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3.11.10

Yorkshire Devolve!

The creation of a campaign for a devolved Yorkshire Assembly gives the Cornish movement one more opportunity to pose a tricky question. English regionalism or English nationalism?

Yorkshire Independence is the name of the website but devolution is what's being proposed. The arguments for a Yorkshire Assembly, well put and logical, will be nothing new to Cornish campaigners. We want nothing less, and perhaps a little more, for Kernow. Their campaign seems sincere and they have already had some interesting and positive responses from various politicians. I've exchanged a few e-mails with the people behind Yorkshire Independence and they are open to any possible cooperation with other democratic nationalists and regionalists from the UK and further afield.

As a nationalist though I find myself troubled by the conflict that pitches English regionalism against English nationalism.

If all English regionalists supported the artificial government zones (i.e the South West, North East etc) and only this form of devolution then my choice would be clear. However this is not the case. The Wessex, Mercian and some other English regionalists do recognise the Cornish nations right to be a region and to have great self-determination. Equally within a framework of asymmetric devolution across England Cornwall's aspirations to an assembly would fit quite comfortably. We would be fools to refuse such an offer. Is the recently granter Cornish LEP, along with others such projects, a move toward asymmetric devolution?

On the other hand if my opinion was formed by the bile spat at Cornish campaigners by all but a tiny minority of English nationalists then again my decision would be simple. However I'm a nationalists and cannot but defend the right of all nations to self-determination. If the English want an all England parliament then they should have one.

Between pragmatism and idealism, what position should the Cornish movement take when it comes to the English question?

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