Trying to force Gaelic speaking onto the nation has not worked! Nor will it work with Te Reo, for much the same reasons. It’s quite simple really. Language evolves organically. Forcing it on people and making it compulsory is bound to fail.

Back in the 1960s, singer Ronnie Drew used to joke at concerts that the Government had proposed that all the books banned in Ireland should be printed in Irish – as this would a great incentive for the Irish people to learn their own language.The proposal didn’t happen, of course but it was an interesting one. Those books weren’t printed in Irish and the language wasn’t revived. But Ireland’s absurd censorship was lifted, and people were allowed to read what they wished, and not have the Government tell them what to do.

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