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Dublin: 1°C Saturday 26 September 2020

Yesterday’s News


Tuesday 1 September, 2020

Trump's presidency has weakened the electoral college - time for it to go

CaoimhĂ­n de Barra looks at the dual US voting system and says the electoral college has the potential to cause major upheaval now and in future.

Friday 6 March, 2020

Opinion: Many would like compulsory Gaeilge taken off the Leaving Cert, but it's a slippery slope

CaoimhĂ­n De Barra says if we take compulsory Irish off the curriculum, we’re undermining our language and our identity.

Tuesday 14 January, 2020

Opinion: 'Taoiseach, discussing a united Ireland is still possible - despite the RIC debacle'

CaoimhĂ­n de Barra looks at the possible compromises we would face if a united Ireland became a reality

Thursday 7 November, 2019

Opinion: 'The poppy argument in Ireland is an ideological battle that's been raging since the 19th century'

CaoimhĂ­n de Barra looks at nationalism and unionism, and the conflicting emotions people have around the use of the poppy.


Thursday 3 October, 2019

Opinion: 'History's special status at Junior Cert level should be celebrated, but the curriculum has major blind spots'

Aspects of Irish history are conspicuous by their absence from the syllabus, writes CaoimhĂ­n de Barra.

Saturday 27 July, 2019

Opinion: Why it's important to call out people referring to Shane Lowry as British

CaoimhĂ­n De Barra argues that it’s something to get exercised about.

Friday 31 May, 2019

Opinion: The Leaving Cert might not be perfect but it is fairer than many other systems

The university bribery scandal in the US shows how far some parents will go to secure their child’s college place, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.

Wednesday 15 May, 2019

Opinion: Independent Ireland was established through violent revolution - there were few peacemakers

It is important that we don’t judge the events of the Irish revolution against fictional, sanitised versions of the Irish past, writes Caoimhín De Barra.

Friday 15 March, 2019

Opinion: What does it take to raise your children through Irish?

My daughter speaks mostly in English but there are also lots of words that she only knows the Irish for – so she mixes them in, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.

Friday 1 March, 2019

Opinion: 'You often hear that the Irish language is badly taught in our schools but that is not true'

Compared with other subjects Irish is not badly taught. More students got a B1 or higher in Irish than in French and German combined, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.

Tuesday 8 January, 2019

Opinion: How could a second Brexit referendum be undemocratic?

Changing your course of action based on your circumstances is considered common sense for individuals, companies, and governments, so why should Brexit be any different?

Monday 10 December, 2018

Opinion: There are some striking similarities between Irish independence and Brexit

Irish negotiators had to agree that Ireland would remain within the British empire while May’s deal could keep the UK trapped in the EU indefinitely, writes Caoimhín De Barra.

Sunday 28 October, 2018

Opinion: 'Of course, no one ever admits to being prejudiced against Travellers'

Bigotry never openly acknowledges its existence, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.

Wednesday 26 September, 2018

The manner in which Gemma O'Doherty's candidacy was railroaded reinforces her main arguments

Political power in Ireland is held entirely in the hands of a small elite, who govern largely in their own interest. The rest of us are on the outside looking in, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.

Sunday 26 August, 2018

Opinion: Our Celtic identity might not be what we think it is

Author CaomhĂ­n De Barra asks about Ireland’s Celtic past, and whether it really is what we think it is.

Tuesday 24 July, 2018

Sinn FĂ©in and abstentionism: 'The party will eventually need people to take oaths for Ireland'

Abstentionism has been a central policy of Sinn FĂ©in since the party’s foundation in 1905, but condemnation of the practice has sharpened since the Brexit referendum, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.

Monday 11 June, 2018

'The seriousness with which Americans take their flag and national anthem is unusual'

Trump continues to exploit this sensitivity to try and boost his popularity, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.

Saturday 17 March, 2018

Do you guys have pizza in Ireland?: 'Most Americans I met knew almost nothing about Ireland'

Their Ireland is the Ireland their ancestors left, often untouched by the changes that have taken place since then, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.

Monday 26 February, 2018

'Militant, hard-liners or Nazis' - How those challenging the status quo are labelled

Language is used in a manipulative way to make one side of the debate seem practical and free of ideological bias and the other side as completely unreasonable.

Saturday 17 February, 2018

'There's a deep-rooted hatred toward the indigenous culture of Ireland, above all its language'

When Northern Ireland was formed, unionist were determined to kill off the Gaeltacht communities, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.

Thursday 11 January, 2018

Column: 'There should be a presidential election and Michael D shouldn't run'

We live in an extraordinary moment for democratic government, where confidence in the honesty of political leaders is seemingly at an all time low, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.

Monday 1 January, 2018

'1918 was a year of monumental importance that had plenty in common with 2018 Ireland'

Here is a look back at that year, with some reflections on the similarities and differences with the Ireland of today, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.

Thursday 7 December, 2017

Brexit: 'The DUP’s hardline policies could be the quickest road to a united Ireland'

“Constitutional integrity” is a myth. The UK has been built on constitutional divergence, writes Caoimhín De Barra.

Monday 23 October, 2017

Opinion: 'Our indifference to our flag and anthem is actually healthy'

Placing legislative restrictions on how our anthem is used would be an unnecessary limitation on our freedom of expression, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.

Friday 22 September, 2017

Catalan independence: 'Ireland came into being as a result of a similar "illegal" action'

To deny Catalans the right to a referendum will likely only win converts to the cause of independence, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.

Monday 5 June, 2017

'The Leaving Cert is a valuable life lesson. If you want something, you need to work hard to get it'

I have never forgotten the idea that I needed to put in long hours if I wanted to achieve something, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.

Friday 14 April, 2017

Northern Ireland: 'Most people would probably welcome a redrawn border'

All options, radical or otherwise for Northern Ireland, need to be weighed up, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.

Saturday 18 March, 2017

Border poll: 'Nationalists will say the recent Assembly elections show things are trending in their direction'

Nationalists may be fobbed off in the short term, but this will lead to demands for clarification from the British government about what conditions will permit a border poll, writes CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.

Thursday 9 March, 2017

Opinion: 'To say Britishness is authentic, while denying Irishness is quaffing one’s own Kool-Aid too deeply'

Melanie Phillips tried to use history to delegitimise the nationalist aspirations of Sinn FĂ©in and the Scottish Nationalist Party, writes Caoimhin De Barra.

Saturday 4 February, 2017

The case for ending state support of Irish language is littered with dubious 'facts'

For starters, we don’t spend €1.2 billion in preserving An Ghaeilge each year, says CaoimhĂ­n De Barra.