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‘White Irish Catholics’ Roil Michelle – OpEd


Columnist Lynn Sweet reports that in Jodi Kantor’s new book, The Obamas, Michelle Obama is described as being “distressed” over the dominance of three famous Illinois families. The future First Lady apparently made her comments in the early 1990s when she worked in Chicago Mayor Richard Daley’s City Hall.

Kantor says Michelle Obama “particularly resented the way power in Illinois was locked up generation after generation by a small group of families, all white Irish Catholic—the Daleys in Chicago, the Hynes and Madigans statewide.”

To say that Illinois politics, especially the Chicago brand, has been run by “white Irish Catholics” for a long time is true. It is also true, as I once said, that secular Jews run Hollywood (and unlike an earlier generation of Jews who made reverential movies about Catholicism, films about the Catholic Church over the past few decades have been mostly negative). But the high priests of political correctness only take exception to the latter generalization. No matter, Michelle will not have to answer for her remark, despite the fact that she “resents” the dominance of “white Irish Catholics” in her home city and state.

Does this mean Michelle has a problem with the Catholic League? After all, its long-time president and vice president are both “white Irish Catholics.”

In all honesty, it’s time for the politically correct gang to take a deep breath and get a life. Generalizations about any racial, ethnic or religious group are not necessarily indicators of some deep-seated bigotry.

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William Donohue

William Donohue is the current president of the Catholic League for Religious and Civil Rights in the United States, and has held that position since 1993.

One thought on “‘White Irish Catholics’ Roil Michelle – OpEd

  • January 12, 2012 at 11:17 pm

    Michelle Obama of all people should know the the ignorance of using an ethnic stereotype label, such as, white Irish Catholic to brand a social injustice.

    I wonder how sick and tired she and Barrack, and their daughters were of having right wing opportunists brand the President as a fundamentalist muslim sympathiser because of the name given him through family tradition? Should he have to change it now?

    I know full well what it is to carry an Irish Catholic surname and that it will define my ethnicity throughout my life but don’t brand me with some corruption that is the work of another person or family.

    Michelle is out of line to label an ethnic group for the blame of a legacy of corrupt politics in Chicago. I am sure if one dug deeper they would find folks of all ethnicities that contribute to Chicago’s reputation of political crimes.

    Is Rod Blagojevich one of those catholics? From all accounts I have heard he was a long time friend of the Obama’s while they were in Chicago. How do you blame his actions on the Irish? She should publicly apologize!

    I have been an outspoken, public, supporter of Barrack Obama and plan to vote for him again in 2012. So, I won’t let the words of his wife change my belief in him as our president but it could change if he got on board with her on with this ethnic slur against Irish Catholics.


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