Czech president Václav Klaus talks about Esperanto! calling it an artificial, dead language.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Václav KLAUS (2007)
Esperanto never gets a break. There's an interview here with the Czech president Václav Klaus where he gets a shot in on Esperanto at the same time as the EU:

What does the Irish NO mean for the fate of the Lisbon Treaty in your view? What impact will it have on the EU as a whole?

I cannot imagine any development other than recognition of the fact that this is not the way to go. Let’s seek a European model different from a supranational state with its centre in Brussels. Let’s go back to a community of friendly, effectively cooperating states. Let’s keep most of the competencies on the level of states. We should let people living on the European continent be Czechs, Poles, Italians, Danes, and not make Europeans of them. That is a flawed project. The difference between a Czech, a Pole, an Italian and a Dane (as random examples) and a European is akin to the difference between Czech, Polish, Danish languages and Esperanto. ‘Europeanness’ is Esperanto: an artificial, dead language.
As expected, there's a whole host of indignant replies below. I'm not Esperanto's biggest fan but it's certainly not dead. Artificial...well, there's no real dividing line between artificial and natural; all languages are artificial to a certain extent (hangul, Turkish language reform, etc.).

No surprise that on his article on the Esperanto Wikipedia his comments have already been added:

Esperanto kaj Eŭropo

La 16-an de junio 2008, post la malakcepto de la trakto de Lisbono de la irlandanoj, li deklaris en la ĉiutaga ĵurnalo Lidové noviny: « Ni lasu la popolon, kiuj vivas sur la eŭropa kontinento, esti ĉeĥoj, italoj, danoj, ... kaj ni ne igu ilin eŭropanoj. Tio estas erara projekto. La diferenco inter la ĉeĥo, la polo, la italo, la dano kaj la Eŭropano estas la sama ol inter la la ĉeĥa, la pola, la itala, la dana kaj la esperanto. La eŭropanismo estas la esperanto: artefarita lingvo, morta »[2].


Anonymous said...

I suspect some lobbying has taken place, because nine days later he talks about Esperanto as "artificial" but not "dead"

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