Irish is a small foreign language


Peter McEvoy (October 6) misrepresents me as I did not state Irish should not be taught.

Perhaps Mr McEvoy doesn’t understand English. I stated: “Why can’t Irish be taught as any other foreign language?”

I have visited Germany, France, USA, Canada and the Republic of Ireland and to me they are all foreign countries.

If one follows Mr McEvoy’s logic then where there is a land boundary the two countries should learn each other’s language, eg the French government should give privileged positions to the teaching of Spanish, German and Italian.

Compared to Spanish, German, Chinese, never mind English, Irish is a minor language and of no benefit in commerce or tourism.

Even the Republic’s parliament – unlike the German, French, Spanish – primarily uses English and not the “mother tongue” which speaks volumes about the unimportance of Irish in that state.

Privileged treatment of Irish is selfish and in keeping with the Sinn Fein outlook of ‘Ourselves Alone’, particularly when third level students are being penalised by useful language courses being cut at the University of Ulster.

There are more important issues for this expenditure such as health, caring for the elderly and tertiary education.

Lyle Cubitt, Ballymena