The whole Dingle / Daingean debacle is a disgrace and Eamon O'Cuiv is a bigot. The majority of residents and councillors in Dingle have on the whole, understandably, disagreed with Mr. O'Cuiv's obliteration of the name Dingle from signposts in their Gaeltacht area. The Dingle Name website gives all the background to the issue.
"In March 2005, Minister Eamon O’ Cuiv brought in The Placenames Order, which has the powers of the 2002 Official Languages Act behind it ...........The 2005 Order decreed that the English language version of a placename is no longer permissible in Acts of the Oireachtas, Statutory Instruments, Land Registry and Ordinance Survey maps and Local Authority signposts both within and without the Gaeltacht. "
Aside from the discontent felt by those living in Dingle the fact that a government minister has the gall to decree that the language which is everyday language of the vast majority of the Irish population is no longer allowed to used for Gaelatacht placenames in official documents and signposts is beyond belief.
This is not an Irish versus English language argument, nor am I having a go at Gaeltacht areas or their residents. Simply put, the fact that I, as a native English (Hiberno-English to be precise) speaker and taxpayer, am no longer entitled to see placenames on signposts with any English on them in certain parts of the country is an outrage. Understandably Gaeltacht natives want to protect their heritage and some may prefer no English on the signposts in their area. However, dual signing is required in all other parts of the country and those of us who do not, or indeed choose not, to speak Irish are entitled to the same rights as native Irish speakers. Certainly make the English smaller, less prominent than the Irish as is done with Irish on English signposting but for God's sake have some respect for the vast majority of the population's first language.
Mr. O'Cuiv would do well to remember that speaking the Irish language is not a pre-requisite to being Irish!
Photo (c) http://archives.tcm.ie/breakingnews/2003/12/15/story125717.asp