Monday, 12 October 2009

Guest Blogger No. 1 - Stephen Chapman

Some time ago, I did a guest blog entry for The State of the Nation UK. Now it's the turn of Stephen to return the favour. He's decided to post on the subject of being English:

The Importance of Being English

I am pleased to be able to contribute as a guest blogger and would like to discuss the silent majority in Britain… the English!

If you ask the owner of this blog where he is from, he will undoubtedly say “Scotland” and could easily enlighten us why he has national pride without embarrassment or the need for justification.

The majority of people living in Britain are English – a varied group of people with many originating from across the globe. Although most are white, a good proportion is of black and Asian origin, but if you look closer and go back just a few generations, the mix is remarkable.

Whatever the original roots, my perception is that the English almost have to apologise before showing any national pride and when they do, they must provide explanation that their views are not racist or against minorities. It’s ludicrous political correctness that benefits nobody and is killing traditions that go back centuries.

National pride can be as simple as celebrating religious and local festivals, supporting the village fete, being part of a local group, getting behind sporting heroes, reveling in our history or flying our nation’s flag. In my opinion, the flag of St George should be flying above every single public building alongside the Union flag, yet has racist connotations due to a small number of evil activists. Let’s take back the flag and connect it with the many many great English achievements that we should be truly proud of.

Having visited Scotland on dozens of occasions (mainly through work commitments), you get a real sense of national pride. It is everywhere, from business names to shop window displays and from local and major events to what people actively say. I am a little jealous that it’s so natural and freely promoted without any PC analysis. It’s not done with a view to put another nation or group down, it’s just ingrained in the national psyche.

Another blogger I read is pro-British and will correct those who overuse “England” and “English” and technically he is correct. However, if you visit to Wales or Scotland it shows how national pride can be a positive and inclusive thing – irrespective of race and religion. Take the loony councils who want to ban the word “Christmas” stating that it may offend minority groups… it offends no-one and simply divides communities! Being fully inclusive allows everyone to enjoy English traditions. And for religious festivals, appreciating what they stand for means that over time, other faiths will be naturally included as part of English tradition.

Minority groups, whether based on racial, religious, sexuality or any other type, actively promote and celebrate their individuality and we must not be afraid to campaign for Englishness despite the local councils only looking to support minorities. I would love to keep our ways alive and welcome all kinds of people into this wealth of history and tradition, but is it possible to engineer such a thing?

Scum like the BNP have got it completely wrong in my opinion. Those that want to maintain traditions and observe Englishness don’t have to be English and anyone can make a contribution to society, so let me make it very clear: this rant is all about inclusion and celebration. It’s great to be British and it’s great to be English.

The English have an outstanding history and number of traditions that are being eroded by local councils, politically correct biased media, schools, racists and even embarrassment. And to end, consider the words of Ray Davies in the Kinks song “Village green preservation society”…

“Preserving the old ways from being abused,
Protecting the new ways for me and for you”

Stephen Chapman


oneexwidow said...

I had posted a long comment, which was almost a blog post in itself, but then my IE died!

This time, will keep it short and sweet:

Thanks very much for this, Stephen. I may well use this as the starting point for a future entry.


Unknown said...

The idea of national pride is in a way a weird one. States are artifical geopolitical entities, created more or less accidentally, usually by thugs of one sort or another. Why it should be thought a good thing that we should 'identify' with these artificial entities and our hearts go gooey when 'Scotland' scores a goal in kicking a ball around or someone else belonging to 'England' invented something, I don't really know. Let's regard states as administrative conveniences, nothing else; hearts that swell at the fluttering of a flag are sad misguided hearts.

Stephen Chapman said...

It's inciteful, brilliant, so well crafted!

OK, I wrote it.

Stephen Chapman said...


ironically, the longest blog post I've ever done is for someone elses blog!