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February 11, 2011     Post-Gazette
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February 11, 2011

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Page 2 , ,i• l POST-GAZETTE, FEBRUARY 11,2011 by ProL Edmund Turiello A weekly column highlighting some of the more interesting aspects of our ancestry.., our lineage.., our roots. TIBERIUS THE PLUNDERER During the reign of Tiberius as emperor there were no public works projects even worthy of mention. He gave no public shows and seldom attended shows that were given by others. He ex- hibited generosity to the general public on only two occasions; the first was when he offered to lend a large sum of money without interest, du?ing a period of recession, and the second was when he gave financial grants to homeowners after a major fire on the Caelian Hill. He seldom permitted veteran soldiers to retire, but instead kept them in service until their death to avoid payment of retire- ment income. As Tiberius grew older he became more brutal and even resorted to plunder. He was successful in having himself made the sole heir of a wealthy estate and then caused the person so much fear and mental anxiety that the man took his own life. There were many wealthy men in the provinces who had their property confis- cated on any minor charge that could be trumped-up. Some were accused of noth- ing more than having a por- tion of their estate in ready permitted only short public meetings with her to avoid afiy appearance that • he might be seeking her advice. He did not visit with her during her illness nor did he pay his respects to her in death. He set aside the provisions of her will, confis- cated all of her property and even condemned one of her designated heirs to a life on the treadmill. There was a complete fall- ing-out with his daughter- in-law Agrippina and even- tually he had her beaten until one of her eyes was destroyed. When she went on a hunger strike he had her mouth pried open and food was forced into it. After her death he violently at- tacked her memory and had her birthday added to the days of ill omen. A man was accused of re- moving the head from a statue of Augustus and sub- stituting the head from the statue of another person. During the trial, which fol- lowed, some of the evidence was conflicting, so all of the and any word or act of Tiberius was a sure cure for "ring- around-the-collar," and a man was executed for noth- ing more than permitting an honor to be voted to him in his home town on the same day that honors had been voted to a previous emperor in years past. Many harsh acts and deeds were commit- ted and passed off as the strictness necessary to im- prove the public morels. As the days went on, Tiberius grew more cruel. Not a day passed ~vithout some form of execution. Sacred and holy days were no exception. Many persons were condemned by their children and people were for- bidden to mourn for their relatives. Sometimes special re- wards were voted for wit- nesses or accusers, and the word of an informer was al- ways accepted as true. Even the utterance of a few simple words was treated as a capi- tal offense. Persons awaiting trial chose to open their veins or to drink poison to witnesses were examined by' avoid certain condemnation torture. The accused was and execution. The wounds eventually condemned for of those less fortunate were having committed a capital quickly bandaged, as they crime. Laws were passed were hurried off to prison. making it a capital crime toAll who were executed were cash. Wealthy foreigners whobeat a slave near a statue of thrown out upon the infa- sought refuge on Roman soil the emperor, to change mous "Stairs of Mourning" wcrg LE ChCr0U ly atrippCfl 0nc cl0thcB in the vicinityanO then Dy mcnn of their fortunes and some of his statue or to wear a ring were dragged to the Tiber for were even executed. He de- or carry a coin with the im-one last drink on the house. veloped an intense dislike age of the emperor to a toi-NEXT ISSUE: for his own mother Livia, and let or a brothel. Criticizing Addio Sporcaccione R Publica by David Trumbull A Constitution The 78-page order by Judge Roger Vinson, "declar- ing "The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act" unconstitutional, ought to be required reading as a lesson in civics. As judge Vinson points out, the ques- tion is not about health care, but: "It is principally about our federalist system, and it raises very important issues regarding the Consti- tutional role of the federal government." At the center of the question is the individtlal mandate to buy health insurance. Two courts have ruled that the mandate is a Constitutional exercise of Congress's power to regulate interstate commerce (the "Commerce Claus"). With this latest ruling two courts have held it to be uncon- stitutional. The question will ultimately go to the Supreme Court. Through the years courts have ruled many times on just what activities of indi- viduals could be regulated by Congress under the Com- merce Clause. But never in Name Only before has the Federal Gov- ernment tried so great a power grab as to penalize an individual for not acting. As judge Vinson wrote: "It would be a radical depar- ture from existing case law to hold that Congress can regu- late inactivity under the Commerce Clause. If it has the power to compel an otherwise passive individual into a com- mercial transaction with a third party ... it is not hyper- bolizing to suggest that Congress could do almost anything it wanted. It is diffi- cult to imagine that a nation which began, at least in part, as the result of opposition to a British mandate giving the East India Company a monopoly and imposing a nominal tax on all tea sold in America would have set out to create a government with the power to force people to buy tea in the first place." Quoting in part from the 1995 United States v. Lopez Commerce Clause case, Judge Vinson continues: "If Congress can penalize a (Continued on Page 15) inner Huge SucCess Once Again by Sal Giarratani k~ 5hriners Hospitals for Children® Kicks 0ff2011 Burn Prevention Campaign February 6- 12 is Burn Awareness Week and during this week, Shriners Hospitals for Children® will kick-off a year-long campaign focused on preventing burn injuries at home, "Safety Begins at Home." Information and materials pertaining to the campaign can be found on the health care system's website dedicated to burn awareness and prevention, "At ~hrincrs Hospitals for Chil- dren®, preventing burn inju- ries through education is an ongoing effort, and we use Burn Awareness Week as a starting point each year," said Peter Armstrong, M.D., chief medical officer at Shriners Hospitals for Children®. "This year, we feel it is very impor- tant to raise awareness of the number of burn injuries to children that occur in their own homes that could possi- bly have been prevented by implementing and following some basic precautions." For example, 95 percent of scald burns, which are caused by hot licluida, ~tco_nl or foods, occur in the home. Scalds are the most common burn injury among young children and the leading INCOME TAX PREPARATION • Financial Services ° Professional Tax Consultant • Personal & Business • Year Round Service M.P. & Co. TAX & FINANCIAL SERVICES GRACE PREVITE MAGOON, EA 61 7-569-01 75 146 Maverick Street, East Boston, MA 02128 /ESTABLISHED IN 1938 e-m l: i I i i i i i cause of accidental death in the home for children under age 4. U.S. hospitals treat an estimated 16,000 children under 5 for scalds every year. In addition, more than 60 percent of residential fires that cause the death of a child occur in homes without smoke detectors. Shriners Hospitals for Children® encourages fire- fighters, teachers, parents, caregivers and other mem- bers of the community to par- ticipate in the year-10ng cam- paign by visiting www.burn for important burn prevention tips and in- formation on how to order free materials, including stickers, brochures and posters. About Shriners Hospitals for Children® - Shriners Hos- pitals for Children® is a health care system of 22 hos- pitals dedicated to improving the lives of children by pro- viding pediatric specialty care, innovative research, and outstanding teaching pro- grams for medical profession- als. Children up to age 18 with orthopedic conditions, burns, spinal cord injuries, and cleft lip and palate are eligible for care and receive all ser- vices in a family-centered environment, regardless of ,the pattents' ability to pay. Left to Right: Michele Morgan and Attorney Rosemary McAuliffe. (Photo by Sal Giarratani) Once again North End families gathered with their children at the Nazzaro Community Center on Monday, February 7 for another family dinner and talk. Once again a special Italiar{t~fleal prepared by Mary and John Romans consisted of macaroni, meatballs, sausages, salad and Metry'a fabulous exnd world famous e~gplant. It may not always be a favorite with the kids but what do they know about eggplant, right? Board members from North End Against Drugs are to be thanks for all the organization does for both the children and their parents in helping the community,s young people stay safe and make wise choices in their lives. Drugs have eaten up many communities but here in the North End the adults of the neighborhood care about children and their future. The North End has been a nurturing place for generations of families trying to raise their children as best they can and steering them away from harm's way. As I walked around the family dinner talking to families, I saw 10ts of 10ve in that room. I saw parents who are completely invested in their children. I saw parents who know that drugs are a real threat and can destroy a neigh- borhood but the lives of all within. The North End's pride was showing at the Nazzaro Center for all to see. There was a lot of positive energy flowing at the annual NEAD Family Dinner and it was truly a family affair. WWW.BOSTONPOSTGAZETTE.COM