St. Patrick is the patron saint of Ireland, even though he was never formally made a saint by the church. He also drove all the snakes out of Ireland. Of course, there weren’t any snakes there to begin with. It seems to me he should be the patron saint of ‘work smart, not hard’.
Unless of course we’re going with the generally accepted metaphor of ‘snakes’ being pagans. Then he likely worked pretty hard. No one really knows how much actual driving out of pagans he did versus just converting them, but I’m going to guess at least some violence ensued, as it usually does when you try to destroy an entire religion.
So, what are we celebrating? His death, of course. It makes sense if you think about it. Here’s a guy whose life mission was to force his religion on those who disagreed with him. So, now we celebrate his death in honor of all those souls who died, were driven from their homes, or were forced to live without their gods until death came naturally. We drink in honor of these souls.
All of them.
We must honor the snakes who were needlessly driven from their homes. Some were driven from their physical homes. Others had their home driven from their hearts. But we must honor them.
Every. Last. One.
And that, my friends, is the reason we get completely smashed on St. Patrick’s Day.