One way in which History differs from “the past” is the constant need to search for bias in sources of evidence.
So when providing such a source ourselves, we should admit our own beliefs and prejudices, then try to remain as neutral as possible in what we communicate.
It was in this spirit that I approached the website of the Britain First party and its eleven statements of principle. I found the third particularly interesting…
“Britain First is committed to preserving our ancestral ethnic and cultural heritage, traditions, customs, and values. We oppose the colonisation of our homeland through immigration and support the maintenance of the indigenous British people as the demographic majority within our own homeland. Britain First is committed to maintaining and strengthening Christianity as the foundation of our society and culture.”
The BF thus draw a clear line of distinction between “Us” and “Them,” and a definition of “Britishness.”
In its sixth statement of principles, the BF states its commitment to “freedom of opinion, [and} expression…” so would surely not grudge me as an interested observer from asking questions regarding “Us”, the supposed indigenous and “Them” the immigrants?
QUESTION. WHO ARE US AND WHO ARE THEM?
In this spirit I will now address myself to “Britain First”…
Is it not true that at the end of the last Ice Age, there was no one living here within the British Isles simply because it was too cold? Does it therefore not follow that every family presently living here are descended from immigrants, whether they arrived 10,000 years ago or yesterday?
Did not your families, like mine, arrive here at some undetermined point in the past seeking the same two things…to escape persecution and/or to better their lot in life?
Confident that you accept this as fact, then at what point do or have “they,” the immigrants, become “us,” the indigenous? Is it a matter of Days? Weeks? Months? Years? Generations, Millennia? Will you not have to make a ruling on this?
Even having made such a ruling how will you determine the truth of a person’s claim of residential longevity in the UK?
What will you do with those who do not meet your criteria? Imprisonment? Deportation back to their original historical homelands? What if the present inhabitants of the latter will not accept them? Will this not impose very heavy burdens on an already over-worked and under-staffed police, customs and prison authorities?
You make great play of the term “indigenous British people” as if we are a people sharing a common gene pool. Really? Are we not an amalgam of all those peoples who have “colonised” the British Isles since the last Ice Age…Mesolithic Hunter-gatherers; Neolithic farmers; Celtic speaking Bronze and Iron Age peoples, Romans, Saxons, Angles, Jutes, Frisians, Danes, Norwegians, Normans, Jews, Huguenots, Dutch, Flemish, Irish, emigre French, West Indians, Africans, Asians, eastern Europeans?
In which case, I wonder what you mean by “our ancestral ethnic and cultural heritage, traditions, customs, and values…” Let us lump them altogether as “Culture,”(here used in the archaeological sense of “the way people do things.”)
Here I must ask, is there one British Culture different from everyone else‘s cultire? If you know what it is, could you please tell me?
Just what is “Britishness?”
Alternatively, is there just one culture or many different sub-cultures as with every other nation on earth caused by geography, history, politics, economics, class and religion? If this is the case then I take it you are bound to protect and encourage them all?
I note with interest, “Britain First is committed to maintaining and strengthening Christianity as the foundation of our society and culture.” As an atheist myself, can you tell me how you will lead and encourage this moral crusade? As you are aware, church attendance is rapidly falling…but with one exception- The Pentecostal Church with its congregations heavily consisting of those Britons whose families arrived from the Caribbean sometime between the sixteenth and twenty-first centuries. Will they therefore meet your criteria for continuing citizenship?
THE ROYAL FAMILY
Will not the acid test of your resolve be your future plans for the Royal Family...the best known immigrant family in the land? Not speaking a word of English, did not disqualify the German Elector of Hanover a.k.a. George I from being offered and accepting the throne in 1714.
Finally, kind reader, it is time to come clean. I hope you will see that I have tried to avoid abusing individual members of BF. Accepting that you share many experiences with me and however much I happen to disagree with you, I have simply asked objective questions about your principles.
“I do not disrespect you as individuals, only your ideas that I thoroughly despise!”