There appears to be many misrepresentations of Irish history. Let me make it perfectly clear. When the Irish came to America in the 1800’s many believe it was from the potato blight and a famine. Yes there was a potato blight but, there was no famine. What actually occurred was genocide conducted by the English ruling class. In earlier Irish history the English won decisive battles against the Irish. So the island of Ireland was governed by an oppressive foreign country. It was so oppressive that the Irish people lost their land holdings, land passed down from fathers to sons. Britain had brought in and gave possession of land to Scottish and English landlords previously owned by the Irish. The people who worked the land as tenant farmer were the Irish themselves. When the potato blight happened it wasn’t just Ireland, it was also happening in Europe. This potato blight didn’t cause a famine in Ireland. There was plenty of sustainable food harvested and produced that was being shipped out of the country. The potato was a root crop that tenant farming families depended on as a sole staple in their diet. Since the potato harvest failed, tenant farmers with little else to grow to pay for working the land were forced off by the landlords. Consequently many of the people died of starvation and the others emigrated to America. Passage was paid for by the English or by the Irish people themselves. As the Irish immigrant stepped ashore in America if family wasn’t waiting at the docks many settled in major cities with deplorable living conditions. Many a man was recruited into the Union Army during the American Civil War period. After the end of the American Civil War was when the first St. Patrick’s Day was observed and parades became popular. Now we Irish have been portrayed as lazy , apes, drunks and the blunt of jokes in degrading form. So we members of the Ancient Order of Hibernians in America have drafted a document that we distribute widely prior to St. Patrick’s Day: “We in the Irish community are fully aware of the commercial aspect of observing St. Patrick’s Day. We are also aware of, and do not appreciate, nor do we wish to see, degrading or insulting depictions of our Irish ethnicity. We welcome celebrations, not attacks. WE WILL NOT SUPPORT businesses or commercial outlets that insult us. Instead, true and complimentary aspects of our culture should be depicted involving our social organizations, dance, music, language , art and the charities we generously support. These would provide a large pool of subjects and objects worthy of your commercial attention. Celebrate the spirit of St. Patrick’s Day with us”. Slainte!