Whit maitters is the survival o Scots


bi Bob Fairnie

The Scots language will only survive if the Scots nation yaises it for ilka-day spoken communication.  It disnae maitter a docken hou weel it gets written, if it disnae get spoken, it will dee oot.  Ilka time a Scot haes somethin tae say an disnae say it in Scots, thon’s anither nail in the deid-kist o the mither tung.  Whit’s e’en waur an daes e’en mair skaith tae the weird o the language is whan fowk stauns up tae praise the mither tung an tae cry for its survival but disnae dae it in Scots.  “I’ve had my Scots educated out of me,” is the excuise that’s gien.

But thon’s aw it is, juist an excuise.  Truith be telt, they’ve aw been brocht up tae thinkin that it’s juist the uneducatit warkin clesses that speaks Scots an educatit professional fowk can aye be recognised bi hou weel they can speak English.  Whuther they still believe this or no is weel seen bi hou blate they are at allouin thirsels tae be heard communicatin in Scots in public.  Fowk that’s ower blate tae yaise Scots the day isnae gaun tae chynge ower an stert yaisin it the morn sae in cryin for mair yuiss tae be makit o the Scots language whit they’re really sayin is, “Dinnae dae whit A dae.  Dae whit A’m tellin ye tae dae!”  Ay, an a lot o guid thon’ll dae tae sauf the Scots language.

There cannae be ony increase in the yuiss o spoken Scots in Scotland athoot a siclike tynin o the yuiss o spoken English.  There nae wey the Scottish estaiblishment, ony time in the oncome, is gaun tae accep the yuiss o spoken Scots in airts whaur English haes hauden owerance for generations an there nae yuiss waitin on some kinna miracle kythin ony time suin.  Gin the spoken Scots language is tae hae ony chance at aw o brekin oot frae the jyle that the estaiblisht British society haes pitten it intae, it will only come aboot whan an if the Scots language an its speakers decides that they’ve haed eneuch an yaise thair ain wecht o nummers tae force thirsels oot the jyle – force the spoken Scots word tae be heard in aw thae places whaur it gars rid faces the day an did in the bygane.  Ay, if it wisnae for oor creenge we cuid dae aw that.

For aw that the feck o Scots language upsteerers is creenge ridden whaur speakin Scots in public is concairned, there thoosands, aiblins e’en millions o hamelt Scots speakers the day that’s no near sae thirlt tae the creenge.  This can be seen bi the wey, thae hamelt Scots speakers is forcin the soond o thair ain Scots language intae the TV news reports insteid o chyngin ower tae speakin ‟polite‟ whan on the tellie the wey the aulder generations did.  The wecht o this force for chynge is a muckle wave that’s still aye growein an it winnae need an awfu lot o help frae the upsteerers afore it kythed intae an unstoppable tsunami.  Whit cuid the estaiblishment dae agin the feck o the fowk ettlin tae force thair ain language intae the media, the courts, the kirk, the schuils, the estaiblishment itsel an ay, e’en intae the Scots pairlament gin they cuid find eneuch MSPs wi the gumption?

Efter gey near forty year o fleetchin governments an politicians tae sauf oor Scots language, whit hiv we got tae shaw for it?  A puckle o pawkie words an a haundfu o bawbees noo an agane, juist eneuch tae keep a haundfu o upsteerers an academics in a job an oot o thair hair.  But Scots is still deein an there still aye nae urgency tae dae ocht positive.  As Prof. Joe LoBianco says, when a government cairries on this wey, it’s cause they hae a hidden agenda an thon’s tae deliberately allou the language tae dee oot throu negleck.

Wha kens hou mony years oor language haes afore it dwines awa past the pynt o nae return?  Time’s no on the side o oor mither tung.  Shuirly the time’s richt noo for aw Scots speakers tae pruive whit they are an speak Scots oot lood.  Nae Scots quotes athin spoken English but richt spoken Scots aw on its ain.  Yaise yer spoken Scots an force it doon the thrapples o the media an the estaib-lishment.  Tak it tae places it hisnae been for generations an be prood o it athoot ony embarrassment.  Oor hamelt Scots speakers isnae embarrassed sae dae yer bit an gie thaim a heeze tae turn thair wave o spoken Scots intae a tsunami.  The Scots language haes waited lang eneuch in the jyle.  Noo’s the time for it tae brek oot an fecht back – or dee.

This airticle wis furst publisht bi Scots Tung Wittins