Friday, December 14, 2012

Guilty of dual standards

Statistics from last year’s census show that people from mixed race backgrounds were among the fastest growing groups in Britain. It is an issue that many assume will undermine the whole nature of Britain. Talk is that, in time, Britain will no longer be a Christian country as the Muslim population takes over. 

This has led to the notion among some of the so called natives that all immigrants to Britain should abandon their cultural heritage altogether and adopt a ‘British’ culture. The opposite view is that people from different races should be allowed to live their separate lives and get on with things in their own way. Neither viewpoint is reality and neither will produce a properly integrated community in which people can coexist in peace and harmony.

The crux of the problem, as identified by the Labour party is language.  Immigrants with little or no command of English are clearly disadvantaged in every way. They stand little chance of becoming fully integrated into their new country. Ed Milliband, the Labour leader, says that he would seek to address this issue if his party were returned to government. 

Imagine if the same principles were to be applied here in Spain. How many British people on the Costa Blanca are there without even a basic understanding of Spanish? How many of our countrymen and women are there that live in glorious isolation from anything Spanish?

We talk of the issues of integration in Britain and complain about those Johnny foreigners who do not fall into line with our views and yet we fail to see that we are equally guilty of creating the same problems living here in Spain. We create our own ‘Bradfords’ i.e. communities and even towns where only foreigners live and we cannot see any wrong in doing so. We live our lives oblivious of the language and culture of Spain and expect to be tolerated. I can’t help but feel that some of us are guilty of dual standards.

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