Tuesday, August 19, 2008

FAI in meaningless gesture to Irish language-Eire will now appear on team jerseys

This is a sop to the Irish language lobby. Eire stands for Ireland (32 counties). The Republic of Ireland soccer team represents 26 counties and not Eire (Ireland). We will now have the farcical situation of a 26 county soccer team labelled as a 32 county team. Poblacht na hEireann (Republic of Ireland) and not Eire should appear on the team jerseys.

Many Irish language lobbyists are enthusiastic about the FAI decision. Is it any wonder that the Irish language has continued to decline? What we have from the FAI is tokenism-an empty meaningless gesture. Presumably the FAI will now introduce Irish language courses for the players and insist on a basic level of competency. That might mean something. Don't hold your breath.

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