Wednesday, 16 April 2014

"What could be more British than to be ‘somewhat proud’ of our country? Honestly – it makes you somewhat proud"


This beautiful, lyrical article about what makes the author love England makes me happy, and I agree with most of it, but also unhappy. It is the Englishman's proudest boast that he never brags, and being somewhat proud of ourselves sounds like the same thing.

And yet...

On the whole, I am ashamed that my countrymen are only 'somewhat proud' of our country. They seem to think loving ones country a lot is suspect.

Every European people should be very proud of their country, apart from one obvious exception. Two, in fact, including the Austrians.

At dinner recently with an English journalist who votes Labour, we got round to discussing the mass migrations that are changing the world. My friend was shocked that I said I wanted 'Europe to continue to have a white and Christian majority'. He explained it was 'white' he found shocking, not the Christian bit. Is he right that this opinion is tendentious and if so how did we reach this point? He is a 30 year-old Cambridge man (how I hate the unisex or bisexual Americanism 'alumnus') and represents the people who will rule England as well as the people who already do.

He said he would defend to the death my right to say what I said, which was comforting, and that he was a patriot. I did not doubt his patriotism. I never doubt Labour supporters' patriotism. Or rather I did not until a couple of days ago a left-wing poet, who is my Facebook friend, posted that he loved the word 'country' and added, for fear of giving offence perhaps, that 'I am not a patriot'. When I commented that I assumed everyone was patriotic it became clear that some of his Facebook friends were shocked to be accused of patriotism.

We live and learn.

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