Is St. Patrick's Day just the worst? | The Tylt
Like Valentine's Day and New Year's Eve, St. Patrick's Day is a holiday with huge fans and serious haters. For some, it's a fantastic celebration of Ireland's patron saint—complete with parades, corned beef and cabbage, green shakes, and beer. For others, it is a horrifying week of public drunkenness, with green-clad twentysomething girls vomiting in gutters while men yell nonsensical things and fight each other. Do you love or hate St. Patrick's Day? 🍻 ☘️ 🇮🇪
Is St. Patrick's Day just the worst?
What began as a religious feast day for the patron saint of Ireland has become a massive party celebrating Irish culture. Since nearly 35 million Americans claim some Irish heritage, a lot of people turn out for the party. Who doesn't enjoy a day of drinking, toasting and wearing o' the green? 🍻 ☘️ 🇮🇪
Answer: A lot of people. Even the Irish find the alcoholic excess of St. Patrick's Day both embarrassing and stupid. For many city dwellers, it's just a shitty day where the bars, streets and public transportation are filled with drunken hooligans.
But historically, St. Patrick's Day in America is far different from its current incarnation. The Irish were once a despised, unwelcome minority in the U.S., and St. Patrick's Day parades actually began as a statement of defiance and pride in the face of discrimination:
[The holiday] became a way to assert Irish Catholic identity and worth, and to mark one's space in the face of considerable hostility and discrimination. In places like New York and Chicago, Irish Americans were determined to make a place for themselves. The parades and related events announced this determination. They were a way of saying, "We're here, we're proud of our culture, and we're not going anywhere."
Despite the lamentations of your Irish uncle about how much his people suffered under the boot of the English and everyone else—you're not oppressed anymore! You haven't been since John F. Kennedy was president. So how come every year, the celebration of this annoying alcoholic holiday starts even earlier?
what the hell is going on in chicago? There's already tons of people milling around in st patricks day get-ups, looking for beer— Brooke Larson (@BrookeTLarson) March 11, 2017
So much vomiting. It's a New Year's Eve nightmare all over again.
But for others, it really is the best holiday of the year 🍻 ☘️ 🇮🇪