“Brain Dead Language” - La bour Party researcher quits

Harold Schiffman hfsclpp at gmail.com
Mon Sep 17 18:11:30 UTC 2007

"Brain Dead Language" - Labour Party researcher quits
Penygroes, Monday, 17 September 2007 by Huw Jones

A Labour Party researcher who made comments in a blog calling Welsh a
"brain-dead language" has been forced to hand in his resignation.
David Collins, who was employed by Ann Jones an elected Welsh Assembly
representative, said on his blog, "Personally I share the view of [the
19th Century politician] Daniel O'Connell when he said, 'I can witness
without a sigh the decline of the Irish langage'", was apt for Welsh
as well. In a letter to Ann Jones, Collins apologised to the Party for
the embarrassment caused. "Having returned to the UK last night and
for the first time properly seen the coverage in Friday and Saturday's
papers, it is clear to me that it is untenable for me to remain in
your employment. As you know, the comments I left were personal and in
no way reflective of your opinions or the policy of Wales Labour
Party. On reflection I deeply regret having written them."

The controversy has also been an embarrassment to Plaid Cymru (Party
of Wales) who have recently formed a coalition with Labour to govern
the Welsh Assembly and are pressing for legislation that would give
further rights to use the language. Other political parties were quick
to respond with the Welsh Conservatives calling for "an unreserved
apology to the Welsh nation" whilst Eleanor Burnham of the Liberal
Democrats called the remarks "typical of the appalling attitude of
many Labour activists towards the Welsh language", adding, "Many of
them resent the prominent and growing role that Welsh plays in Welsh

Labour has been the dominant political force in Wales for almost a
century and is committed it to promote and support the Welsh language.
However, a wide range of opinion exists within the Party's ranks, from
enthusiastic supporters of Welsh to those who are steadfastly opposed.
The electoral map of Wales shows that the Party is now without a
single Assembly seat in Wales' western areas where the language is
strongest. (Eurolang 2007)

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