Inviting Julian Ruck on to S4C is inexcusable

Picture by BBC

Ifan Morgan Jones

I was hugely disappointed to learn today that anti-Welsh language troll Julian Ruck is to be invited to give his opinion on the Welsh language on S4C next week.

It was bad enough that he was invited on Newsnight over the summer. At least they had the excuse that, in the words of BBC Welsh Affairs Editor, the programme-makers were “ignorant” about Wales.

The decision to invite Julian Ruck on to Byd ar Bedwar completely undermines Welsh speakers’ argument that the future of the Welsh language and culture is not up for debate.

The discussion in Wales today is about how best to ensure the Welsh language thrives, not whether it should be terminated or not.

Y Byd ar Bedwar produces some very good journalism, including an excellent programme earlier this month about OCD. And I’m sure that the presenter will give Julian Ruck a good grilling.

But that’s not the point. By inviting him on to a program about the future of the Welsh language, Y Byd ar Bedwar are basically conceding that his opinion is valid and that it deserves an airing.

This is not an argument against free speech – Julian Ruck is free to spout his gibberish to anyone that chooses to listen.

But here he is being elevated to the position of an expert by a public service broadcaster.

Julian Ruck is not an expert. In fact, it’s not clear what he is, apart from a man very adept at getting his face on to the television by taking advantage of journalists’ fondness for controversy.

But as we’ve seen over the last few years, non-experts who are given a platform to spout nonsense against minority groups are often taken seriously and embolden others who hold the same views.

The programme-makers should note that thousands of viewers signed a petition calling for an internal inquiry into how the BBC and other media organisations portray the Welsh language, following Julian Ruck’s appearance on Newsnight.

Y Byd ar Bedwar’s decision to ape the BBC and give Julian Ruck a platform again seems like a massive slap in the face to their most loyal supporters.

The next time he or others like him are invited to speak to a more sympathetic audience on English language media, Welsh speakers won’t have a leg to stand on.

Welsh speakers must deal with enough anti-Welsh ignorance without having to come across it on our own single TV channel.

If Y Byd ar Bedwar think this is a provocative way of getting their ratings up, they will be disappointed. It’s a betrayal that viewers won’t forget in a hurry.


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Eos Pengwern
Guest
Eos Pengwern

An awful lot of what the BBC does is inexcusable – that’s the main reason why we tore up our TV licence about ten years ago, and haven’t missed it nearly as much as we’d expected.

gaynor
Guest
gaynor

Byd ar Bedwar is ITV not BBC, i mean if you want to give someobody the opportunity to spout anti Welsh facts and figures go for somebody who does spout facts ! not a self- delusional ignoramous

Eos Pengwern
Guest
Eos Pengwern

Yes, you’re quite right; my mistake. Unfortunately what goes for the BBC goes for much of the television industry and the media in general. Hence I won’t be renewing my licence any time soon.

Adam Pearce
Guest
Adam Pearce

Pam bod pobl yn dal i roi llwyfan iddo?

Benjiman L. Angwin
Guest
Benjiman L. Angwin

Dydy pobl ddu o le dwi’n dod yn America yn derbyn y fath casineb a hiliaeth. Byddan nhw’n llosgi siopau dros y pethau mae’r dyn hwn yn dweud.

Erin
Guest
Erin

But a public service broadcasting choosing his opinion as a valid one … this is not necessarily so surely. Let him put both feet in it once again; only Welsh speakers will hear, unless watching with subtitles.

Richard Perkins
Guest
Richard Perkins

For goodness sake let Julian Ruck parade his abysmal ignorance and ill informed prejudice. On the language he speaks loudly, if not coherently, for a declining constituency which needs to be fully understood in order to be undermined with calm reason and logic. He may be an enemy of the language but he has a right to be heard on this and any other matter.

y prysgodyn
Guest

Depends on context. If the programme is an expose of the anti-welsh language lunatic faction – and how trolls like him roam cyberspace spreading hate-filled nonsense – then, yes, put him on and grill him. But on a programme on the Welsh language and its future, there is no reasoned contribution the ‘clickbait charlatan’ could possibly offer.

kim erswell
Guest
kim erswell

I agree, Y Byd ar Bedwar, does some very good stuff. I’ll be definetly tuned in to hear what, Mr. Ruck – who seems a rather bigoted person – has to say this time over the Welsh language. Having previously been irritated by him, it’ll be hard my being objective though.

John Howe
Guest
John Howe

I am not a Welsh speaker but will encourage the teaching and use of the language.
But I abhor any attempt to silence reasonable voices and opinions, censorship of views and opinions is unjustifiable in a democracy and is the slippery road to the thought police.

leigh richards
Guest

“I abhor any attempt to silence reasonable voices and opinions” – i’m afraid there’s nothing remotely ‘reasonable’ about Ruck’s bigoted rantings john 🙁

Cedwyn Aled
Guest
Cedwyn Aled

Everything that one considers important is, and always should be, up for debate. Otherwise it’s Croeso Brawd Mawr. No democrat should be afraid of debate, no matter how dear the subject is to one’s heart. As for Julian Ruck, why not give him enough rope; it will be most amusing. Censorship will only give him credibility amongst the linguistic numbskulls.

Cedwyn Aled
Guest
Cedwyn Aled

PS note to Eos Pengwern – Y Byd ar Bedwar is produced by ITV Wales, not BBC.

Dic Griffiths
Guest
Dic Griffiths

Ifan Morgan Jones is absolutely right, I agree with him completely. Julian Ruck was allowed to appear on Newsnight because the BBC is always anxious to give an airing to any viewpoint which the English/British establishment feels an urge to promote. The fact that he is now appearing on Y Byd ar Bedwar is indictive of the extent of Welsh subservience to that same establishment.

Graham John Hathaway
Guest

The only saving grace is that it will be heard and seen by a much smaller audience than Newsnight. That may be the key to understanding the issues, the audience. On Newsnight it was a free ride , basically uncontested, in his personal criticism of a Nation’s language, in this case Welsh. I suggest he seeks to understand hiraeth, that often escapes closed minds who see only the black crow of prejudice of English. Tiresome but I defend the rights to say it , rather than be opposed to free speech. It’s more about the alternative view that was missing… Read more »

M
Guest
M

Should a new petition be called to determine if he should appear on S4C?

Keith Parry
Guest
Keith Parry

Take your rotten cabbages along with you to the meeting!

Ann Corkett
Guest
Ann Corkett

Dw i ddim yn deall rhai o’r sylwadau: ydy Mr Ruck yn siarad Cymraeg? A fydd y cyfweliad yn Gymraeg?

Dafis
Guest
Dafis

Ruck is a weird old cove carrying bags of AngloBrit supremacist prejudice. However it was the BBC’s failure to feature an opposing view that did most damage on Newsnight. That omission was deliberate and should not be swept under the carpet.

leigh richards
Guest

Given his long and well known track record of denigrating the welsh language at every opportunity inviting him is an extraordinary decision – the equivalent of inviting a neo nazi to give their opinions on the holocaust.

Dafydd Roberts (@apemyr)
Guest

I tend to agree with you Leigh. I just don’t understand why S4C thinks it appropriate to give him a platform for his hate speech. He has social media for that. And does Y Byd ar Bedwar think that it’s viewers – Welsh speakers presumably – need a dose of anti-welsh-language rant now and again?

Michelle-Louise Burrows
Guest
Michelle-Louise Burrows

Julian Ruck ar S4C? NAC OES! Dim ffordd! Rydw i wedi dod o hyd i lawer o bigots gwrth-Gymraeg ar gyfryngau cymdeithasol heb orfod gwrando arno.

Robert Williams
Guest
Robert Williams

Is giving a platform to the bigoted – and inaccurate – ranting of Eos Pengwern ‘excusable’? Yes, as long as it’s balanced by the more reasoned – and factually accurate – contributions of such as Cedwyn Aled.

Paul Hoskins
Guest
Paul Hoskins

This man appears to be achieving the same status vis a vis the welsh language as Nigel Farage achieved in relation to Europe.The first ‘rent a quote’ the lazy media turns to!

Dafydd ap Gwilym
Guest
Dafydd ap Gwilym

Well we were given S4C as a, be grateful and shut up, gratious handout at the end of the day so, what do you expect? That it would’t be used as an English priopaganda tool! I fear this is the problem within Wales today. Every one wants to moan about the obvious and the sublime none of which do anything for Welsh unity. Get onto S4C and demand that a spokesperson for the Welsh people attends the interview to show that this anglophile does not speak at all for Wales, not even for the new English settlers! Nation.Cymru is our… Read more »

Petroc
Guest
Petroc

Cheap TV, inviting the abuser to the screen to discuss with the victim. After all it’s just his word against hers (cymru).

kim erswell
Guest
kim erswell

Well, I’ve just finished watching tonights programme and in my opinion, Mr. Ruck (who has issues) came across as a total moron; whose comments should see a few more people encouraged to help reach the million. My God, the guy’s an imbecile – but to be fair a superior one. Prat! Overall though the programme – to me – was positive.

julianruck
Guest

From the man ‘who has issues’ – God help us!
Julian Ruck