As an overseas scholar of Maltese, and presumably a somewhat more objective observer than permanent locals who are just as committed in their endeavours for the advancement of Maltese, I offer the following thoughts and suggestions towards provisional (never permanent given the transient nature of language) solutions.
Concerning the recent idea of providing a less stringent level of Maltese school certification, intended, I understand, to accommodate certain segments of the community, I am all for it.
It is well known that an alarming segment of present-day Maltese children, as well as our youth, are illiterate in their supposedly native tongue, and just as many others are miserably lacking in their own language. It makes good sense to seek to accommodate these people by providing such a facility, as has been suggested.
This can only result in a win-win situation benefitting all concerned while drawing many to their native fold and providing them with a chance to further their competence in Maltese.
Surely such a facility would be an encouragement for them to further their proficiency in Maltese by afterwards proceeding to the traditional school-leaving qualifications for entry into university and upgrading to their ‘O’ or ‘A’ levels.
Also, such a system would facilitate and encourage foreigners who wish to work in our local service industries, such as hotels and restaurants, eliminating the presently unacceptable status where Maltese are being forced to use English in their own native land.
This servile treatment we Maltese are facing on a daily basis needs to be confronted head-on before this national embarrassment makes further damaging inroads into the national psyche.
It is all fine and well to exalt our past achievements but of little practical value to continue to ignore this appalling relatively recent development.
We of the diaspora, who from time to time visit this fair land, our revered motherland, observe the progressive corrosion of spoken Maltese more acutely than our permanent resident siblings.
This rapid erosion of spoken Maltese is wreaking havoc on the national character, along with other social aspects of our treasured Maltese way of life.
Let us get together and stop the rot now. And let us do so with patriotic sincerity and without the usual prima donnas and posers butting in who need to bow their heads in shame.
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