Goodbye Columbus: Warren Wilhelm Jr.’s (AKA Bill de Blasio’s) Favorite Movie?

Dante Vitoria's Dante's Inferno

By Dante Vitoria August 29, 2017

Ever see the 1969 movie ‘Goodbye Columbus’? (In case you’re wondering, yes, 1969, the same year my Mets won the World Series). But back to ‘Goodbye Columbus’… Ali MacGraw and Richard Benjamin were the leads. It was a satirical look at life through a middle class Jewish family, poking fun at the complacency, parochialism and love of materialistic things in society. Not to be confused with ‘Gone with the Wind’ or ‘The Ten Commandments’. So, who cares about someone named Warren Wilhelm Jr. OR what his favorite movie is? Great question…I care, and so should YOU! I know my friend Bo Dietl cares! And I GUARANTEE you my very good friend Sal Albanese cares!

Warren Wilhelm Jr. is NOW Bill de Blasio, New York City Mayor. YES! Our PROUD Italian American Mayor Bill de Blasio, the one who gave both of his children Italian names at birth Chiara and UNBELIEVABLY Dante…that Bill de Blasio! He is like the old saying goes, “There are only two types of people in the world, Italians and those who WISH they were Italian.” Guess which one Mr. Mayor is? I know you’re thinking, “wait a second, Vitoria, not so fast, that may be a bit harsh.” YES, it is actually, Bill de Blasio must not want to be of Italian heritage. How could HE? Those of US with the blood of Italy in our veins have an unwavering and undying sense of PRIDE in our heritage, culture and history. And there it is! Mayor de Blasio is a FAKE and a FRAUD, a PSEUDO Italian if you will. How else could you explain that he wants to remove the statue of Christopher Columbus from of all places Columbus Circle? What a FOOL!

Christopher Columbus, the MAN who discovered America, does not get to keep the honor bestowed on him in 1892, to celebrate the 400th year anniversary of his commanding of the Niña, the Pinta and the Santa Maria, the ships that sailed to America! Remember that Mr. Wilhelm? Perhaps your son learned that in school. He is a smart young man, remember he understood what you taught him about how to behave when he gets arrested? My father gave me advice about getting arrested too, “DON’T”!

How does this make sense at all? What is the rationale for this? Is it that the GREAT METROPOLIS of Oberlin, Ohio changed Columbus Day to ‘Indigenous Day’. And you thought it was a good idea? Don’t think Mr. Wilhelm, you are not very good at it. Councilwoman Linda Slocum, a TRUE scholar, used this rationale to justify the change, “Columbus has enjoyed 500 years of praise, and it’s now time to shift the spotlight.” EXCELLENT! Look out Jesus, you have had a 2017-year run, so Christmas and Easter must be next, right Councilwoman Slocum?

Mr. Wilhelm, are you aware of the AMAZING WORK that the Columbus Citizens Foundation actually does? Highly doubtful, you are too busy taking guidance from Melissa Mark-Viverito New York City Council Speaker. And IF SHE is the Speaker, that council should also be disbanded, just saying. Her remarks (I would say “thoughts” but I do not LIE), “a commission should take a look at the statue of Christopher Columbus in Columbus Circle because of his alleged mistreatment of the native population he encountered.” Great concept, so I have an idea…let’s have a commission to raise $24.00 and give Manhattan Island BACK to the Native Americans. And PLEASE note the word “alleged” in Ms. ‘Einstein’-Viverito’s comment, maybe we should buy Ms. Speaker a dictionary?

Let me share some of the things that the Columbus Citizens Foundation actually does for all of US in New York City. They host and PAY FOR IN FULL for the Columbus Day Parade. All of the costs incurred are marked “PAID IN FULL”, from the Columbus Citizens Foundation. The PROFITS from the parade (and there are SIGNIFICANT PROFITS) go to support scholarships for deserving Italian American children, of all levels, from grammar school up through college. Now keep this in mind, so we all understand exactly what this GREAT Foundation does. If they award $2.5 million dollars to college freshmen, they match the students award for the entire 4 years of the recipient’s college career. They also pay for the maintenance for the statue of Columbus.

That being said, does Mr. Wilhelm even have a say in what happens to Columbus’ statue? Warren spent in excess of $2 million for a parade for the U.S. Woman’s World Cup soccer team. You KNOW I LOVE sports and my Country. I just wonder why Mr. Wilhelm picked up the tab (on OUR behalf) when ZERO members of the team were from New York City? Even my “dear friend” New York Senator and Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer shows up to the Columbus Day Parade (I am SURE for the DELICIOUS free food). He even said, “Oggi tutti siamo Italiano.” That translates to “Today everyone’s Italian!” Come on Mr. Wilhelm, even Chuckie gets “it”!

I have spoken with my friend, the great Joe Piscopo (who along with Maria Bartiromo) host the TV coverage of the parade annually and he shared with me that this event is one that he truly looks forward to every year. Joe, Maria, myself and EVERY Italian you’ll ever speak with, not only embraces the Italian culture but we all are PROUD to share it and our happy memories of our family traditions as well…i.e. the Columbus Day Parade!

Anytime Mr. Wilhelm would like to stand up, and face me one-on-one in a debate on the merits of Christopher Columbus and his contribution to not only the United States of America, but to the world at large I am MORE than ready willing and certainly ABLE. After all Mr. Wilhelm, I am a TRUE Italian American, and very proud of that! In fact, we are ALL proud of the past Grand Marshals of the Columbus Day Parade.
2017 – Leonard Riggio
2016 – Robert LaPenta
2015 – Alberto Cribiore
2014 – Frank Bisignano
2013 – Joseph R. Perella
2012 – Mario J. Gabelli
2011 – Joseph J. Plumeri
2010 – Maria Bartiromo
2009 – Kenneth G. Langone
2008 – Admiral Edmund P. Giambastiani, Jr., US Navy (Ret.)
2007 – Lidia Matticchio Bastianich
2006 – General Peter Pace
2005 – Justice Antonin Scalia
2004 – Mario Andretti
2003 – Roberto Cavalli
2002 – Franco Zeffirelli
2001 – Bobby Valentine
2000 – Dan Marino
1999 – Piero Ferrari
1998 – Richard A. Grasso
1997 – Paul Sorvino
1996 – Hon. George E. Pataki
1995 – Louis J. Freeh
1994 – Susan Lucci
1993 – Regis Philbin
1992 – Past Grand Marshals
1991 – Joe Di Maggio
1990 – Tommy La Sorda
1989 – Danny Aiello
1988 – Vincent Gardenia
1987 – Rudolph Giuliani
1986 – Hon. Alfonse D’Amato
1986 – Hon. Mario Cuomo
1985 – Henry Mancini
1984 – Sophia Loren
1983 – Canceled due to the passing of His Eminence, Terence Cardinal Cooke
1982 – Lee Iacocca
1981 – Tony Bennett
1980 – Luciano Pavarotti
1979 – Frank Sinatra
1978 – Bob & Delores Hope
1977 – Vincent J. Peters
1976 – Sergio Franchi
1975 – Yogi Berra
1974 – Frank Capra
1973 – Hon. S. Samuel Di Falco
1972 – Amb. John A.Volpe
1969-71 – Fortune Pope

Mr. Mayor, we’re all on to you trying to save face by saying you’re still planning on marching in the Columbus Day Parade this year, “The parade is a moment to express our pride in our Italian heritage, for all of us who are Italian, and for others to recognize the contributions Italian-Americans have made to New York City and the whole country. So, I am absolutely comfortable continuing to march.” Too little, too late Mr. Wilhelm!

And one last quote, from a great man, a proud Italian American, a dear friend and President of the Columbus Citizens Foundation, Angelo Vivolo, “We are proud to stand up in support of the Columbus Monument and we will do all in our power to preserve its continued presence in our great city of New York.”
The challenge has been made Mr. Wilhelm, now either accept it or leave Christopher Columbus, his statue and HISTORY alone!

Dante Vitoria is the Founder and CEO of The Vitoria Group in New York City.


  1. Derrick Comfort

    Thanks for highlighting more liberal lunacy against Christopher Columbus. The “Light Bearer” has been their target for years. As they say, nothing happens in politics by chance.

    This statue toppling of great men is another assault on our history and heritage by those who seek to remake America in their own image.

  2. Donna Vaters

    Perhaps DeBlasio would prefer that we replace Columbus with a statue of him. After all, this would blend perfectly with the parade that he feels we should have in his honor. The only question is – in what posture would we craft a statue to the current mayor to truly represent his time in NY? With him patting himself on the back or picking his nose to waste time! What folly we allow this man from Massachusetts to enjoy at our expense!

    1. Dante Vitoria (Post author)

      I couldn’t agree more Donna! Hopefully this time New Yorkers will wake up and elect a REAL MAYOR!


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