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PAGE 2 POST-GAZETTE, JULY 28, 2017 by Prof. Edmund TurieUo A weekly column highlighting some of the nwre interesting aspects of our ancestry.., our lineage.., our roots. by Girard A. Plante It is beginning to look and sound a lot like 1974. With national events taking shape amidst a collective clamoring to impeach another president and an air of uncertainty, I feel a familiar tug towards that summer of my youth that brought down an unre- NERO'S GOLDEN HOUSE pentant Republican president who believed he was above the law. Nero might have held the Christians who were blamed about twelve miles away, and The Vietnam War raged on even as its own collapse appeared Christians responsible for the for the fire, and then merci- special baths which were sup- imminent. The end would not happen for another nine months. Roman conflagration of 64 A.D., lessly persecuted because of plied with sea water from the Forty-three years seems a far off fuzzy memory of national citizen but history places the respon- it? Oh how history would have Mediterranean. There was also unrest, gasoline embargo, anxiousness over declining manufactur- sibility directly upon him. It is been changed if this cruel and a temple built of a rare translu- ingjobs, war, and a host of other human fights injustices worldwide. said that the great fire was the evil man had never walked cent stone and a lake for mock I reluctantly share my thoughts and emotions four decades later only way that he could have on the face of the earth! The naval battles, because my generation lived with the specter of the Vietnam War so completed a wholesale evic- first architects ever to be men- The foundation walls and long that each succeeding war offering American troops brings heavy tion of hundreds of thousands tioned by name in the history other sub-structures are all that sighs. President Richard M. Nixon presided over its extension even of residents in order to clear of Rome were Celer and Sever- remain of Nero's Palace, but it is as he held the power to leave a hell 7,000 miles from U.S. shores. the land for the erection of his ous. They poured the emperor's certain that it contained every Today, the echoes of yet another war sting. President Donald J. golden house, wealth and their skills into the adornment and decoration Trump tosses threats to nations at war with themselves: And, like This memorable conflagra- construction of what becamethat this abundant and artistic Nixon in 1974, he daily confronts ongoing investigations into his ap- tion during Nero's reign started known as Nero's Golden House. civilization could furnish. The parent murky role with Russian President Vladimir Putin, along with staff having some connection to Putin's high-ranking underlings. near the Circus Maximus and It occupied the space of nearly a name Golden House was used Have our presidential candidates not learned the awful lessons then, driven by a hot, oppres- square mile in the midst of the because of the gold-plated tiles and hard truths about the dark-secret involvements that place sive, dust-laden wind from city. This was not a continu- on the roofs. Much gold was our great nation in peril? Are Trump and his staff, some not born the Libyan Desert called a ous building that occupied the also used in cornices, mold- to know anything about Vietnam or Watergate, unaware of the "sirocco," it swept through the two hilltops and the connecting ings, column bases and caps. damaging effects wrought by those historic events? Questions are valley between the Palatine ground; the entire area wasThere were ivory wall panels, endiess. Answers we citizens may never receive. More lies have been and Caelian Hills. The fire was enclosed by three colonnades, easel paintings, statues, count- spoken than truths. finally stopped six days later at each about a mile long, andless vases of every size and A question often heard when one joins active duty status of the Esqualine Hill. More than there also was a grand entrance form, and a display of wealth America's military is: "Do you have a need to know?" Well, America's a hundred thousand homeless portico that faced the Forum. and comfort almost beyond citizens possess a need and the right to know exactly what is daily Romans were transferred to the Within this enclosure they built description, churning in the Congress, as well as inside the White House. gardens of Agrippina, Nero's the imperial residence. TheAfter the dedication, his only I am weary of the attitudes of most members of Congress, our inherited property on the other vestibule was large enough to remark was that at last he was President, his staff and the general lack of moving our democracy side of the Tiber, where just by contain a colossal statue of the being housed like a human to a better place. I grew up around America's Greatest Generation, chance a great number of tents emperor, which was over onebeing. Here, again, we learn of who plowed through the rough journey of life respecting others, and small one room sheds were hundred feet high. The dining another of the great ironies in possessing ethics and morals, knowing their responsibilities to ready and waiting to receive the room ceiling had panels which history; one of the most brutal community, and ffflfilling their obligations to family and country. homeless, could release a shower of flow- men the world has ever known I yearn for that long ago summer that remains clear in my Nero then had all of the land ers and were fitted with pipes was permitted to occupy one of memory. Regardless of that era's struggles and battling political he needed for his planned pal- for sprinkling the guests with the most luxurious living places parties, democracy remained solid for future generations. Should ace and a lot more to spare. He perfume. The main banquet hall that the same world has ever such sacred values survive another government scandal that could rebuilt this spare area in strict was circular and when in use produced, cause a Constitutional crisis? Or a war that prevents peace from accordance with a new building was constantly being revolved NEXT ISSUE: being the mantra of current citizens too young to die on foreign soil? code which specified fireproof by slave-power. Dishonor Thy Mother materials and height restric- The area contained beautifffl tions. Some say that the recon- parks, gardens and vineyards, struction was a great benefit to including large baths, which Rome, but is this justification were supplied with water via for the countless numbers of aqueduct from sulphur springs STATE SENATOR Happy Anniversary & Continued 811Eces$ . .. STATE REPRESENTATIVE Congratulations to the Post-Gazette for being the Italian-American Voice of Massachusetts for 122 years! Happy Anniversary PAUL J. DONATO SECOND ASSISTANT MAJORITY LEADER STATE HOUSE, ROOM 481 BOSTON, MA 02133 TEL: (617) 722-2180 FAX: (617) 722-2881 REPDONATO38@AOL.Co M 271 SPRING STREET MEDFORD, MA 02155 TEL: (781) 385-1683 FAX: (781) 395-2871 D E J. MoDlCa Tel: 617.567.7200 Fax: 617.567.7205 Email: dmodiac@aol.com V ! :: 7 i : ! !!i!!!iiiiii!i ii!iii! !i!iil' :i! !iiiii!iiii!iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiil; i i : i i i i iiiiii: ........: = =;ii!!i i~i~iiiiii!i= Happy 122nd Anniv e rsary STATE REPRESENTATIVE DISTRICT 3