Wednesday, 27 May 2009
An open letter to the BNP.
I have just sent this enquiry to the BNP office in Bristol.
It really is a genuine enquiry; I want to understand what they think. I believe passionately in freedom of speech and thought, but I also believe in integrity and truth. Some of their recent publicity has not really given me much confidence in their ability to show either of these qualities. My suspicions are that they are an organisation of ill-informed, narrow-minded bigots that haven't really thought about what they are saying or what it means, let alone checked the facts of what they are saying in any kind of historical or philosophical context; that they are a group of people that are excusing their racism and prejudices by using pseudo-intellectual mumbo jumbo. They would certainly not be the first group of extremists to do that and they probably won't be the last. However, I am prepared to admit that I could be wrong on this fact and that their policies are based on sound thought and motive. I look forward to their response and will, in the interests of balance and parity, post it here when it arrives. The letter I wrote them is as follows:
Dear sir or madam,
I was wondering if you could help me understand one of the details of your policies. I have read on your party's website that you are not against people of other communities and immigrants but rather are standing up for 'native British people'. I have also read that you are standing up for Britain's "indigenous population" and not stirring up racial hatred.
The phrases 'native British' and 'indigenous population' confuse me somewhat; what exactly do you mean when you use these terms? Where exactly is the line drawn? As far as I am aware, the term Briton and British strictly speaking refers to the pre-Saxon celtic population of these islands. The Saxons were just one of a group of immigrants (Angles, Jutes etc.) that flooded into the British mainland and forcibly took territory from the 'indigenous' population, marginalising them and forcing them to the extreme west and north of the island. Does that mean that the English - as those immigrants later became - are in fact one of the groups of immigrants that would be offered the benefits of your voluntary resettlement policy? Or perhaps the Scots, who were in fact immigrants from the kingdom of Ulster that overran the Pictish peoples of the far north of the British Isles?
By that reckoning, almost everyone on the island is a non-'indigenous' person. Except for the Welsh (and perhaps a few Cornish). And them only because we can't actually prove where they came from. All we know is that they represent all that's left of the 'native British' that would have existed before the country suffered wave after wave of immigration - from the Romans; the Saxons, Angles et al; the Vikings; the Norman French. And even the Welsh originally came from somewhere else, probably central Europe, in the first instance. Or is it simply because all of the immigrants I've mentioned here are white? They were categorically not of the same religion or culture and all bemoaned the influx of immigrants that came after them.
So where are we drawing the lines? Were all the previous immigrations to this island wrong? Are we not merely in a fluid and transient flow of peoples in and out of the islands?
This is a genuine and serious enquiry; I am not writing a hate mail or making fun. These issues are very important ones for me and I am trying to make up my mind with regard to casting my vote on June 4th. I analyse every party's policies carefully, question them and decide which fit best with my personal beliefs and opinions. I would be very much obliged if you could help me understand this aspect of your party's philosophy. I look forward to your reply.