National Museum of Ireland

I write to congratulate Rosita Boland on her excellent article on the necessity or other wise of the Irish language. She decries the waste involved in the State funding and supporting something so unnecessary, and I agree with her.

Surely though, we should not stop at our national language in an effort to eradicate this shameful waste.

I propose the following, not exhaustive, list of unnecessary institutions supported by the State that should be scrapped: the National Museum of Ireland, the National Gallery of Ireland, the Irish Museum of Modern Art, the National Concert Hall and Culture Ireland. I look forward to living in Rosita Boland’s particular vision of utopia.

Barra Mac Niocaill,
Co Kildare.

Is Irish a necessary language? (Irish Times)

Pic: Juanfran

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67 thoughts on “Troid!

    1. Kieran NYC

      Gaelgoirs usually do try and miss the point rather than get to the core of why most of the country can’t speak their language and quite a few people actively dislike it.

      Head in the sand stuff.

      Their failure to reform the way its taught, as *everyone constantly tells them/asks them to*, is really what’s killing the language.

      1. coco

        Fair point, but are the gaeilgoiri in a position to change how the language is taught?

        1. Tony

          Of course not. You’d swear they ran the show…. And as for actively disliking it.. Thats a psychological issue surely.

        2. Kieran NYC

          If the people who speak the vast, vast majority of the language in the country (and provide a huge chunk of Irish teachers), can’t, then who’s running the Irish language section of the Dept of Education? I’d imagine they’re running the whole shooting gallery in there, but because they have no issue speaking the language, they don’t see the problem.

          1. Tony

            Why dont you find a few things out before shouting off on something you obviously know nothing about and throwing a little condescending casual racism in along the way.

          2. Kieran NYC

            Irish speakers are a race now, eh?

            They must be aliens living on a different planet if they can’t seem to influence policy on Irish.

          3. Clampers Outside!

            Tony, you’re a gas man. No attempt to respond to Kieran, just you accusing him of shouting when he gave a perfectly reasonable answer.

            That’s why Irish is fupped, because anyone who speaks of the wasted money on it is told to shut up, and the waste continues.

            Hilarious stuff… if it wasn’t for the waste.

      2. classter

        Who are these uniform group of Gaelgoirs that are excoriated on these threads whenever Irish is mentioned?

        I speak Irish regularly with a few people in my life but I don’t have my name as Gaeilge & I don’t work in an Irish-language-related job. I don’t hang around in the Conradh & I’ve never been on TG4.

        Am I one of these Gaelgoirs?

    2. classter

      How has he missed the point, Bob?

      The original writer made several (imo vacuous & ill-thought out) arguments on the lack of a practical necessity for the Irish language.

      MacNiocaill carried a couple of these arguments through to their logical conclusion.

  1. Condescending nana

    all of those institutions barely get any funding, Ireland has one of the lowest level of public funding and support for arts and culture in all of Europe.

    1. delacaravanio

      And funnily enough the Irish language gets massive funding relative to the number of speakers. Not to mention indirect funding via money channeled to the gaeltacht. Almost all of it coming from central government.

    2. Clampers Outside!

      Not when you include what is spent on the Irish language. We’re right up the top after that…. national TV station, national radio station, regional stations, and so much more but hey, let’s not count any of that…..

  2. sycamoreal

    We can look at art and we can look at historical exhibit’s but unfortunately that’s all most of us can do with the Irish language. Look at it, because for the vast majority of us can’t speak it.

  3. Tony

    Good to see all the equalidee brigade standing up for the minority of irish speakers in this country. Hard to imagine any other minority getting such persistent and nasty attacks by the very people who claim to be open minded and generous. I wonder why that is?

      1. classter

        I don’t hate women & I agree with Tony on this.

        There is always a really nasty, spiteful streak to discussions on the Irish language on Broadsheet. The notion (one I agree with on balance) that the teaching of Irish could be better does not come close to explaining it.

        1. MoyestWithExcitement

          “There is always a really nasty, spiteful streak to discussions on the Irish language on Broadsheet.”

          Sure but then to equate Irish speakers with victims of racism because of that is completely stupid.

          1. classter

            I think one might argue on whether it does indeed have a racial component but the suggestion is certainly not stupid.

            There is a level of vitriol which doesn’t apply to other aspects with no immediate economic utility nor to other minority languages. It isn’t applied to other topics or subjects we are ‘compelled’ to learn in school.

          2. classter

            While we are on that latter topic, Peig was never on the syllabus in my time in school.

            Almost every mention of Peig in my life has been a moan about how difficult/miserable/boring Peig was in the context of compulsory Irish education.

            What is boring is that Irish columnists can’t be ar$ed coming up with even mildly interesting or original opinions – just rehashing the same for & against arguments again and again and again.

          3. Tony

            The reason I use racism is because a specific phobia hasn’t been assigned to the hatred of language or those who speak it. But to pick on and denigrate a group of people because they share a common trait such as ethnicity, language, gender, sexual preference or colour is usually a form of discrimination not tolerated by reasonable people. Except when it comes to Gaelgoirs apparently. I agree with cluster that it has deep roots in a post colonial mindset, but this is usually too intellectual a proposition for the mindless hate that people feel. A sow that eats her farrow etc

        2. Kieran NYC

          Gaeilgeoir: Why don’t people speak Irish?

          Everyone else: You could start with changing the way you teach it.

          Gaeilgeoir: ………………..


          Gaeilegoir: Why don’t people speak Irish?

          Everyone else: You could start with changing the way you teach it.

          Gaeilgeoir: No, it must be that you’re just too stupid to learn it and you fail at being Irish, you West Brit.

          I liked Irish in school and was halfway decent at it (just about scrapped a fainne) but I’m sick of the same arguments each and every time when the people who have the power to change things don’t and then wonder why nothing changes. Oh, and I’m somehow usually called dumb and an almost traitor someway along the way too.

          1. classter

            This conversation did not start with ‘Why don’t people speak Irish?’

            And nobody on this thread called you a traitor or a ‘West Brit’.

            In fact, I have seen anti-Gaelgoirs accusing Gaelgoirs of calling them ‘West Brits’ far often than I have ever heard someone use ‘West Brit’ in earnest.

    1. Rowsdower

      You find it hard to imagine any other minority in Ireland getting attacks as nasty and persistent as Irish speakers?

      1. Tony

        Yes. In a nakedly racist way. Any other group would be defended by the so called compassionate liberals. But when it comes to Irish, any insult is fair game…. Mind you, Catholics get it in the neck too and they are almost minority

        1. Rowsdower

          The attacks against Irish speakers are nakedly racist?

          I’m not sure I follow that logic.

          Also, Catholics are almost a minority now?

          1. Rowsdower

            Those are called questions.

            You posted some bizarre statements and I was trying to clarify if you genuinely meant them to be taken seriously as individual points or were posting them as some rhetorical exercise in hyperbole.

          2. classter

            There is definitely an awkward, self-hating racist aspect to a significant minority of the anti-Irish commentary.

            I reckon the language makes some of us ask questions of ourselves that we don’t want to answer or don’t know how to answer – why were we seemingly so poor & so downtrodden for so long, why was ‘our’ (Gaelic) system so comprehensively outclassed by the ‘gall’, why did we lose our language when the Finns & Dutch even the Basques etc. held onto theirs, are we even a real nation if we adopted the language & laws of our neighbour, why did ‘we’ hold so fast to Catholicism, why did we starve like wretches when other places (Belgium! Scotland! Sweden!) were succeeding in the industrial revolution….etc.

        1. The Key of G

          He makes the odd relevant point despite himself.
          Your agenda is so tedious and one dimensional

          1. Tony

            Like i asked. Which agenda are you referring to. You said it was tedious and one dimensional. Would you like to expand? Or is that the sum total of your argument?

          2. The Key of G

            Oh look – the troll wants to be my bestie.
            Ok friend – what about your absurd ” the Gaelgeoirs are the blacks of Europe” agenda?

          3. Tony

            I have clarified my comments above. Why do you think it is ok to be so disparaging to irish speakers? Why do so many people hate Irish? Do you have thoughts on that? I think classter has made some relevant points up there. Would you like to respond in a more expansive way? Because you know I never said the blacks of Europe and you obviously have a point of view.

          4. The Key of G

            You seriously think I’m going to read back through the comments to further consider your inane perspectives? I take it back – you are funnier than Moyest

    2. Clampers Outside!

      one stands up for a minority hard done by… are you telling me that there is not enough investment in the Irish language and speakers are hard done by?


      That’s amazeballs man.

  4. DubLoony

    Got a D in pass Irish in the LC, 20 years ago.
    It became one of those things to do but never got around to it on life to-do list. I was interested in location names from hill walking & plant names from Garrai Glas. Suddenly our landscape and plants had a whole new dimension.

    2 years ago, did an adult Irish course on an island for a whole week. By the end of it was able to have a very drunken conversation in a bar (I sounded great!).

    Lesson: there is more Irish buried in the back of your head than you realise, however crappy the experience in school. Need to actually speak and hear a language being used to get comfortable with it.
    Gaelgoirs : Find more subjects to talk about than the death of the language, Peig, and “jailteacht” jokes. And I’m from Dublin, I have a Dublin accent. Don’t expect m to have Kerry/Galway/Donegal accent. I’m tryin’ here.

    1. MoyestWithExcitement

      Also, learning something because you *want* to produces different results when you’re learning something because you *have* to.

      1. Harry Molloy

        +1 twice today Moyest I’m in complete agreement :-)

        it’s very true though, I remember a asked me to sign a petition in galway when, I think it was Enda Kenny back before he even led Fine Gael, suggested mandatory Irish should be examined. And they were gone mad, marching and putting petitions together when all that was called for map a debate.
        Can they not see the bloody language is dying!?
        I don’t speak it, wish I did, but as an immature and contrary teenager I didn’t appreciate having it shoved down my throat

        1. classter

          Fine but that applies to English poetry and ox-bow lake formation and the lives of monks in medieval Europe etc.

          1. Harry Molloy

            I know but it just isn’t working for Irish for whatever reason. May be time to try something else.
            BTW you make a lot of good points above in relation to scorn for Irish speakers, it is there. A similar scorn as the one held towards boggers maybe – and I don’t j St mean dubs referring to everyone outside the m50 as boggers, people in towns refer to people 10 miles out the road as boggers too.
            As if we’re embarrassed of our past or something

          2. Cluster

            Is Irish genuinely much worse than most other subjects?

            What percentage of us can discuss the work of Plath or Mahon with much knowledge or insight? How many could do slightly above basic maths – say integration by parts?

            Maybe part of the issue is that knowledge of Irish can be easily measured? And also that the level required in ‘foreign’ languages in the LC is ludicrously low?

    2. Tony

      Deal. And maybe others could do more with Irish than bang on about the way they were taught and the waste of money. To me the langue is very alive and growing. I speak it every day to Dubs, Nordies, learners and natives. I haven’t even read Peig.

    3. Shayna

      Sounded like a great week, despite your Dublin accent – I’m drawn by the drunken aspect . Is there a web-site for the course?

  5. Shayna

    I’m not a Gaelgoir but I can speak enough Irish in Bun Béag to understand condescension.

  6. Truth in the News

    He forgot about scrapping Irish Water and keep the musuems and the rest
    Indeed we would need to establish a National Science and Technology Musuem also

    1. Boba Fettucine

      Indeed. And have it in Dublin to reflect its industrial heritage, rather than the De Valera state sanctioned ruralism of the National Museum.

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