Wales controlled by ‘Taffia’ who ‘despise the indigenous people of Wales’ claims prominent conservative website
One of the UK’s most prominent conservative websites has published an article claiming that Wales is controlled by a “Taffia” who “despise the indigenous people of Wales” and is intent on replacing their culture.
The article by artist Alexander Adams on the Conservative Woman website, which has over 600,000 monthly visitors, claims that Wales is run by “Welsh-speaking elitists who dominate the local government, charity and civil service”.
The article’s author, who has written a book Culture War published by Societas, includes a review of the National Museum of Wales and claims that the ‘Taffia’ “dislike the heritage Welsh population and culture”.
The article goes on to echo the talking points of far-right conspiracy theories that claim that global elites are seeking “cultural and demographic substitution” by suggesting that the ‘Taffia’ have “promoted migration and embraced globalism” and want to replace “indigenous European-British culture”.
“Staff and members of Labour, the Nationalist Party, the Arts Council of Wales, S4C (Welsh television), NGOs, universities and senior administrative posts in the civil service are often called ‘the Taffia’,” the article says.
“This is a group of Welsh, Welsh-speaking elitists who dominate the local government, charity and civil service. Being Welsh-speaking (in a nation which is generally not Welsh speaking, in south Wales, the area with the fewest Welsh-speakers per head of population) allows them a privileged position.
“It also detaches them from the local population, giving them a sense of entitlement and superiority.”
The article takes particular issue with the National Museum of Wales’ decision to take down a painting of General Sir Thomas Picton.
Picton had been celebrated as a war hero because he was the highest ranking officer to die at the Battle of Waterloo, but awareness grew of his role in the slave trade, as well as his cruel treatment of Black enslaved people and free people, and for sanctioning torture during his governance of Trinidad, from 1797-1803.
It culminated in the decision to box up his statue during the 2020 Black Lives Matter protests, and later to take down his portrait from the Faces of Wales gallery.
Alexander Adams claimed that the move was a “flex – a chance for the elite to show their power by disposing of European art and replacing it with non-European art, and by using museum resources to degrade a Welsh war hero”. He added that it “echoes their intention for the population”.
The decision to remove the portrait was made in July 2021 as part of Reframing Picton, which is a youth-led initiative by the National Museum of Wales.
The Museum said at the time that it was “another important step” for Amgueddfa Cymru in examining their national collections and thinking about who they displayed in their Faces of Wales gallery and why.
“This project replaces one artwork – which assigns great importance to someone whose actions as Governor of Trinidad even at the time were seen as cruel – with a celebratory portrait of a worker – someone we could today consider to be a hero,” a spokesperson said.
“Looking ahead, Amgueddfa Cymru will be creating educational resources on the history and achievements of communities experiencing racial inequalities within our society. These will support the recently announced changes to the curriculum by the Welsh Government.”
A report published by Hope not Hate in October suggested that the vast majority of people across Wales celebrate diversity and community, and are open to difference and change.
The report highlighted that although most people in Wales are open, tolerant and welcoming, there is a sizeable proportion of the Welsh population who are susceptible to swing towards populist right support or far-right sympathies if conditions are stressed.
“The vast majority of Welsh people celebrate diversity and community, and are open to difference and change,” they said.
“But we find some contradiction between a view of Wales as welcoming, open and tolerant and pockets of hostility and unease around issues like immigration and multiculturalism.”
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