i love transparency in relationships. i don’t wanna have to ask u how u feel about me. i wanna see it, feel it, and know it.
Celebrate St. Patrick’s Day by quietly remembering that Native Americans sent more aid to Ireland during the famine than Britain or the US.
specifically, it was the Choctaw nation that sent aid to the Irish during the famine
1. “more aid to ireland during the famine than britain” okay let’s clear this up, again– there was no famine, it was a genocide, commited specifically by the british. ireland was literally packed with food. the only crop that failed was the potato crop. the british had no problem with ships FULL OF FOOD leaving british ports on british ships from ireland to other places to make money. IT. WAS. NOT. A. FAMINE. IT. WAS. A. GENOCIDE. and that probably explains why britain didn’t “send aid”. britain was literally using the “famine” they manufactured to clear the land of indigenous irish people.
2. which lends poignancy and power to the attempt by the choctaw nation to send food to starving irish people.
3. there was much fanfair about this in the british press at the time, because of course the british government was lying to its own people about what they were doing. it’s convenient to blame natural disasters like “famine” when in fact it is mass murder– kinda like what’s going on in yemen right now. but to conclude, what didn’t receive a lot of fanfair in the british press is the fact that much of the corn and other food the choctaw nation attempted to send did not go to starving irish people, it was essentially hijacked and went to feed british pigs and livestock.
4. which is why every saint patrick’s day we remember the genocide (one of many the british attempted in ireland) of black ‘47. and we always remember the native americans who responded in such good will and with such generosity to starving people an ocean away from them.
And - all through primary school (until age 12) it was taught as a famine; only in secondary school did we learn that the British caused it deliberately. There’s a fair amount of Irish YA novels about the Famine (can’t remember titles off the top of my head), and they’re all pretty brutal with the facts of what happened. Not to mention most people’s great-grandparents probably lived through it - it’s not that far back.
Also there’s a monument to the Choctaw nation somewhere up the country for the help.
It’s by Alex Pentek, it’s in Bailick Park, Midleton, Co. Cork, and it’s called “Kindred Spirits”.
“The English never remember and the Irish never forget.” (Chesterton)
Not forgetting is why there are so many Irish names here.
(The link above is to donate to the Navajo & Hopi Families COVID-19 Relief Fund - definitely contribute if you can! I could not find a website to donate to a Choctaw relief fund.)