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Lord Hannan spars with peer after saying UK has ‘one language’

02 Jul 2021 3 minutes Read
Daniel Hannah speaking in the House of Lords. Picture by BBC Parliament.

Two Peers in the House of Lords sparred when one of them claimed that he could not understand why the UK was breaking apart as “we speak the same language”.

Lord Daniel Hannan, who was one of the most vocal pro-Brexit voices as an MEP in the Conservative Party, said that he did not understand why the separation of the UK was on the table.

“We’re not riven by some massive ethnic difference like Kosovo or South Sudan,” he said. “In all parts, we speak the same language, we watch the same TV, we follow the same sports, we shop at the same chains, we abuse alcohol in the same way.

“This common affinity predates our former union.”

However, his comments were criticised by Lord Davies of Oldham, who said that Lord Hannan’s comments were indicative of an attitude that was more damaging to the union.

“I am proud to be British, to be English and even a bit Welsh so I know that to say we have one language in these islands is the sort of destructive attitude that is driving us apart,” he said.

‘Trashing’

In his speech, Daniel Hannah said that the “shared nationality” and “shared characteristics” of the people of the UK were being eroded as people regressed to “older patriotisms”.

“We were stubborn, we were stiff-necked, we bridled at injustice, we were slow to anger, we could be morose but we had a clear sense of union fostered by our habit of intermingling so what’s changed? What’s changed, it seems to me, is the trashing of the British brand.

“If the United Kingdom as a concept is systematically derided and reduced by our intellectual elites, if our history is presented to young people as a hateful chronicle of exploitation and racism, then is it any wonder that people in the constituent kingdoms will start roping back towards older patriotisms.

“And yet I ask the question: where else in the world would you rather have been poor or female or from a religious minority? Which country has done more to spread liberty and law?

“We don’t have to make up a fable, a noble lie, we have a tremendous story to tell. We defeated attempts to unite the world under fascist tyranny, we ended slavery. It’s a great song to sing and we haven’t finished singing it yet.”

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William Glyn THOMAS
William Glyn THOMAS
29 days ago

Can we assume “Davies” will be fighting to have Cymraeg recognized as the oldest and therefore the first/premiere language of the British Isles?

Quornby
Quornby
29 days ago

The “elites” just don’t get it do they? Wales was conquered by a rapacious King and has been stripped of the assets that would have made any free country rich whilst always being derided and suffering humiliation upon humiliation.

Chris
Chris
29 days ago
Reply to  Quornby

Invaded, pillaged yes. Not conquered. Remember Wales and England united after the WELSH army defeated the English at Bosworth Field. Henri Tiwdr first united Cymru and Lloegr. So strictly speaking, we conquered them. Then when the Tiwdr line died out, the Scottish norman James VII took over

Hannergylch
Hannergylch
29 days ago
Reply to  Chris

The Tiwdrs were a mixed blessing for Wales, arguably more good than bad in the long run. Their Welsh backers got a return on their investment of blood and money when the Tiwdrs curtailed the powers of the marcher lords; but they were inconsistent about the language. On the one hand, the Laws in Wales Acts forced the English language into public life here, but on the other hand Elizabeth I — who could read Cymaeg — brought the Cymraeg of the mediæval poets to a wider readership when she commissioned translations & printings of the Prayer Book & the… Read more »

Derek
Derek
29 days ago
Reply to  Hannergylch

More good than bad 😂😂😂 maybe for a few sycophantic sell out petty gentry, but not for the peasantry

Trystan Wledig
Trystan Wledig
29 days ago
Reply to  Derek

We’re still here aren’t we?

Estelle
Estelle
27 days ago
Reply to  Hannergylch

Not sure if Henry Vll revoked the earlier harsh laws of Edward 1st who made it difficult for welsh in the new “English” owned towns, he may have been good for wales initally by rewarding welsh gentry but that’s where it ended. HenryVlll laws stated that no welsh person could hold office, no welsh language to be used. Pretty much wanted to strengthen the union by act of parliment by basically getting rid of welshness. It was at this time that old welsh gentry families became English ( The Fychans became Vaughans etc ) Our language only survived because of… Read more »

Celt Roberts
Celt Roberts
27 days ago
Reply to  Estelle

It’s rather odd, don’t you think, that Estelle puts a capital to English, Henry and Edward but no capital letter for Welsh and Wales. Is there a point that you are trying to make?

Derek
Derek
29 days ago
Reply to  Chris

Wales suffered the most classic colonialism and conquest ever seen on this planet. We need to stop this stupid denialism.

The Tudors were a ghastly anti-Welsh family, and even worse laws which included hanging the homeless and the beheading a nun for having a bad dreams about Henry VIII.

The Battle of Bosworth is a con.

j humphrys
j humphrys
29 days ago
Reply to  Derek

Bad for the English poor, also. Nowhere for sick people to go once the Abbeys were sold off to his rich friends. Things very different these “modern” days, of course………eh……..what?

Hogyn y Gogledd
Hogyn y Gogledd
29 days ago

Love the way Hannan says “we”, when he means “I and my friends with fascist leanings”

Chris
Chris
29 days ago

“Not riven by some ethnic difference”? Stealing our land, trying to wipe out our history, misappropriating our culture, stealing our resources, betraying our workers, murdering the chartists, beating our children in an attempt to wipe out the language, demeaning and deriding us at every opportunity, flooding our valleys, cheating us of our own taxes raised, undermining our government and betraying OUR referendum do you for a starter?

CJPh
CJPh
29 days ago

There is a point here (when the cloak of anglocentrism is lifted) that is to be heard. When history is reduced to a narrative of victims and victimisers, nothing but hate is generated. Views get skewed, heroes forgotten, culture warped. True. But then to make ahistoric, blatantly false claims of a unified sense of nationhood and culture undermines the broader point. Conservatism (per se, not toryism) is at its best when it reminds us of the value of certain modes of being, institutions and traditions. It’s at its worst in Lord Hannan’s characterisation of the UK – revisionist, whitewashing and… Read more »

Wrexhamian
Wrexhamian
29 days ago

Is Lord Hannah’s claim an exercise in thickness and ignorance (albeit cleverly-worded) or an exercise in denial and self-deception? Is it that he doesn’t get it, or that he refuses to get it, as regards the very real absence of complete homogeneity on this island? Of course there are shared characteristics, but it’s still four countries whose differences can’t just be ignored by those, like Hannah, with privileged access to publicity.

hdavies15
hdavies15
29 days ago
Reply to  Wrexhamian

Hannan – a prize example of an overloaded verbal fluency without a matching intellectual depth or rigour. Result ? – pompous, self opinionated tw*t.

Derek
Derek
29 days ago
Reply to  hdavies15

Hes just an English imperialist crying over a dead empire

defaid
defaid
29 days ago
Reply to  Wrexhamian

Neither. It’s just towering hypocrisy. Read what Wikipedia has to say about him:

MEP and disruptor of European Parliament proceedings,

misappropriator of half a million euros of EU funding,

darling of Fox news,

secretary of the European Research Group,

proponent of devolution (at least until he’d got brexit done) now effectively denying the existence of one of Britain’s nations,

proponent of direct election of decision-makers until Bojo proposed a life peerage for him…

Derek
Derek
29 days ago

“Proud to be British” nowadays … Just means proud to be whatever identity that the centralised UK state in London has decided to ram down our throats

The actual British were Welsh and Cornish speakers but we aren’t allowed to read history

Steve Duggan
Steve Duggan
29 days ago

When are these people going to understand in Cymru we had little choice – we were conquered ! During the 19th century in particular Westminster tried to eradicate our language – yes, there is more than one language on these islands !!

Stephen Owen
Stephen Owen
28 days ago

What does Hannan know about Wales?

Kerry Davies
Kerry Davies
28 days ago

The more Hannan and his fellow Tories like that plonker Wallis push this centralising agenda the better. Even some of the less damaged English are starting to question the inequality that centralised power in a corrupt Westminster makes inevitable. 20% of ll civil servants are London based but they reckon an amazing 80% of the House of Lords is London centric.

We may yet get back to the old Plaid slogan “Home Rule for the Home Counties.”

Kurt Morgan
Kurt Morgan
26 days ago

‘We defeated attempts to unite the world under fascist tyranny.’ The irony of that statement from a Centre Right Tory 😒 So, it can’t happen elsewhere, but you will make it happen here 🙄😠😡

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