Fern Park, FL
There is a huge chunk of Irish slavery in colonial America eliminated from the public school history books. Why? We can only guess… but the history is there, the proof is there, and yet, it is completely ignored.
There were the same amounts of Irish brought to America and sold into slavery as there were Africans. Irish slaves were sold for roughly a quarter of the price of Africans, and thus were beaten and killed in higher numbers because it was more affordable to lose an Irish slave than an African. Irish girls were forced to breed with African males in order to produce Mulatto slave children, which sold at a high price in the slave markets. This was such a problem that eventually, a law was signed in that prohibited the practice – not for ethical reasons, but because it was taking business away from the big-time slave traders who brought captives in from overseas.
You don’t have to trust my word, though – look it up for yourself. You’ll see that everything I’ve said here is very true. This absolutely cannot be ignored, especially not with the huge emphasis put upon the history of the enslavement of Africans. We can’t forget the Irish; to ignore their history is to disrespect the dead.
I would not put Irish and Italian in the same sentence. Two totally different histories in this country. Both faced tremendous discrimination, but for different reasons. The problem with putting them in the same sentence is that it would imply some solidarity or some similar experience. It’s not there. The unfortunate reality is that in the case of Italian immigrants during the early 20th century, the discrimination came not only from the Anglo-Saxon old school white American, but also from the Irish Americans who were thoroughly established in this country by that time. Look up “Italian Problem” in the Archdiocese of NY and you’ll get what I’m talking about, or look at studies of dock work (“one white man can do the work of three Italians”) early 20th century, etc. Italian immigrants at that time saw no difference between English, Irish, and German: those were all just a bunch of Americans who gave them a hard time. After WWII, with the exodus out of ethnic neighborhoods to the suburbs, these two groups forgot their differences as they assimilated and other aspects of their identities, such as Catholic, became more pronounced. Then began the intermarriage… But, unfortunately, as long as American history books fixate solely on white people and black people, we will never learn the history of the many, many immigrant ethnic groups in the country. And, quite conveniently we will continue to discriminate against today’s immigrants just as we did against those of the past, and often with the very same words. So sad.