Recently I was disappointed when a handful of Labour activists in the Duchy took it upon themselves to criticise the very meagre funding given to promote the Cornish language; suggesting that it would be money better spent on BSL.
This kind of populist rhetoric has everything to get the heads nodding at the bar in the local pub, but does it stand up to closer scrutiny?
How very disheartening to see Labour members putting up one language community against another; trying to create unnecessary competition between two minority groups. So much for promoting community cohesion and solidarity! Instead of dividing the Cornish community wouldn’t it be much better to celebrate the funding Cornish gets (that Cornwall gets) from central government – funding that we wouldn’t otherwise obtain – and then go on to create as large a consensus as possible to demand support for BSL? I think I can safely say the vast majority of MK members would support the teaching of BSL.
In reality Cornwall has been desperately under funded by Westminster for decades. No doubt our overlords in London, irrespective of political alignment, are only too happy to see Cornish people at each others throats in this way – fighting for scraps from the masters table – instead of standing together to demand a better deal.
So lets finish with: Not Cornish or BSL, but rather Cornish and BSL!