‘I am proud to be British’ they announce.
As if Britishness had become a foreign concept- as if it something elitist to say ‘I am British’. What does that even mean? To me it’s just a nationality, written on a passport, attempting to define me. It really doesn’t.
The raucous claims of Britishness, the people behind the noise, are mesmerised by the call to restore what is ‘Great’ about Britain ricocheting between the mouths of each party leader. Is it only those with a general understanding of the history of the last 100 years who understand that this plea to national identity is the most obvious form of propaganda? Can our modern day politicians find nothing better to string us along with? Are we no more developed or intelligent that our 1930s Russian and German counterparts? Build a common enemy- reinforce patriotism- embed nationality in education. Surely it’s not just me who can see the undeniable parallels?
A common enemy: immigrants, haven’t they always been. Clearly nothing changes, or no politician is imaginative enough to change anything. What about the tax evaders- are they a not more worthy enemy? But, of course, they deliver such important ‘services’ to the U.K that their criminality can go unnoticed. (Did the Queen forget to remind you to pay your taxes whilst she was knighting you Gazza?)
How many times have we heard a politician serenading Britain with constant reminders of her greatness? Their faces begin to merge into one grotesque mask: Cameron, Farage, Miliband (and the other, useless one, what’s his name?) a super-beast of political inadequacy. With ease this gusto infiltrates education: a heinous announcement to make the study of English in schools wholly British in an attempt to indoctrinate the young- what a load of bullshit. Michael Gove can go shove that where the sun doesn’t shine (his conservative arse). How can one study English without understanding its roots and links with other countries. It’s disgusting enough that African literature doesn’t even get a word in let alone American literature being banished as well. But of course, the English language is heralded as one of the mighty triumphs of the British. I am in utter despair. Perhaps History should have a more prominent place on the curriculum?
If only plagiarism was to the student as stealing past political tactics was to the politician- if only.