The latest Phil Evans column from the South Wales Evening Post
The latest Phil Evans column from the South Wales Evening Post.
Comedian Phil Evans is from Ammanford. He is known as the man who puts the ‘cwtsh’ into comedy.
Anti-Semitism in Britain has come to the foreground in recent days and I’m sure we all agree it has no place in today’s society.
But, here in Wales, I’ve noticed another kind of intolerance, bordering on pure hate.
I recently read a letter in a Welsh newspaper – not this one, I hasten to add – written by a buffoon suffering from raging indignation of the pen.
The target of his bilious outpourings?
He blamed the problems we face in Wales, such as the economy, overcrowded schools and doctors’ waiting rooms - possibly even the appalling Spring weather - not just on the English Parliament, but the English who move here to work, conveniently forgetting that they pay taxes and help the economy by shopping and eating-out locally.
And that ‘migration’ between England and Wales is a two-way street.
I recognised him as a dimwit when he referred to English people who move to Wales as ‘incomers’ - an archaic, pejorative word I’ve always loathed.
It’s worrying that a Welsh person could harbour such a medieval attitude against the English in 2016.
Is the cave he lives in detached or semi-detached from reality?
Presumably, he won’t watch TV in case an English actor suddenly appears to affront his sensibilities and won’t buy a newspaper that might contain words written by an English person.
He seemed oblivious that many different nationalities live in Wales, including English people and those whose parents came from England in decades past.
Conversely, when Welsh people move to England, Scotland, Northern Ireland and further afield to achieve their ambitions I doubt that they’re referred to by the disdainful term ‘incomer’.
I’ve never been called that on the many occasions I’ve work outside Wales and I don’t consider my English colleagues and friends who’ve moved here as ‘incomers’.
We don’t define ourselves by our nationality.
We’re all just people!
I’m sure the bitter and twisted letter-writer isn’t the only person in Wales who yearns for the good old day’s when only Welsh people inhabited our villages, strangers were shunned and we all married our cousins.
However, the fact is, if you constantly keep looking back at the past you’ll end up banging your head on the doorway to the future – something the splenetic writer’s clearly done.
Either that or he’s on heavy medication.
Can I suggest that from now on, we consign the word ‘incomer’ to history and replace it with ‘welcomer’?
Dreams and the ride of her life:
I was truly moved by a story I read last week and feel that it's more than worthy of a mention in my column.
A group of Harley Davidson riders have made a 97-year-old woman's birthday wish come true by taking her out for a ride.
Daredevil Kay Matthews, from Cannock in Staffordshire, who has previously skydived at the age of 92, told her hairdresser a trip on a Harley was a lifelong ambition.
Shaun Jenkinson, a member of the nearby Wolfruna Chapter of the Harley Owners Group and husband of Mrs Matthews' hairdresser, offered to take her out for her 97th birthday, but little did she know, he’d also invited several other riders in the chapter to join in.
After roaming the mean streets of Cannock, they stopped for refreshments at a garden centre before taking Mrs Matthews home.
Another great story of the biking community once again pulling together to make dreams come true.
What an amazing way to stay young at heart.
Goals and things to look forward to at any age are a must.
Right then, I'm off to the shed to clean the bike.
This must be unhealthy;
The debate for schools to become academies continues and much has been aired on the news over the past weekend.
However, having listened to the debate, to me this spells out stress and danger for both pupils and teachers alike.
We are already seeing children being weighed down with additional homework and higher standards to be reached for examinations.
Many children have already suffered as they are not emotionally equipped to deal with the demands at such a young age.
Surely, this can't create a healthy childhood?
Additional or unrealistic demands and pressure at a very young age does not lead to a balanced upbringing and can do nothing but kill creativity and drain confidence.
OK, a few may excel at the challenge, but not the majority.
Surely, this is widening the gap therefore detrimental in these early years of learning?
I'm open minded about most things, but for me to be convinced that all schools should aim for academy status the research needs to be clearer and far more convincing, which at this point in time is not forthcoming.
You can follow Phil Evans on Twitter @philevanswales and www.philevans.co.uk