Today I received an envelope through the post. It was from my junior guardian of national identity at the department of culture and sport, David Lammy. I opened it and looked in vain for the ‘Happy Winterval from Britishland, love Dave L . XXX’ card - but it wasn't there.
Instead there was a letter concerning Daniel Kawczynski’s EDM supporting the cause for Jerusalem to be installed as the national anthem of England. I’d sent a short note about it to Mrs Comatose, my local MP (motto, a clean desk means bugger all to do) – true to form, she simply forwarded it into the culture spiel machine.
I’m sure this reply is via the stock bullshit software beloved of government departments – But maybe there was a glitch in the system because I haven’t a bleeding snoop doggy dog what the hell he is talking about.
’As you may know, it is the tune which constitutes the authorised part of the National Anthem in the United Kingdom and not the words. The latter are traditional and the choice of words and verses to be used on any particular occasion is one for those concerned. Whilst the National Anthem is the anthem for the whole of the United Kingdom, the constituent parts of the United Kingdom may quite properly have national songs for which they have a particular attachment.
Mr OK’s comments have been carefully noted, but there are no plans to recommend to the Queen that any change be made’.
So what’s he saying? Are they thinking of changing the words? Was ‘Flower of Scotland’ presented to the Queen as a new anthem for the Scots? Is everyone in the UK allowed their own anthem apart from the English? Why do the two statements ‘the constituent parts of the United Kingdom may quite properly have national songs for which they have a particular attachment’ jar so much with ’there are no plans to recommend to the Queen that any change be made’…. Does Dave think that Scotland and Wales can just do willy nilly national anthems - but England cannot?
I intend to get back to Lammy to clarify this rubbish letter. I don’t hold my breath for a logical response..