Nationalists want to rule their own destiny
WHAT is the self-interest of Welsh nationalism?
It is the motivation which drives us to oppose the building of the first, and now the second, superprison for offenders, mostly from England in a Wales that does not need them. It drives us to express disappointment and anger that London has decided that we do not need the railway line to be electrified to Swansea, that it is too expensive for us to have a tidal lagoon in Swansea Bay. It causes us to be frustrated when our government is not allowed to vary air traffic duty because the people of Bristol might be upset.
It opposes the division of our country into three annexes of Merseyside, Birmingham and Bristol. It campaigned against the burial of nuclear waste in mid Wales in the 1970s when scientifically, the best place to bury it was under London, and the location of nuclear power stations in our country, far away from the population centres of England.
Welsh nationalism grew from seeing our landscape drowned to build reservoirs, our men being killed working underground in the dark. It grew from the disasters we faced together as a community in spite of indifference from the government in London.
It causes hackles to rise when the English Prime Minister attacks our nation, using our health and education services’ problems as a weapon to attack the English Labour Party. It is anger caused across our country when Mrs Thatcher used her hatred for the trade unions to destroy our communities, removing all hope of them ever recovering.
Wales will not oppose these insults because it is poor and its people need any sort of work, however demeaning. It is the history lecturers in our colleges pronouncing in the 1970s that Welsh children should not be taught their own history “because it would make nationalists of them”.
The self-interest of Welsh nationalists is the desire to live in a country where we can decide for ourselves what is good for us, and that we have the power to put those decisions into action.
John H Davies Llandysul, Ceredigion