Given that you’re so great, and did so well, it’s pretty clear that they only got the job because they can speak Welsh. That’s discriminatory!
And not only do Welsh speakers get the best jobs, you’re also very well informed, from a friend of a friend, that they form a sinister cabal (also known as the Taffia) that rule Wales!
You will often hear this claim that Welsh-speakers are elitist, and that the language is used as a useful tool with which to exclude others and ensure jobs for the boyos. Sometimes, the same people who suggest this will simultaneously insist that Welsh is forced on them. I humbly propose that both of those things can’t really be true – it’s an odd sort of elite club that actively seeks to give everybody else in Wales the chance to join should they wish to do so.
First of all, it should be pointed out that some 20% of people in Wales can speak Welsh. And even more than that can speak Welsh, but don’t think it counts because their Welsh ‘isn’t good enough’.
So if there’s a job being offered, there’s about a one in five chance a Welsh speaker will fill it. This is not a conspiracy.
To demonstrate this, consider the fact that four of the 15 players in the team that started against Australia in the final Lions test could speak Welsh very well (and a few more could do so under duress). That’s almost 1/3 of the starting team.
This could mean two things – there was a sinister plot to give places in the squad to Welsh speakers. Or it was just a statistical coincidence because ten of the players came from Wales. Unless you’ve gor your tin foil hat on, I hope you’ll agree that it’s the latter.
Of course, there are a few jobs where you need to be able to speak Welsh. Being a translator, or a Welsh language school teacher, for example. Or being the Welsh language commissioner.
There are other jobs where being able to speak Welsh is a definite advantage. And why shouldn’t it be? It’s a skill, like being able to speak Spanish or French, or being able to write in shorthand. There are a lot of people in Wales who speak Welsh as a first language, and would prefer to receive services in Welsh – it’s a matter of supply and demand.
You may think this vaguely sinister if you consider Welsh speakers to be a homogeneous group to which no outsiders can get access. You may think it’s ‘racist’. But since anyone can learn to speak Welsh, whatever their ‘race’, and every school child in Wales is taught to speak the language, there’s nothing exclusive about it.
New Wales Order
But what about the accusation that Welsh speakers form a powerful ‘Taffia’ that rules Wales? Well, it always seems to be the case than minorities are either considered savage simpletons, or (if that accusation fails to stick) evil, greedy, and power hungry, controlling the world from behind the scenes. Perhaps we should be happy that Welsh speakers are put in the second category – at least it comes with a little prestige.
I can only speak from experience when I say that, if there is a Taffia out there, I’ve certainly not been invited to their secret meetings to plot world domination. But if you are reading this, guys, I’m free on Mondays.