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  • irishtimes.com - Posted: September 1, 2010 @ 11:12 am

    Carey cares

    Pól Ó Muirí

    Minister for the Gaeltacht, Pat Carey, offers a stout defence of the Government’s commitment to the Irish language in today’s Tuarascáil. Essentially, he says that the Government reminds steadfast in its support and intends to deliver a 20-year language strategy that will be radical and worthwhile. The Minister was responding to criticism of the Government from the Donegal-based pressure group, Guth na Gaeltachta.

    Have to say that it is very heartening to see groups in the Donegal Gaeltacht to the fore in making their concerns known so effectively and it is equally heartening to see Minister Carey respond with the same sort of vigour. Ding, ding, seconds out…

    • George says:

      Forget about the Irish language, it never done any of us elderly who had to emigrate in the 50s and 60s any good, a country that throughout history exports most of it’s youth ought to spend more time improving their understanding of English as this is where 80% of the exported go. As i remember back in the early sixties the holyhead boat was always full of the poor and Half-educated from the west of ireland. These people if not dead are now libving in doss houses all over britain. Language is only a means of communication nothing else,the is nothing permanent about any language as it change with time ,just try comparing the English of today with that of the sixteenth century. It is said there is about two million and more irish in britain, and very few will ever return so their children with their irish names will become very British and quite a few will end up in northern ireland in the British army,. The will not even remember that there ancestors died in the famine . The learning of Irish should be voluntary and good luck to those who wish to learn it,as it will not be of any benefit when you emigrate.

    • Oscar Murray says:

      Who are we without our language? We should make a serious effort to revive it as the language of everyday usage or let it die but please stop paying lip service to it with token nods to its peripheral presence -’Gardai’ , ‘Oireachtas’ etc.
      With the right approach, fluency for all school leavers could be achieved over a period of time, with quality immersive teaching from an early age. It could take 100 years, but it is possible.

    • Jim says:

      George, what a bleak attitude you seem to have about everything. You make LIFE almost seem futile. But to speak plainly, language isn’t about economics, or it shouldn’t. The Irish have bought that lie that English is a national jewel and advantage, but there are places that get by just fine without much English at all. You’d think in our “advanced” world you wouldn’t have to give up your language and be sucked into the English vortex in order to make a living. But the Irish language is YOURS. It a doorway into a culture and viewpoint that simply doesn’t exist in any other medium. Every man who dwells on the Island should take the personal responsibility to learn as much Irish as they can, and to have there children school into it so they can maintain or develop fluency. Use it and you’ll see that it has more “value” to you. That’s the thing about language, you have to use it to see the value. And think of any harm that can come of it? None. But much good, because you’ll have saved a treasure of your cultural identity and a cultural link from the great homogeneity of our time. Ádh mór oraibh, a chairde!

    • Neil Doherty says:

      George..your comment is a joke. What do you mean by improving people’s English?And why do so many Irish people think that English is so vital for communication with that vague concept that is the rest of the world?Being competent in two languages is the norm in that same rest of the world and why should Ireland be any different??Is it the lazy arrogance that can come with the so called ‘World Language’ that prevents people from extending their boundaries past one language?Like Jim says language should never be reduced to economics.An Armenian from Lebanon sittting next to me on a flight from Dublin to ıstanbul was horrified at the idea that most Irısh people make little or no effort to teach the language to their chıildren as the Armenians do. He himself was competent in Armenian, Arabic, Turkish, French and English and here we are complaining about one more language ….which is actually ours……sad.

    • Máirtín Mac Cormaic says:

      Poor George. I could not be angry with you but sorry for you. You see, there are none so blind as those who cannot see. George probably knows the cost of everything but the value of nothing. I suppose I am wasting my time if I say any more.

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