Watch CBS News

Keller @ Large: What Is A Real Bostonian?

BOSTON (CBS) - What is a real Bostonian?

Real Bostonians come in all sizes, flavors and colors. We're an immigrant city, always have been, the Brahmins notwithstanding.

And outside of a few pockets of wealth, we're a blue-collar city, a city of neighborhoods where people value their ethnic roots and cultural identities.

Real Bostonians can seem aloof, especially to outsiders. But real Bostonians have empathy for their fellow man, and will reach out to help one another in their moment of need.

There is no truer friend than a real Bostonian you have befriended.

Real Bostonians wear their hearts on their sleeves. They will boo the visiting team, boo their own team, and boo each other when booing seems warranted.

But they will also cheer for the underdog, applaud the classy gesture, and even in their hour of defeat, put things in perspective by imploring the 76ers to "beat L.A."

Nothing bothers a real Bostonian more than unfairness and oppression. Remember "No Irish Need Apply"?

Real Bostonians understand their city's history, warts and all.

They know we were the capital of the American abolitionist movement and a bastion of support for the only black governor in the country a few years back.

And they also know about the vile racists of the Boston School Committee in the 20th century who perpetuated a disgraceful separate-but-unequal school system, and the persistent, repulsive behavior of too many locals.

Real Bostonians aren't like that.

But some fake Bostonians are, and they've given our city a bad rap.

Time for the real Bostonians to do more to see to it that the fakers are exposed, isolated and shamed.

Listen to Jon's commentary:

View CBS News In
CBS News App Open
Chrome Safari Continue
Be the first to know
Get browser notifications for breaking news, live events, and exclusive reporting.