Friday, June 25, 2010

Right, we've reclaimed the flag, now lets go for the anthem.

One of the more pleasant aspects of "world cup fever" has been the almost total resurgence in the use of the Cross of St George to support the England team, even if a lot of them look a bit odd with "England" printed across them. Still in one sense that's what football fans do, you see it on the banners at the matches with various home towns or teams written on them. Still looks a bit odd and makes me wonder just how intellectually challenged some fans are though. It's also good that the flag itself despite attempts by various left wing groups and the odd newspaper to associate it with what they term the "far right" and anyone with any sense terms the racist left (check the BNP manifesto, it reads like old Labour) The clue is in the name British National Party, so guess which flag they use? Although the party itself is predominantly English, it is a unionist party and most football fans wont have much if anything to do with them, they just want to support their team and despite the attempts by the MSM tabloids, most English don't hate foreigners although at times the choice of songs they sing can be either amusing or embarrassing, still mocking the opposition is something all fans do.
So, now we have our flag, how about an anthem, recently the Commonwealth Games Council for England conducted a poll of members of the public which decided the anthem for the 2010 Commonwealth Games. The three options were "God Save The Queen", "Jerusalem" and "Land of Hope and Glory". Jerusalem was the clear winner with 52% of the vote. Seems like a good choice though trying to get England football fans to sing it might be more tricky, rugby and cricket fans perhaps not so. Still I'm sure it can be done if the will is there and I believe it is fast approaching, it's even getting a mention in the UK Parliament.

Parliament should debate the case for an "English national anthem" that fans can sing at sporting events like the World Cup, a Lib Dem MP has said.
Greg Mulholland said it was "frustrating" to hear fans sing God Save The Queen in South Africa as it was the anthem for the United Kingdom.
He told MPs there should be a "properly established" anthem for English teams.
For the first time, Jerusalem will be played to celebrate English winners at this year's Commonwealth Games.
The anthem was chosen for medal ceremonies at the event in Delhi - ahead of the God Save The Queen and Land of Hope and Glory - after a public vote backed by Commonwealth Games England.
Historic decision
Mr Mulholland raised the issue during Business Questions in Parliament, where the government sets out future business for the weeks ahead and MPs can call for debates on chosen subjects.
He has raised the issue before, claiming that English fans are at a disadvantage compared to their counterparts in Wales and Scotland.
While Wales has its own national anthem, Scottish football and rugby fans have sung the unofficial Flower of Scotland since the 1990s and this was chosen for the Scottish team at the Commonwealth Games following a similar public vote.
Mr Mulholland told MPs "it was wonderful to see the Cross of St George flying" after England's victory over Slovenia, which booked the team's place in the last 16 of the competition.
But he added: "However, it is still frustrating to see England singing the wrong anthem, the anthem of the United Kingdom.
"Following the historic decision to use Jerusalem at the Commonwealth Games, can we now have a debate about properly establishing an English national anthem for when England compete as opposed to the UK."
In response, Leader of the House of Commons Sir George Young said he had raised an "important issue".
Decisions on which anthems should be played are taken by national sporting associations.
So, it's up to the sporting associations and that's where we need to apply pressure against a no doubt "British" rearguard action. Again it is a fight that I believe can be won and certainly needs to be won, with removal of various "UK" ties the English and England can prosper and a true national identity can emerge distinct from and different too the British one, hopefully without the jingoistic overtones and often overt racism of a past imperial age.
I believe a new and refreshing flowering of English identity is on the cards, hopefully without the idiotic tabloid racism and without ties to the British past, as I've said before Britain and Britishness are tainted good in the eyes of the world, which isn't to say that there wasn't some good done in the name of Britain (slavery for one). Those times are past now and it's time and past time that England takes its place in the 21st century.

5 annotations:

Pavlov's Cat said...

What has actually happened is that the flag has been reclaimed from the lefties, racemongers and multiculturalists.
Who screamed racisim if hint of English national identity was actually shown. (unless it was a Welsh Dragon or St Andrews Cross as being a minority that's alright)

As you rightly point out it is the British National Party and from my distant youth I remember the shouts of the NF being 'There ain't no black in the Union Jack'

Anonymous said...

I've been delighted to see your flag flying in the world cup, and on visits to England in the last few years, more and more.

You guys are a proud nation, even if like all nations, including mine, you have a chequered past, but now is the time to move it forward.

In Scotland we ditched 'GStQ' years ago in favour of "Flower of Scotland". The Welsh too have ditched the union anthem.

Then demand that Camerclegg give you a parliament to run your country for your benefit. Not the benefit of others.

It worked for us, even with a Labour government(or executive).

I really don't see why London has a parliament and the rest of you depend on Westminster.

Time for English independence.

Anonymous said...

Hm - let's not fall for that line that the British Empire was a blot on the whole human race; In actual fact the hatred that we bear from other nations is simply because we were so successful.

Instead of screaming racist genocides; why not contemplate why a group of mere six men (only one of which was police) could administer an area the size of Wales without any military back up?

My grandfather did in Africa and did so for twenty years. No riots, no terrorism, just schools, hospitals, manufacturing and infrastructure. We handed over at independence a group of highly successful ex-colonies which (especially Kenya - were the pride of Africa) and what has happened since cannot in honesty be blamed on the Empire.

Trouble started after the second world war, when (my grandfather confidently stated - claiming to have seen proof) the US demanded that Britain divest itself of it colonies and open the Empire to American trading. He went so far as to claim that groups such as Mau Mau were trained and supported by the CIA.

I know that we are supposed to be ashamed of our past - but in point of fact we were far more gentle colonial masters compared to France, Germany and especially Belgium. We were spectacularly more successful - hence the need to take us down.

Anonymous said...

Well said, anon @6:19!

Bali still refuses entry to Dutch nationals on account of their colonising brutality. Meanwhile, Britain is held in warm regard throughout the Commonwealth. (OK. Not Canada. You can't win 'em all).

Anecdotally, my globe-trotting family has experienced (amongst lesser examples): an ancient railway guardsman saluting my hippy brother in northern India, just for being British, and a Malayan taxi driver begging my parents to 'tell them in London' what it's like in Singapore now that the Chinese are in charge. He was very nostalgic for the old days of British rule.

If you were an equitorial huntsman (for eg) in the days of European expansion, you'd be hoping for the Brits to get there first, Black Hole of Calcutta notwithstanding.

Land of Hope and Glory or Jerusalem? Can't decide. Jerusalem is very moving, but LoHaG, sung en masse, is soo uplifting. Like at the Proms.

Alfie said...

Anon 2 - LofH&G is a BRITISH IMPERIAL anthem. It celebrates the colonisation of Africa by the BRITISH EMPIRE through such lines as 'Wider still and wider'(which refers to the ever widening influence of BRITAIN.....

LofH&G is therefore entirely inappropriate as an ENGLISH anthem as it has nowt to do with us... (and would you really want to sing a song that celebrates the carving up of an entire continent by imperialists?

And I agree with the cat. The flag has been reclaimed from the lefties etc. Tghe sadness is that people still refer to this mythical reclaiming of the flag from the right wing nut jobs stuff.....