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BS: Multiculturalism

John MacKenzie 28 Jan 08 - 06:16 AM
Mr Happy 28 Jan 08 - 06:32 AM
Emma B 28 Jan 08 - 06:34 AM
John MacKenzie 28 Jan 08 - 06:46 AM
Emma B 28 Jan 08 - 06:52 AM
GUEST,PMB 28 Jan 08 - 07:09 AM
John MacKenzie 28 Jan 08 - 07:16 AM
Liz the Squeak 28 Jan 08 - 07:24 AM
greg stephens 28 Jan 08 - 07:34 AM
GUEST,PMB 28 Jan 08 - 08:18 AM
McGrath of Harlow 28 Jan 08 - 08:51 AM
Megan L 28 Jan 08 - 11:10 AM
Liz the Squeak 28 Jan 08 - 11:46 AM
Stringsinger 28 Jan 08 - 12:17 PM
John MacKenzie 28 Jan 08 - 12:26 PM
Richard Bridge 28 Jan 08 - 12:39 PM
McGrath of Harlow 28 Jan 08 - 01:45 PM
Amos 28 Jan 08 - 02:18 PM
Megan L 28 Jan 08 - 02:19 PM
katlaughing 28 Jan 08 - 02:22 PM
McGrath of Harlow 28 Jan 08 - 02:53 PM
Emma B 28 Jan 08 - 03:51 PM
Richard Bridge 28 Jan 08 - 05:29 PM
Emma B 28 Jan 08 - 05:36 PM
Bill D 28 Jan 08 - 06:57 PM
Amos 28 Jan 08 - 07:02 PM
Bill D 28 Jan 08 - 07:18 PM
Bill D 28 Jan 08 - 07:31 PM
Grab 28 Jan 08 - 09:07 PM
Joe_F 28 Jan 08 - 10:32 PM
Richard Bridge 29 Jan 08 - 03:23 AM
GUEST,PMB 29 Jan 08 - 03:31 AM
Keith A of Hertford 29 Jan 08 - 03:35 AM
GUEST 29 Jan 08 - 04:19 AM
Liz the Squeak 29 Jan 08 - 05:00 AM
Big Phil 29 Jan 08 - 05:01 AM
Jack Blandiver 29 Jan 08 - 05:26 AM
Mr Happy 29 Jan 08 - 05:29 AM
Jack Blandiver 29 Jan 08 - 05:44 AM
Mr Happy 29 Jan 08 - 06:05 AM
Keith A of Hertford 29 Jan 08 - 07:07 AM
Mr Happy 29 Jan 08 - 07:13 AM
Keith A of Hertford 29 Jan 08 - 07:27 AM
Emma B 29 Jan 08 - 07:30 AM
Mr Happy 29 Jan 08 - 07:34 AM
Emma B 29 Jan 08 - 08:07 AM
Stu 29 Jan 08 - 08:42 AM
John MacKenzie 29 Jan 08 - 08:56 AM
Jack Blandiver 29 Jan 08 - 09:07 AM
GUEST,PMB 29 Jan 08 - 09:22 AM
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Subject: BS: Multiculturalism
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 06:16 AM

Quote from Martin Amos on Radio4 UK this morning.

"The main result of multiculturalism in the UK seems to be, that the only culture a person can criticise now, is their own."

Discuss.

G


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Mr Happy
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 06:32 AM

All this stuff is about labelling, categorising people into arbitrary groups, mainly for the purpose of control/exploitation by the rich & powerful + manipulation by politicians.


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Emma B
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 06:34 AM

'Martin Amis is considered Britain's number one, top drawer, literary heavyweight. His reputation rests on a fancy prose style and an intellectualism that is nonetheless within the reach of the majority of readers, who are flattered into feeling clever and so credit Amis with being profound'.......

.....'But the really staggering feature of London Fields is not its narrative ingenuity or its millennial eclipse but the patronising representation of the working class who are, without exception, portrayed as vicious or ridiculous or both. The novel is not only anti-working class, it is riddled with racist stereotypes, jocularly passed off as comic caricatures. Equally staggering is the general stampede to praise Amis's ambition and formal elegance and comic genius, while his snobbery and racism have gone largely unremarked.'

from 'Race and Class in Martin Amis's London Fields' from Literary London by Susie Thomas

Further examples are given of Amis's unpalatable prejudices in this novel which refers to 'our coloured brethren' and the 'spade lifestyle' through the mouthpiece of the character Keith!

- end of discussion!


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 06:46 AM

That's what's called 'shooting the messenger'.
Can we take it that you dislike the message, and that rather than deal with it, you prefer to use the words of others to do the shooting for you?
G


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Emma B
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 06:52 AM

I dislike racism true, in any form - even thinly disguised as humour!

I choose to use the words of the literary critic and author Dr. Susie Thomas as I believe she, in fact, represents very eloquently the feelings of many people and because a much deeper analysis of Amis's racism can be found in that article than I could present in a short post.


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: GUEST,PMB
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 07:09 AM

Of course, if you are going to criticise cultures, your own is a good place to start from. At least, if you've examined it closely, you won't fall into the traps of hypocrisy and double standards.

Martin Amis is both an accomplished writer and one of Britain's most famous intellectuals- if what he says comes over as a taxi- driver's rant one might suspect negligence on his part as an alternative to the crude racism a simplistic reading of his most famous contribution might suggest:

"...the Jewish community will have to suffer until it gets its house in order. What sort of suffering? Not let them travel. Deportation - further down the road. Curtailing of freedoms. Strip-searching people who look like they're from the Israel or from Golder's Green … Discriminatory stuff, until it hurts the whole community.."

(I've changed one or two words slightly, but the sense is the same).


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 07:16 AM

So different cultures denote different races do they? Better write to the dictionary compilers and let them know that.
Or do all English people go to Glyndebourne and Covent Garden? Obviously they all attend the Church of England every Sunday too.
There is more to arguing one's corner than rebuttal via a set of conditioned responses.
Just stop a minute, and think of all the cultures that exist within the boundaries of these islands. Having done that, address the point that fashionable phrases place unnatural constraints on the interactions of both peoples, AND races.
G.


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 07:24 AM

Not so much 'end of discussion' more, that's my opinion and that's all that matters.

I don't like Martin Amis' work, so I tend not to read much of it, but a quick skim over the synopses and essays on 'London Fields' available online show me that it was a work of fiction, written in 1989, about a period set 10 years into the future. It was a future entirely of Amis' invention, regardless of how near or far it is from reality, 20 years later. The protagonist 'Keith' is an extreme example and product of his environment, so speaks in the way that 'he' knows. He is not necessarily the mouthpiece of Amis. Amis has put words into Keith's mouth, but he is not Keith.

The comment Giok quoted for discussion - "The main result of multiculturalism in the UK seems to be, that the only culture a person can criticise now, is their own." - is, for the most part, an apposite one.

In my multicultural office, I can insult morris dancing all I want but if someone hears me criticising a troupe of Bangra dancers, I could be accused of making racist comments. If one of my Indian colleagues insulted morris dancing and I complained, I would be laughed out of the room. Luckily, the majority of people in my office are not so mono-culturist.

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: greg stephens
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 07:34 AM

GUEST PMB's "quotation" is of course a copmplete fabrication. Ignore. The original remark that PMB has rewritten described Amis' feelings of anger at Islamist bombings.There have not,as far as I know, been any campaigns of bombings conducted by Jewish people from Irsrael or Goldersa Green.
I tired to read "London Fields" once, and didn't make it to the end of chapter 1. All of his dad's superciliouisness with none of the charm. But that doesnt mean you should try to prove he is a racist by ascribing remarks to him that he never made.


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: GUEST,PMB
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 08:18 AM

"There have not,as far as I know, been any campaigns of bombings conducted by Jewish people from Irsrael ".... I imagined Lebanon?

The quotation is NOT a fabrication. Amis later backtracked, describing it as a "thought experiment" : Amis rejects the claim that he has ever espoused these views, saying that the remarks were made in a newspaper interview and preceded with the following: "What can we do to raise the price of them doing this? There's a definite urge - don't you have it? - to say ... [etc, etc]."

The remarks were not "advocating anything" he continued, they were a thought experiment, merely "conversationally describing an urge - an urge that soon wore off".

The novelist went on to "declare that 'harassing the Muslim community in Britain' would be neither moral nor efficacious", but made no apology for making remarks describing an "urge" that the Muslim community should "suffer", nor any attempt to respond to wider concerns over his views concerning Islamism.


(from The Guardian ).


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 08:51 AM

the only culture a person can criticise now, is their own.

Nothing wrong with that, nothing new in that. As the Bible puts it: And why beholdest thou the mote that is in thy brother's eye, but considerest not the beam that is in thine own eye? Or how wilt thou say to thy brother, Let me pull out the mote out of thine eye; and, behold, a beam is in thine own eye? Thou hypocrite, first cast out the beam out of thine own eye; and then shalt thou see clearly to cast out the mote out of thy brother's eye.

After all, the only culture anyone has the kind of expertise to make their criticisms meaningful and useful is their own, whatever that may be.


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Megan L
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 11:10 AM

I have noticed recently that it appears to be very acceptable to slam britain it is no longer a case of being able to criticise your own country you are expected to smile sweetly while every other blighter around the world is doing it as well. As ma granny used tae warn folks "Dinny staun on me corns laddie."

Get the phrase book oot LtS


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 11:46 AM

I think I get the jist of that one Megan, and I point you in the direction of a little ditty by Flanders and Swann... "The English, the English, the English are best, I wouldn't give tuppence for all of the rest!"

:D

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Stringsinger
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 12:17 PM

Multiculturalism is a big word. I prefer World Community. Any criticism of a general
nature about any cultural group should be suspect as a hidden agenda of prejudice and
xenophobia.

I see prejudice in the US and Great Britain wearing the mask of intellectual discussion.
It's easy to use big words in an attempt to criticize a cultural group but those who do
the criticism are themselves as finger-pointers that posess the qualities they abhor.

I suspect any writer who insists on promulgating their ideas of glittering generalities
of any cultural group whatever.

Frank Hamilton


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 12:26 PM

Well really Frank your first paragraph defines what is for me the epitome of this whole subject, and that is paranoia.
It is the fact that any criticism objective or otherwise about anyone else's way of life, is immediately jumped upon by the promoters of this new buzzword,"Multiculturalism" It's not my word btw, but a word that seems to be never off the lips of many UK politicians.
Why is it,as Liz the Squeak said, impossible to comment without accusations of 100% prejudice. I mean if I say I don't like your new shoes, it doesn't mean, I think you are a wanker and a waste of space, does it?
It's the total lack of balance that is wrong.
Giok


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 12:39 PM

Some habits are contrary to civilised values and should be anathema and intolerable regardless of the community that adopts them and regardless of whether the culture claims they are religiously mandated. The most obvious example, to my mind, is clitorectomy.

It should not be regarded as unacceptable to criticise such values, but there are some who will try to defend such habits as traditional.

There are some things that are for the good of society that can only be addressed by examining cultural values. For example, why is there a heirarchy of educational achievment, in both the UK and the USA (and, I think, different in each) that shows cultural background to be statistically significant? I reject the Eysinckian view that there are different racial norms of intelligence, and if I am right to do so then the skewness may be due to cultural differences - or it may be due to some variance that is not statistically addressed. Therefore cultures should not be exempt from criticism from without, but the criticism must be on the basis of onformation not prejudice.


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 01:45 PM

But the most effective critics of those kind of things are people from within the community where they occur - they know what they are talking about, whereas it is all too easy for outsiders to get things wrong and make things worse.

That also applies in other contexts - for example, think of the way some of us can react when others post here in a way that is seen as critical of their country. (I have a current thread in mind...)


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Amos
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 02:18 PM

I woud submit that the grounds for criticising an individual anti-social practice defended on the basis of tradition is by directing your attention to the individual who espouses it and puts it into practice, an individual choice.

A murderer is a murderer, regardless of what pictures, feelings, or madcap illogics he offers in rationalization. He is individually responsible for buying madcap traditions, if that is the case, and using them thoughtlessly.

I am sure at least one of my ancestors was a salt-sea pirate.

It's traditional. So if I pillage and sink the Queen Mary don't blame me. (Must remember -- pillage and then sink, pillage and then sink!)


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Megan L
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 02:19 PM

And dont forget to throw the tea overboard lad


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: katlaughing
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 02:22 PM

But the most effective critics of those kind of things are people from within the community where they occur - they know what they are talking about, whereas it is all too easy for outsiders to get things wrong and make things worse.

But then what of education? Should no outsiders be welcomed if they bring "outside" ideas of efficiencies, etc. which may upset the apple cart, so to speak?

I doubt the citizens of rural areas in Africa and elsewhere minded the the Outsider who must have had some critical viewpoints on their traditional ways of getting water when he invented the PLay Pump.

I know that's not quite what you meant, McGrath, but that was a blanket statement, imo. Sometimes effective critics do come from Outside.


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: McGrath of Harlow
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 02:53 PM

It makes all the difference to the contribution of the outsiders if there are people who actually welcome them in - and those people have to be inside the community if they are to provide that welcome. It's a delicate matter, and so often people have got it wrong for the best of reasons.


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Emma B
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 03:51 PM

I confess willingly that I have little time for those authors, historians etc (like Amis or Irving ) who use their 'authority' and access to the media to make public and provocative statements.

It may be necessary to present the concept of 'multiculturalism' in the UK context.....

The Institute of Race Relations states that.....

'Multiculturalism, a term generally accepted across the political spectrum for some three decades, has suddenly become a term to be scoffed at, rather like 'Political Correctness'
....
'To describe society as multicultural is just a statement of fact of what it is.......our society is indeed infinitely diverse and multicultural.
It reflects on a cultural level the many different ethnic groups that have settled in the UK.
And it reflects this, not just in the sense that each ethnic group can have access to its own customs and traditions but that all members of society can of society can partake in the cultural diversity that has been jointly created.

Multiculturalism as policy emanated from both central and local government as a conscious attempt to answer racial inequality ( and especially the resistance to it)

Critics of multiculturalism of the say that it has gone too far - been pushed to such lengths - that it is in hindering 'integration'

But, what the actually mean is that they are not happy with the weight being given to other cultures and customs . They essentially want British culture to be more traditional and/or Christianity to prevail over other faiths.'

While I am unwilling to enter into any so-called discussion on a statement of 'fact' like Amis's which is no more (or less) than a repetition of the bogus scare stories of 'banned' carols and Xmas decorations that were widely disseminated and discussed here last year; as a descendent of Jewish refugees, fleeing from the Russian progroms who felt obliged to abandon both faith and family name to fit into their host country, I would be happy to discuss the problem of 'assimilation' v. 'integration'


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 05:29 PM

Nonetheless there are some "traditional" practices that the host state cannot accept.


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Emma B
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 05:36 PM

Yes Richard I agree with you wholeheartedly, I have been am outspoken opponent of female 'circumcision' here.


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Bill D
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 06:57 PM

It's pretty simple, really...if there are a few people about, speaking a different language, or yours with an accent, cooking different foods, worshiping different gods, wearing different clothes...etc., it's quaint, interesting and educational.
   If there are a few MORE, enough so that you find them regularly in jobs where they interface with 'the public' much, it becomes slightly awkward and 'enclaves' spring up and cultural clashes become an 'issue'.
If sizable numbers develop, entire communities and nations have major problems trying to work out how to embrace the benefits and opportunities of "multiculturalism", while juggling the conflicts, misunderstandings and 'perceived' threats of having one's own culture diluted and/or changed...etc.

   Despite slogans and 'political correctness', mixing cultures too quickly and with little oversight is NOT automatically a healthy, simple process. The Japanese understand this, and consciously resist certain changes to their culture. They do NOT always do it genteelly or gracefully, but they do prevent some problems at the expense of being called 'isolationist' in some areas.

The USA was founded by many different groups..(and overran a couple others in the process!)...but the situation in 2008 is not the same as in 1690...or 1778...or 1875...or even 1912! We are a melting pot....but ingredients to some recipes need to be added slowly & carefully when everyone has to eat from it. (no extra charge for ambiguous metaphors)

It is time to look at the issue of what it MEANS to embrace multiculturalism....and how to have a serious discussion of any related issue without labels of 'racism' flying anytime a disagreement arises.

My favorite aphorism of all time:

"It all depends on whose ox is being gored."


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Amos
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 07:02 PM

I think there are civil codes that any practice of mutilation violates. Once those are out of the way, the matter of multiculturalism is a simple matter of manners toward humans, which is something you would think any civilized society would be practicing, but often find yourself disappointed.

A


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Bill D
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 07:18 PM

sure, Amos...except that different cultures have very different notions of what IS manners.


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Bill D
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 07:31 PM

Sometimes people can not even realize why they are not comfortable together....how loud does one speak? How close to another person does one stand to converse? Do you touch one another? Are children taught 'respect' for the same things? What is proper decorum when driving or being a pedestrian? (That one is a MAJOR issue in an area like Wash. DC....)

Gradual assimilation can allow adjustment...to language, to laws, to school issues...etc. We NEED to communicate, and where I live & shop and drive, there is less & less real communication happening.


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Grab
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 09:07 PM

Nice soundbite, but clearly wrong. Pick up any red-top paper (or the Mail/Express which are "black-top red-tops") any day of the week, and there'll be at least one article saying how Muslims/Poles/gypsies are inherently criminal and shouldn't be allowed into the country.

In other words, plenty of folk *are* criticising groups other than their own. And what's more, they're mostly doing it without the benefit of an active braincell too.

Racial prejudice is alive and well and living in Fleet Street...

Graham.


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Joe_F
Date: 28 Jan 08 - 10:32 PM

If "multiculturalism" means the same as "free association", it is superfluous. If it means any more or less, it is pernicious.


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Richard Bridge
Date: 29 Jan 08 - 03:23 AM

Pardon?


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: GUEST,PMB
Date: 29 Jan 08 - 03:31 AM

Joe F, are you standing in for Senator Bullfrog?


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 29 Jan 08 - 03:35 AM

Grab, you overstate the case.
They are not allowed to say or imply that an ethnic group are "inherantly criminal" or to say that a particular ethnic group should not be allowed in, and they do not say that.
I see the Mail because my school provides it. They do have an anti immigration and anti immigrant stance.


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: GUEST
Date: 29 Jan 08 - 04:19 AM

"They do have an anti immigration and anti immigrant stance."

Unfortunately I think the sort of insidious xenophobic bile peddled by papers such as the Daily Mail is an accurate reflection of the attitude of a large percentage of the population in modern Britain. It's endemic in the media and is so entrenched in everyday attitudes it makes me despair.

The right wing in this country has long used the spectres of immigration/Europe/anything with Johnny Foreigner involved as an excuse to promote the idea of Britain under threat, invoking the spectres of Churchill and Thatcher as fine examples of people who stood up to those wretches from over the channel and beyond.

The anti-multicultural stance taken by many of these people reflects more a hangover of our imperial past than any sort of first-hand experience from their daily lives. I have no doubt there are entrenched views in every ethnic community in the land - but you have to ask yourself why.


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Liz the Squeak
Date: 29 Jan 08 - 05:00 AM

But surely we have such diverse and radically different traditions and cultures BECAUSE various countries, empires and religious groups have resisted change, enforced their laws and customs on visitors and kept true to their traditions despite being overrun with "Johnny Foreigner" who in most cases appear to be British.

The British Empire spent a hundred years imposing 'Civilisiation' on a developing world, and now, those worlds have developed exactly like the Empire. Karma can sometimes be a bitch.

Although I hate living in London, I love being able to pop up the road for an Indian meal or a Chinese meal, or have Polish bread, Jamaican pattys and a good goat curry. I like it that my friends at work bring in traditional food for the various religious holidays - I like it that although I'm the only white Anglican Christian there, I share my faith with a lady of Asian origin and several people of African origin. I learn more about Jainism from speaking with a follower of that religion, than I ever did in school. I like it that I can talk about black history, white history and all shades of brown and pink in between, I like it that we communicate with each other.

I don't like the fact that, as I stated above, I can make fun of my own culture - that of warm beer, morris dancing, country yokel accents and classical music, but it's bordering on a disciplinary offence to make fun of anyone else's customs, traditions, food, drink or entertainments; and that's what the initial comment from Martin Amis was about.

We are supposed to be multicultural and for the most part, we manage fairly well, but there are certain factions that would have us lose our own identities in the rush to appease others and fawn over them like an over excited puppy.

To counter this, we have another faction who would resist all changes, who actively encourage people to mistreat or ignore other humans. People who deliberately stir the shit and spread lies, rumours and gossip, who only tell their side of the story and refuse point blank to listen to any other, who deny certain types of people the basic civilities, who refuse entry to their 'communities' ~ such people are destined to be the very lonely kings of their own dung heaps... because who wants to visit a dung heap?

LTS


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Big Phil
Date: 29 Jan 08 - 05:01 AM

Multiculturalism = How to ruin a great Country.

Great Britain, full of the dross from Euroland. A once Great Country sacrificed in the name of multiculturalism. Well done the plastic sandal, tree hugging brigade.

"Unfortunately I think the sort of insidious xenophobic bile peddled by papers such as the Daily Mail is an accurate reflection of the attitude of a large percentage of the population in modern Britain. It's endemic in the media and is so entrenched in everyday attitudes it makes me despair."

But to millions the Daily Mail [and others] spell out the truth, thank goodness someone somewhere can see we are sleepwalking towards disaster.

Phil*


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Jack Blandiver
Date: 29 Jan 08 - 05:26 AM

There islands have been multi-cultural since the retreating of the last Ice Age 10,000 years ago, our subsequent history an endless & gloriously inevitable round of immigration, invasion, colonisation, and (eventual) assimilation. They were certainly multi-cultural some 46 years ago when I was born into a multi-ethnic Northumbria, growing up with first, second & third generation Chinese, Pakinstani, Indian, Afro-Carribean and Yeminite kids - and yet my only experience of Sectarianism as such was with white kids on our estate who were Roman Catholic!

Multi-cultualism? The more the merrier if you ask me. I only hope I live long enough to hear the Muezzin calling for prayers from the top of Durham Cathedral.

And remember, The Daily Mail (et al) nurtures the ignorance from which it derives its sustenance; there is no truth in any of it - which is why I only take Fortean Times, Private Eye and the occasional Viz & Beano. It is the millions who read the Daily Mail who are the problem; kick the bastards out & let the rest of us live in peace.


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Mr Happy
Date: 29 Jan 08 - 05:29 AM

'A once Great Country....'

You'll be pratting on about 'Merrie England' next!


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Jack Blandiver
Date: 29 Jan 08 - 05:44 AM

After all, even Morris Dancing comes from the Moops (sorry... Moors)


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Mr Happy
Date: 29 Jan 08 - 06:05 AM

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Merry_England


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 29 Jan 08 - 07:07 AM

It is a perfectly reasonable position to be concerned about the unknown consequences of mass, uncontrolled immigration into a small country with an acute housing shortage, inadequate infrastructure and social services, and existing social problems.


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Mr Happy
Date: 29 Jan 08 - 07:13 AM

Look at the initial post & you'll see its not about 'uncontrolled immigration'


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Keith A of Hertford
Date: 29 Jan 08 - 07:27 AM

The discussion has moved on.
Keep up.


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Emma B
Date: 29 Jan 08 - 07:30 AM

A report on Multiculturalism in American Public Opinion published in the British Journal of Political Science concluded that while "'hard' versions of multiculturalism are rejected in all ethnic groups" ....."racial hostility is a consistent source of antagonism to the new ethnic agenda of multiculturalism".


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Mr Happy
Date: 29 Jan 08 - 07:34 AM

Some references have been made to immigration, but not so much as to go off topic


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Emma B
Date: 29 Jan 08 - 08:07 AM

'Challenge racism - defend multiculturalism'

'...leading academics such as Professor Danny Dorling of Sheffield University have shown, Britain continues to become more integrated and not more segregated. Restricting people's right to express their cultural identity, demonising religious expression and denying the valuable contribution that diversity makes to modern Britain today will only further fuel ignorance and intolerance

Against those undermining multiculturalism, we should challenge the notion that our many cultures are incompatible with one another. To address division and isolation we must tackle racism, respect diversity and reject the idea that one culture or religion is superior to another'

'In an increasingly racist climate across society, students have an important role to play in ensuring that racism is actively confronted.'

From the National Union of Students


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Stu
Date: 29 Jan 08 - 08:42 AM

GUEST: 29 Jan 08 - 04:19 AM was me - not sure what happen there . . .

"Multiculturalism = How to ruin a great Country.

Great Britain, full of the dross from Euroland. A once Great Country sacrificed in the name of multiculturalism."


Great Britain is an island, not a country. It's a geographical location. Typical Daily Mail reader – ignorant of their own place in the world whilst spouting the sort of todge in the quote above.

The defence of multiculturalism and the celebration of our diversity is one of the defining issues of our time. It is a barometer of our status as a civilised society and whilst we are a tolerant society as a whole (as LTS says), individually we must all be made to question how we interact with fellow citizens who don't share out religion, traditions or skin colour.

"It is a perfectly reasonable position to be concerned about the unknown consequences of mass, uncontrolled immigration into a small country with an acute housing shortage, inadequate infrastructure and social services, and existing social problems."

So here we have a typical right-wing comment that betrays deeper prejudices. Linking immigration with the housing shortage and inadequate infrastructure and social services (both consequences of the Laissez-faire economics of the modern capitalist UK governments of the last 25 years and sod all to do with "uncontrolled immigration") is laughable as is the notion that "existing social problems" somehow are exacerbated by the presence of said immigrants.

Or it would be laughable, if this sort of unsubstantiated crap wasn't given far more credence than it rightly deserves in a civilised society. A lot of the "existing social problems" don't restrict themselves to the imaginary boundaries the right-wing impose on them - they are across the board, regardless of ethnic origin, religion or creed.

The NUS is right to be worried, and so should we all be.


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: John MacKenzie
Date: 29 Jan 08 - 08:56 AM

I think what we are really talking about is tolerance and not racism.
I never mentioned race, nor do I equate Multiculturalism with racial prejudice as the more paranoid amongst us are prone to do.
I am not prejudiced against anyone because of their race. I DO dislike intolerance, be it of other people's right to hold the opinion they hold, or to attend whatever folk festival they want, or whatever else they wish to do!
What Liz is complaining about, and in this I totally agree with her,is the one way system that tolerance has become in this 'Right on' politically correct world we now inhabit.
To some it is characterised as a right versus left thing, with the left assuming the monopoly on libertarian ideals.
Well I don't care if you are to the right of Attila the Hun, or so left wing you make Karl Marx look like Norman Tebbit.
One should not surrender the right to hold the opinions one does, in order to appease someone who is on the face of it, not even willing to meet you half way.
That said, there is no need to antagonise them, or make it a personal thing even if other parties might wish to do so.
Giok


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: Jack Blandiver
Date: 29 Jan 08 - 09:07 AM

It is a perfectly reasonable position to be concerned about the unknown consequences of mass, uncontrolled immigration into a small country with an acute housing shortage, inadequate infrastructure and social services, and existing social problems.

Is this an editorial from the Daily Mail or somesuch shit-rag? Sounds like an agenda for reactionary sensationalism that might justify racism on any grounds it so chooses. I say racism, because any opposition immigration is racist by default, no matter what language you might care to wrap it up in. And talking of infrastructure, where would the Health Service be but for the nurses from the Phillipines?

Can we talk of multiculturalism as being entirely separate from immigration? Seems to me one is the direct consequence of the other. It's only a matter of time before we're hearing words like Repatriation & Ethnic-Cleansing being put forward as viable 'Solutions' to the perceived 'Problems'.

And of course it's right that we can only make fun out of our own cultural traditions; same way I can make fun of myself without causing any offence to anyone else, because once I make fun out of someone else, haven't they got a right to be pissed off? Best be positive and appreciative, and be aware of the persistent myth that our own culture is somehow 'under threat' by anything other than the policy makers of our own so-called government stripping away such basic human rights as fox-hunting and smoking in pubs - but two aspects of Traditional British Culture we have allowed to vanish away without so much as a whimper.


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Subject: RE: BS: Multiculturalism
From: GUEST,PMB
Date: 29 Jan 08 - 09:22 AM

OK Giok, if for the moment we accept that "multiculturalism" is undesirable, how do we decide on the monoculture that is to replace it? Is there any "national" culture that is available for imposition as the norm for all groups- Surrey stockbrokers, London cab drivers, Mansfield ex-miners, Lincolnshire farmers, Welsh speakers, non-Welsh speakers in Wales, Glasgow (Rangers and Celtic) folk, Scillonians, Hebrideans, football fans and village green cricketers, Anglicans and atheists, train- spotters and fashion victims. I'm hoping that anti- multiculturalism doesn't only apply to "alien" cultures , because then we start- are the French aliens? The Irish? Italians? Romanians? Who gets to draw the line?


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