of Families of Korean & Cold War POW/MIAs. “Like thousands of other American families who pray to bring their loved ones home, I hope to go back and bring my father home. Calls for diplomacy like this make that opportunity much more real.”

As of late March 2017, there were 61,322 surviving family members among the list of those waiting to reunite with relatives in North Korea, and more than 62 percent of them are over the age of 80, according to Nan Kim, an associate professor of history at the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and author of Memory, Reconciliation, and Reunions in South Korea: Crossing the Divide.

Signers of the letter included 5 Democratic Members of the House Foreign Affairs Committee and the leadership of the Congressional Progressive Caucus. The 64 letter signers included: Alma S. Adams (NC-12), Karen Bass (CA-37), Joyce Beatty (OH-03), Don Beyer (VA-08), Earl Blumenauer (OR-03), Suzanne Bonamici (OR-01), Michael E. Capuano (MA-07), Salud O. Carbajal (CA-24), Judy Chu (CA-27), David N. Cicilline (RI-01), Katherine M. Clark (MA-05), Yvette D. Clarke (NY-09), Wm. Lacy Clay (MO-01), Emanuel L. Cleaver, II (MO-05), Steve Cohen (TN-09), John Conyers, Jr. (MI-13), Danny K. Davis (IL-07), Peter A. DeFazio (OR-04), Rosa L. DeLauro (CT-03), Nanette Diaz Barragán (CA-44), Lloyd Doggett (TX-35), Keith Ellison (MN-05), Anna G. Eshoo (CA-18), Adriano Espaillat (NY-13), Dwight Evans (PA-02), Bill Foster (IL-11),Tulsi Gabbard (HI-02), Raúl M. Grijalva (AZ-03), Luis V. Gutiérrez (IL-04), Colleen Hanabusa (HI-01), Alcee L. Hastings (FL-20), Eleanor Holmes Norton (DC-AL), Sheila Jackson Lee (TX-18), Pramila Jayapal (WA-07), Eddie Bernice Johnson (TX-30), Henry C. “Hank” Johnson, Jr. (GA-04), Ro Khanna (CA-17), Brenda L. Lawrence (MI-14), Barbara Lee (CA-13), Ted W. Lieu (CA-33), Alan S. Lowenthal (CA-47), James P. McGovern (MA-02), Gwen Moore (WI-04), Jerrold Nadler (NY-10), Richard E. Neal (MA-01), Rick Nolan (MN-08), Frank Pallone, Jr. (NJ-06), Donald M. Payne, Jr. (NJ-10), Chellie Pingree (ME-01), Mark Pocan (WI-02), Jamie Raskin (MD-08), Bobby L. Rush (IL-01), Janice D. Schakowsky (IL-09), Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (VA-03), José E. Serrano (NY-15), Carol Shea-Porter (NH-01), Louise Slaughter (NY-25), Darren Soto (FL-09), Mark Takano (CA-41), Niki Tsongas (MA-03), Nydia M. Velázquez (NY-07),Bonnie Watson Coleman (NJ-12), Peter Welch (VT-AL), and Frederica Wilson (FL-24)

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Full Text of Letter:

May 23, 2017

President Donald Trump
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W.
Washington, DC 20500

Dear President Trump:

We write to once again draw your attention to your constitutional responsibility to consult and receive authorization from Congress before ordering use of U.S. military force, which would include any military action against North Korea that is not in response to an attack by that country. The mandate requiring Congressional consultation and authorization is prescribed in both the U.S. Constitution and the War Powers Resolution of 1973.

While both the Constitution and the War Powers Resolution of 1973 provide the Office of the President with the authority to act in cases of emergencies, both require an affirmative authorization from Congress before our nation engages in military action abroad against a state that has not attacked the U.S. or our assets abroad. As Section 2 of the War Powers Resolution of 1973 makes clear, absent a declaration of war or a specific statutory authorization approved by Congress, only a “a national emergency created by attack upon the United States, its territories or possessions, or its armed forces” can justify military action undertaken without Congressional authorization.

Few decisions are more needing of debate than a move to launch attacks, or declare war, on a nuclear-armed state such as North Korea. Military action against North Korea was considered by the Obama, Bush and Clinton Administrations, but all ultimately determined there was no military option that would not run the unacceptable risk of a counter-reaction from Pyongyang. This reaction could immediately threaten the lives of as many as a third of the South Korean population, put nearly 30,000 U.S. service members and over 100,000 other U.S. citizens residing in South Korea in grave danger, and also threaten other regional allies such as Japan.

In such a volatile region, an inconsistent or unpredictable policy runs the risk of unimaginable conflict. That is why we strongly urge you to adhere to the diplomatic approach recently articulated by Secretary Tillerson, who stated that your Administration’s sole goal is to “seek a denuclearized Korean Peninsula,” and that you “do not seek regime change” and “do not seek a collapse of the regime,” both of which could lead down a path that could risk nuclear war. We support Secretary Tillerson’s statement that the preferred method for resolution is “direct talks with North Korea,” including persuading them to relinquish their nuclear weapons by assuring them that they “do not need these weapons to secure the existence of [their] regime.”

We respectfully request more information about the steps your Administration is taking to advance the prospects for direct negotiations that could lower the potential for catastrophic war and ultimately lead to the denuclearization of the peninsula. We would also urge the Administration to outline steps to address humanitarian issues of mutual concern such as the reunification of Korean and Korean American families as well as the repatriation of the remains of US servicemen left in North Korea following the War.

We look forward to receiving details about your plans for a negotiated resolution of the nuclear issue on the Korean Peninsula, and, in the event that your plans do include an ill-advised military component, we stand ready to exercise our constitutional duty to approve, or reject, any such military action.

Modernize U.S. military medical training to save lives and money

By Doris Browne, M.D., M.P.H.

Nearly 100 Republicans and Democrats have come together in support of an important bill — Rep. Hank Johnson’s (D-Ga.) Battlefield Excellence through Superior Training (BEST) Practices Act (H.R. 1243).

If enacted, this bill would help doctors, medics and others save the lives of injured military service members by replacing ineffective and expensive trauma-training drills on animals with superior and less costly human simulation models.

I am a service-disabled veteran who spent nearly 28 years as a physician in the U.S. Army Medical Corps, and I currently serve as president-elect of the National Medical Association. I support this effort to modernize military medical training.

Many military medical personnel currently receive Cold War-era training that involves inflicting traumatic injuries on pigs and goats to learn how to repair injuries in humans. Some animals have very different anatomies from humans, which can inhibit successful translation of medical skills across species.

For instance, goats have 13 sets of ribs as opposed to 12 sets in human beings. Compared with humans, goats and pigs have smaller torsos, thicker skin and major differences in internal organs. Goats have a four-chamber stomach compared to the human one-chamber stomach, making goats poor models for teaching human abdominal procedures. Placing an epidural needle in pigs is different from doing this procedure on humans, as the respective spinal cords for pigs and humans end in different vertebral sections, and incorrect placement in humans could cause severe nerve damage.

Goats’ veins and arteries sit on top of the muscle and are easy to visualize, grab and clamp to stop a hemorrhaging wound. Human veins and arteries run through the muscle, and when damaged, they contract, making them difficult to grab and clamp to stop a hemorrhage.

Also, the pressure required to properly apply a tourniquet on a human’s limb is significantly different from that needed to apply one to a small goat’s limb. Failing to learn how to properly stop hemorrhaging wounds can have potential life-or-death consequences.

A recent study found that nearly a quarter of combat deaths from 2001 through 2011 were potentially survivable, and in 90 percent of these cases, avoidable deaths were due to massive blood loss.

Military medics shouldn’t be burdened with translating skills learned on an anatomically foreign, sedated goat or pig to a bleeding and screaming comrade on a chaotic battlefield.

A better training method would use anatomically correct, advanced human simulators that can breathe, bleed and even die just like real people.

The BEST Practices Act would help the military make the transition to using superior human simulation technology in place of animals for trauma training.

A recent Army study found that the agency could even save millions of taxpayer dollars with this transition.

Last month, the U.S. Coast Guard announced that it had suspended all animal use for trauma training. This policy shift will allow medical personnel to master emergency skills on realistic human anatomy, improve providers’ skill confidence and save the agency money.

The Department of Defense should follow suit by giving its medical personnel the human-simulation training tools they need to better save lives and permanently banning inferior, animal-based trauma-training methods.

Doris Browne, M.D., M.P.H., is a retired colonel who served nearly 28 years as a physician in the U.S. Army Medical Corps and is the president-elect of the National Medical Association, the largest and oldest national organization representing the interests of more than 30,000 African-American physicians and the patients they serve.

Worcester City Council, save our inner-city neighborhoods! Say “YES!” to a $15/hr LIVING WAGE!

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Poverty, Endicott Street.  pics: R.T.

By Rosalie Tirella

WORCESTER CITY COUNCILORS, PLEASE SUPPORT COUNCILOR Khrystian KING’S RESOLUTION Tuesday night (May 9) and VOTE YES to SUPPORT a STATE-WIDE MINIMUM WAGE of $15/hour!

By doing so, you will save Worcester’s inner-city neighborhoods/urban core.

If we continue on this road, if you do not show your support and VOTE YES to pay the working poor more than peanuts, Worcester will go the way of NYC and Boston: a city where the VERY RICH and VERY POOR live –  but no “in-betweeners” because they are priced out of the city. The upper middle class and wealthy will go to their special schools, restaurants, venues in the city; the other class – really the underclass – will live in Section 8/govt subsidized housing and have its own world, sometimes just several blocks away. We see this happening in Worcester now – our urban core these days is not the urban core in which I grew up. The American dream no longer takes hold in places like lower Vernon Hill, Union Hill, Green Island. Our economy does not support it! Instead, we have Section 8 meccas filled not with the working stiffs and stiffettes of yesteryear (like my late mom) toiling their way on/up the economic ladder, raising their kids in a no-bull-shit manner, making them go to school because education was valued as one of the sure ways out of poverty. Instead, these days, our inner-city neighborhoods are brimming with people whose lives are played out somewhere far from the American Dream, a landscape filled with guns, drugs, anger, depression, morbidly obese women, scrawny kids (1 in 4 kids goes to bed hungry in Worcester). They are not part of a world that creates aware, healthy, educated, aspiring Americans.

These once amazing old neighborhoods … where the original owners have died and their kids, detached suburban dwellers who want no part of the inner-city scene, sell their inheritances for top dollar to absentee landlords and developers who buy the buildings and make them Section 8 so they can make steady, good money, courtesy of the federal govt. These new landlords do very little or nothing for their properties; they couldn’t care less about the situation – even the law breakers and drug dealers they often rent to. As long as they get their Section 8 checks – a lot of $$ – every month –  like clockwork – from Uncle Sam.

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Section 8 housing – Endicott Street

Their tenants? Well, the working poor are priced out of these places! If you work full-time at minimum wage, you can’t afford these apts! Instead, the places are rented to people who have a Section 8 voucher for LIFE. This guarantees the absentee landlord (or slumlord) top rental dollar for LIFE. The tenants add nothing to the economic or cultural or educational fabric of Worcester. They usually bring drugs, violence, ignorance and zero respect for teachers, police, the rules of society into their new abodes. It’s the world of the under class – an entire swath of our population that cannot function in civil society. They are, for the most part, unemployed folks who game the WELFARE system with a kind of insolence that stems from knowing they’ll never be called out and the gravy train just goes on and on. It’s not a lot of $$ but just enough to keep you afloat and in housing. Then you can abuse the system to get extra $$/perks. Folks have no desire to get off welfare and become self sufficient BECAUSE BEING ON WELFARE IS JUST AS OR MORE LUCRATIVE THAN WORKING A 40 HOUR MINIMUM WAGE JOB! For lots of folks, it’s a better deal!

Which is why we need to raise the state minimum wage to $15/hour.

WE NEED TO WIDEN THE $$$ GAP BETWEEN the working poor and the scammers. We need to make WORKING 40 HOURS A WEEK AT AN ACAP AUTO OR CVS worth more $$$ than sitting on your ass in your Section 8 apartment becoming depressed or agoraphobic or morbidly obese or a pot head or a junky – all the while collecting the welfare package: free or low low rent, free utilities, free food, free health care.

This federally subsidized package – which should be a  temporary leg up and not a permanent hand out/way of life – should not be worth as much money as a PAY CHECK. From a 40 hour a week job – or from 2 or 3 part-time jobs.

WORKING FOR A LIVING – no matter what you do – should mean YOU CAN PAY FOR YOUR LIFE. Not a fancy one, but a stable, basic, healthy one – with a few perks thrown in, like a vacation at the shore, a jalopy that you drive around town to work etc – or to the Cineplex or the Olive Garden on a Saturday night. Certainly digs you can afford!

Welfare scammers should see that being a part of the legitimate American economy – on any level, even at Wal-Mart pushing a broom – IS VALUED by our society.

It gives folks pride and hope and spending money, which they WILL spend, boosting the economy, boosting neighborhood biz. Worth WAY MORE THAN SITTING ON YOUR ASS IN YOUR SECTION 8 APARTMENT SMOKING WEED, the way my downstairs neighbor does. Or renting a room out to a boarder and getting cash under the table and using your Section 8 apartment as a kind of business/rooming house – the way my downstairs neighbor does! Or bringing in your girlfriend, who collects welfare $$ because she had your baby and you do not marry her so she can move all her free govt benefits$$ into your apartment so you can afford to buy a shiny silver Acura! The one you zip around in with such absurd pomposity. I am describing the violent little tenant-turd at 48 1/2 Ward St. I guess that’s what babies are for!!

The madness must stop!

The cheating is almost universal in the urban core. The ingenious ways folks have of gaming the system here boggles the mind! And its done with TOTAL INSOLENCE. People feel it is OK to pull this crap – cheat the American taxpayers who are the ones SUBSIDIZING their lifestyle, if you wanna call acute dysfunction a “lifestyle.”

This is why Donald Trump was elected president. Lower middle class and working class resentment.

Enough is enough!

Time to support WORKING PEOPLE. In our hoods they used to and still do bring: a work ethic, stability, respect for property, respect for the rule of law, respect for teachers and public education, respect for all public servants. I grew up in a minimum-wage household years ago on Lafayette Street, in Green Island. I know first hand how tough it is to PLAY BY THE RULES and keep a family afloat on minimum wage. But my single working mom did it. She paid our bills by working for minimum wage at the dry cleaners down the street: 40 hours regular time, 20 hours under the table. Accounting for the cost of living/housing back then, minimum wage was worth about $10/hour in the 1970s. Still, my mom, my two kid sisters, “Bapy” and I lived hard lives: We never owned a car – or even a clothes dryer; vacations were the stuff of dreams (though we kids did have a lot of fun in the hood and cousins’ houses!); we – or at least I – wore a knit hat to bed during winter because our tenement was drafty and always cold in Jan and Feb, and we had to keep our gas bill down. Our only source of heat: the gas “log” in the kitchen stove. Meals were basic but healthful, Polish peasant food: lots of cabbage, potatoes, beets, onions and the cheapest cuts of beef – the meat more as a side dish or even a garnish. Looking back, my mom was feeding us well but, if you were a fussy eater, you might not like what was on the Mrs. Tirella menu. I was not a fussy eater – I was a little Hoover vacuum cleaner who sucked up all the food Ma put on my plate. My sisters were picky – and pretty skinny because of it.

Below: One of Rose’s kid sisters, goofin’ on their 3rd floor back porch, in Green Island. Many moons ago!

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But we survived. It was rough and tumble, but we had good shoes, good to nice clothing, went to the movies, bought records and portable record players… I grew up adoring my amazing mother, valuing work, family and God, enjoying healthy competition, getting up with a bounce in the morning to go to Lamartine Street School to study hard and get those all-A report cards for Ma – a lady who admired resourcefulness, competence and drive because she had it all in spades.

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Ma” (left), sharing a laugh with her fave sister (and Rose’s fave Auntie) in the Lafayette Street flat.

Councilor King’s Worcester City Council colleagues – Konnie Lukes, Michael Gaffney, Gary Rosen, Moe Bergman and Tony Economu – should support his resolution just like Worcester City Councilors Candy Mero-Carlson, Kate Toomey, Sarai Rivera, (mayor) Jos Petty and George Russell have. We need more Mrs. Tirella’s. But we need to pay them a living wage because, without these urban stalwarts, our inner-city neighborhoods will never wholly rebound.

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Where it all began: In “The Block,” on Bigelow Street, in Green Island. Rose’s fave Auntie💛 (again), with the beloved “Bapy.”💗💗💗

A church Sunday bulletin does not give room for rebuttal, does it?

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Our Lady of Mount Carmel church

CROSS at MT CARMEL(2)

By Mauro DePasquale

What we as parishioners and members of the Mount Carmel Preservation Society see as the heart of the matter:

Mount Carmel Preservation Society (MPS) stated it will come up with the $120,000 (the cost the City Building Commissioner had originally said it would take to make Our Lady of Mount Carmel Church safe) to help alleviate the burden of cost upon the Diocese (the real owners of the building).

We said we would be happy to turn over the money raised to the Monsignor after the Monsignor opened the doors for Masses.

The Monsignor accepted that, and at a meeting with the MPS board said he would hope to have it by June 2017.

We proceeded and raised enough funds in pledges and cash and placed it on hold until the Monsignor opened the doors to our church.

We also, at that point, suggested and requested that Masses be conducted, temporarily, in the Recreation Center until the Church was made safe.

The Monsignor rejected that suggestion.

We had the Church positioned for the National Historic Register, which would make the building available for grants and tax credits that could save up to 40% of repair cost.

He rejected that option.

We offered a sustainability plan he was not interested in reviewing.

He then turned around and said the interior of our church needs to also be “proven” safe by a certified engineer. He then asked that the MPS pay for the engineer.

When we had an engineer ready to schedule an entry, the Monsignor sent us to the Diocese facility manager to set up an appointment to enter the building. The facility manager, about a month later, told us we had to ask the Monsignor to let us in.

When we apprised the Monsignor of this, the Monsignor refused to allow our Engineer enter the church and said there will be “no further discussion.”

Every effort the MPS made to reach out to the rest of the parish community the Monsignor censored, blocked, criticized or simply rejected, as if it were a personal attack, which of course it never was.

We are parishioners who simply want to save our beloved Church rather than walk away from it. To us it is a meaningful and Holy sacred place, an anchor to our families, our heritage and our identity as Italian American Catholics and Worcesterites. We simply haven’t given up on our Church like so many Catholics have after the pedophile cases came to light.

Shouldn’t the Church be working to save all that is holy and to save its flock, rather than risk loosing it?

This Sunday’s May 7 Church Bulletin we find the Monsignor spinning his own story, again painting an incorrect perspective about his own parishioners who are members of MPS, pitting our parish against itself.

The Church needs repair. Perhaps it can be doable over the years. We have a sustainability plan that proved it possible. Furthermore, it may also be possible to have Masses at the Church in a short time while a section of the church is under repair. We could also, if need be, have Masses on campus at the Recreation Center while major work is conducted.

Our engineer could have given us a definite answer to that question – IF THE MONSIGNOR WOULD HAVE LET HIM IN THE CHURCH TO INSPECT IT. But he didn’t.

The Pastor and the Diocese continually blame a declining congregation population. We have not seen scientific proof of declining numbers. I remember a time when the count conducted at Mount Carmel consisted of someone standing in the choir loft finger counting heads before Mass. That same person then sang in the choir during Mass.

So what about those in the church who were seated in the ten or so pews below the Choir loft – the people who couldn’t be seen from the choir loft? What about those who came late to Mass, while the choir member was engaged in music ministry? Where’s the real evidence? Where is the real transparency?

Is it really necessary to close the church?

Is it really necessary to merge our parish with another parish that is in deep debt to the Diocese for reasons we are not really fully aware of?

Real transparency would answer those questions, but no one knows the answer to them because there is a lack of transparency. Parishioners have paid to build and sustain the church over the years, a church we do not own, and yet, in this latest church bulletin, the Monsignor spins his story in such a way as to blame parishioners for the neglect of the owners, THE DIOCESE. He opines the fact that the owners had to put money into their own building, even though he knows, if he opens the church for Masses, MPS would come up with that money.

Wow! Can you imagine if all building owners could get their tenants to make a loan, from the owner, to pay to repair that owner’s building?

We also found many model plans for the Church to be preserved as a living shrine, which can have limited masses and serve a community of faith. This was also rejected without discussion.

Talk about transparency!

Can the Monsignor tell us why Our Lady of Loretto church is in such deep debt?

Can he tell us if the Diocese is really loosing parishioners left and right? Why is it so and where are they going? Can he tell us what he is doing to convert or retain parishioners? He doesn’t seem to care about the thousands of Catholics and Christians and others that agree with and support our mission. Can he tell us where ALL the money parishioners donate (including all weekly baskets, legacy giving, and other donations) is really going to pay for?

Can he tell us why he is betraying his flock and the Word of Christ by chastising our members and calling our efforts foolish? Can he tell us where we can find the “Holiness” in all of this?

*****
Here is a link to the church bulletin:​
https://content.parishesonline.com/bulletins/04/0513/20170507B.pdf

A Must Read – One reason Why Loretto and the Diocese May be in Debt:
https://www.churchmilitant.com/news/article/parishioners-look-to-save-church

MPS BOARD WORKING MEETING Monday, 5:30 p.m. Please contact Mauro for details.

Thank you and God Bless,

Mauro DePasquale, Mount Carmel Preservation Society