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January 30, 2007

Comments

Noosa Lee

Titanic...deckchairs...whatever

molasses

Feeling British is connected to being a good citizen of Britain though. What feeling British actually amounts to is an undefinable sense of pride to be a citizen of Britain.

However, if there is no pride, there is no loyalty, there is no identification with fellow countrymen and there is a general lack of motivation to participate in wider society.

What you are then left with is not necessarily a bad thing - people can still be human, exciting, interesting etc. without feeling any sense of loyalty or connection to the whole enterprise (Britain). However, this lack of identification definitely weakens and cheapens the wider enterprise.

Ms Baroque

Molasses, the point is to stop them trying to blow up their fellow commuters.

Even aside from the "Muslim first, British second" threat, there is the endemic issue of rank everyday behaviour among the (mostly) young, up to and including people being knifed to death on buses for objecting to anti-social behaviour, Though would a sense of Britishness really prevent that sort of thing?

Britain is essentially a political construct in any case: so "Britishness" - as opposed to Welshness or Scottishness, etc - is a politically expedient identity.

The thing is, though, that in a country with so many immigrants in it, "Britishness" is the one thing that holds us all together.

Chris

I wouldn't define myself as "British" or "English" either, even though I am.

I am me. That is all.

Stewart

I'm from Manchester, that's my identity, Britishness means nothing to me, why should it mean something at all?

Ali

Dave:

"The basic flaw, though, is identical. It lies in the assumption that being a good citizen of Britain and defining oneself as British are the same thing; that to instil either is automatically to instil the other; that the two things are indivisible. I wish it were that simple."

Who needs the second if we have the first? The EU means citizenship without borders, so it is a concept we are going to have to get used to.

Peter

Good post, Dave. I thought though that the deficiencies of Monday were pretty well flagged up by the lazy "education point in the Sunday article (and surrounding briefing).

Neil McGowan

Does one have to be a muslim to be utterly disaffected from Britain?

In the light of 15-year-old kids thrown off Iraqi bridges to drown by British squaddies who are then condoned by the MoD for their actions... of wars fought for packs of stinking yankee lies... of Cabinet Ministers who had houses bought for them by the Heads of Foreign Governments, and then claimed to have "forgotten" about it...

... I walked out of Britain seven years ago with two suitcases at Heathrow Airport. I have never, ever regretted doing so, and I will never come back to your stinking country.

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