“Welsh nationalist” is the ‘insult’ Labour and Tories alike level at me and my Plaid Cymru colleagues. And every time I hear that phrase I smile, safe in the knowledge we have won the argument.
The fundamental mistake made by the Westminster establishment parties – that is both Labour and the Tories – is every time they deploy this ‘insult’ they reaffirm that Plaid Cymru has Wales’s best interests at heart, whilst Westminster ranks higher in their order of priorities.
It’s less of an accusation and more of a statement of fact – a compliment even.
So, let’s set the record straight, what does it mean to be a Welsh nationalist?
The obvious starting place is the constitutional question – where should decisions about Wales be made? To me, that answer is not complicated – decisions about Wales, should be made in Wales.
Why should politicians in Westminster, who have never been to Wales, have a say over the future of our country?
Despite years of Westminster ignoring Wales’s interest, the establishment parties both disagree.
For Labour and the Tories, Westminster and the London establishment must remain the centre of power…
…. Welsh nationalism means recognising this deep economic injustice, created by the Westminster establishment parties, is not something to celebrate.
It means believing that we can build an economy that doesn’t see a third of Welsh children grow up in poverty. It means taking responsibility for the future of our country and the well-being of our people.
But at both ends of the M4, we have parties in power that have no interest in ending Wales’s dependence on Westminster.
Of course all ideologies can be thrown at you as an insult and in the United States socialists and even liberal are used by the right as an insult and unlike here where we can use Tory the mainstream right are not perhaps labeled in insulting terms.
The problem I have with “Welsh Nationalist” is not that it is used as an insult but it is too broad a term for a movement seeing Independence.
“In “The desire of nations” in 1974, R Tudur Jones wrote: “An Englishman never calls himself a nationalist. This is one of the characteristics of English nationalism.” In its essence, the very idea that ‘nationalism’ is something from which ‘our’ nation is uniquely exempt is a highly nationalistic statement, necessarily underpinned by a perception of uniqueness and specialness when compared to all those ‘others’.It’s unfair, of course, to say that all English people share this sense of uniqueness in the world, but it often seems as though most politicians and ministers do, and we saw a classic example from Michael Gove last week, attempting to claim that Brexit was nothing at all to do with identity politics – that was something from which only Scots (and presumably, by extension, Welsh independentistas as well) suffered.One of the other characteristics of most English nationalists is that they seem to suffer from a complete inability to recognise the difference between England and Britain. Monday’s tweet from Conservative HQ was an absolute classic:.@BrandonLewis :The citizens of our country have created for themselves an inclusive & thoughtful English identity. One based on the values of freedom, fairness & justice. Principals that are not just shared in England under the St George’s Cross, but across our whole Union #PXThe stress on identity rather undermines what Gove said just a few days earlier, of course, but consistency is hardly one of the current government’s great strengths. It shows a complete confusion between ‘England’ and the ‘Union’ which can only encourage people to believe that the English consider themselves the superior driving force. But leaving aside both that (and the fact that the ‘principals’ which we apparently all share obviously don’t include a commitment to accurate spelling), only a died-in-the-wool nationalist could really believe that “freedom, fairness and justice” are values which uniquely underpin one particular national identity. Do they really believe – and expect the rest of us to believe – that these values are found nowhere else?
The important relevant piece here to me is the term independentistas.
John I believe is the originator of using independentista here in Wales and i believe we should follow his example.
Whereas Welsh Nationalist can mean could be used to those seeking Home Rule, Dominion Status, a Federal UK and Independence in the manner of our friends in the Republic of Ireland
Independentistas Is what it says on the label .
Well actually more than that, it confers a desire to run your nation yourself . It does not mean that you believe that you are ethnically different or superior, but you have an identity that can express it self as an Indepenfent state.
One of the major aspects of the independentista movement in Catalonia is that there seems to be complete lack of any anti-immigration rhetoric.
It has been said of Franco that he was a Nationalist who behaved like a Fascist .
This can be said of his heirs in the ruling Spanish Government .
In making the difference between Spanish Nationalists in Madrid and Catalonian independentistas. in Barcelona we have an example between British and Weksh “Nationlism”.
So Leanne lets stop calling ourselves Welsh “Nationalists” but
It may take a while to get used to, but it may well be worth it.