Aistriúcháin in aisce – alt liom sa Sunday Indo

Seo chugaibh alt liom a foilsíodh sa Sunday Independent ar maidin…

THE Irish Language Commissioner, Sean O Cuirreain, has urged Irish speakers to avail of their right to have their cases heard in the First Official Language in the Irish court system.

Apparently only a little over €1,000 was spent on interpreter services for Irish speakers in 2007, and in 2006, the figure was less than €2,000.

Although interpreters were sought in legal actions involving 71 different languages, Irish wasn’t among the top 10 languages for which such services were sought.

Of course, let me hastily point out that the Irish Language Commissioner, An Choimisineir Teanga, the much respected Sean O Cuirreain, hasn’t called on more Irish speakers to break the law, one of the possible requirements to appear in court. He has, however, called on more Irish speakers to avail of their right, under the Constitution, to fight their cases in Irish.

This call suggests to me that an tUasal O Cuirreain is a glass-half-full kind of guy. Isn’t it good news that the court system isn’t clogged up with Irish speakers? Doesn’t it prove that Irish speakers are more law-abiding than the rest of the population?

You may have guessed that I am a Gaelgeoir myself and are, perhaps, wondering why I’m adopting such an apparently anti-Irish stance.

I simply can’t take it any more. This latest scandal is piling ignominy on my beloved Irish language. More and more money — our tax euros — is being spent on translating documents which aren’t read in English so they can be equally unread in the First Official Language.

And yet my six-year-old son attending primary school in the Gaeltacht is starved of reading material in Irish due to lack of resources.

I used to be an editor of an Irish-language daily newspaper — but it closed due to lack of resources. At its peak, more than 4,000 copies of La Nua were being sold daily. That’s not to mention the number of hits the website attracted from all over the world.

When I make these points to my Gaelgeoir friends, they tell me that I’m naive to expect that if translation of the official documents were to stop, the resources saved would be spent on the provision of high-quality textbooks or a youth-oriented magazine as Gaeilge.

The point, to put it bluntly, is that as long as the money is being spent on Irish, no matter if it’s read or not, that’s fine. After all, it provides work

for highly qualified translators who are paid more than your average journalist for their unread translations. On average, they’re paid €14 per 100 words. The scale of the folly is underlined by the recent revelation that translation of rarely read documents cost €1.8m last year — that’s more than was spent on funding Irish language books, newspapers and magazines combined.

You might expect that the undoubted expertise of these translators be used to produce the textbooks or magazines for which there is, it appears, demand among the public?

Not at all. Because the Official Languages Act only provides for the translation of some official documents and doesn’t, for instance, compel the Department of Education and Science to ensure that textbooks of a similar quality are provided in all subjects in each of the official languages.

So now, here we go again, as if we needed more ways to waste public money in entirely futile gestures, the Coimisineir Teanga, whose ultra-modern office in An Spideal is funded to the tune of €1m per year, comes up with another way to put us further in the red. All ‘ar son na cuise’.

When the Official Languages Act was mooted and vociferously demanded back in the early days of the Celtic Tiger, it was sold as the panacea for all Irish language ills. And I have to admit that I was to the forefront of those who believed it might be of benefit — until I read the bill as it was proposed and realised it was little more than a bureaucrats’ charter.

Now we have the legislation and Irish is an official working language in the European Union. All should be well — but it’s clearly not, as the Irish language is increasingly under threat in the Gaeltacht, and Irish speakers are on tenterhooks. As we await the publication of a plan to revitalise the Irish language by 2028 with the ‘creation’ of 250,000 daily speakers, the certainty is that the money doesn’t exist to fund the fulfilment of such a plan. But I fully expect the farcical situation of rarely read documents being translated to continue.

The famed satirist Myles na gCopaleen would have had a field day with this. His memory will be recalled in a revival this month of his classic An Beal Bocht by Belfast-based Aisling Ghear who are taking their production on an All-Ireland tour.

If ever there was an antidote to the farce of futile translation, it’s this. Maybe Sean O Cuirreain could take a time out to attend and realise the folly of his proposal.

Sunday Independent

20 de thuairimí ar “Aistriúcháin in aisce – alt liom sa Sunday Indo

  1. aonghus

    Bhuel, ní chuirfidh sé iontas ort nach n-aontaím go hiomlán leat. Ach beidh sé spéisiúil féachaint an spreagfaidh d’alt díospóireacht fiúntach. Tá gá le díospóireacht leathan – agus ó tharla gur gá do bheith leathan, caithfidh sé bheith i mBéarla. Súil agam do dtugann an Sindo cead freagartha do Sheáin.

    Is i nGaeilge a d’fhoilsigh an Irish Times a mholtaí agus na cúiseanna atá aige leo.

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  2. ormondo

    D’fhéadfaí a rá maidir le líon an ábhair léitheoireachta faoi láthair: an mhuir, an mhuir thart timpeall orainn agus ar éigin atá braon le hól againn.

    Is ceist chasta í gan amhras ach ba chóir go mbeadh an-drogall ar lucht na Gaelainne géilleadh i gcúrsaí stádais dlíthiúla.

    Feictear dom go bhfuil sé de shíor mar nós ag an rialtas riachtanas amháin a chur in iomaíocht le riachtanas eile agus an rud go léir a chur in iomaíocht leis an ngannchuid agus cúrsaí Gaelainne á bplé acu.

    Agus dá mbeadh easpa leabhar Béarla sa chóras oideachais, an gcaithfí sa chás sin rogha comheisiatach a dhéanamh idir foilsiú cáipéisí oifigiúla i mBéarla agus breis leabhar scoile sa teanga sin?

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  3. aonghus

    Dála an scéal, a Chon, maidir le cás do mhic: an é atá á mhaíomh agat go bhfuil easpa leabhair i nGaeilge ann? Nó an é nach bhfuil siad ar fáil don scoil?

    Ní dóigh liom féin go bhfuil easpa leabhair ann – tá roinnt céadta ceannaithe do phaistí agamsa thar na blianta, agus breis ag teacht amach i gcónaí do phaistí óga.

    Ceist eile an bhfuil teacht ag na scoileanna orthu – nó an amhlaidh atá siad ag brath ar bhronntanais, agus gur leabhair i mBéarla is minice a bhronntar orthu.

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  4. eoin o brolachain

    Tá d’alt míchruinn. Más buan mo chuimhne bhí an Coimisinéir ag tathaint ar dhaoine fianaise etc a thabhairt trí mheán na Gaeilge mar atá ceadaithe agus dlithe dóibh. Go bhfios dom ní raibh sé ag impí ar dhaoine cás a éisteacht i nGaeilge. Má tá tú leis an teanga a ionsaí ba cheart duit a chinntiú go bhfuil na fíricí ceart. Iriseoireacht sleamchúiseach a bhí ann agus ba cheart é a cheartú. Más sampla é an t-alt seo ar chaighdeán Lá Nua is beag iontais go ndeachaigh sé go tóin poill fad is a bhí tú i gceannas air. Maybe Conchubhar Ó Liatháin could take a time out to realise the folly of his article.

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  5. RG Cuan

    Nach bhfuil Seán Ó Cuirreáin díreach ag iarraidh ar chainteoirí Gaeilge a dteanga féin a úsáid i gcúirteanna an tstáit? Cad é atá cearr leis sin? Agus ní fheicim mórán costaisí breise ag teacht as… ceist eile iad na haistriúcháin ar ndóigh.

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  6. igaeilge Údar an Ailt

    Tá deacrachtaí ag nuachtáin Bhéarla le gutaí fada – msh ní chuireann an Irish Times na gutaí fada ar na cinnteidil.

    Ní ag íonsaí na teanga atáim, a Eoin, ach á cosaint ó mhí úsáid. SIn an tuiscint atá agam ar Acht na dTedanacha Oifigiúla agus an mhaorláthas i nGaeilge a eascraíonn as. Tá na milliún Euro á chaitheamh ar chaipéisí nach léitear agus páistí i scoileanna Gaeltachta agus i nGaelscoileanna fágtha gan téacsleabhair atá ar chomhchéim leis na h-acmhainní a bhionn ar fáil sna scoileanna Béarla. Sin íonsaí ar an dteanga agus ar an bpobal a labhrann í nach gcuirfidh mé suas leis.

    Nior thug mé a mhalairt le fios ach go raibh an cead ag daoine iad féin a chosaint i nGaeilge dá mba é sin a rogha – sin a deir an Bunreacht. Ach bhí an chosúlacht ar an bpreas raiteas a d’eisigh an Choimisinéir Teanga -agus a foilsíodh ar Gaelport agus ar An Druma Mór go raibh an bhéim ar an easpa caiteachais ar ateangairecht seachas rud ar bith eile. Ní chreidim gurb é sin an bealach chun tosaigh.

    Mar eolas do Eoin, ní riabh mé i gceannas ar Lá Nua nuair a druideadh é. Ós rud é go bhfuil suim agat i gcruinneas.

    Tá gá le diospóireacht ar na nithe seo. Is ar mhaithe le diospóireacht atáim.

    Gan amhras tá roinnt daoine dall ar sin – roinnt acu d’aon ghnó.

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  7. eoin o brolachain

    Léigh an preasráiteas arís agus ansin gabh leithscéal leis an gCoimisinéir in eagrán na seachtaine seo chugainn don Sindo

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  8. Gael gan Naire

    Tà dearcadh agus barùil ar leith ag Con agus tà sè thèis a chath a thabhairt isteach sa mheàn Bèarla – An Sindo, an pàipèar is frithGaelaì dà bhfuil ann, beidh sè doiligh do dhaoine eile ceart freagra s’acu a fhàil ach amhàin muna gcuirfear na ceadta litreacha.

    Ach is tìr daonlathach a bheag nò mhòr an stàit ò dheas agus tà gach cheart ag Con a dhearcadh a bheith aige is sin a fhoilisu agus dà rèir.

    Ach nàrbh fhearr do Ghaeil a bhfuil dearcadh difiriùil acu ar chearta teanga, in àit a bheith i mbun pinn anseo – nìl Con dul tiontù ar an cheist seo – dul i mbun pinn iad fèin?

    Litreacha chuig na pàipèir ag cur an stàid i gcomhtheacs is ag mìniù an taobh eile den scèal, ag miniù an càs ar son an dàtheangachas agus ar son reachtaìocht teanga nìos làidre.

    Litreacha ar son an choimisnèir, fear breà atà ann agus ar son àr gcearta sna cùirteanna, nàr thosaigh gach rud san àit ceanna le càs Mhic Giolla Bhrìde?

    Cad fà blaganna ar son an coincheap gur cheart go mbeadh stàit dhàtheangach ann? Cad fà agòid? Cad fà feachtas posteir? Cad fà ùrlabhra’ maithe a chur chun tosaigh?

    Nà dèanaimis dearmad a chairde, is cuma cèn taobh den dìospòireacht seo a bhfuil tù air, dà mbeadh a mbealach ag lucht an Sindo, nì bhead Gaelscoil, teacsleabhair comhartha bòithre nò a dhàth as Gaeilge in Eirinn – èirimis as àr bhfalsacht – tà cath ar shiùil, nìl sè dul imeacht.

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    1. colm

      Tá cath ar siúl cinnte, agus beidh tuairimí Choncubhair á n-úsáid chun aimhleas na Gaeilge, dá dheoin nó dá ainneoin. Is trua sin, mar tá mé cinnte go bhféadfaí an rud céanna a rá ar bhealach go mbeadh sé deacair mí-úsáid agus mí bhrí a bhaint as a chuid focla.

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    2. aonghus

      Cinnte, is ceart litreacha a scríobh, fiú agus amhras orm go bhfoilseofar iad. Ach is ceart na litreacha céanna a bheith béasach, agus plé leis an ábhar, ní an duine!

      Tá litir dem chuid féin seolta agam. Molaim go scríobhadh daoine eile litreacha – ag díriú ar an argóint. Dá mhéid litreacha a fhaigheann an Sindo, is mó seans go bhfoilseofar ceann nó dhó. Le cúnamh Dé foilseofar ceann nach léiríonn Gaeilgeoirí mar cancráin féasógacha geansaithe místuama!

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  9. aonghus

    Scríobh Conn:
    “Tá deacrachtaí ag nuachtáin Bhéarla le gutaí fada – msh ní chuireann an Irish Times na gutaí fada ar na cinnteidil.”

    Ní dóigh liom go bhfuil sé sin fíor níos mó, má bhí riamh. Bhíodh deacracht ann le clófhoirne a bheith gann ar – go háirithe – ceannlitreacha le gutaí fada. Ach san ré leictreonach seo, níl leithscéal ar bith.

    Comhartha drochmheasa atá ann, dar liom. Aon rud nach féidir cuir in iúl sna 26 bun litir Gallda, ní ann dó.

    Seo sampla ón IT inniu
    Seán Quinn group pays out €200m to his five children – Guta fada i gceannteideal Bhéarla.

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  10. igaeilge Údar an Ailt

    Le fada an lá bhíodh an Irish Times ag tagairt don Aire Ghaeltachta mar ‘O Cuiv’ agus nuair a thogamar an ceist leo, mar dheineas le linn mo sheal ag Lá Nua, dúirt siad nár aithin siad ach an aibitir Bhéarla.

    Tabhair faoi ndeara an slí a litríonn siad Fás mar shampla – Fas a thugann siad air.

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  11. igaeilge Údar an Ailt

    Is maith an rud é mar sin gur thug an Irish Times ceann don mhéid a bhí le rá againn i Lá Nua i gcaitheamh na mblianta faoi dheireadh thiar.

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    1. aonghus

      Blas iolar Sciobairín ar an mhéid sin, a Chon. Tá an teicneolaíocht tagtha chun cinn go mór ó shin, go háirithe de bharr Unicode. Anois do dheis – agus tú ag scríobh dóibh – é sin a chuir in iúl do hIndependent Newspapers.

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  12. eoin o brolachain

    Tagaim leat a Ghael Gan Náire gur tír dhaonlathach agus gur cheart go mbeadh cead ag daoine tuairim a nochtadh. An pointe atá agam, áfach, gur cheart do Chon na codanna sin dá alt a bhí míchruinn a cheartú i Sindo an Domhnaigh agus leithscéal a ghabháil leis an gCoimisinéir Teanga as a mhíchruinneas

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  13. igaeilge Údar an Ailt

    Má theastaíonn ón Choimisinéir gearán a dhéanamh faoin alt a bhí agam – agus bhí sé ar an fón roimhe seo ar maidin ag caint liom faoin alt (féach anseo) – is féidir leis litir a sheoladh chuig eagarthóir an Indo ag cur a ghearán in iúl agus táim cinnte go dtabharfar cead do m’alt a fhreagairt. Anuas ar sin ní aontaím gur dheineas aon éagóir air agus ní fheictear dom go bhfuil mi chruinneas ábharach nó tabhachtach san alt. Ach má tá, cuirtear é sin in iúl don nuachtán. Nílimse chun obair an Choimisinéara a dhéanamh ar a shon go h-áírithe agus é soiléir san alt cad a bhí á lua agam leis an Choimisinéir agus cad abea mo thuairimí féin.

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  14. Gael gan Naire

    “Is dóichí gur úrlabhraí nach maith mé anois. Dia ár sabháíl.”

    Ba lèir do dhuine ar bith nach dearna mé iarracht a leithead a chur in iùl.

    Ar ndòigh, bhì’ mè fèin ag iarraidh ar dhuine ligin do Chon. agus dul i mbun pinn.

    Faraor, glacann tù gach rud go pearsanta ar chùis èigin a Chon. Bìodh agat ach nì gà leis.

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