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New Labor Schools

New Labor Schools by Bill Droel Bishop Blasé Cupich received several invitations to speak with union groups after he arrived in Chicago in November 2014. He declined for a time. But after nearly one year Cupich went to Local 130 Plumbers Hall this past September at the request of the Chicago Federation of Labor. There […]

World Series

World Series by Bill Droel Here is Rev. Martin Luther King (1929-1968) writing from jail in Summer 1963. The intended audience is fellow ministers. The topic is church leaders’ opposition to King’s direct advocacy for integration. “In spite of my shattered dreams of the past, I came to Birmingham with the hope that the white […]

When America Hated Catholics

When America Hated Catholics In the late 19th century, statesmen feared that Catholic immigrants were less than civilized (and less than white). By Josh Zeitz September 23, 2015 In the late nineteenth century, political cartoonist Thomas Nast regularly lambasted Irish Catholic immigrants as drunkards and barbarians unfit for citizenship; signs that read, “No Irish Need […]

After Protest

After Protest by Bill Droel This column is hardy ready to endorse Hillary in 16. But Clinton is correct in her reaction to Black Lives Matter activists with whom she had an off-stage exchange early in August. They probed her how she will change hearts to eliminate racism. “How do you actually feel that’s different,” […]

Papal Visit – Part II

Papal Visit – Part II by Bill Droel Where does Pope Francis get his ideas on the economy? The same place as every other informed Catholic. Like other Christian traditions, Catholicism says God’s truth is revealed through the Bible. Like other Christian traditions, Catholicism says Jesus Christ is God’s unique self-revelation. Catholicism also says God’s […]

Pope’s Visit

Pope’s Visit by Bill Droel Is the pope a socialist? During this month’s papal visit to our country a few vocal critics raise the question. Why would someone call Pope Francis a socialist? First, there is still a strain of anti-Catholicism in corners of our society. Socialist conjures up abhorrent communism. The socialist label is […]

Rules Part II

Rules Part II by Bill Droel Chris Matthews supplies several rules for public life in Hardball: How Politics Is Played (Free Press, 1988). One chapter explains why “it’s better to receive than give.” Such surprising rules make Matthews’ book a classic. “Contrary to what many people assume,” he writes, “the most effective way to gain […]

No Rules

No Rules William Droel  Saul Alinsky (1909-1972) could not tell less experienced organizers more loudly or more frequently: There are no rules. Creative life is for fluid people. Alinsky’s insistence caused cognitive dissonance in many of his novice disciples. They read his Rules for Radicals (Random House, 1971) and concluded there really are rules for […]

Free Choice?

Free Choice? by Bill Droel Rebecca Friedrichs doesn’t want to pay her union dues. And indeed, because our culture is premised on individualism some workers can now legally opt out of their dues. Friedrichs, whose workplace is represented by California Teachers Association, wants something more. She wants no payroll deduction for what is called agency […]

Action First

Action First by Bill Droel Young adults do not so much need a meaning in life as an experience of living. Despite or because of our cosmopolitan culture and global economy, too many young adults get caught up in a small circle of co-workers and friends while communicating mostly about small comings and goings. Meanwhile, […]