World heritage lost if Irish dies
Published 31/10/2004 | 00:11
A Chara - I refer to an article in the Sunday Independent (17/10/04) headed 'Strictly speaking - an Irish solution to an Irish problem'.
Contrary to this article, the fact of the matter is that the vast majority of the population have a positive attitude towards the Irish language. This was most recently evident in the outcry against the singing of the National Anthem in English at the Ryder Cup in America. It is true also to say that the vast majority of the people of this country believe that our ecological, archaeological and linguistic heritage should be protected particularly when that heritage is of world importance.
To put it in its world context, the Irish language is the oldest vernacular written language in Europe. It is of major importance in this context as part of our world linguistic heritage. Furthermore, in the European context, the European Union is founded on the concept of unity in diversity and on the protection and the development of the diversity and richness of European culture.