Monday, July 09, 2007

Anti-Welsh Claptrap

As I mentioned in a previous post, there's a lot of English-only speakers in Wales who are happy to support the Welsh language. Here's an excellent letter from David Rodway in Cardiff which perfectly demonstrates this (Daily Post, July 9).

An an English-speaking Welshman visiting beautiful North Wales during the fall-out from the Thomas Cook Welsh ban, I am amazed to see how much sheer, nasty anti-Welsh claptrap is still bandied about.

Various people have written in to tell us how they see nothing wrong with a language being banned, or accusing protesters of being "paranoid", "extreme", etc.

This whole affair has had the merit of showing us just how far some are prepared to go in their attempt to smear and eradicate a language.

Welsh is an historic language of Wales, despite all that has been done to destroy it, and the majority language of Gwynedd.

It deserves respect and equal status.

It is, to me, far more "bigoted" or "racist" to refuse to learn your neighbour's language, than for your neighbour to ask you to do so.


At 4:44 PM, Blogger cornubian said...

An agenda for a police state with Crown immunity?

On the strength of the manipulation of the evidence taken from an impressionable Cornish teenager, the press appears to be attempting to condemn as nationalist anyone claiming to be Cornish. Nationalist is not applied to anyone claiming to be English. We are all British with only British passports so, any sub-division of British is equally nationalist. If British is the legally correct nationality, then, the use of English, for the state funded English Heritage Co. Ltd., would be an example of cultural nationalism.

Are we Cornish really the guilty nationalists as charged by those self-appointed judges, the barons of the English press?

The press appears to have been given the task of covering up centuries of economic nationalism in Cornwall retained, with Crown immunity and inalienable rights, for Duchy profit authorised by the permanent English majority at Westminster. This feudal legacy is ripe for exposure as incompatible with the modern principle of equality before the law. In a state where the public are being deprived of the other side of the story, the suspicion is aroused of the presence of journalistic nationalism.

Recently, the United Kingdom became the only one of 27 member states of the European Union to have “won” the right to exclude Fundamental rights from its legal system. This apparent assertion of racial supremacy is similarly suspected in the exclusion from the Human Rights Act 1998 of Article 13 of the European Convention on Human Rights: “the right to an effective remedy for violations by persons acting in an official capacity”. In addition, politicians do not appear prepared to legislate for a guarantee of: “The right to equality before the law for all persons” currently unavailable in the English legal system. Such a basic international right is available in a written constitutional form for all the citizens of the Monarchy of Sweden, the United States of America, France, Germany, Poland and Switzerland to name but a few governments who have created universal inalienable rights for their citizens. They have rejected legislative nationalism by accepting that the individual has the right, in every case of the alleged abuse of power, institutional bias and official racial discrimination, to enforce accountability upon persons acting in an official capacity.

To avoid the possibility of a charge of academic nationalism, we challenge English universities to write down the British Constitution as it stands today showing proof of any inalienable rights available to the individual to challenge any alleged failure to comply with the Oath of Allegiance taken by persons acting in an official capacity.

The Human Rights Act includes Article 10 of the European Convention: “Freedom of expression”. This gives Cornish people the right to declare their membership of the Cornish national minority, (Article 14): “without interference by public authority”. The Police do not record declarations of “Cornish” on their forms. Is this a case of interference with freedom of expression encouraged by the Duke of Cornwall’s attack on human rights? (The Times, 2nd March 2006).

The denial of basic Human rights, Fundamental rights and equality before the law is an agenda for a police state with Crown immunity. Every attempt to grab absolute power must be resisted by rejecting all forms of aggressive nationalism, whether Cornish or English, and demanding the right to be condemned only by an impartial and independent Court of law free from judicial nationalism.

The Cornish Stannary Parliament

At 1:47 PM, Blogger Respectable Citizen said...

When I attended a Cymdeithas rally in Cardiff, the only political parties with a presence were Plaid and RESPECT. We handed out this leaflet (english translation reproduced here):


"The Government calls this a Welsh Language Bill, but it would be better described as a Welsh Language Quango Bill. What one could call a Quango for the lingo ...... We shall be abstaining tonight because we hope to have the opportunity before long to do the job properly. That will be done when we revisit the question of a Welsh language messure when we are in Government."

So Said Rhodri Morgan back in 1993 when he opposed the Tories Welsh Language Act. But as with many of the promises New Labour made prior to getting elected in 1997, this promise has vanished into thin air. We in RESPECT are for the Welsh language having full equality with English. This would mean going way beyond the present legislation. The current Act calls for bilingualism based on ‘reasonableness’ . This has been used to avoid immediate use of Welsh in some official contexts.

We agree with Catrin Dafydd of the campaign for a new Welsh Language Act when she says, “This is the time to press for a new Welsh Language Act. The recent decision by the Welsh Assembly’s Government to abolish the Welsh Language Board means that some sort of Act will be created. The Welsh Assembly aims to carry out an administrative tidying up exercise and nothing more. This is not good enough.”

We stand for the defence of the Welsh language, not out of nationalism but out of respect for international culture. International culture to us does not mean the ’culture’ of Murdoch, Mcdonalds and Market Values, but of those who believe another world not only possible; but necessary. We believe our children should have access to the Mabinogion, Shakespeare, Salman Rushdie, Caradoc Evans, Dylan Thomas, Bapsi Sidhwa, Chinua Achebe and many others - and in whatever language they want! Such a stance also includes fighting for the rights of those who speak other languages such as refugees and asylum seekers and their children so that they have access to education and other facilities in their own languages.

We believe the money is there to provide this, but the government wastes billions on a war opposed by millions. Our movements, whether they be for language rights, or against war and injustice have begun to provide the basis for a real alternative to New Labour. But our views are far too often marginalized and disregarded by the mainstream political parties. RESPECT is a party that seeks to provide a voice for the millions who are opposed to war, racism, privatisation inequality and the destruction of the environment. We hope to create a broad party that brings together all progressive movements into a united challenge to New Labour."

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