Tag Archives: Christianity

UK Christmas & the economic crises

Christmas is coming up soon and students (Chinese and Turkish) used to ask me what Christmas was like/about in the UK.

Well, as the last couple of census’ have shown us religion (and in particular Christianity) in the UK is on the rapid decline, however this doesn’t/hasn’t effected how we in the UK celebrate Christmas.

For most of the UK (God believers or not) Christmas is now more about family time, a time of the year when families get together and exchanges a gift to show their love and appreciation for each other (as well as eat and drink far to much).

Economic crises

Since the economic crises hit, Christmas has been somewhat a time of panic, panic for the parents who can no longer afford the latest games console for their kids, panic for the high-street businesses who will shortly realise that they are about to go into administration which in turn follows the panic for the governments and the market.

Last month Comet went into administration, who will be next?

Future

Historically Christmas was a time when consumerism went crazy and businesses really cashed in but with the UK’s triple A rating under threat the continued outlook is still rather gloomy. People’s jobs are not safe enough to risk spending money they don’t have, businesses will suffer and more redundancies will follow.

England & Wales Census 2011; immigration

The 2011 England & Wales census findings continue to be released in dribs and drabs with todays (amongst others) on employment, immigration and religion.

The media have of course focused on immigration (maybe the national dislike of foreigners helps sell papers). This is turn has led to online posters winging out the immigration issue (or problem as they like to say).

A quick look at the figures…

The population of England and Wales has gone up by 4.1 million over the 10 year period since the last (2001) census.
The same number (4.1 million) is also the amount that those describing themselves as Christian has fallen (12%).

Most of the immigrants during the 10 year period came from Poland with India and Pakistan making up the top three.
1.15 million more people identify themselves an Muslims (up 2%).
14 million said they have no religion a huge increase of 6.4 million.

So while religion on the whole is falling (good news) Islam (due to immigration) is rising (bad news) with the biggest change being those of no religion rising sharply (great news).

The findings (for me at least) paint a generally positive picture but the main issue is the unsurprising online response from the public of England & Wales in regards to immigration.

It’s no secret how the British (I know the census is England & Wales but the online posters are from all over Britain) public feel about foreigners and it’s certainly not positively!

So I was thinking about foreigners, who are the good foreigners and who are the bad foreigners?

Has anyone ever complained about the Dutch or Swedish immigrants in the UK? Are white foreigners ok while non-whites are not ok? Maybe rich foreigners are fine as long as the poorer ones stay out?

Judging from the online posters I’d say that rich and white-skinned were much more preferable to poor and brown-skinned. Brown-skinned people seem to be perceived and not willing to adapt and integrate into British society bringing in with them their own religion and culture that doesn’t adhere to Britain’s own values.
No-one complained about the Russian oligarchs buying British football clubs and attracting the best players. Britain doesn’t like benefit scroungers (unless of course they are white British benefit scroungers then it’s certainly less of an issue).
Some may think I’m being too hard on my fellow Brits, unfortunately I’m not.

Similarly as I posted about European Identity Britain wants those who accept and adhere to its own set of values. Someone who pays their taxes, drinks real ale, supports the England national teams and speaks with an English accent (cor blimey guv’nor).

Personally my experiences of foreigners have been generally really good in Britain (mostly Europeans good) and Africans and Caribbeans a mixed bad (some really good while others awfully homophobic and rude).