To Pinch or Not to Pinch: Why Some People Get Pinched on St. Patrick’s Day

To Pinch or Not to Pinch: Why Some People Get Pinched on St. Patrick’s Day

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by Kiersten Friesner

Why do some people get pinched on St Patrick’s Day for not wearing green? Have you ever asked yourself that? Some GHS students have opinions on the matter.

Shiv Vithal (11)

shiv

“I Think people pinch on Saint Patrick’s Day because Saint Patrick died. So we could feel his pain or something like that. We pinch and wear green in honor of Saint Patrick.”

 

 

Christian Elias (9)

chiristian

“They do it because it’s an excuse to pinch people.”

 

 

Breanna Labitzke (12)

breanna“Well, in our psychology class we learned a lot of holidays have social norms that go with them, so what’s the norm on Saint Patrick’s Day? To pinch people. And on top of that, it’s just fun to hurt people.”

 

There are different sources with their own speculations of this odd holiday tradition.

One theory comes from Irish legend. The legend says that one wears green to make them invisible to leprechauns and fairy creatures. If you are not wearing green, the creatures pinch you. According to this theory, humans pinch to remind those not wearing green that they are exposed to the mischief of leprechauns and fairies.

Supposedly when England took over Ireland the “emerald isle” changed to a blue and yellow flag, says csmonitor.com and sfist.com. This also meant that wearing green would have gotten an Irishman killed. So green became the color of the Irish rebellion.

After the potato famine in Ireland, Irish immigrants flocked to America, where they were treated unkindly. In order to not be ashamed of their heritage, the Irish would wear green, and those who didn’t, were pinched for their lack of pride.

st-patricks-day-pinching

gif from the movie “The Princess Bride” (gif from Pinterest)

 

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