"I am Irish but I'm a person of colour" is just one of the many powerful statements made by Irish people in a video that's going viral.
"What does Irishness look like?" was posted on Youtube just two days ago and has already received hundreds of positive and negative comments. The video stars Ibrahim Halawa, the Irish student imprisoned in Egypt, as one of the many people sharing their experiences of being Irish in 2018.
The short six-minute video combats our perception of what it means to be Irish and, sadly, highlights racist attitudes that equate Irishness to whiteness. Throughout the video Irish people of colour revealed that they're asked "where are they REALLY from" when they're introduced to a new person.
Alarmingly, some people trolled the YouTube comments section with remarks like "this is just factually inaccurate, this isn't up for debate, you are NOT Irish", "Irish people are white. If you're not white then you can't be Irish", while others celebrated how diverse our society has become.
Irishness is a celebration of Irish culture and tradition and should not be limited to people born in Ireland or with white skin. If we're saying Irishness has to be part of our ancestral gene pool then you'll be surprised to learn that our ancestral gene pool isn't exactly 'pure'. In fact, it's almost impossible.
Here's what our beautiful island looks like today: