Tell you what, friends and neighbors—I’m drunk tonight. Fuck-drunk. Rye whiskey. Went down to Wally’s and got started, went to the greenfront down on Center Street half an hour before they closed and bought a fifth of rye. I know what I’m up to. Drink cheap tonight, pay dear tomorrow. So here he sits, one drunk nigger in a public library after closing, with this book open in front of me and the bottle of Old Kentucky on my left. “Tell the truth and shame the devil,” my mom used to say, but she forgot to tell me that sometimes you can’t shame Mr. Splitfoot sober. The Irish know, but of course they’re God’s white niggers and who knows, maybe they’re a step ahead.
Could anyone explain to me the meaning of the last sentence, i.e. why the Irish know and why they are God's white niggers and are step ahead for what?