Monday, January 15, 2007

Trevor Phillips = British Nationalist

I find this article particularly offensive. In it Trevor Phillips implies that Welsh, English or Scottish nationalism is incapable (racially incapable maybe, Trevor?) of creating a civic nationality.

His praise of the English language is particularly offensive given the colonial prejudices the Commission for Racial Equality has treated the Welsh language during the Simon Glyn affair and before stretching back to 1986 when they tried to sue Gwynedd County Council for demanding that staff should be able to speak Welsh... what, are English-speakers or ethnic minorities racially incapable of learning Welsh?

Trevor - your inclusiveness is just British nationalism in drag. Be honest, come out of the closet, and call yourself a British nationalist. How is a publicly funded officer able to make such blatantly party political points?

Isn't it time that Plaid Cymru, Welsh Societies and other Welsh Nationalist websites, such as
Wales - World Nation, also started calling these people by their true description - British nationalists?


plaid wrecsam said...

Well said... Labour is rolling out every desperate trick in the book to try to turn the tide in Scotland (and to a lesser degree in Wales).
In 1997, when it passed the devolution bill, I don't believe Labour in its wildest nightmares thought it would lose power of its two Celtic heartlands. The arrogance, the sheer arrogance is about to rebound on them.
Phillips is a tame Labour establishment man, who's done well from the Race Relations Industry and his connections. Just like a lot of Welsh language quangocrats who wore their "radicalism" on their sleeves until the lure of Labour patronage proved too much.

Pads said...

It looks like Ken Livingston was correct when he accused Trevor Phillips of pandering to the Right. Now Mr Phillips is just pandering to Prime Minister In Waiting.

Yes we need to bring people of different backgrounds together - does that mean we all have to live under a single, centralised, unified state? Why just Britain? What about Europe and the rest of world? I know - bring back the Empire!

Aran said...

Very well put, and I agree completely that this kind of mindless tub-thumping from Trevor Phillips is deeply unacceptable. I'm sure it will not have been met with smiles in the CRE Cymru offices, where they have a good understanding of the issues involved in promoting Welsh language and civic identity.

It would be very interesting to know what proportion of people who self-identify as primarily British come from black or asian backgrounds - I've no way of knowing whether I'm right or not, of course, but I often feel that black or asian people living in England are more likely to self-identify as British than are the ethnic English.

I wonder if this is some kind of side-effect of intolerance in England? Is it, perhaps, easier to belong to a semi-mythic nation which claims a permanent moral high ground than it is to belong to a real nation of people who tell you to 'go home'?

Outpourings like those of Mr Phillips certainly seem to be heavily imbued with a doey-eyed romanticism that is a million miles away from ever getting to grips with the real issues about the right distribution of decision-making, from the community upwards.