Britain Will Always Be British – Even Without The Right-Wingers

Image: John Byford

Would you believe that after all the trials and tribulations of getting my new pair of glasses sorted they STILL aren’t ready? Yesterday morning when I went to collect them, although they did manage to get the lenses made with no errors, the manufacturers sent them back in the WRONG frames!

Just my luck that the frame designs were all changed last week but the ordering codes weren’t, so although the staff thought they were ordering replacements they were in fact ordering totally different specs. What is one to do? Wait longer I suppose.

Other than that hiccup my Saturday morning was a smooth and enjoyable one. Some nice music while walking through Edinburgh, a nice coffee and a read of the paper, a new poem, oh, and the threat of violent violent clashes sparked by the arrival some right wing group called the Scottish Defence League, who were planning a march through Edinburgh.

There was a bit of tension in the air along Prince Street where police lined the route of an anti-racism rally, which had been arranged when news spread the SDL were going to hold an unauthorised march against Islam and extremism.  A police chopper hovered and coppers stood about looking nervous in their wee huddles. It was all pretty… needless.

I’m all for free speech and all that comes with it, and although the SDL website says they are “opposed to sectarianism and racism, and membership is open to people of all colours, religions and sexes,” the truth is the kind of people who are attracted to right-wing groups like the SDL are just that. I think all voices should be heard, but without reasoned and fair arguments the whole thing descends into chaos and disruption. Casual forums were full of aggressive talk promising violence—that’s why Edinburgh’s residents and politicians didn’t want you here, SDL, not because we read all we believe in the papers.

The SDL website goes on to say: “We will not silenced and we will not be run out of Scotland,” but apparently that is exactly what happened. The police refused them to leave a pub on the Royal Mile until the anti-racism march had passed, then stuck the SDL onto buses and shipped them out of the city. Good job if you ask me.

Let’s face it, though, Britain will never become a Muslim state and our way of life is never going to change that much. Our ability to be flexible is as strong as our ability not to change; it’s what Britain is good at. So when I hear right-wing groups making statements that they want to stop us turning into an Islamic state I have two things to say:

  1. Get real! Britain is suddenly going turn into an Islamic state because of a few hard-line extremists? It’s laughable, for one amazing reason: we have a monarchy that is so ingrained and deep rooted in our society that people often forget this is where we get our backbone from. It’s the one constant that never changes and it is what makes us proud to be British. We will always be British with or without right-wingers, and it’s possible to do it without hating everyone else.
  2. Britain never was all white and we never will be; multi-culturalism isn’t going to go away for any reason, it’s part of the fabric of our society. So if it bothers you that much that you feel the need to lash out and piss off people of your own colour and race, then the only harm you are doing is to your own cause. Nobody listens because you shout too loud and abusively about a point of view that most disagree with. In my opinion, it’s the right wing groups that are the real minority in Britain, nobody else.

What pisses me off about the whole thing is that when the media show pictures of right wing groups it’s usually of skinheads with angry faces, fists and bovver boots. This stereotype is absolute bollocks. The truth is that skinheads are largely not all about right wing politics and they are not all about hating black people, Muslims, or any other minority group. Skinheads are all about bringing black and white together. Skinheads are all about freedom and about good music and being British—Scottish, English, Welsh or Irish—whatever colour they may be. Go to any ska gig and whites will be dancing with blacks because we all have one thing in common—the music.

I’ll leave it there for now but I’d like to thank the SDL for a couple of things: the poem I write while watching all the protesters gather and the short story idea that sprung out the whole situation.

The rest of my day was relaxing and rewarding. As I already mentioned, I wrote a new poem—inspired by the mood of the protesters outside the coffee shop where I was sitting—and a short story idea also blossomed from the whole affair. I polished up and prepared my latest short story, PAINT, which is to be posted on Monday as my entry into a short story competition, and worked on several other poems for which I have big ideas for.

Till tomorrow, then, have a great Sunday—peace out!

The Scruffy Dog Review – Winter Issue OUT NOW!!

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About Colin Galbraith

Keen runner, thriller author, Madness fan, Mets fan, St Mirren fan/owner, rabbit tamer, outstanding fake faller. Loves cannolis & espressos. #LFGM
This entry was posted in Edinburgh, Editorial Comment, Fiction, Poetry, Politics, Scotland, Writing and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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