My son lives and works in Machynlleth, with his partner and their two young children in a small house they’re buying in a cul-de-sac. Last night his partner was parking their W Reg car when she had a slight coming together with the vehicle from the larger house next door, coming out of that property’s driveway.
The damage was slight, but words were exchanged and my son’s partner called the police. They turned up and calmed things down. This morning, the woman next door shouted at my son’s partner, “Time to put up the ‘For Sale’ sign. We’re gonna make your lives hell”. The neighbours were reported to their landlord, Powys County Council.
My son’s partner – who, in addition to bringing up two children under 5 works as a part-time carer – is Machynlleth born and bred. The neighbours moved in about five years ago, from somewhere in the English Midlands. These neighbours, neither of whom works, have seven (7) kids and they drive around in a 6.2 litre, 4 x 4, 15mpg, LHD Cadillac Escalade. Nice.
Now obviously, ‘benefit scroungers’ with 7 kids and a massive and very expensive to run American car would normally be meat and drink for the Daily Mail, but we know they’re not going to be interested in this one. If these people were Welsh, maybe. For as we know, the English media is very keen to run anti-Welsh stories at the moment.
Though our own ‘Welsh’ media is not blameless. Jason Mohammad did a phone-in on Radio ‘Wales’ this week about some young man badly beaten in Cardiff because, allegedly, he was English. The suggestion of an ethnic motive came from no one but the victim himself, who thought the attack might have been provoked by his English accent. Not much to go on, but of course that didn’t stop Radio West Anglia reporting it as Gospel. Though I wonder if ‘Jase’ would have been interested in a case of English on Welsh violence, even with hard evidence? No, he wouldn’t have touched it.
Inevitably, the English media – including the aforementioned Daily Mail – ran with this story about racist Welsh thugs attacking entirely innocent English people. But that’s what we expect. What I found really disturbing was that there was no appeal for moderation from either our political establishment or our police. I can only assume that both decided it was best to say nothing, and to let this smearing of a nation (and possibly influencing of judicial process) go unchallenged.
I wonder if any Welsh people living in England were verbally or physically abused as a result of this gutter press journalism? If they were, then we can guarantee that the Daily Mail would not have reported it. Worse, the ‘Welsh’ media would not have reported it either.
It has become clear of late that Wales and all things Welsh are under attack from all sides. It’s almost as if someone has declared open season on us. Part of this offensive is selective and prejudicial reporting by news media, both in England and in Wales. Another aspect is an attempt at redefining what Welshness means; thereby making anyone who steps beyond this definition an ‘extremist’. The sort of idiot who kicks shit out of someone because they have an English accent.
This brings me back to ‘Jase’ Mohammad and others, such as Wasting Mule columnist Caroline Hitt. (But there are plenty more.) For this group ‘Wales’ is defined by (and confined to) things like sport, tourism, showbiz, Cardiff. It is the dumbing down of any consideration of Welshness to the point where someone from Wales appearing on a ‘reality’ TV show becomes the most important thing happening in the country. No place here for history, traditions, culture, language, economics, politics, or the worsening poverty and increasing deprivation. In fact, no place for anything of real consequence. This is bread and circuses tailored for twenty-first century Wales.
All done to distract us from the colonisation, the exploitation, the calculated attacks on Welsh identity from all quarters. Those who should be defending us are part of the problem rather than part of the solution. While the English media can attack us head-on, what remains of the ‘Welsh’ media operates more subtly. It’s message is, ‘Oh, don’t get worked up over that (you’ll be an ‘extremist’) . . . ‘Look! Catherine Zeta Jones is home in Swansea’ . . . ‘George North’s injured’ . . . ‘There’s a new branch of Gobshite & Co opening in Cardiff’ . . . ‘Prince William lives on Anglesey’ . . . ‘Some twat said something stupid on Facebook’, etc., etc. Weaving a ‘curtain’ of trivia and superficiliality behind which to hide the uncomfortable truths of modern Wales.
I can’t predict the outcome of my son’s spat with his Cadillac-owning neighbour, but I guarantee the neighbour will be blameless of anything – he’s English, my son’s Welsh. No one will dare ask why these undesirables moved to Wales. Or why a Welsh local authority is housing them. Or why they are getting so much benefit they can afford to own a vehicle with three or four times the running costs of a normal car. There are people like my son’s neighbours all over Wales, their numbers increasing; but we mustn’t complain, it makes us ‘racist’.
Yet it’s not racist to relentlessly vilify, intimidate, exploit, traduce, atomise, ridicule, colonise a nation . . . and make it clear that we can expect even worse treatment if we stand up for ourselves! When a minority is treated like this it is often the precursor to something even uglier. So I say, ‘Fuck ’em!’ Enough is enough. Reject the stinking English system and its Welsh quislings. Fight it wherever you can. However you choose.