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  • St. Patrick’s Day on a Sunday is about as useless as a eunuch trying to do the money shot on a porn shoot. If you are young, chances are that you (and the watering holes you hang out at) did the social math and got St. Paddy jiggy wit’ it last night. Some people would say that getting boozed up isn’t the correct way to celebrate St. Patrick bringing Christianity to Ireland, but we all know that’s not true because the only reason this holiday got big was that it released observant Catholics who happened to be drunks (in other words: Irish) from the penance of Lent to go out and get hammered and feast for the day. And, according to most focused, ancient stereotypes and hatreds, being drunk is being Irish enough, hence, the proper way to celebrate St. Paddy chasing the snake cults out of Ireland.

    Of course, here in America, it’s just another bar holiday and reason to get smash faced drunk while trying to claim some glinty wisp of a pubic hair of Irish heritage in your background. Next to claiming to be some meager percentage of Cherokee (or strangely enough these days, Jewish), finding the Mick in the wood pile seems to be an American past time for white people, especially today. Strangely enough, no one digs deep for their long lost Mexican ancestor on Cinco de Mayo, and this is probably because the lack of perceived suffering within a romanticized historical framework: the Cherokees have the Trail of Tears, the Jews have The Holocaust, and the Irish have the potato famine and massive mid-nineteenth century migration to the Americas. Being Irish means that you are an immigrant problem from the past while being Mexican means you’re an immigrant problem right now, and white people tend to like a little time and space before appropriating the heritage of a conquered culture into their glorious patchwork. Plus, there’s the skin color thing. And you Mexicans are just too damn dark for us whiteys to claim affiliation with.

    It’s hard to believe now, but racist groups of the past didn’t even allow the Irish into the fold, generally due to their status as Papal idolaters, and you could forget about Jewish Christ killers, fried bread eating Indians and Mexicans (boarder jumpers or not). Things change though. With the heavy incarceration rates of darker skinned folks in our growing privatized industrial prison gulag and whites being heavily outnumbered, the definition of being white has gotten a bit watered down since the 1920s' KKK heydays and first the Irish and then even some Jews (the ones that were Ashkenazi and rejected their born religion) were allowed in. The dark “mud people” are still kept at a distance. But, that kind of hatred can go the other way and to extremes as well. The most important lesson of St. Patrick's Day (other than don't drive around drunk when the cops are out in force looking for drunk drivers) is that if white people don’t have any blacks or brown people around to hate, they find another group to concentrate and focus their hate on, such as the Irish.

    So, since this glorious holiday seems to be drenched in a sub-text of racial hatred and religious intolerance, I’m not celebrating it by doing the exact opposite. I woke up early today, without a hangover, went to a Protestant church service wearing orange, and had some beans on toast for breakfast; I'm having some crumpets and Earl Grey tea right now, and later I'm going to an English themed prime rib and ale house for dinner. And tonight, I will watch nothing but English themed movies such as Robin Hood, Elizabeth, and The Lion in Winter. Fuck being Irish for just one day. If you're a true Irishman (or woman) you'll get drunk when you damned well please and not when people tell you to.
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