Tuesday, August 07, 2007

Numptie versus Gurdeep…

The other day, I’d finished watching paint dry and making elephant shapes out of clouds – so I thought it was about time I had a quick look at the blog of Cornwall’s very own Victor Meldrew. He calls himself ‘Bondbloke’ – but everyone knows him as ‘Numptie’.

For those who don’t know, Tourettes-Syndromed Numptie, now residing in Scotland, is something of a legend in English Nationalist circles. His one-eyed view of the English knows no depths of prejudice and stereotypical ranting. If anyone happens to disagree with him he likes to threaten them with his fabled comments policy – and the ultimate sanction of ‘deletion’. He will not tolerate ignorance or bad language from anyone (apart from himself, obviously).

Anyway, the post that caught my attention is titled – Helping the English in Scotland and was posted on April 26th, 2006. Numptie has done his routine scissors and glue stuff with some entries on the Cross of St George forum, then written his unique slant on each piece. His agenda is the usual Numptie brand of intolerance and ignorance – but hey, it’s never stopped him before. The post is all about the treatment of the English in Scotland – apparently, Numptie reckons it’s all rubbish – and inevitably the fault of the gobby Empire-building English….

The comments span well over a year are the usual responses to such a post. Outraged English people, mostly given short shrift by Numptie – and the inevitable threat to delete the comment unless they behave, say sorry and stroke Numptie’s ego…. And there’s also a particularly ignorant rant from an SNP commentator – it is full to the brim with hate, ignorance and inaccuracies – but as this is a Scotsman slagging off the whole of England (landscape included) then it clearly did not apparently contravene Numptie’s selectively stringent comments policy. So that’s OK then.

Anyway, I trolled down the comments, gradually losing the will to read and despising the hectoring control freakery with which Numptie revels – until I happened upon Gurdeep’s comment, posted on July 2nd of this year.. I have copied it below in its entirety. There is also Numptie’s feeble response – and Gurdeep’s reply. I reckon the comments policy has just had to be redefined as Numptie gets a comment from someone who doesn’t fit his stereotypical pigeon holes…..

Gurdeep Says:
July 2nd, 2007 at 10:29 am
It’s the Cornish nationalists that worry me more than the English, they seem to have taken up the blood and soil celtic nationalism that the Scots specialised in in the 70s and the Welsh in the 80s.

Whatever your views on the rights or wrongs of an English parliament you must at least give the English nationalists some credit - they’re not Settler Watch, The BNP or An Gof.

You don’t see English nationalists burning British, Scottish, Welsh or Cornish flags. Even the BNP (who aren’t really ‘English’ nationalists (they are white nationalists who happen to be English) don’t go in for that sort of thing.

The English accept that multiple identities are possible because the vast majority of them, even the most passionate Englishmen, tend to also feel British or have some strong regional identity, or perhaps some other ethnic identity like Indian. This is something that the Celtic nationalists don’t really understand, much less appreciate. England is much more tolerant and multicultural in this respect. So you have Cornishmen burning the English flag and threatening to burn down English homes and stating that you can’t be English and Cornish. If Englishmen burnt the Indian flag and said that you couldn’t be English and Indian then people would be up in arms about it. But because it is celtic racism directed at England it is seen as acceptable or not so much of a problem.

Respectfully I say that you as a Cornishman you should sort out your own backyard before pouring scorn on the English who seem to act with a great deal more dignity and probity than the Celts. I would count myself as English and I do not understand the animosity that this debate generates.

22. BondBloke (aka Numptie) Says:
July 3rd, 2007 at 1:35 pm
I will come back to your points Gurdeep when I return home from a short trip…

23. Gurdeep Says:
July 4th, 2007 at 12:11 pm
No response necessary really, it’s just my personal opinion. England is more accepting of multiple identities than the Celtic nations. I’m not saying that the Celtic nations are more racist (that exists in England also) but celtic nationalism is more rooted in ethnicity. This leads to anti-Englishness more than hostility towards people of other skin colours because the Celts define themselves in opposition to Englishness, whereas the English tend to define themselves in opposition to foreign non-British nations or immigrants (although this is changing due to asymmetric devolution).

The tragedy for England is that the British government persists in a headlong drive towards Britishness when the indigenous English population are ‘retreating’ into Englishness because of devolution (and possibly also unintegrated immigrant populations that are hostile to English culture). This marginalises the non-indigenous non-hostile hyphenated population (like British-Asians) in England because we cannot subscribe to an English identity (like we would a Scottish identity in Scotland) because England does not exist outside the imaginations of the English. To be English is to be ethnically English because England lacks constitutional form and political expression.

All I am saying is that you should recognise that Celtic nationalism is not superior to English nationalism. Celtic nationalism is also driven by fear of the other (in your case the English), and much of the language deployed is more racist than that used by English nationalists (that is not a comment on you personally BTW). Fortunately devolution to Scotland and Wales has instilled a new confidence in those nations and much of the vile anti-English rhetoric of the 70s and 80s has disappeared, the same though cannot be said for Cornwall whose nationalists inexplicably rage against the English when really they should be raging against a British state that is top heavy with Scotsmen. Now in England too we are seeing the rise of anti-Scottishness due to a completely unfair devolution settlement.

When all said and done the majority of English nationalists that I have come across seem to be asking for fairness. They want their nation to have the same constitutional safeguards and political representation as the Celtic nations. To flatly deny that perfectly reasonable claim is in itself racist. All nations, all peoples, have the right to self-determination, and England is no different just because it makes up the largest part of the United Kingdom.

Not a lot to add really - Numptie clearly shares that view.

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