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October 9, 2009     Post-Gazette
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October 9, 2009

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POST-GAZETTE, OCTOBER 9, 2009 Page 7 NEWS RIEFS (FROM ITALIAN NEWSPAPERS AND OTHER PUBLICATIONS) Compiled by Orazio Z. Buttafuoco CELEBRATING Italian Culture in 2009. By the time you read this, we will be already in the Pantheon of culture, our culture. October is here. It is the month when we cel- ebrate our rich cultural heritage. It's the time also when we should stand up, gather in groups, to talk about topics that deal with history, literature, art, music, science, etc. It is alSo the time when we all should work with our local libraries to organize exhibits of Italian books, or step up in front of people and discuss even informally, about any sub- ject that emphasizes our culture. And there are many in- deed. It is an opportunity to show to anyone the level of Italian ingenuity, creativity, inventiveness, etc., through- out the centuries, and even millennia. Italian's contrib- uted in changing the world, fostering progress in many fields. I often feel the urge to discuss, even briefly, some of the many things Italians are so famous for. To those who constantly emphasize how many criminals are of Italian extraction answer them by saying that precisely Italians were the ones who invented the telephone (Antonio Meucci, who called the device 'teletrofono), in 1849 when Alexander G. Bell was only 2-years old. That was the year when the world learned the name of 'Meucci'. Once General Ike Eisenhower, already President, stated: "Isn't it ironic that Italians discovered America, and America hasn't yet dis- covered Italians, and their accomplishments". That is why we ought to take the initiative to 'talk' and openly discuss Italian culture. I realize that, as anyone can attest, Ameri- can schools do not have any curriculum that, even mini- mally, brings any, albeit simple aspects of Italian culture in the open. That's why some people, as yours truly, has stepped up and 'volunteered' to help our own ethnic family to get some knowledge about our cultural roots. Always remember that it was an Italian that discovered America, it was the Italian-born who explored the new continent, and it was Italians who settled in many parts of what is now the United States, and Italian immigrants who estab- lished many churches, hospitals, seminars, schools, Universities, and the raising of cattle (a priest!) as well. And before I forget, it was an Italian who inspired, and first used, the name of America, on the maps. Last, but not least, let me briefly talk about the 'pronouncements' by the Brown University's faculty (the brain trust!), who recently decided to forgo the celebration of 'Columbus Day', because Columbus, they say, was responsible for the many trag- edies that afflicted the Native Populations. Obviously this 'Brain Trust' never learned that Columbus NEVER set foot on the American continent, after making four journeys. It is time to expose the 'intelligence' of those so-called 'intellectuals'. They do not deserve even an answer. It would be an exercise in futility. They would not be able to under- stand even a simple historical point. So, my friends, let's drop the issue, and leave them in the '...Olympus of Negativism and Mediocrity. Let's invest our time meeting our own people, to begin with, and learn to appreciate the 'good things' we all cherish, be they 'food' (why notI), music, art, etc. Let's start with the month of October to begin our activities in 'intelligent pursuits'. Let's move forward. AVANTI ! Happy Co lu mb us Day Dr. Dean J. Saluti President Renaissance Lodge, OSIA Majorie Cahn 52 Bay State Road Boston, MA 02215 617-367-3161 St. John School Graduating Class of 2009 St. John School of the North End congratulates the graduating class of 2009. Front row, left to right: Elizabeth Marashi, Danielle Saita, Logan Sweet, Elizabeth McKelway and Justin Amoroso. Back row, left to right: Sister Eileen Harvey, Marilen Phillips, Marissa Rosati, Brendan Cantin, Bianca Lafrate, Mattie-Ann Matarazzo and Ms. Robin Horgan. Missing from photo is Yarah Hassani. Neighborhood Under Pressure by Bennett Molinari and Richard Molinari While businesses struggle for customers in our down economy, the North End is fortunate enough to have an abundance of tourists and resident traffic to allow its many restaurants and retail shops to prosper. The ve- hicles and pedestrians that daily crowd our streets and sidewalks are a vivid testa- ment to the lure of history and ethnic charm that de- fine the two square miles that is both a neighborhood and tourist destination. The question is asked what came first the chicken or the egg. In the case of the North End the answer seems clear; the historic North End with its colorful history draws the tourists who fre- quent the North End busi- nesses allowing a degree of insulation to the ups and downs of our economy. The fact that the North End re- mains an active neighbor- hood with people going about their lives as they have done in the past, adds charm and a sense of continuity, a win- dow to the past to the thou- sands of visitors that pass through our neighborhood each year. Increasingly the delicate balance that has existed between historical site, city neighborhood and commer- cial district has come under pressure to the detriment of the residents of the North End. Traffic along Hanover Street is becoming increas- ingly difficult to navigate; late night parties and noise, once never heard of in the North End are now a regu- lar occurrence. The rodent population continues to grow, fed by litter too often left carelessly discarded, all contributing to the gradual deterioration of the quality of life in our neighborhood The Church has always been at the very heart of the North End as it is in many communities. Despite the fact that more people are vis- iting our churches particu- larly Saint Leonard's where visits continue well into the evening, Saint Leonard, Sa- cred Heart and Saint Stephen have been forced to lock their doors opening only for Mass and related church services as a result of break ins and inappropriate activi- ties conducted in church. This is unprecedented, once again revealing the negative pressures that are affecting our neighborhood. We are assured by Fr. Antonio, pas- tor of Saint Leonard's parish that the closures are tempo- rary and that the churches will return to normal hours once the problem has been corrected. With its historic sites, many restaurants and coffee shops, boutiques and spe- cialty stores all packed into 2 square miles, the North End is an exciting and fun place to visit. Flushed with success, what cannot be forgotten is that the soul of the North End is its residents and that we should work to- gether to ensure that it not become increasingly a tran- sient community and a place of business but a great place to live for those of us who choose to call it home. Happy Columbus Day 2009 Green Cross Pharmacy FARMACIA CROCE VERDE J. Giangregorio, Reg. Ph. - F. Giangregorio, Reg. Ph. 393 Hanover Street, Boston, Mass. Tel: 617-227-3728 Professional Dependability - Accuracy - Service