When Mary told me she had been accepted at the festival, I teasingly said, “Could I come in your suitcase?” She laughed and then a couple of days later called me and asked if I’d like to go with her.
Left: Joanne Tosti-Vasey Right: Mary Vollero
So on May 21, 2014, the day after the two of us helped staff our precinct for the Pennsylvania 2014 Spring Primary, we left for Ireland and flew to Cork and then drove to Schull in West Cork. We attended the festival in Schull for several days and did a bit of touring in County Cork. We drove/took a ferry to tour West Cork, including the Altar Wedge Tomb, Bandon, Goleen, Long Island – Inishfada, Macroom, Mizen Head, and Schull.
We both took lots pictures of our trip. We also stopped in Bandon to pick up an Irish cloak that I ordered and paid for online in April after finding out I was headed to County Cork. This is the same store that my sister had purchased the green Irish cape for me as a gift for our mutual birthday in 2013 (see picture above of me with Mary Voller0). Here’s a picture of me wearing the heavier-weight Irish cloak I had custom-made by Siobhan Wear, picked up in Bandon, and brought home with me.
Joanne at home wearing her custom-made Irish cloak in the fall of 2014.
Mary then turned her pictures into a subtitled video with Irish music. I think she captured our visit quite well. Here it is:
“May good and faithful friends be yours, wherever you may roam.”
“May your day be touched with a bit of Irish luck, brightened by a song in your heart, and warmed by the smiles of the people you love.”
− two of the Irish blessings included in this photographic video: my wish to all my readers.
It’s the home stretch. Candidates and volunteers are working overtime to get people out to vote on Tuesday, November 4. As part of that effort, prominent politicians are canvassing the country to assist candidates running for the US Senate, the US House of Representatives, and state Governorships.
In my home state of Pennsylvania, President Barack Obama came to Philadelphia to stump for Tom Wolf (D) on Sunday November 2. He is running for Pennsylvania Governor to replace the current Tea Party Governor Tom Corbett (R). I’m so looking forward to a victory tomorrow for Tom Wolf (see some of the reasons why here). It will be a win for the environment, for women, LGBTQIA people, low-income individuals who can’t access healthcare, and for better jobs and wages for everyone in the state.
In New Hampshire the fight is not to replace a right-wing slate of elected officials, but to retain and reelect the four progressive women leading that state – Governor Maggie Hassan, Senator Jeanne Shaheen, Representative Ann McLane Kuster (NH-2), and Representative Carol Shea-Porter (NH-1). New Hampshire is the only state in the nation to have women in 100% of the top leadership positions in the state. And prominent female politicians have come to the state to stump for them. On October 25, it was Senator Elizabeth Warren (D-MA) stumping for her colleague Senator Jeanne Shaheen. And on Sunday, November 2, while President Obama was stumping for Tom Wolf, Former Secretary of State, Senator, and First Lady Hillary Rodham Clinton came to Nashua, NH to support these four women’s reelection efforts.
I was there at both events. I blogged about the Warren event last week. Today, here’s the Clinton event.
NH Gov. Maggie Hassan and Sen. Jeanne Shaheen with Hillary Rodham Clinton
About 1000 people gathered at Nashua Community College in Nashua, NH. The lineup of speakers was quite interesting. Except for State Democratic Chair Ray Buckley, every speaker was a woman – something I’ve never seen in a political event or rally before. Here are the speakers in order of their appearance:
Senator Jeanne Shaheen’s granddaughters singing the Star Spangled Banner
Caraline and Elle Shaheen singing The Star Spangled Banner
Chair Ray Buckley calling on the NH electorate to not only vote for the Democrats at the top of the ticket, but to also vote for the Democrats all the way down the ballot.
NH Democratic Party Chair Raymond Buckley
He gave a rousing speech on the problems that NH had when Republican Bill O’Brian was leading the General Assembly and how the mostly female Democratic leadership turned the state around through bipartisan cooperation once the Republican party became the minority party two years ago. Here’s that speech:
Then the line-up of female political leaders began. Each talked about why NH is doing better now, how their bipartisan efforts have improved the economy of New Hampshire, and what has been protected in the state for women’s reproductive justice and pay equity, children’s and adults’ public and college education, marriage equality, access to health care for all and job restoration. Here are those speakers:
In introducing Hillary, Senator Shaheen put forth this zinger that brought a roar from the crowd:
“She traveled 956,000 miles as Secretary of State – that’s nearly as many miles as Scott Brown traveled looking for a Senate seat to buy.”
Due to the low battery on my video camera, I was not able to record the speeches of the keynote speakers. After the video camera died, Hillary focused on women’s and family issues. Since I could no longer videotape the event, I took a few notes. Here’s some of Ms. Clinton’s additional remarks:
“Women are not just half the population.”
“Women’s rights are on the front line of rights around the world.”
“Equal pay is not just a women’s issue. It is a family issue.”
“Fear is the last resort of those who have run out of hope.”
“If you vote, you can elect these women who will lead New Hampshire and the rest of the country [for the better good of all].”
In addition, the Manchester Ink Link compiled several quotes from Hassan, Shaheen, and Clinton. You can see them here.
You Gotta Vote!
So no matter where you are – in Pennsylvania, in New Hampshire, or anywhere else in the country – consider the impact of who your next Governor or US Senator or US Congressperson may be. Do not vote based on fear. Vote for the candidates who will protect middle-class income, education for all, access to healthcare, marriage equality, the environment, and reproductive justice.
GET OUT AND VOTE on Tuesday, November 4, 2014. You can find out where and how to vote in your state here (courtesy of the League of Women Voters). Thanks.
Collage of pictures taken during the Hassan/Shaheen/Clinton rally in Nashua, NH on Nov. 2, 2014
Progressive commentary from Gainesville, Florida, once called the Berkeley of the South. Potano was the chief of and the only known name of the Native American tribe inhabiting the area around what is now Gainesville at the time the Europeans arrived.
“It takes no compromise to give people their rights…it takes no money to respect the individual. It takes no political deal to give people freedom. It takes no survey to remove repression.” – Harvey Milk
Learn more about the state laws being introduced and passed around the U.S. that is limiting Women's rights. Did you know that the Women's Equal Right Amendment from 1983 still needs to be ratified by 3 more states before it goes into effect?