Editorial: Hoboken fells St. Patrick Saturday, January 14, 2012

Editorial: Hoboken fells St. Patrick Saturday, January 14, 2012

January 14, 2012 -  The Record

A ST. PATRICK'S Day parade has been a tradition in Hoboken for a quarter of a century. The tradition ends this year, and it is a loss to all in North Jersey.

New Jersey is often overshadowed by New York. The St. Patrick's Day parade in Manhattan is bigger. Unfortunately, the people pouring out of bars and parties in Hoboken on the day of its parade are drunker or at least less controlled. The Hoboken St. Patrick's Parade Committee's decision last week to cancel the parade traditionally held on the first Saturday in March is an admission that Hoboken cannot guarantee the safety of the spectators who come from far and wide to celebrate.

The parade committee did not want to switch the date to a Wednesday evening, as city officials had suggested. We agree the parade should be held on a Saturday. How many people are going to enjoy an evening parade in early March in a city by the Hudson River? The move to Wednesday would be a feeble attempt to tamp down on a day of public rowdiness by making the parade as unpleasant as possible for marchers and spectators.

The problem isn't the parade or the majority of people who travel to see it. The problem is the city's reputation as being out of control on the day of the parade. The city should limit bar hours, enforce laws on disorderly conduct and flood the city with police on parade day.

St. Patrick drove the snakes out of Ireland; the least Hoboken officials could do in his honor is to get drunks and hooligans away from his parade.

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