Gaelscéal: Is Ireland a country or an island?

Blag le Colm Ó Broin : 

Gaelscéal: An tír í Éire, nó oileán?

Bhí tuairisc ag Gaelscéal le déanaí faoin gconspóid idir na Gaelscoileanna agus an Roinn Oideachais ó dheas faoi thumoideachas.

Fuair muid go leor cáipéisí faoin Acht um Shaoráil Faisnéise, ina measc dréachtaí d’óráid a thug an t-iarAire Oideachais, Batt O’Keefe, chuig comhdháil bhliantúil Ghaelscoileanna Teo in 2008.

Bhain roinnt den óráid leis an gcomhoibriú a bhí ar bun aige leis an Roinn Oideachais sa Tuaisceart. Bhí an méid scríofa i ndréacht amháin.

My northern counterpart, the Minister for Education, Caitríona Ruane, is in agreement with me about the importance of the language in any education system. Particular mention is made of the importance of encouraging and promoting co-operation throughout the whole country.”

Athraíodh an chéad dréacht eile chuig “throughout the whole island of Ireland,” áfach.

Dheimhnigh Roinn an Taoisigh le Gaelscéal go bhfuil sé de nós ag an rialtas ‘island of Ireland’ a úsáid seachas ‘country’ ach nach bhfuil treorlínte daingne acu.

An bhfuil sé ceart ná cóir cosc a chur ar dhaoine cur síos a dhéanamh ar Éirinn (an t-oileán) mar ‘thír’?

Gaelscéal na seachtaine seo; Tension in Belfast Irish language groups; Conamara direct action group to continue campaign ... and did Leipreachán's really come from America?

 Gaelscéal: Is Ireland a country or an island?

Gaelscéal reported recently on the controversy between the Republic’s Department of Education and the Irish-medium sector regarding immersion education.

We received documents from the Department under the Freedom of Information Act, including drafts of a speech by then Education Minister Batt O’Keefe to the Gaelscoileanna AGM in 2008. Part of the speech referred to cooperation with the NI Department of Education.

The following was in one draft.

“My northern counterpart, the Minister for Education, Caitríona Ruane, is in agreement with me about the importance of the language in any education system. Particular mention is made of the importance of encouraging and promoting co-operation throughout the whole country.”

However, the following draft was changed to “throughout the whole island of Ireland.”

The Department of the Taoiseach confirmed to Gaelscéal that the government usually uses ‘island of Ireland’ instead of ‘the country’, but that there are no firm guidelines.

Is it right that there would appear to be a ban on ministers referring to Ireland (the island!) as a ‘country’?

Related article :

An ag magadh atá an DUP (are the DUP having a laugh)?

 

[Clarification, 12:00, Friday, 5th October, 2012 – I think the point being made in this piece is that the Minister’s draft referred to Ireland as a country, with 32 counties implied in that definition, this was crossed out by a civil servant (the permanent government?) and replaced by ‘Island of Ireland’. Prior to the GFA it was common practice for politicians to refer to the ‘state’ rather than to Ireland]

Freelance journalist, working mostly in Irish.

Have my own independent news website – antuairisceoir.com – which is in constant need of material.

I am the former editor of the newspaper Gaelscéal, www.gaelsceal.ie