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The Daltaí Boards » Archive: 1999-2004 » 2004 (October-December) » Archive through November 24, 2004 » Ó Cuiv accused of 'daft statement' I.T. 11.10.2004 « Previous Next »

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Náid (Unregistered Guest)
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Posted From: 62.231.55.170
Posted on Wednesday, November 10, 2004 - 05:41 am:   Edit Post Print Post

Article published in The Irish Times, 11.10.2004

O Cuiv accused of 'daft statement'
Michael O'Regan



The Minister for Gaeltacht Affairs was accused of "crazy logic" in his attitude to the Irish language.

The charge against Mr Ó Cuív was made by the Labour spokesman, Mr Brian O'Shea, who asked the Minister to elaborate on his comment that the outcry against the singing of the Irish national anthem in English at the Ryder Cup was evidence that the vast majority of people had a positive attitude towards the language.

"We need to be much more accurate and scientific in what we say," said Mr O'Shea.

Mr Ó Cuív said an allegation had been made that there was "general bad will" towards the language, with just a few people interested in it.

"While travelling throughout the country, everywhere I go I find general goodwill towards the language. There has been research on this issue in the past," he added.

"While I have a science background, the reality is that one of the best tests of popular opinion is the mood of this House.

"One thing that can be said of politicians of all colours is that they tend to get the way the wind is blowing fairly fast. Allowing for the fact that this House reflects the view of the people, there appears to be goodwill towards the language."

Mr Ó Cuív said the fact that everyone sang the national anthem in Irish indicated that there was not a general antipathy towards the language, because if that were the case, people would sing it in English.

Mr O'Shea claimed that the Minister's statement was "unscientific", adding that the attitude of the vast majority of the population was not known.

"We will not know that unless and until qualitative research is carried out or, alternatively, there is a referendum on the matter," he added.

"My basic point is that a daft statement such as this damages the movement that seeks to preserve and promote the Irish language."

Based on the Minister's reply, Mr O'Shea said they were getting a little bit of "looking into our hearts and seeing what the Irish people want". They needed to know what people in general thought about the language before they could move forward.

Mr Ó Cuív said: "A comprehensive policy is being followed in regard to the language. We must be careful about research, which is often largely influenced by how one asks a question."

The Minister said that he was a great believer in the wisdom of the political system. "It is often the best opinion poll of all, because sometimes the antennae of politicians are much more accurate than surveys since sometimes questions are loaded to provide a specific answer," he added.

Mr O'Shea remarked: "I am sure the Minister believes the waffle we have just heard has some significance."

"It is a fact," replied Mr Ó Cuív.

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Aonghus
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Username: Aonghus

Post Number: 386
Registered: 08-2004
Posted on Wednesday, November 10, 2004 - 06:46 am:   Edit Post Print Post

While Brian O'Shea is the labour parties spokesman on Irish, he is notorious for this kind of thing.

BTW, Náid, I really don't like your anonymous posting of various (often anti Irish) articles from the Irish times to this website; I feel the discussions they generate are not really helpful to the core users of this website, who are learners of the language. I will be trying to ignore them in future.

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Seosamh Mac Muirí (Unregistered Guest)
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Posted From: 193.1.100.102
Posted on Wednesday, November 10, 2004 - 08:08 am:   Edit Post Print Post

(often anti Irish) articles from the Irish times to this website; I feel the discussions they generate are not really helpful to the core users of this website, who are learners of the language.

Tagaim le hAongus a Náid. Is mó aimhleas na scéalta sin ná a mhalairt, faraor. Ní thuigfeadh foghlaimeoir Gaeilge i Meiriceá cuid den tseafóid a bhíonn ar bun ag leath-Ghaeilgeoirí na hÉireann a mbíonn de chúram ag cuid acu labhairt faoi gnóthaí Gaeilge sa Dáil, i mBéarla an chuid is mó den am.
Ní fiú a bheith le seafóid. Tá an saol róghar.

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Alevans
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Username: Alevans

Post Number: 146
Registered: 08-2004
Posted on Wednesday, November 10, 2004 - 09:06 am:   Edit Post Print Post

Seosamh: "Tagaim le hAongus a Náid."

Agus mise freisin.

"Ní thuigfeadh foghlaimeoir Gaeilge i Meiriceá cuid den tseafóid a bhíonn ar bun ag leath-Ghaeilgeoirí na hÉireann..."

I, for one, don't understand it at ALL. I don't understand why anyone would detest a language, I don't understand why anyone would react negatively when an "outsider" speaks their language, ...

In fact, I don't understand why everyone over there doesn't just LEARN the bloody language and get on with their lives.

From an outsider's standpoint, Irish politics makes no sense at all when you first look at it. Learning more about the issues sometimes seems to make it worse:-)

--Al Evans

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James
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Username: James

Post Number: 56
Registered: 08-2004
Posted on Wednesday, November 10, 2004 - 09:48 am:   Edit Post Print Post

One of the best sayings I've heard about Irish politics is something to the effect of:

If you understand Irish politics, then you obviously have no understanding of Irish politics!

What confounds me, and pardon me from dragging a comment from another posting into this one but they seem related...what counfounds me is the reluctance of the Irish to speak the language to outsiders. I've spoken Spanish all over the world with total acceptance, my pathetic attempts at German were accepted with a smile and a laugh throughout Bavaria, my horrible butchering of Korean was again comically accepted and nurtured from Seoul to Munsan. Any attempt at Swahili was embraced with a smile and some gentle corrections, even the Somalis were delighted at my futile attempts with that most difficult language.

I can't understand why the vast majority of the Irish with such a rich history, with one of the oldest written histories of Europe...I just can't understand why they don't embrace the language. And I don't understand why those of us who bother to take the time and expend no small effort to learn the language are marginalized for our efforts.

You can talk about the english beating Irish out of the kids, you can even argue that the nuns and priests tried to beat Irish into the kids but you know what? That's in the past...get over it! We live in the 21st flippin' century and teaching tactics have come a long way and Ireland (at least the Republic) is its own country now. What's driving this resistance?

I just don't get it!

Le meas,

James

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Aonghus
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Username: Aonghus

Post Number: 387
Registered: 08-2004
Posted on Wednesday, November 10, 2004 - 12:03 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

Post colonial insecurity

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Jonas
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Username: Jonas

Post Number: 531
Registered: 08-2004


Posted on Wednesday, November 10, 2004 - 12:26 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

Exactly. My experience of speaking foreign languages very much resemble what James writes. I've spoken Croatian in Croatia and been met with an entusiastic response; I've spoken Spanish in Spain and had Spaniards smile at my attempts but still answering me in Spanish; in the Catalan area of Valencia I've been met with surprise and even some admiration when I've tried to communicate in Valencià. Even in Wales have people always ALWAYS replied in Welsh when I've started in that language. Throughout Europe people have been either delighted that I try to speak their language (most of Europe) or expected that I do (England, France, Germany). The only exception is Ireland. Sure, in the villages in which I've lived people have started to speak Irish to me - but only after some time. Once, on Inis Meáin, I desperately tried to get a man in his middle ages to speak Irish to me (it was clearly his first language). In the end I had to lie and say that I, as a Finn, unfortunately had very poor English. Then he was happy to converse in Irish :-)

As Aonghus says, this is an old insecurity. For most of the past 200 years, speaking Irish has equaled poverty, and some Irish speakers may feel that a stranger who speaks Irish assumes that the Irish speaker has bad English. Of course, the Irish speaker immediately wants to show that his English skills are good, so he switches to English and this in turn makes the learner feel that his Irish is bad.... A vicious circle, I'd say.

I fully agree with James, and I'm sure all of us do, that there is no reason whatsoever for this attitude but it is still too common.

To end on a happier note: when I first came to Conamara I used to frequent a little village shop. The first time I was there the owner only spoke English to me. The second time, he did the same thing. Quite soon, as he began to know me, he switched to Irish and after that he always spoke Irish to me. One time, when the shop was unusually full with customers, he even called out loudly to the other customers (in Irish) that they all had to come to meet the Irish speaker from Finland. :-) People to start to talk Irish once you know them, but of course I would want them to have the confidence to do so right away.

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Patrick Roche (Unregistered Guest)
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Posted From: 67.70.194.131
Posted on Wednesday, November 10, 2004 - 01:26 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

I just read Jonas' message with interest... I remember a similar incident that occured to me in An Cheathru Rua...I was in a shop and needed some things, one being a hair brush. There were a group of older women at the cash along with the salesperson and I asked in Irish did they have hair brushes on sale, however at that time I did not know the word for hair brush so I said that word in English. I was directed to the appropriate place. When I returned to the cash, the sales person held up the brush and said the word in Irish to me a couple of times... she made me repeat it and then all the women there said it...

I bet that when everything else has gone from my mind I will always remember hair brush in Irish...

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Seosamh Mac Muirí (Unregistered Guest)
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Posted From: 193.1.100.104
Posted on Wednesday, November 10, 2004 - 02:31 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

Déarfainn go raibh tú Tigh Mhicí a Phádraic. Duine iontach dílis don teanga is ea fear an tí sin.

Le Jonas:
People start to talk Irish once you know them:

Sin é go díreach agus baineann cúthalacht leis an scéal chomh maith. Ní gá ach an oiread gur ró-umhlaíocht amach is amach an luiteamas le Béarla. Tá a fhios agam daoine a labhródh Béarla cúig míle bealaigh as a mbaile féin mar nach mbeadh aithne cheart acu ar an nduine a mbeidís ag caint leo. Cúthalacht.
Iascairí agus lucht feirme caorach an dá dhream is fearr leis an nGaeilge a bhrú chun cinn taobh amuigh dá gceantar féin, bídís i mbaile mór nó beag.

A Jonas, a chara,

Thugas fé ndeara nár ghlacas buíochas leat cheana nuair a fhilleas ar ais tar éis an tsamhraidh. Tusa a bheannaigh dom ar an gclár so i dtosach ach gur luigh m'aire ar an nduine a scríobh i do dhiaidh, tharla gur bheirt agaibh a d'fháiltigh romham. Bhíos róthapaidh ar an méarchlár le hais a raibh an scáileán. Bhí sé tamall maith ina dhiaidh sin sular thugas fé ndeara go ndearnas an leathcheal san ort. Gabh mo leithscéal fé sin a dhuine mhaith.

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(Unregistered Guest)
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Posted From: 67.70.194.131
Posted on Wednesday, November 10, 2004 - 02:40 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

Ceapaim go bhfuil ceart agat a Sheosamh. Daoine macanta a ba iad go deimhin.

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Patrick Roche (Unregistered Guest)
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Posted From: 67.70.194.131
Posted on Wednesday, November 10, 2004 - 02:42 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

oops... rinne me dearmad ar mo ainm.

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Rebecca (Unregistered Guest)
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Posted From: 213.202.129.36
Posted on Wednesday, November 10, 2004 - 04:24 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

Caithfidh mé a rá libh má tá sibh sa Cheathrú Rua gur cheart dul go 'Tigh Mhicí' Is fear chomh deas sin é agus sílim gur chaill sé go leor gnó ón uair a d'oscail an Spar. Nuair a bhímse sa Cheathrú Rua déanaim cinnte tacaíocht a thabhairt dó.

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(Unregistered Guest)
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Posted From: 67.70.194.131
Posted on Wednesday, November 10, 2004 - 04:48 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

Tá suil agam go mbeidh mé sa Cheathru Rua annuraidh agus tabharfaidh mé tacaiocht dó go cinnte.

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Aonghus
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Username: Aonghus

Post Number: 391
Registered: 08-2004
Posted on Thursday, November 11, 2004 - 04:32 am:   Edit Post Print Post

An bhlian seo chugainn, seans?

anuraidh [dobhriathar]
an bhliain seo caite.

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Antaine
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Username: Antaine

Post Number: 21
Registered: 10-2004
Posted on Thursday, November 11, 2004 - 07:26 am:   Edit Post Print Post

you know, if náid gave half the time he spends doing this to volunteering with an organization like Daltaí he could revive Irish to its pre-famine levels single handedly...

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Patrick (Unregistered Guest)
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Posted From: 67.70.194.131
Posted on Thursday, November 11, 2004 - 09:52 am:   Edit Post Print Post

oops...dearmad aris... an bhlian seo chugainn... go raibh maith agat a Aonghus

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Smugairle Róin (Unregistered Guest)
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Posted From: 81.136.120.106
Posted on Thursday, November 11, 2004 - 10:04 am:   Edit Post Print Post

What is "hairbrush" in Irish?

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Aonghus
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Username: Aonghus

Post Number: 395
Registered: 08-2004
Posted on Thursday, November 11, 2004 - 10:07 am:   Edit Post Print Post

scuab ghruaige

(damnú ar na séimhithe san)

(Message edited by aonghus on November 11, 2004)

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(Unregistered Guest)
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Posted From: 67.70.194.131
Posted on Thursday, November 11, 2004 - 10:11 am:   Edit Post Print Post

I hate when work interfers with my main interests such as chat... but I see Aonghus kindly provided the answer... a word that will stay with me forever

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Aonghus
Member
Username: Aonghus

Post Number: 396
Registered: 08-2004
Posted on Thursday, November 11, 2004 - 10:20 am:   Edit Post Print Post

For the record: A link to the full debate.
I note that the Fine Gael spokesperson (Dinny McGinley) spoke in Irish, and Mr O Shea in English. The Minister matched his language to the questioners...

http://debates.oireachtas.ie/DDebate.aspx?F=DAL20041109.xml&Page=2&Ex=391#N391

(Message edited by aonghus on November 11, 2004)

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Jonas
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Username: Jonas

Post Number: 533
Registered: 08-2004


Posted on Friday, November 12, 2004 - 05:32 pm:   Edit Post Print Post

A Jonas, a chara,
Thugas fé ndeara nár ghlacas buíochas leat cheana nuair a fhilleas ar ais tar éis an tsamhraidh. Tusa a bheannaigh dom ar an gclár so i dtosach ach gur luigh m'aire ar an nduine a scríobh i do dhiaidh, tharla gur bheirt agaibh a d'fháiltigh romham. Bhíos róthapaidh ar an méarchlár le hais a raibh an scáileán. Bhí sé tamall maith ina dhiaidh sin sular thugas fé ndeara go ndearnas an leathcheal san ort. Gabh mo leithscéal fé sin a dhuine mhaith.


A chara, ní gá aon leithacéal a fhiafraí! Thuigeas an scéal nuair a léas é an uair sin :-) Chun na fírinne a rá, tuigim tu ró-mhaith mar bím féin ag déanamh an rud céanna i gcónaí agus gach seans go bhfuil sé déanta agam inniu féin. Thana thar n-ais ó chomhdháil agus táim ag léamh na bpost go léir anso anois.



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