Upstream. A Mohawk Valley Blogzine.

Friday, April 21, 2006

Ralph Tortorici, Jason McEnaney & The Artificial Mick.

This is part six of a series of posts on Ralph Tortorici. In 1994, Ralph Tortorici held a class hostage at the University at Albany. Tortorici suffered from delusions associated with his diagnosis of schizophrenia. One student was injured in the struggle to disarm him, and Ralph was convicted in 1996 of kidnapping, attempted murder and other felonies. On August 10, 1999, Ralph Tortorici committed suicide in the Sullivan County Correctional Facility. Just this month his family finally reached a financial settlement with the State of New York due to the State’s failure to provide adequate treatment for Tortorici.

My apologies to the late Flannery O’Connor, a real “mick,” for borrowing my post title from her powerful story, The Artificial Nigger. My apologies to my grandmother, Mary Kerry, for using the m word.

When arguing in behalf of mentally ill people who commit crimes there is always the danger that you might forget the victim, but it doesn’t have to be that way. Although I have a great deal of sympathy for Jon Romano and Ralph Tortorici, I do believe that the teacher who tackled Jon Romano is a hero, and I also believe that Jason McEnaney was a hero when he tackled Ralph Tortorici.

Not everyone thought McEnaney was a hero, In particular, radio talk show host, Mike Gallagher. Albany Eye reminded us recently that Mike Gallagher is not an Irishman at all, in spite of his last name. His real last name is Smelstor.

I can still remember Gallagher calling McEnaney a scumbag for suing the state back in 1996 when Smelstor-Gallagher's opinions were heard only on WGY in Schenectady. It was so nauseating, I had to turn off the radio. When a real Irishman, Dan Lynch, took on the artificial Irishman, he found out just how vicious Gallagher could be.

Anyway, after Gallagher’s show during which he trashed McEnaney, McEnaney began to receive death threats. It got so bad that he withdrew from the University at Albany.

So if you are one of Gallagher’s fans, I advise you to read Dan Lynch’s columns that Albany Eye has provided links to and see the methods the artificial Irishman used to climb to the number eight spot on national talk radio. It’s enough to make a real Irishman want to change his name to Smelstor.


  • Albany Eye: Smelster
    Upstream: Smelstor
    Regardless of how it's spelled,
    it's agreed that Gallagher smelled.

    How I couldn't stand that vile piece of garbage!!
    How could venerable WGY have disgraced herself by allowing that loathsome piece of sh*t to debauch her hallowed waves of air?
    That pioneer Grand Old Lady of 50,000 class A, clear-channel watts, a touchstone in her time, suffered a mighty blow to her respectability during her ratings-crazed flirtation with Gallagher. She'll be a long time in recovery, in my book.

    (Aside to Eye: Who the hell hired Gallagher in the first place and where's the bastard now?)

    About G-Y's plunge into the abyss of self-humiliation, it's interesting to ponder whether or not she would have eventually come to her senses and kicked the derelict out if he hadn't gotten the offer from New York. Or would he still be among us today?
    Perish the thought.

    By Anonymous Lake George Guy, at 3:24 AM  

  • Gallagher is the number eighth ranked talk show host in the U.S. now. Fortunately, around here he is only on a low powered station, that can't be picked up in much of the region.

    By Blogger Dan Weaver, at 5:31 AM  

  • McEnaney was lauded by the Governor and received invitations to appear on television, radio and print to tell of his heroic disarming of the SUNY gunman. McEnaney turned down all requests and money except for an unpaid 1/2 hour w/ an author for a short Reader's Digest story. Mike Smelstor was an opportunist who attacked a hero. 34 people could have died had McEnaney not acted.

    By Anonymous Anonymous, at 12:59 AM  

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