Graffiti is ‘dragging language to the gutter’

INDEPENDENT councillor Michael McClafferty has criticised comments by a fellow councillor over the spray painting of road signs.

Dozens of roadside place names have been daubed with red paint in recent days.

On each occasion the English version has been crossed out and the Irish version left intact.


Not everyone has been critical of the graffiti though.

In an interview published in Tuesday’s Irish Times Independent Councillor Micheál Cholm Mac Giolla Easbuig said he fully supported the activity.

Councillor Mac Giolla Easbuig, who is Chair of the Irish Language Committee on Donegal County Council, said of those responsible, “I not only applaud them, I am encouraging them to continue to do so.”

He added that he hoped the vandalism would spark a debate around the Irish language.

“In my opinion all signs in Donegal should only ever be in Irish in an effort to encourage the Irish language which is being eroded day after day.”

But Councillor Michael McClafferty told the Donegal News that in his opinion Mr Mac Giolla Easbuig was “wrong” to make such comments.

“For anyone to encourage graffiti and vandalism would have been wrong but to hear it from a fellow elected member, I think it was a very poor show,” Councillor McClafferty said.


“This is downright criminality, that’s what it is.

“Damaging State property and costing the taxpayer money is not something that should be celebrated.

“I don’t know how much damage has been caused at this stage but I know there are a lot of signs defaced across the county.

“I don’t know what the motive for it is either but I would say that it is not promoting the Irish language, in fact it is doing the opposite, it is dragging the language into the gutter.”

Councillor McClafferty said he had requested new signage to assist visitors to the county, particularly around Muckish, Horn Head and Creeslough.

“I’ve been told that I can’t get them because there is no money available.

“We don’t have the money yet here we have an elected representative encouraging people to go out and damage the signs we do have.

“We had an issue similar to this a few years ago and I thought it had been put to bed.

“Unfortunately here we are again and I’ll say what I’ve said before, this is not good for tourism, it is not good for people living in these local areas and it is doing nothing to promote the Irish language.”

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