“The quality of the rich is determined not the quality of their riches but by the quality of the food given to the poor.” –Pope (paraphrased version)
I read this quote when I visited the Irish memorial on Thursday with Mark, Katherine, Adam, Sandy and Melissa. Although this wasn’t the ideal destination of our trip, it was very informative. The Irish Hunger memorial is dedicated to all those who suffered those harsh times during the potato famine. The memorial was situated in an inconspicuous part of Manhattan, overlooking a large body of water. When I read this quote, I was astonished and I decided to do some research. It turns out that although the majority of Irish were Catholics at that time period, most of them were poor. Most of the upper class members of society were English protestants, which explains the subsequent tension between the Irish and English. The pope said this quote to convince those upper class Englishmen to provide for the Catholics living in Ireland at the time.
Overall, the memorial seemed somewhat drab and gloomy. The location and the dark night sky seemed to enhance that effect. Surprisingly, however, couples came there for the solitude and other small groups also came to see the memorial. It seemed that some parts of the memorial need more renovation and merited greater attention from the public. Even though I am not Irish, I believe that it is extremely important to rejuvenate this memorial for the sake of history.