Legalize the Irish

irish_clover.jpgThis Saint Patrick’s Day, let’s honor all Irish workers who have come to America to seek a better way of life.

I am 6th generation Oakland Irish, and of the second generation to have a college education. My grandfather was a proud blue collar union member who worked in a printing press.

The Kellys came over from Ireland during the peak of the Irish diaspora in the middle of the 19th century.

Oh, like they came here legally.

The Irish used to do all the blue collar jobs. They’d do the stuff that the “natives,” you know, the ones who led millions of indigenous peoples to their deaths, wouldn’t do. And they’d do it for less money, and better, than the Anglos who claimed the Irish were stealing “their” jobs.

Today this tradition continues,  but they’re not getting nearly the same amount of press that they did in prior generations (think “No Irish need apply“). I guess they don’t stand out so much.

People always have to blame somebody.

My Grandma Cathy used to tell me stories about the hullaboo that started when my Boppy proposed to her, as she was half Irish Catholic. 

Her grandmother was a German mail order bride.

Vivan los inmigrantes.


About katiekelly

I grew up in a parking lot.
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4 Responses to Legalize the Irish

  1. Andy says:

    I am full blood Irish. Came here in 1973. Lost passport in 1974. Reported to all concerned. Tried to adjust status many times , but I.N.S always got it wrong. They always blamed me. Have an American wife .Six American born children. I work E.M.S helping save American lives. I was at ground zero 9/11 for eight days and nights. Now because of a lost passport and I94 stamp almost 35yrs later. I am facing deportation. I suppose this is How America says Thanks. We Irish. Stood with George Washington. I suppose all those people who helped to give birth to America , were deported to?

  2. Andy says:

    Sorry . I forgot something. It is stupid I know, but did The Pilgrims have visa’s? How about The descendants? Are they legal?

  3. Andy says:

    wow. This site is a real blast. Loose sleep thinking about it.

  4. katiekelly says:

    Thanks for writing, Andy. I’m sorry to hear about your INS woes. I wish I knew what to say.

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