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To be ashamed of being British?

(158 Posts)
Morgana Tue 10-Oct-17 23:25:57

Just watched Panorama. Reminiscent of Germany in the thirties - made my flesh run cold. Pity no mention of the role of the gutter press.

Tegan2 Tue 10-Oct-17 23:34:55

Daren't watch it. My television is in danger of having something thrown at it these days sad....

Cindersdad Wed 11-Oct-17 06:13:05

The British are essentially a good nation (as are most nations). The problem is that we are rightly ashamed of a small percentage (<5% I estimate) of the population who make life less pleasant for everyone. I mean those who drop litter, take drugs, frequently get drunk, and generally act anti-socially. Extreme right and left wing politics excluding the silent majority is another example.

Brexit has sadly allowed the nastier side to become more evident. I genuinely do not know how to get a national return to common sense. Most Germans are ashamed of the AFD, most French ashamed of the Fronte Nationale and ISIS not a true reflection of Islam.

whitewave Wed 11-Oct-17 07:18:02

What was the programme about?

Elegran Wed 11-Oct-17 08:18:44

We just have to do what we can to counteract the dreadful image that SOME British people seem to think it is OK to show the world. If we let them make us ashamed to BE British ourselves, then that is the equivalent of being ashamed to be called Smith because someone else called Smith has been convicted of a crime.

I saw something on FB that illustrates this - a woman was asked by someone she met what language she was speaking. "It is Tagalog, the language of the Philippines," she replied. The other woman raised her eyebrows."So you are Philippino - just like the Las Vegas shooter's girl-friend!" "Yes, and you are white just like the shooter."

If we don't show a better side, and defend ourselves - and the majority of our fellow-countrymen - from stereotypes, then the bad image goes unchallenged, and like the Philippino woman we are all tarred with the same brush as the worst examples.

vampirequeen Wed 11-Oct-17 08:29:52

I'm not ashamed of being British but I am ashamed of what is often deemed to be acceptable or not automatically challenged in this country. British people need to stand up and be counted. We need to challenge racism, sexism, homophobia and all the other 'isms' when we see them not just complain about them later. If we can't challenge personally we need to be willing to call the police and let them deal with it. We need to stop trading arms to countries that have no respect for human life and use them against their own or other people.

Chewbacca Wed 11-Oct-17 08:32:48

What I found interesting in the programme was that racism isnt just something that the white, English population are guilty of. The man from Yorkshire, born in the UK but of Asian heritage, was very vocal about how Britain is "full up, we've had enough, no wonder people get fed up of the Eastern Europeans", without thinking back to how his own family must have felt when they first came here. But it was the young Polish boys that I felt most sorry for, and their parents.

Grandma70s Wed 11-Oct-17 08:40:34

I’m quite ashamed of being British at the moment. Brexit, binge drinking, gutter press, poor education, acceptance of the mediocre, little opportunity for the ‘have-nots’ to improve their lot.

Luckygirl Wed 11-Oct-17 08:48:37

I did not watch the programme - not sure what it was - but I feel embarrassed to be British watching Boris/Theresa and crew trying to negotiate Brexit - what a load of buffoons! It makes me want to crawl under a stone.

MissAdventure Wed 11-Oct-17 08:50:51

I'm not ashamed of being British. The repugnant element doesn't represent me.

Morgana Wed 11-Oct-17 08:55:47

It was about racism and how figures of reported race related crimes have increased since the referendum. But please don't let this thread be side tracked into a BREXIT discussion!

lemongrove Wed 11-Oct-17 09:27:43

Yes, I think you are being unreasonable to be ashamed to feel British.
This is one programme about certain types of people.As mentioned upthread, you will find these attitudes in many countries , probably all! Here, we have laws in place to protect people from overt ‘race or hate crime’ and it is to be remembered that the vast number of people abide by them.
We are still one of the main Western countries that other nationalities want to come to.
Harder to change perceptions perhaps, but we are generally one of the better countries when it comes to accepting foreigners, and always have been.

lemongrove Wed 11-Oct-17 09:29:37

Well said Miss Adventure smile

whitewave Wed 11-Oct-17 09:37:53

Police Statistics show us that race hate has indeed risen by at particular times 100%. Particularly after the referendum, when the decision to leave the EU somehow enabled people to give vent to their suppressed prejudice. Something must have happened to instigate this, and I can only assume that the sort of rhetoric present throughout the campaign encouraged this behaviour.

Complacency over the matter which indicates that we are good at accepting foreigners is simply ignoring the lessons of history. Immigrants have never been welcomed with open arms and in some cases the population was openly hostile towards them, which is why the government of the day felt it necessary to bring in the race laws and “education” was stepped up to teach diversity etc.

Maggiemaybe Wed 11-Oct-17 09:41:05

Not directly related to the programme - I haven’t seen it - but further to Chewbacca’s point. Much of the racism suffered by the Central European Roma community in Britain comes from other Central Europeans who are living here.

lemongrove Wed 11-Oct-17 09:44:53

We are no worse and I suspect somewhat better than some other European countries on this subject ( ever been to a French football match?) In any case, no reason to feel ashamed to be British, I doubt that French or Italians feel ashamed, if they are decent they will just feel ashamed of their countrymen but not their country.Big difference.
It seems to be a British thing to constantly feel guilty about almost everything in life.

Anniebach Wed 11-Oct-17 09:48:54

Only change is racists now speak openly, just as they did in the sixties and did no one here speak to people of the Windrush generation.

Grandma70s Wed 11-Oct-17 09:57:26

I didn’t see the programme, but the feelings of being ashamed of my country were there already. I used not to be. It’s only recently that I’ve recognised how strong the obnoxious side is.

Luckygirl Wed 11-Oct-17 10:04:24

There is an obnoxious side in every country.

paddyann Wed 11-Oct-17 10:05:29

I've never felt British ,so had no reason to feel ashamed of it.I am Scottish and have always ben proud of MY country.There hasn't been the huge rise in racism here that there is in other parts of the UK ,WE have a government thats working FOR the people not agianst them and life here has the potentail to be very good indeed ..WHEN we gain independence.Our government announced yesterday the plan to create an energy company controlled by them that will be non profit making so a benefit to us THATS what governments should be doing..looking out for everyone ,not just the rich. Saor Alba

lemongrove Wed 11-Oct-17 10:07:05

Another SNP trumpet blowing excercise Paddyann?

Anniebach Wed 11-Oct-17 10:14:28

What is the link between a state controlled energy company and racism ?

TerriBull Wed 11-Oct-17 10:15:52

You didn't give any information OP for those of us who haven't seen the programme, so my post is apropos of the posts that followed in trying to get the gist of the content.

I don't think you can pick any one country in isolation and say that it's any worse as far as racism, xenephobia and extreme nationalism is concerned. there are elements of all of those not only in Europe but the entire world. Turning to Europe though, the Eastern bloc are very upfront in it's nationalism which imo is more reminiscent of Germany in the 30s than here. For example Victor Orban of Hungary has made it clear that he intends to keep his country very white and very Christian, contrary to EU directives and ethos. Meanwhile, many western EU countries are putting measures in place to ban the burka, including liberal Denmark. I don't see any such moves afoot in this country, in fact I can't see that happening, but I'd never say never. France particularly can be quite confrontational and draconian in pursuing such policies. I felt the incident on the beach last summer where police told a Muslim woman she shouldn't have been covered up to the extent that she was , leggings and a kaftan top, didn't do them any favours. Neither will France tolerate the burkini. Our black footballers don't get a warm welcome in quite a few European countries, particularly Eastern Europe and have been greeted at times with pathetic monkey noises from the crowd.

The incident of the attack on the Polish man in Essex soon after Brexit and conflated with the referendum, appalled most people, but it emerged later there was a background to that story. The man who died had had a drink or two and was shouting at some local boys, one of whom was black or mixed race but his comments were of a racist nature and a fight ensued in retaliation to his slurs, unfortunately he was knocked to the ground and suffered a fatal injury. That wasn't how it was reported though and we had Jean Claude Junker et al berating Britain because this fitted in very well to the negativity of the British character apropos of Brexit.

I can't comment on the programme because I haven't seen it, I don't doubt racism exists here, but it exists everywhere, unfortunately it's a negative of the human condition. It exists not only in the context of a black and white racial/religious equation but in all manner of ethnicities, for example black people have their own dislikes of other black cultures and act on those animosities in more extreme ways than casting racial slurs.

Anniebach Wed 11-Oct-17 10:25:34

Wanting to ban the burka is based on fear not racism as are anti Muslim rants

TerriBull Wed 11-Oct-17 10:37:21

My perception is that it's based on a desire to make the wearer adapt to the culture of the country they are living in, possibly with an element of fear that indigenous cultures are being undermined by zealous religious practices. Although the contrary point of view would be that by banning such a garment the host country is interfering with personal liberty and freedom.