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Thosaigh a lán daoine ag dul chuig ranganna Gaeilge ar na mallaibh. Ní dheachaigh cuid eile mar gheall ar easpa muiníne. Mar sin de, sílim go spreagfadh Benny Lewis an dara grúpa. As Contae an Chabháin é agus tá deich dteanga aige, an tSínis ina measc. Ach ní dhearna sé ach Gaeilge bhunleibhéil san Ardteist, agus ní bhfuair sé ach leibhéal ‘C’ sa Ghearmáinis. Deir sé gur féidir le gach duine teanga a fhoghlaim, ar neamhchead d’aois agus eile. Admhaíonn sé nach bhfuil sé iontach líofa sa Ghaeilge, áfach! Cuireann sé iontas ort nuair a deir sé nach bhfuil suim mhór aige i dteangacha: tá suim aige i dtíortha agus ina gcultúir agus, ar ndóigh, i muintir na dtíortha a dtugann sé cuairt orthu. Cuireann Seosamh Ó Muirí agallamh ar Ben in Beo.ie an mhí seo.

Tá alt san eagrán céanna ag Tony Birtell ‘Uafás arbh fhéidir a sheachaint’ faoi thubaiste Hillsborough. Thug seisean a thicéad don chluiche dá dheartháir an lá sin! ‘Bhí muid mar ainmhithe, sáinnthe i gcaighean,’ a dúirt a dheartháir. ‘Ní raibh locht ar thacadóirí Learpholl FC…d’athraigh na poilíní 116 ráiteas…bhí na marthanóirí brúite in aice leis na daoine a fuair bás, páistí ina measc,’ a deir Tony.

Ó thaobh na polaitíochta de, deir Breandán Delap go bhfuil athruithe bunúsacha ar an Bhunreacht de dhíth. ‘Tá nithe áirithe de nach bhfuil fóirsteanach do shochaí ilchultúir an lae inniu siocair gur dréachtaíodh é i ré eile,’a deir sé.

Amharcann Colm Mac Séalaigh ar chur chuige bhainisteoirí na bhfoirne a bhain craobhacha sna cluichí Gaelacha le déanaí.

Tá alt an-mhaith ag Robert McMillen ar Chúnant Uladh. Geallann sé gur seo an t-alt deireanach faoi!

Tá éagsúlacht ábhair in Beo.ie an mhí seo mar is gnách. Agus tá sé soléite: brúigh ar an luchóg agus faigheann tú aistriúchán de na píosaí deacra. Scríbhneoireacht den scoth – saor in aisce!

A man of many languages

Many people have started going to Irish classes recently. Some others have not gone through lack of confidence. This being so, I think Benny Lewis would inspire the second group. He is from County Cavan and he speaks ten languages, including Chinese. But he only did Foundation Irish in the Leaving Cert, and he only got a ‘C’ in German. He says that anyone can learn a language, despite age and everything else. However, he admits he is not very fluent in Irish! He amazes you when he says that he is not greatly interested in languages: he is interested in the countries and their cultures and, of course, in the people of the countries he visits. Seosamh Ó Muirí interviews Ben in Beo.ie this month.

Tony Birtell has an article in the same edition: ‘A horror that could have been prevented’, which is about the Hillsborough disaster. He gave his ticket for the game to his brother that day! ‘We were like animals, trapped in a cage,’ said his brother. ‘The Liverpool supporters were in no way to blame… the police changed 116 statements…the survivors were crushed up against those who died, including children,’ says Tony.

On the political front, Breandán Delap says that the Irish Constitution is in need of radical change. ‘There are things in it that are out of place in a modern multicultural society, since it was drafted in another age,’ he says.

Colm Mac Séalaigh looks at the approach of managers of Gaelic teams which have won championships recently.

Robert McMillen has a very good article on the Ulster Covenant. He promises that this will be the last article about it!

There is a variety of material in Beo.ie this month as usual. And it is easy to read: click on the mouse and you get a translation of the difficult parts. First rate writing – and it’s free!