Tuesday, June 06, 2006

More flak for the flag

From the Guardian:
Those red and white flags are everywhere - but are they a badge of menacing jingoism or a warm inclusive embrace for fans of all colours and faiths?

Jingoism during the World Cup may coerce people to sport the England flag for fear of exclusion, thinks Leicester University historian George Ferzoco. Visible minorities in particular could feel they need to be seen to be 'patriotic' as World Cup fever grips the country…

Mr Ferzoco is worried that some minorities may fear exclusion. “Witness the recent front page of a major national newspaper. It presented a series of photos of people of many ethnicities (especially some very visible ones) draped in the Cross of Saint George.

"Some members of the ethnic groups represented on that page may feel they absolutely must wave the flag. Why? For fear of being thought of as somehow anti-English, even if they don't care about football or the World Cup."
I presume he means this great front page:



If white people embrace the English flag they’re racist. If non-white people embrace it they’re being coerced by the whites. Seems to me Mr Ferzoco is suggesting that non-white English people can't think for themselves; isn't that a tad, er, racist?

I found this picture of him on the BBC’s website, taken just before Euro 2004:



Oh look, he's draping an Italian flag round his shoulders. I hope nobody is coerced into doing the same thing.

From the same Guardian article, here’s another Leicester University academic - Professor Martin Parker, social scientist:
"I think the link between the flag and right wing extremist groups is now too strong to simply be reclaimed by four weeks of football…What seems more important is to invent a form of pride in Englishness that does not involve suggesting that all foreigners aren't as good as us. Too often, the flag is flown defensively, rather than in celebration of something."
And when we celebrate something, tossers like you call us racist, or coerced minorities, or some such tedious leftie bullshit.
Professor Parker adds that the World Cup provided people with an opportunity to assert a sense of national identity: "I suspect this is largely because it involves people who identify as English being encouraged to drag out some tired old stereotypes and histories. They then call these patriotism...
God forbid the English should have a patriotic sense of identity based upon their history!
Professor Parker continues: "I would rather see Stoke City get promoted to the premiership than have England win the World Cup.”
And I hope Stoke City do shit next year.

11 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Oh, we've had our national flag for over 1200 years. Labour's malevolent attempts to deconstruct our country as are the blink of an eye. Such a powerful symbol over such a period of time transcends politics and all those malevolent little lefty would-be destroyers. They come and they go. Robin Cook. Claire Short, to name but two. Dead Labour councillors. Dead socialist journalists. Dead trades union leaders. Gone and largely forgotten, but our flag is still here. Tough luck, lefties and Islamophiles! Our flag is stronger than you.

- Anonymousette

4:18 pm  
Blogger DFH said...

Our flag is stronger than you

Fuck yeah!

4:26 pm  
Blogger Eugenio Mastroviti said...

FFS!

I'm Italian, I'll support Italy this World Cup of course (pity about England, you did have a chance, but you'll probably lose the final against us), but I'm flying the George Cross off my bike during my daily commute to work - and yes, it's because I'm being coerced: what's forcing me to do it is this hurricane of PC idiocy. Even my wife, who's even more of a bleeding-heart liberal than me, bought one when she read about the al-Muhajiroun threats, and it'll hang next to the Italian flag for the duration of the World Cup.

4:30 pm  
Blogger Eugenio Mastroviti said...

Um,

the FFS was not in response to any of the comments. It was just an almost literal quote of my reaction when i read about the English flag complaints

4:33 pm  
Blogger DFH said...

"it's because I'm being coerced: what's forcing me to do it is this hurricane of PC idiocy" Nice one Eugenio. And good luck for the finals - you'll need it if you meet our boys!

4:53 pm  
Anonymous Clematis Fraud said...

Um, why is it perfectly acceptable for Signor Ferzoco to drape himself in the Italian tricolour but when the English wave their flag around, it is threatening to minority groups?

I presume ethnic minorities live in Italy too?

People who are far less charitable than me might accuse this gentleman of hypocrisy, perhaps?

7:57 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Mr Ferzoco is happy to be cheeky about English people, although he is living very comfortably over here. Of course, he would never dare to say anything that might annoy Muslims. Why not? Because they have a rather low threshold of irritation.

Maybe if English people kicked the heads in of a few of these loud-mouth types like Ferzoco, he and the rest of the Guardian-reading England-haters might start to keep their traps shut...

8:20 pm  
Anonymous Clematis Fraud said...

btw, the good professor has called it correctly when he says:

Too often, the flag [The Cross of St George] is flown defensively, rather than in celebration of something."

That could be because England doesn't win very often.

It could also be because there is a form of institutional disapproval of any outward display of pride in England and Englishness; hence the flying of the flag could be seen as an act of defiance.

Officially, England appears not to exist as a country. Throw in other factors, such as 'Euro-creep', devolution, the preponderance of Scots in government and growing fears about security at home, and you have a country that is increasingly prickly and bloody-minded.

So why do I think there are so many English flags on cars and houses? Are "people who identify as English being encouraged to drag out some tired old stereotypes and histories", as 'Professor' Parker suggests? Possibly.

But I am prepared to stick my neck out and offer a view. Shoot me down in flames if you wish.

I reckon a lot of people are flying English flags because they live in England and want England to win the World Cup.

There. I've said it.

8:41 pm  
Blogger AntiCitizenOne said...

"I reckon a lot of people are flying English flags because they live in England and want England to win the World Cup. "

Too complicated.

10:01 pm  
Blogger Tommy said...

Well I am not a highly educated proffesor but try this, I am Engliash, in England, suporting England by flying an English flag er ... spot the pattern?

11:38 pm  
Anonymous Clematis Fraud said...

"I reckon a lot of people are flying English flags because they live in England and want England to win the World Cup. "

Too complicated.


Damn, you're right.

I am supporting England and wearing a Cross of St George on my left tit because:

(a) I am a racist;

(b) I long for Empire;

(c) I am an 'Islamophobe' and a Zionist';

(d) I subliminally wish to bully minorities into supporting England;

(e) I am a pot-bellied, tattooed, shaven-headed, self-loathing BNP bullyboy.

12:22 pm  

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