Thursday, December 20, 2007
Boston mourns beloved racist homophobe
Awww, you gotta love him - if you didn't, you'd throw up.
Well, we can finally ring down the curtain on Albert "Dapper" O'Neil, the "crusty" Boston pol whose act depended on an implied war between the poor, freckled Irish family in Southie who only needed a free turkey to make their little Christmas bright, and the unwashed hordes of women, blacks, gays and lesbians with evil designs on said bird. O'Neill's last, wackily finest hour, I suppose, was his crazed opposition to the Robert Mapplethorpe show at the ICA some years back. I still remember the photo the Globe appended to its article on the show's eventual opening - of "Dapper" himself closely inspecting a photo of a half-clothed young boy. At the time, it seemed like a hilariously po-faced nod to the rumors whispered in the gay community about O'Neil's own sexuality (rumors being repeated these days about another major Boston cultural figure). Needless to say, "Dapper" never married - although he "dated" the same woman all his life. Uh-huh. Now before you say it, do I have any proof that "Dapper" was cut from the same cloth as Representative Foley, Senator Craig, and the many conservative queens who've been tripped up in their hypocritical pumps over the last few years? No, I don't - but it seems likely, doesn't it? And why can't we simply discuss its likelihood? And why do beloved, conservative Irish pols always seem to be drunks, or have murderers for brothers, or are rumored to be gay trolls? (I'm asking that as an Irishman myself.) Isn't there some Irish Mitt Romney out there, who's merely a bland control freak who ducks his religion's former racism? Sheesh.