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St. Patrick’s Day is one of the most celebrated holidays in the United States. It is an excellent example of many of the things that make our country great. Furthermore, the festival also shows respect for a religious leader and an old figure. It brings Irish culture into the wider American one.
It brings all people together, Catholic or not, into one big feast day. However, some people go too far in their revelry. St. Patrick’s Day is a beautiful tradition that we should keep as pure as possible. Drink if you choose, but don’t get behind the wheel. Ehline Law’s here to let you know some of the critical facts and figures behind this holiday.
St. Patrick’s Day is often associated with the Catholic Church and Ireland. St. Patrick was a Christian missionary and later bishop in Ireland. He wrote a story of his travels, including his early days in Roman Britain. Members of his family were Christians. Patrick himself was kidnapped and brought back to Ireland at 16 years old. The raiders enslaved him, and he worked for six years as a shepherd.
At this point, God told him to flee to the ocean, waiting for a boat. The future Saint did and made it back to Britain. He returned to Ireland and converted the formerly pagan Irish to the Christian faith. He spent much of his time-saving people. This famous fellow became the tale of his driving of snakes out of Ireland. According to tradition, he died on March 17th, which still bears his name.
Ireland celebrates the holiday. But St Paddy’s Day remains more of an Irish festival celebrated by people with non-Irish descendants. This particular day includes dancing, drinking, and parades. Chicago has one of the largest Irish parades in the country– even shown in The Fugitive motion picture with Harrison Ford. People celebrating will often dress in green and wear clovers representing Ireland’s pagan to Catholic conversion.
The simple answer is booze. And perhaps DUI drivers were counting on the luck of the Irish to drive themselves home safely? People drink much more alcohol on St. Paddy’s day and ensuing days, including the following weekend. Since St. Patrick’s Day often falls on Fridays, you must keep your eyes open, looking for drunk drivers. According to NBC Los Angeles, March 17th is one of the deadliest days of the year. Police responded with DUI checkpoints. According to the National Highway Traffic and Safety Administration, there were 276 fatal accidents on that day between 2009 and 2013.
The Laguna Beach Patch reminds everyone that police are out in force this weekend. Additionally, the Riverside County Sheriff’s Department is launching its crackdown. Nerdwallet has a great feature on the increased cost of insurance after a DUI conviction. Drinking and driving are never acceptable. Also, DWIs are enforced more during this period. Stay safe on the road out there and don’t drink and drive. Call someone a cab if they’re considering doing so. You must take steps to avoid creating serious injury victims or getting tossed in jail.
Michael is a managing partner at the nationwide Ehline Law Firm, Personal Injury Attorneys, APLC. He’s an inactive Marine and became a lawyer in the California State Bar Law Office Study Program, later receiving his J.D. from UWLA School of Law. Michael has won some of the world’s largest motorcycle accident settlements.