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Letter: Not funny, Bob.

Byline: SION JONES

# SIR -I was at the Sesiwn Fawr Dolgellau gig over the weekend (July 20, 21) and really enjoyed a well-run festival.

I was looking forward to seeing Bob Geldof play. I enjoyed his set, great stuff, great band and great songs. He has always championed the underdog and I admire him greatly for that. So what made him display such misunderstanding of his Celtic cousins, the Welsh, at Dolgellau? I am referring to his ill-informed jibes at the Welsh language. He told the crowd he had learned some Welsh and was about to address us in our own language, when he just made some guttural gibbering sounds. He actually repeated this puerile act at the end of the set.

Doesn't he realise that the language is weak and in a fragile state?

I live in Welsh-speaking Wales and am constantly reminded of the threat posed to my language and culture. The last thing we need is to bebelittled during one of our rare celebrations of Welshness such as Dolgellau's gig.

I may seem thin-skinned to you, but it is so frustrating to realise that so many people are ignorant of our plight. It's made even worse when someone of Bob's standing and reputation displays an ignorance of Wales and the Welsh so blatantly.

Get him to learn about Wales and maybe he'll modify his stance, because if people like Bob could see another minority language is on the way out then at the very least he could be proactive in promoting an awareness and understanding of a unique culture before it fades into the memory of a bland Anglo-American future.

I won't lose any sleep over Bob's flippant jibes, but taking the mick only works when its funny.

SION JONES Bethesda
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Title Annotation:Letters
Publication:Western Mail (Cardiff, Wales)
Date:Jul 24, 2003
Words:294
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