As I write this, it's March 17 -- St. Patrick's Day - - and as a member of the Irish diaspora, I'm wearing green and playing the CD Murphy's Irish Pub as I work. This is the one day of the year that I immerse myself in my ancestry.
I’m an American first and foremost, but who I am as an individual stems largely from my Irish ancestors, who emigrated to the U.S. from Ireland in the 1700s. They left Ireland for many reasons, including survival during the Potato Famine. They saw not only an opportunity for survival, but also for prosperity in America, as evidenced by these lyrics from an Irish ballad, “The Green Fields of America”: (more...)