Address by President Michael D. Higgins in Boston
09 May 2012
Irish President Michael D. Higgins delivered an address in Boston Saturday as part of the 2012 Annual Irish Famine Commemoration.
On Saturday, 5 May 2012 President of Ireland Michael and Patron of Gorta D. Higgins visited Boston. He gave a presentation on the impact if the Famine at Faneuil Hall followed by a wreath laying ceremony at the Boston Irish Famine Memorial at the corner of School and Washington Streets.
The event was part of the 2012 Annual Irish Famine Commemoration which encompasses a yearlong program of commemoration. Boston has been designated by the Irish government as the official site for overseas events in 2012.
In an address entitled: Reflecting on the Gorta Mór: the Great Famine of Ireland Some narratives, their lessons and their legacy, The President acknowledged the complex legacy of the famine, which he called Ireland’s “greatest social calamity.”
In a pointed moment, The President decried the failure of the world community to stamp out hunger.
“To international relations, governments, and the institutions which generations place their trust [in], it remains one of the great unresolved ethical challenges of our time – the daily needless loss of life to hunger and preventable diseases,” The President said.
The speech drew many members of Boston’s Irish community, who packed the hall to near capacity. They greeted The President, who has made reconnecting with emigrated Irish a priority of his presidency, with warm applause.