St. Patrick’s Day Should Remind Us Of U.S. Anti-Migrant Sentiment

No Irish Need Apply

It’s no secret that the Irish went through exactly what the Hispanics today are going through when well over a million migrated to the U.S. to escape the potato famine. Rather than the embrace of loving Americans they were greeted with signs that said “Irish Need Not Apply” along with the Know Nothing movement – Watch this video “No Irish Need Apply.”From counterpunch.org:

American rivers will literally run green on Saint Patrick’s Day to celebrate the ‘Irish in America.’ Annually, massive parades, green beer, the ‘wearing of the green’ and a genuflection by the political establishment mark the Irish contribution to and presence in the United States. The 2006 US census bureau reports that close to 36 million Americans claim Irish ancestry. However, such a spectacular celebration of one of America’s largest immigrant population seems especially ill-fitted today in the midst of a growing crackdown on immigrants and the ratcheting up of anti-immigrant rhetoric.

From Wikipedia:

Negative English attitudes to the Irish date as far back as the reign of Henry II. An early example is the chronicler Gerald of Wales, who visited the island in the company of Prince John. As a result of this he wrote Topographia Hibernia (“Topography of Ireland”) and Expugnatio Hibernia (“Conquest of Ireland”), both of which remained in circulation for centuries afterwards. Ireland, in his view, was rich; but the Irish were backward and lazy;

They use their fields mostly for pasture. Little is cultivated and even less is sown. The problem here is not the quality of the soil but rather the lack of industry on the part of those who should cultivate it. This laziness means that the different types of minerals with which hidden veins of the earth are full are neither mined nor exploited in any way. They do not devote themselves to the manufacture of flax or wool, nor to the practice of any mechanical or mercantile act. Dedicated only to leisure and laziness, this is a truly barbarous people. They depend on their livelihood for animals and they live like animals.[1]

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