Gaels to protest at Stormont


This is short notice, but it’s well worth supporting. Thanks to Ciarán for the forward.

Tuesday 9th October 12pm Stormont

On Tuesday 9th October, UUP MLA David McNarry is proposing a draconian motion to ban the use of Irish in the NI Assembly. Irish language organisation ACHT have organised a protest to coincide with the hearing of the motion at Stormont next Tuesday at 12 pm.

ACHT Spokersperson Ciarán Mac Giolla Bhéin said, “this motion not only contravenes Article 73 of the Assembly Regulations but also the Good Friday Agreement and the European Charter for Regional and Minority languages, both of which which uphold the right to speak and learn Irish. The use of indigenous languages is an internationally recognised human right that can’t be held to ransom by anti-Irish racism or party political posturing. The Irish language community firmly believes that instances such as this highlight the necessity for a rights-based Irish language Act in the six counties.”

Mr Mac Giolla Bhéin also stated that Tuesday’s motion can’t be taken in isolation and follows what he descirbed as, “a month of vitrolic and hugely insulting racist anti-Irish attacks by senior elected representatives of both the UUP and DUP. This was epitomised by the deeply offensive racist mockery of DUP MLA Gregory Campbell last month where he disgracefully imitated an Irish phrase by saying ‘Cori my yogi Bear, a can coca colya’.

Such irresponsible and racist behaviour is totally unacceptable and wouldn’t be tolerated by any other linguistic or ethnic minority. The Irish langauge community is no different and deserve a complete retraction and apology from Mr Campbell.

“ACHT is calling on support of the Irish language community and all others who oppose racism and believe in human rights. We look forward to seeing you at Stormont.”

Dé Máirt 9 Deireadh Fómhair 12in Stair Mhonadh

Dé Máirt 9 Deireadh Fómhair, tá rún á chur os comhair Thionól an Tuaiscirt ag David McNarry, Feisire ón UUP, ina molann sé bac iomlán a chur ar úsáid na Gaeilge sa Tionól. Tá agóid eagraithe ag an eagras Gaeilge, ACHT, ar 12in Dé Máirt chun cur i gcoinne an rúin.

Dúirt Úrlabhraí ACHT, Ciarán Mac Giolla Bhéin; “Ní hamháin go bhfuil an rún seo ag teacht salach ar Alt 73 de Rialacha an Tionóil ach fosta ar Chomhaontú Aoine an Chéasta agus ar an Chairt Eorpach, a thacaíonn le ceart an duine an Ghaeilge a fhoghlaim agus a labhairt. Tá an ceart chun teangacha dúchasacha a úsáid aitheanta go hidirnáisiúnta agus ní féidir ligint do chiníochas frith-Ghaeilge agus páirtithe polaitiúla an ceart seo a dhiúltú ar phobal na Gaeilge. Creideann cainteoirí Gaeilge go léiríonn eachtraí mar seo go bhfuil géarghá ann do Acht ceart-bhunaithe Gaeilge sna sé chontae.”

Luaigh an tUasal Mac Giolla Bhéin chomh maith go gcaithfear rún na Máirte a chur san áireamh leis na hionsaithe fíochmhara eile a rinne polaiteoirí ón UUP agus ón DUP ar an Ghaeilge le mí anuas. “Is iomaí masla ciníoch a caitheadh leis an Ghaeilge ar na mallaibh. Mar shampla rinne Gregory Campbell, Feisire ón DUP, scigaithris chiníoch ar fhrása Gaeilge sa Tionól an mhí seo caite. Ní féidir glacadh leis an chineál seo iompair ó fheirsirí tofa agus ní chuirfeadh aon phobal eitneach suas lena leithéid. Is amhlaidh an scéal le pobal na Gaeilge agus tá leithscéal tuillte ag cainteoirí Gaeilge láithreach.

“Tá ACHT ag iarraidh ar phobal na Gaeilge, agus ar dhuine ar bith eile a thacaíocht le ceart daonna, tacú leis an agóid agus cur i gcoinne an chiníochais. Tá súil againn go mbeidh sibh linn ag Stair Mhonadh.”



  1. October 8, 2007 at 7:42 pm

    […] in Culture, Democracy, Ireland, Northern Ireland, The North. trackback Just to quickly note this, and thanks to Ciarán of Crá Croí Cois Cuain for bringing it to our […]

  2. Liam said,

    October 8, 2007 at 10:37 pm

    Is it well worth supporting? The modern gaelgeoirs seem to have their own carriage in the Provie peace process gravy train and the outrage seems a bit synthetic. It sounds as if someone is putting in a grant application.
    Lots of Fenians take the piss out of the Irish language as well. It never caught on because it’s too damned hard and I’ve got a “U” grade O level to support that assertion.

  3. Ciarán said,

    October 9, 2007 at 12:54 am

    The outrage is anything but synthetic. The group organising the protest, ACHT, was set up following the announcement of an Irish Language Act in the St Andrew’s document, which was then put on the backburner by DCAL who held two public consultations on the Act (obviously to ensure Stormont would be up and running when the time for legislating came around). Next week Edwin Poots is expected to make an announcement on the Act, and the expected position will be the ones taken up by unionism during the consultation processes, that an Irish Language Act would somehow be detrimental to community relations.

    And on top of it all since the Assembly returned from its summer break we’ve had to deal with wave after wave of unionist attacks on the language. The DUP and UUP are apparently competing to see who is the most virulently anti-Irish. Gregory Campbell’s “Yogi Bear” statement notwithstanding (and seriously, there would have been uproar if Anna Lo had spoken some Chinese and then he responded with “ching chong chong ching” or some other racist tripe), McNarry’s motion tomorrow to have the Act sank and the Irish language completely banned from Stormont was the last straw for a lot of people.

    There are a lot of Gaeilgeoirí out there who have supported the Good Friday Agreement, but they’re getting tied of waiting for that “parity of esteem” part to come into effect.

  4. eamonnmcdonagh said,

    October 9, 2007 at 1:45 am

    so Irish is an indigenous language. What does that make English?

  5. eamonnmcdonagh said,

    October 9, 2007 at 1:48 am

    and by the way, what exactly is a “gael”? I am from Galway and don’t speak Irish, what does that make me?

  6. Colm said,

    April 8, 2008 at 6:34 am

    “and by the way, what exactly is a “gael”? I am from Galway and don’t speak Irish, what does that make me?”

    You’re Irish. A Gael would be anyone with connections to the Gaelic culture (of Ireland, Scotland and the Isle of Man). Just like you don’t have to be Irish to a Gael you don’t have to be a Gael to be Irish. They are two different things though there is significent overlap. The extremist view is that a Gael is a person who speaks a Gaelic language as an L1(or fluent L2) but I don’t imgine that view is common. Personally for me, if you are interested in Gaelic culture and make it part of your life (be it music, dance, song, language, sports, literature…) you are a Gael.

    I wouldn’t however recognise someone as a Gael is they were anti-Gaelic languages.

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