We all think we know what being Irish means: a family full of alcoholism, a funny accent, a fixation with the color green, four leaf clovers and a let’s not forget those potatoes. Of course, when you use the term “Irish,” do you really know where your ancestors came from? According to some new research about the origins of Irish people, you may be a bit off.
Professor Dan Bradley at Trinity College in Dublin led a study where he and his fellow scientists worked to trace back the roots of a particular farmer from Ireland and map her DNA back about 5,200 years to the area around modern Belfast. They also worked with the genes of three other Irish men who lived about 4,000 years ago in the same area. In their research, they were able to find signs of massive migration. In this migration, they were able to trace the origins of these ancient men and woman back to the Middle East and even as far as Russia. In other words, the original natives of Ireland weren’t really natives at all.
Well, first of all you need to forget that old Irish Catholic tradition and go pick up a copy of the Koran. Next, you have to stop drinking that whiskey and eating potatoes and instead should start getting used to the traditional cuisine of Islam. Or not…
Actually, if you are living in the 21st century it really shouldn’t mean anything. Cultural identity is so 20th century and today you are much better off if you just realize we are all children of the same world. More directly, who cares? The reality is if anyone reaches back far enough they will find their ancestors ultimately came from Mesopotamia, which is somewhere over in the Middle East. So, technically everyone is of Middle Eastern descent, which someone might want to remind a certain presidential candidate.
Speaking of which, if Mr. Trump does manage to get the nomination, there likely is one thing you will have to watch out for. Get ready to be put on a national registry and don’t be too surprised if you end up being deported back to your home in the
Middle East Ireland. Or, whatever he might want to call it. If it’s not in America, it doesn’t really count.
If you are still insistent on holding tightly to your Irish heritage, then go ahead and do that too. The reality is this study only looked at four people, which really doesn’t paint a picture of the entire country of Ireland. Furthermore, additional research shows the people who were inhabiting Ireland had some significant genetic changes around 4,000 years ago when the Celts were a big thing. So, celebrate St. Patty’s Day like it’s Christmas and keep enjoying that excellent whiskey.