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Gratuitous February 6, 2017

Posted by WorldbyStorm in Uncategorized.
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Isn’t it?

Speaking at the launch of her party’s election campaign in Lurgan, Mrs [Arlene] Foster said “if we have an Irish language act, maybe we should have a Polish language act as well because there are more people in Northern Ireland who speak Polish, compared to Irish.”

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1. EWI - February 6, 2017

And this is exactly why the Assembly fell.

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2. irishelectionliterature - February 7, 2017

It’s really just appealing to their bigoted base. Awful stuff.

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3. 6to5against - February 7, 2017

Its awfully bigoted stuff, and it flies in the face of the St Andrews agreement, an agreement that the DUP have accepted. But I think the coverage of this is focussing on the anti-nationalist aspect of it and missing a wider bigotry.

What would be so awful about a Polish Language Act. She may well be right that there are more fluent speakers of Polish than Irish in the North. So what? Shouldn’t all be accommodated? I don’t know how it has played out over the last decade or so, but I’m sure Polish families would like their children to be able to learn Polish in school – or at least in some schools. I’m sure they would like to be able to engage with officialdom in their first language on at least some occasions. I imagine they would like to hear their language being used on the odd state occasion, to validate their presence if nothing else.

The fact that she dismisses all of that as an idea that is worth only of ridicule really strikes me as problematic.

The DUP’s bigotry is not clearly not confined to nationalism. But I wonder to what extent this is coloured by the fact that most Poles are Catholic.

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CMK - February 7, 2017

The status of Polish on the island of Ireland is an interesting topic. There are easily 150,000 speakers across the two jurisdictions; more native speakers than, sadly, Irish. One of my kids has a Polish school friend (Mum is Polish, the Dad is Irish) and the kid goes to Polish school at the weekend. There are ads around my area for private Polish language schools for kids. No reason why this can’t be integrated into some element of the school curriculum. Like it or not a considerable part of the Irish population – many citizens included – are Polish speakers and that social ‘fact on the ground’ needs to be recognised. Paradoxically, there are many Polish kids attending Gaelscoil who are growing up tri-lingual and adding to the linguistic tapestry of this country. I know, for instance, that the Greek government pays the salaries who teach Greek to children of Greek heritage who live in other EU states. Maybe some similar arrangement could be made here. As for Foster: crass bigotry is par for the course with her.

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WorldbyStorm - February 7, 2017

+1 to both your comments. I think integration of Polish into aspects of the state would be very positive.

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irishelectionliterature - February 7, 2017

On a somewhat related issue I wonder what languages The DUP produce their material in other than English?
Here I’ve seen election material from parties produced in Irish, English, Arabic, Polish and Lithuanian. I know The Alliance Party have produced material in Chinese and also Polish. In the North Sinn Fein produce Material in Irish as well as English.

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6to5against - February 7, 2017

I would be interesting indeed to know if their bigotry was trumped by their desire for votes.

But whatever about translating it into Polish, how would you go about selling the DUP to Poles in any language?

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oconnorlysaght - February 7, 2017

Presumably, they have some rubbish printed in Lalans? Isn’t Sammy Wilson its great advocate ?

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4. GW - February 7, 2017

Fenians and Furriners in one swipe of her ashy paws.

Have the DUP got some Trump campaign advisers over?

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5. ypMs - March 30, 2017

ffffffg

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