I am disappointed

Britain, I’m disappointed in you. The world once admired for our inventiveness, our culture, our David Beckham…

Now the world stands back and stares in horror as we tell the foreigners living here that they can all go home because we no longer want them.

I wrote a long post yesterday (actually, it took from Friday to yesterday to write), in which I said what I thought we need to improve as a country. There was one notable omission, though, because there was no way I could write about it without a monumental word count. This is not aimed at all Britons, just the ones who have decided that they need to be overtly racist on the grounds that “we” voted to leave the EU.

Confession: I once told a Polish man to go home

It’s best to get this out of the way right now; I did once tell a Polish man to go home. I’m not proud of it, but I’m not ashamed of it either. And I don’t consider myself racist. I know that’s the excuse that everybody uses, but I can actually back up that claim.

I had an argument with this particular Pole about something trivial, and he walked away from the argument. I then said something unrelated to somebody else and he stormed back and demanded to know what I said. I refused to tell him, because I had said it to someone else and not him. He then told me something like, “I hate you English people, you’re all so stubborn!” He used several expletives, and he also implied that I give sexual favours for money. I told him that if he hated it so much here that he should go back to Poland (I may have used some expletives of my own).

You should have seen his face when I told him that. Not because I told him to go back to Poland, but because he had yelled at me in Polish. He didn’t think I’d understand him when he called me a whore. I learn foreign languages for fun, and Polish seemed like a logical choice because we have a lot of Poles in Britain. I don’t want foreigners to feel unwelcome in Britain. I want to be able to converse with them, even a little, in their own language if they struggle with English. That’s why I’m not ashamed of what I said. I’m not proud of it, because someone else heard me say it, but didn’t understand what he had said to me. #awkward

We’ve become a nation of quitters

Only a few hours after the referendum results dropped the country into chaos, David Cameron quit his job as Prime Minister. He’s not the first to do it in my lifetime, but Tony Blair didn’t do it after the country just voted to implode itself.

England got knocked out of the Euros last night. I’m a Scotland fan, but I’m not gloating, honest… Anyway, almost immediately, Roy Hodgson quit as England manager.

When an ATOS “expert” declared me fit to work and signed me off Incapacity Benefit in 2004, I didn’t have a hissy fit and give up. I applied for three or more jobs a day, every day, for about six weeks (even on weekends), until I found something. I didn’t complain that I couldn’t find a job because of immigrants. They didn’t give me cancer or stop my Incap. They didn’t get all the jobs I wanted.

They did drive the buses and taxis I used to get to job interviews. They did work in my doctor’s surgery and opticians. They did work for the employer I ended up working for. The name of employer? The NHS. They did treat me when I was on chemo and radiotherapy. They did help bring my children into the world. They did this and so much more, and they deserve respect, not abuse.

I’m disappointed with your casual racism, Britain

Philip J Fry on immigration

Snaffled from Dead Clydeside

 

There’s a common complaint that “decent Brits” can’t get a job because all the immigrants have them. Then there’s the complaint that immigrants come over here and take out of our benefits system without paying anything in. Which is it, Britain? Are they taking all our jobs, or are they lazy scroungers? Or are you just blaming immigrants for everything because it’s somehow fashionable to do so now?

It seems it has become acceptable to be racist, xenophobic yobs in Britain. Anyone seen as a foreigner is now somehow less worthy of respect than they were a week ago. It leaves a bad taste in the mouth to read stories like this, and this, and this, and this. Is this what we have reduced ourselves to? Hurling insults and telling people to go home based only on their skin colour?

Here’s a wake-up call to you all, Little Britain. We are all immigrants. Maybe we aren’t all Poles or Pakistani, but we all have immigrant blood. We have thousands of years of history in which many countries invaded us countless times. None of us are completely British. I have Scandinavian blood thanks to the invasion by the Vikings. My surname is Latin, but brought to England by the French at the time of the Norman invasion. Is there a statute of limitations on foreign blood? Does a Frenchman in my lineage 1,000 years ago make me less British? Does the fact that a Viking took a Scottish wife even longer ago make me any less British?

But voting Remain makes you less British

You know what? I was born on a British army base, and British army bases are all British soil. I have a British mother, my father was British, I was born on British soil in Britain. I’m as British as you can get. My children were born in a regular hospital, on land that the Danes could take it back if they wanted to, as they held the it several hundred years ago. The land I was born on is legally British. Nobody can dispute it. Now does anyone want to make the claim that I’m not a real Brit just because I voted to remain a part of the EU?

Could it not be that many of the 16.1 million of us who voted Remain would have preferred to see a reshaping of the union? Leave kept drumming the message of a broken and outdated EU, so why not help to fix it? We can’t do that on the outside, and they know that. It goes back to what I said earlier – we’re a nation of quitters.

And you weren’t “doing it for England”

A lot of the worst unguarded racist comments made on the various news outlets on Friday were from “English patriots” who voted Leave to “take back England for the English”. But this wasn’t about England, this was about Britain. The whole of Britain. They made the decision to vote Leave for selfish reasons, without considering that it would affect Britain as a whole.

That said, why did the various news outlets go to places like Newcastle and Barnsley? Plenty of other towns and cities voted Leave, so why not go to them? I suspect it has a lot to do with a higher chance of finding bolshy white people in the middle of the day with England T-shirts, bags of booze and no job.

Oh, and this…

Not to mention that Polish and Czechoslovak pilots, among others, flew for us in WW2, in our RAF. It seems more than a little unfair to ask that of them and then kick them out for being foreign.

Ironically, Nigel Farage doesn’t know when to quit

He turned up at the European Parliament today. Presumably it was to take a final shot at the EU before he finds out he can’t claim JSA if he made himself obsolete by getting people to vote Leave. There’s no need for a UK Independence Party now that he got what he wanted. But I’m sure whatever he has left from his near €8k a month salary as an MEP will get him through it.

So anyway, he blustered as he does about how Britain is “a beacon of hope to democrats” and “you’re not laughing now are you?” Not to be outdone, Guy Verhofstadt told him, “Finally, we are going to get rid of the biggest waste in the EU budget, which we have paid for 17 years; your salary!” And on the subject of Farage’s deplorable Breaking Point poster, “I never thought it was possible that somebody in this house should do a thing like that.” Political one-upmanship yes, but at its finest.

The best comment of all though, has to be from the European Commission President, Jean-Claude Juncker: “You were fighting for the exit, the British people voted in favour of the exit – why are you here?” I’ll even overlook the fact that a large majority of the British people didn’t, in fact, vote in favour of exit. That is the best thing I have ever heard from the European Parliament.

On the subject of Farage

I have seen comments on Facebook and Twitter by UKIPers calling David Cameron is a liar for saying on June 21st that he wouldn’t quit after a Brexit vote, then quitting anyway on June 24th. Surely I’m not the only person who remembers a certain party leader who quit last year, but who is still here annoying everybody? I’ve never been Cameron’s biggest fan, but he’s not the only one who has made false promises about their future as a party leader.

I got a bit off topic again…

My point is that I don’t want to feel so disappointed in my fellow Brits. I am proud to be British. I am proud to be a part of a Britain that has been and will be Great. It’s just that some Brits aren’t there right now, and that has to change. As Aditya Chakrabortty pointed out in this piece for The Guardian, we rely on other nations to balance the national chequebook through investments and foreign trade. For how much longer will they want to do business with the nation that so loudly declares it hates foreigners?

Do yourselves a favour, Little Britain; grow up.

Rebecca

NB
Even this horse is laughing at you

Even this horse is laughing at you

 

A note to England fans:

You can’t use the argument with me that “at least we were there”, because you still got knocked out. Scotland didn’t suffer that humiliation. Again.

Anyway, at least it proves that not everything has changed since “we” voted to leave the EU. The England football will still never win anything.

Uh… As you were.

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