One of the things I enjoy about St. Patrick’s day, along with Cinco De Mayo, and other cultural celebrations is how, at least for a short time, we can all celebrate the diversity of our culture. This wonderful country of ours is made up primarily by immigrants. This has been true from the very beginning of our history. I don’t think any other nation has so many cultures combining into one.
We do ourselves a disservice when we turn our backs on any one culture, regardless of the reason. So deeply imbedded into our national identity is the melting pot concept that we often forget that the words on the Statue of Liberty are part of a sonnet written by Emma Lazarus. It expresses an ideal that is uniquely American.
Give us your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to breath free. The wretched refuse of your teeming shore, send these, the homeless, tempest-tossed to me, I lift my lamp beside the golden door.
No other nation on this planet has ever posted such an invitation. It has lifted the spirits of countless immigrants over the years, symbolized what a nation can be, and defined for the world how high an ideal can be. When we combine these words with our Declaration of Independnce We believe all men are created equal we can remember that no one culture, religion or national origin has a lock on what it is to be American
So today, as you wear the green, raise a toast to not only Ireland, but the world at large. We are all one.
Happy Saint Patrick’s Day! May freedom reign!