Referendumb

Hello folks, it’s that time again where I need to write about a big issue. So people everywhere are having their say on whether this island on the edge of Europe should stay with in the European Union. Before uni, I’m not even sure if I knew fully, what the EU was, it was just something that Britain put itself into after the wars. The EU is a big union that oversees the money and politics that roams around every member state. That said, I’m sure you have heard many people from around the world having their say. Americans have discussed the possibility of our country weakening as a result of leaving and many other leaders have said they would prefer us to remain within the establishment.

But what do I think? I’ve read some of the ‘Stronger in’ and ‘RemaIN’ and nothing of the Leave campaign, I’ve only seen those that have advocated it, which doesn’t reflect a vote of confidence in me. However, based on what I have read, the only reason I have heard that seems to make sense is that the government is not fit to run this country. That seems to be the only thing. I have heard all of these things that the EU has implemented like: regular working hours, regular pay, jobs. My pretty logical answer would be ‘why can’t the government keep the working hours and pay the same, why can’t they encourage local, independent businesses? Surely that would also make the country greener, open up jobs and encourage initiative? But, I was assured by an avid EU voter that the government would do that, they just want to mess up everyone’s lives. Which is why I’m calling this article Referendumb. Neither side is particularly helpful.

My last point is the fearmongering, which both sides are guilty of, however I can only comment on that of the Remain Campaign. ‘leaving will cause us years of uncertainty and a recession’but I wasn’t even aware that we had left the last recession so I’m debating whether leaving will make much of a difference to the mess we’re already in. We just need a good government that are confident with what they are doing and don’t insist on screwing the people over.

As you can probably guess, I am most likely to vote out, although I’m still undecided. I would like to vote Conservative out and replace it with a perhaps more competent government that can not only get us back on track, but make us better than ever. According to this leaflet I’m 1 of just 30% of the student body that is most likely to vote Leave but I think I’ll be happy with my choice.

The 7th Wonder of Yeovil

Many of you may have been wondering why I had only mentioned 6 out of the 7 wonders of Yeovil, and I promise you it was not because I had forgotten how to count to seven. It was in fact because I wanted to write about the 7th in a completely different post, of course! Yes, this 7th wonder has made many locals awestruck, and I too find it quite astonishing.

Roundabouts.

Ta da! Yes, the 7th wonder is the brand new and exciting ‘traffic flow solutions’ that have been introduced to roundabouts about Yeovil! The police station roundabout has cost a bomb and they’re now throwing money on the next roundabout. £14M on the next roundabout according to the Western Gazette. Wonders in Yeovil don’t come any more expensive than this one. The Bowling Alley could learn a thing or two.

See, I haven’t been home that long, but I have been around to pick up bits and bobs and for the amount of money, I expected a massive change to the landscape. The most that I have noticed is a few extra unnecessary traffic lights and some bike paths. The question to be raised though is: will they get used? Do Yeovilians  have the capability and fitness to cycle? Can they afford bikes on top of their fuel guzzling cars? Eh, or maybe that’s just me.

What do you think? I’m no motorist, not for a while anyway, but has it made a difference? I hear people complain, still, but is it because it’s really not made a difference or because we’re British and love a bloody good moan? Cheers for reading! X

How’d you write about Yeovil?

First things first: take advantage. When you title your work, be sure to use a shocking title to highlight the absence of education and sensibility. Refer to words such as ‘chav’, drugs’, ‘immigrants’, ‘over populated’, ‘criminal’, ‘beat up’, ‘charity shops’, ‘teen pregnancy’, ‘traffic chaos’, ‘Yarlington’ and ‘ugly’. When referring to ‘The People’, you must distinguish clearly between those raised and born in Yeovil, although, those in other areas of Somerset may be included, except Chard and Bridgwater (those areas don’t count) and foreigners, most commonly Polish folk.

Do not feature an intellectual on the cover unless they are popular and have in some way, tried to better the living conditions in Yeovil. By no means should it be a councillor or a local politician; book burnings would be frequent. Instead, you must go with either the working class hero that is known for their thick, homely accent or a hugely famous and widely loved celebrity that has visited Yeovil, such as any actor or actress of ‘TOWIE’.

In your text, you need to talk about Yeovil as if it were the only place in Somerset, because it is. Nowhere else is worth mentioning, and Bath and Bristol aren’t really in Somerset so there’s no need to worry about them.  Taunton rivals Yeovil so it’s best not to mention them unless you’re ready for a civil war. Just close your eyes and hope they go away. Yeovil is developing. It’s all consuming. Soon all of the surrounding villages will become one with Yeovil. It is Somerset’s mother. You must mention its deep history: its glove factories, its place in the War. Take car not to mention the deteriorated state of the ‘stink’ factory though. Nobody needs to know that it’s a drugs den. It’s a big town with a population of more than 45,000 and it’s rapidly increasing. We’re close to being a city. You must include the football team but leave out the unnecessary description of the stadium and bad parking in residential areas every Sunday due to these battles that Yeovil can never win. Paint the people as ambitious football fans.  Your reader won’t care about the particulars, as long as they know that there are lots of big, strong athletic people, that should be enough to keep them reading. You must begin your research with the Facebook pages: ‘Yeovil ‘Real’ News’, ‘Yeovil…A Trip back to the Past’, ‘Buy and Sell Yeovil’… the places you will find true, factual information about Yeovil and its inhabitants. It’s a booming economic success and The Quedam is its shopping capital. Yeovil is far enough away from the levels to avoid any threat of flood although all weathers that hit are considered unsavoury. These are all good things to include in your writing.

Construction Gold
An actual image of Yeovil’s expansion. It’s happening. Be afraid. 

Make sure you inform the reader about the night life and the warrior lifestyle that the youths of Yeovil endure every weekend. Neo is the academy for youth, where they will dance until they are pouring with sweat, upon poles above the ordinary class of people. It is where they will drink liquids you could only dream of, from a simpler time. It is where they attract their mates, after an extensive period of pluming themselves at home and walking in shoes that make walking on glass look comfortable. Neo is the end trial of a number of tests, including Wetherspoons and Karma. If your characters make it through all of the trials, a trip to Charcoal Grill will be the ultimate reward, other kebab shops will do though. You must reflect on how delicious their kebabs are to those poor souls that have endured such a night of tests and trials. Yes, Yeovil’s youths are the strongest of Britain’s young but they are modest and therefore, will not acknowledge their strength. Those that do are not worth mentioning unless you are looking to create a villain for your story. There are plenty of villains worth bringing up in your story set in Yeovil.

20140906_000031.jpg
A group of young Yeovil warriors embarking on their final trial, Neo, after barely making it out of Wetherspoons alive on a Saturday night.

Taboo subjects would be showing appreciation of the road works which are wrecking havok through the town, the lack of independent businesses operating in the town centre and UCY (University Centre of Yeovil). UCY is a forsaken ground that is frowned upon by any respectable, ambitious young person. To talk of higher education is not generally done. Assume that everyone has dropped out of education as soon as they were legal to do so, although the juiciest stories come from those that dropped out long before legalities.

Include a love story, perhaps that develops between the single young parents of a baby or between two drugged up lovers that declare their hatred of each other loudly in the bandstand because they have been banned from The Quedam. You may also include a battle between parents and teachers over pupil illnesses, holidays, general scruffiness and rudeness. Your readers will love to hear about the treachery committed by teachers to their pupils at one of Yeovil’s local youth prisons.

You must talk sarcastically and discuss how much you hate Yeovil and can’t wait to get away from it because that is that your readers will expect from you. If you oppose this tradition, your writing will fail. Yeovil is not a place where the sun is always shining. Despite the lack of floods, it is not a pleasant place. It would take a true visionary to change the opinion of masses. You should probably explain early on whether you are right wing or left wing but do not state ideas that are too radical. ‘slightly’ will be the key word to use here. Otherwise you may attract a readership that you do not want and many of your potential readership will not understand a word you say. Regardless of political intention, you must talk about Yeovil’s failures and how the new generations are ruining it. You must talk about how nobody wants to live here but no one ever really gets out; unless they move away up north, because the people are southern and southerners have issues adjusting to any lifestyle that includes removing oneself from bed.

Gender Politics

I’ve been thinking of writing for this for some time but have often dropped out of the mood to write it. Today I am ignoring the urge to not write anything and I think this is an important topic to write about. It started off as a question that I dared not to physically ask. I have a friend that, when we met, identified as being a ‘non-binary trans’. As an English student, I know what these terms mean. Had I have not gone to university, I probably would have had no idea. LGBT+ issues don’t generally tend to pop up in Yeovil. Everything is pretty conservative and traditional. Homosexuality is a thing, obviously. I have lots of gay/lesbian/bi friends but there isn’t much of a known trans community in Yeovil and LGBT+ issues aren’t all that talked about. it’s not like there are rainbow rallies at any point through the year, through the Quedam and down Middle Street. So, have I have not gone to uni, extended my vocabulary and met a great range of new people, I would have been completely ignorant of what my friend was talking about and would have absent mindedly agree with that they had said about their identity without having the guts to ask what it meant due to embarrassment.

However, I’m not completely clued in. I don’t pretend, well actually, I do a little, to know everything about the LGBT+ community and their issues. Not wanting to sound silly, or offend anyone, is what it all boils down to. So I was talking to my friend when I referred to them as a man. My friend corrected me by using the term ‘person’ and I felt a little silly and apologised. I then began to think about what I’ve called ‘the pronoun game’ and I know I’m not the only one to talk about it, but I am going to talk about it now. He is male. She is female. It is non-gendered. They is plural. Where does the person that does not feel they fit into a particular gender ideal fit in terms of the English language? It feels for too impersonal and inhuman. Using they is a breach of grammar rules. Do we completely invent new pronouns? I have seen the use of ‘Xhe’ and words surrounding this but I would have no idea how to pronounce this in a sentence. I saw a Tumblr debate on this. There were lots of comments that said that they respected the choices of Trans people on changing their gender identity and using the correct term that suits them. However, lots of people refused to change their language for those that could not identify with any given gender norm.

I wasn’t sure where I fit in this ‘debate’. I thought about it on the bus home a few weeks ago and I felt that gender wasn’t necessarily a yes or no question any more, and it may we be a case that it can’t be in the future. Of course, that’s hugely speculative of me. Instead of exclusive categories, I instead looked at gender as a spectrum, like colour. Masculine on one end, feminine on the other and people dotted about all over the place because I’ve never met a man that is ‘all masculine’ nor have I ever met a woman that is ‘all feminine’. Of course, that is masculine is a social construct anyway and these things do change from place to place and over time. I’m also aware of people not wanting to be on any part of the spectrum; genderless, but not sexless. So when it comes to pronouns, are we addressing gender, or are we addressing sex? Because gender and sex are different. Sex is male or female, and is decided upon which reproductive organs we are born with and which hormones we have rushing around our bodies. Gender is masculine or feminine- boy or girl, which is decided upon by our culture, social rules and regulations. One is outward and one is inward. One can effect the other.

This isn’t really meant to be educational in any sense, but reflective. Is our language far behind our time? Have our culture and politics out run our language? Do we need updating? And how would all this happen? Studying English Language A Level at Yeovil College gave me a lot of insight into how the language evolves or remains the same. When our society as a whole is evolved to a point, then our language too shall change. When everyone is knowledgeable about gender issues then the language shall be modified to suit the needs of the people. Right now, we’re just not at that point yet. ‘Xhe’ isn’t going to catch on for quite a while with the majority, if that’s the term non-binary, genderless, androgynous, unisex ect. people wish to be identified as. Maybe in the future gender will cease to exist? Can it? Who knows.

Thanks for reading guys, see you soon! x

Angry Feminist Bottles Man Review

As I was aimlessly wandering about on Facebook, as I do, I came across this video. I’ve been pretty taken by the videos that I’ve come across on Facebook recently and I felt particularly appalled by what had happened. so, I click on this video, unsure of what I was about to behold. I see a vulgar man slut-shaming a woman for wearing a crop top, while waiting for someone, her boyfriend. I think: this woman doesn’t deserve this shit. Crop tops ARE normal. I like crop tops. My sisters like crop tops. My friends like crop tops. And she was perfectly in her to right to wear what she wanted to. She was indecently exposed. She wasn’t asking for the attention she got, or any kind of attention. As the choas ascends, the other men she asks around her for support, deny her such. They appear to back up the vulgar man which leads the man to further degrade her until the two ladies throw food at him. FINALLY, some kind of back up for this woman. I was glad that they intervened, even if it was something as little as throwing a chip at the man. Did he listen to what they had to say? NOPE. ‘He’s a man. He deserves respect.’ No. Just no. No one automatically get respect. It is earned. If you act like a dick, you’re going to be treated like one. As this man so justly was by these two women. The fact that some men really do think this way is troubling for me. What he deserves was.. well… what we shall find out.

Then, finally, some male interjection. Does the man listen to what the defending men have to say? Of course not. He doesn’t see anything wrong with his actions. Everyone else is wrong or are apart of this ‘deal’. He starts getting offensive towards the men. Finally a woman who has been waiting patiently for this man to pipe down finally gets mad and hit him over the head with a glass bottle. She has a go at him then hit him, seeking approval afterwards. When the women seem to half agree, she spits and walks away. I find this bit hard to swallow. Yes, the man needed to be taught a lesson. Yes, I understand that it may have gotten violent one way or another… but was the use of the bottle necessary and was the spitting? He, so far, hadn’t gotten physical with anyone. He was verbally abusive and anyone of them could have given it right back. He didn’t look like a saint or an actor. Someone could have easily made him look like a mug. The fact she looked around to seek approval made me feel like she wasn’t sure that what she did was right. Therefore, looking guilty of GBH or ABH, I’m not sure of the difference. I also personally hate spitting; I find that really vile and unneccesary after she’d bottled him over the head and he’s most likely to be unconscious, but I’ll assume that was done due to the adrenaline rushing through her body.

The last bit of this video I wanted to address was the title. I’ve left this till last because I wanted the previous babble to come back to this conclusion. ‘Angry feminist bottles man’. The separate uses of ‘feminist’ and ‘man’, lead us to believe it was a liberal woman who believes in equality against a conservative man that does not. the use of ‘angry feminist’ makes it seem like she was a loaded gun, completely crazy and without reason. However, this is inaccurate. As I have stated, both women and men stood up for this woman and her freedom of dress. All of these people then, I would regard as feminist, regardless of how radical they acted, they stood up for this helpless person. A more accurate title would then be: ‘Feminism Stand Up To Inequality In Big Showdown’ or something to this effect. Feminism is often thought to be gendered. We forget the men that teach us, grow with us and love us. They are the ones that help the movement to grow. This is something Malala Yousafzai mentioned in her interview with Emma Watson. Men aren’t just part of the problem, they are also a large part of the solution and I think should take some credit in this video.

Thanks for reading, let me know your thoughts in the comments! x

SIDE NOTE: I have just found out that this was in fact a social experiment. I have no idea if the actors are ok but yeah, this wasn’t real. However, responses are real and this is how I felt it should have been acted upon.

Emma, Malala, Education and Equality

Into Film Festival opening Q&A

So, I just watched Emma Watson interview Malala and I felt completely overwhelmed by her brilliance and the brilliance of Emma. Had I have been in the same place as the two, I probably would have fainted or died of whatever it is these two women give off, my guess is intelligence, ideas and inspiration. Seeing two women, or completely different backgrounds coming together for a common cause- global equality and education for all is… I’m awestruck. I grew up with many ideas of my own but I felt because I was a child, I was not entitled to an opinion. I was not able to materialise my ideas. Watching Malala’s interview and how she talks about how age is not a restriction, really did get me thinking. I’d wished this had happened a lot earlier on. Seeing the affects drugs, alcohol and abuse can have on families, I have always wanted to do something about it but I never knew what. It is an issue that is a lot harder to track than education because hypocrisy is still live and well. Despite social media and our dependency on technology, we, like Victorians, still live a dual life. How do you change that?

I felt that because of how old I was, where I lived, where I went to school, who my friends and family were, because of how much money I didn’t have, I wouldn’t be able to make any kind of difference on anyone’s life. I had the dream of building a centre in my ever-growing home town for those ‘broken problem families’. I wanted there to be a safe haven for the scared, where children could have the space they needed and mothers, and fathers, wouldn’t have to keep looking over their shoulder. I knew kids that had to travel from which ever haven they were sent to to school. They’d forget all their equipment, half the time their uniform and they were disorientated. How do you reach out to these people without it seeming like you’re trying to stick your nose in? It’s very hard for a kid to learn anything when all that is going through their minds is what happened the night before with their parents, or other relatives.

And I agree with Malala, that education is so important. Most of what we learn, is what we need to achieve something in life and to contribute to society in some shape or form. I paid a lot of attention in school and had an awful lot of respect for most of my teachers, and even the ones I did not like, I still showed respect for. I didn’t think that I’d need a lot of what I’d learnt in school but recently, I’ve wished that I kept these things up. Hat making is not as simple as it appears to be, when you have forgotten mathematical equations and how to work with textiles. Maths, Science and Languages really are the core to everything but all of the other subjects are far from being useless. It’s true, there are a lot more things we could have learnt about in terms of our society and ‘how to adult’ but these things are buildings blocks for a career and hobbies.

It frustrates me so much when I hear about my younger sisters taking their education for granted and choosing to half-ass it. Getting sent out of class, or worse isn’t cool. You’re lowering yourself by missing something that could be so important to you and your future. There was a group of kids I went to school with who took their education as a joke. Sure, not everyone is going to need the full spectrum of what we learn but it’s better to have been giving a slice of the cake than to not be offered at all, which is Malala’s point. If kids in this country were denied a spot in school there would be an outcry and I bet you a lot more kids would want to go to school. I get the dis-appeal of the daily grind but it is necessary. After you’ve got the knowledge, it’s time to go out and get the experience and that’s all up to you. Education is there so you can just pick your future like an apple from a tree. Without this knowledge, you’ll be picking poisonous berries thinking that you’ve got a handful of blackberries.

My point here is to allow yourself to be inspired and fill yourself with as much as you can. When you allow this to happen, you can make things happen. I feel honoured to be able to have the opportunity to create a Pagan community down in Falmouth, for, hopefully, many to reap the benefits of. It is a breath of fresh air being able to meet like minded people that believe in similar things I do, because faith is not something I’ve ever been able to converse about. I’d also taken an interest in religious studies but I had always felt like an outsider to the conversation. Now I’m beginning to get stuck in and it really does feel lovely to be apart of such a welcoming community where no one is there to judge you. I’ve got a lot of ideas for this community and I hope with them to make some kind of change and to make an impact.

Thanks everyone. I really recommend you watching the interview and see how you come out the other side. Please remember, that each and everyone of you is capable of making change. x

An After Note On Britishness

I was quite surprised to see how well yesterday’s article had been received. I did not believe that I would have such a good day yesterday and wen I saw a just how many people came to read about Britishness, I was astonished. I was equally relieved to find that many people shared my view of Britishness as a concept and as a collection of characteristics a group of people coming from or living on this island may hold. I was also glad to hear that many people also share my crazy notion of freedom of expression and religion. The humour that I had infused in the article was generally taken pretty well. I don’t often play with humour, often finding that things are much funnier when I say them out loud. I would like to therefore thank every one of you that had come over, and hopefully, found pleasure in the reading.

I’m writing this after note for those that perhaps didn’t understand my point, those who didn’t get the humour and were perhaps offended by my piece. This after note is, perhaps a revised statement of the post that I had written about in yesterday’s article. I do not apologise for sharing my opinion, and I do not apologise for having such an opinion. Do I apologise for insulting those that had insulted me? Only a little. I apologise for sinking down a level, while at the same time feeling proud that I was able to pull it off (in most regards) to a pretty high level of wit. It would have taken a lot of foul language and perhaps even threats, to have properly sunken down to the level of those that I had written about. A comment made about the article had quite struck a cord with me, and that was one of the reasons for me writing this after word- because I am better informed than most on that page. That’s not me being arrogant, that’s just me not admitting that a religion and the people that follow it do not scare me. Violence and terrorism scare me, this is true. I can admit that, but I am able to distinguish between terrorists and generally quiet people that just want to survive like the rest of us. I’m able to keep a clear judgement and I have trust that our government and our armed forces will not let tyrants into our country. There are people that aren’t necessarily as educated, that still share my belief. It’s a common pagan belief- To Live and Let Live. If a person beliefs do not strictly affect you. If someone is not hurting you or your loved one, then there is no reason to have hate. There is no reason to get in the way of someone’s happiness because it is not in the same form as yours. There are also people who are as educated as I am and have opposite views. This is ok too. I’m not going to slander your name because you don’t agree with what I’m saying. You’re not a bad person for being afraid, for being set in your ways, for being a cynic. You’re a bad person if you wish harm upon innocent people and you go out of your way to attack people. There is an unspoken code about expressing your opinion. If you’re going to sound like a douchebag, don’t say it. Keep it to yourself and spare peoples feelings. You aren’t the only human being on this planet.

Gosh this keyboard is awful to write on.

I’m currently at university and, in my class about Genre and Form, had spoken about the post I had written about yesterday. My lecturer was intrigued and I was glad that she happened to also share my ideas opinions. She talked about the past reflecting the future and about the importance on picking up these temporal markers. These temporal markers of the past influencing the future is exactly what I had spoken about yesterday when talking about ‘British Pride’ Facebook pages in the context of Adolf Hitler and World War Two. If these things are not addressed. If people don’t write about it; if people don’t comment on these posts, then we are damning ourselves all over again. We might as well build the concentration camps ourselves. We, level headed people, might as well import guns and put them in the hands of our loved ones. That’s the kind of future that this kind of behaviour has me imagining. One where, our great country, is torn apart by bombs and war, just like Syria is. Only, the Muslisms and immigrants wouldn’t have started it. We would have, out of fear and prejudice. These two things are what blind people from truth. How did the German Worker’s Party get away with their evolution and the mass genocide of millions of Jews? The same way groups such as ‘Britain First’ are able to exist. They exploit your fear; they misinform you and they make you angry. They make you so angry that you want to generalise a whole population of people that you have never met before. They make you want to hurt people and burn down sacred places. Before you know it, that’s what will happen.

I’m keeping this short (if that is what this is) and I will sign off here. Have a lovely day and i will see you later x

How to Be British

I’ve spent the morning looking around a Facebook page called ‘I Am Proud To Be British’. I liked this page because I am proud to be British and feeling a sense of patriotism isn’t necessarily a bad thing. It’s ok to be proud of where you come from and your culture. What isn’t ok is to look down on other cultures and other countries because you’ve got your head so far up the anus of tabloid writer and other British hate preachers that you can not see common sense and feel the need to talk abuse to those that share a differing opinion. When you hear of ‘hate preacher’ most people will often assume it’s a Muslim going round Britain with flyers and posters, ranting about the god awful British and god awful Britain, and about how much they hate being here. What people fail to realise is that, by moaning about immigrants and Muslims, for example, by making racial slurs and committing acts of violence against innocent people, regardless of race or religion, you are too, a hate preacher. Congratulations.

I find some of the comments to be atrocious and oftentimes, I can’t help but reply back with some comment far too witty for half of the hate inciting commenters to understand. Luckily, I’m not the only one that tries to talk sense into the dimwits. However, they wouldn’t be dimwits if you could easily talk sense into them. They would still be dimwits, even if those that they hate with such passion saved their lives or the lives of a loved one. You cannot save those with the brain size of an ostrich. It doesn’t stop me from trying sometimes though. We just have to thank our lucky stars that these people aren’t in charge of our country. We don’t need people who think that burning down mosques and killing people because they don’t believe in your religion, or religion at all, running our country. They are little better than terrorists. Hate fuels hate. Most of the terrorists claim to be Muslims. The ‘British’ then generalise ALL Muslims as terrorists and run silly hate campaigns against innocent Muslims and wonder why ‘all’ Muslims hate the British. It’s a ridiculous cycle and it needs to be broken.

If World War Two had happened a hundred or so year later, it would have been started by Hitler creating a Facebook page called ‘I Am Proud To Be GERMAN’, where it’s followers moan about immigrants and Jews. The resemblance is uncanny and terrorist acts often begin with a minority, before it manages to brainwash a majority to commit atrocities. I find the idea of religious persecution to be ridiculous, especially in the 21st century, where we have human rights that entitle us to follow whichever religion I choose, or not and it promises us that we don’t have to worry about prejudice and persecution. If I wanted to be a satanist and started going around doing rituals to Lucifer in public, I’m sure people would give me a few looks and they’d be on their way, unless I was dancing naked whilst preforming animal sacrifices, then I would surely be arrested for breaking laws. If this was something that happened in my own home, or some kind of Satanist sanctuary (minus the animal cruelty), then again, no one would batter an eyelid and no one would start generalising other British people for a minority of anarchists. But a Mosque! A building where people PRAY TO ALLAH. Bloody hell. Better write about it on our racist page to let the other good British  people know about it and the devastating effects it’ll have on our culture.

This is where I invite you, the reader, to decide on what makes you British. Our country was formed on immigration. We started off as tribespeople invaded by Romans. Then by Vikings. Then, by the Normans. Then we were ruled by Germans. We’ve had immigration from Afro-Caribbean people after we forced them into slavery. Then after Slavery, we still had immigration coming in from all over the ‘British’ Empire. What also needs to be remembered is that alot of MIGRATION also happened. America, Australia, the Caribbean, South Africa, India ect. WE were the invaders. WE were the plague that the people native to their countries fought to have their cultures back. People talk about being ‘pure English’ but how far back does that go before you find out your grandparents came from some country in Europe? Or from even further afield? I’ve been tracing my family heritage and there’s all kinds of emigration that went on. If it didn’t happen, who knows? Maybe most of us wouldn’t be here to moan about what it means to be British.

That’s just a short history lesson on so-called Britishness. I’ve learnt various things about our national identity from my pretty good education. Which is why education is so important. Most of the people that comment on these pages, unfortunately, probably still have the reading and spelling age of a ten year old, where idea’s such as ‘don’t let any at all in [the refugees] and send our own soldiers and clear out caleigh‘ come from. This was an actual comment made on a post arguing about how many of the refugees coming into the UK were Syrian. Several comments were made by people with that clearly finished school, pretty well educated and kept themselves well informed. The first comment corrected his spelling mistake ‘caleigh’. Another point was made about how he, himself, was a British immigrant into a Middle Eastern country. The last good point was made about how Calais is French and our soldiers would have to have permission from the French government before actually entering to ‘clear it out’. The amount of times I face palmed while reading was uncountable.

So what is Britishness really? From what I have learned, it’s a certain sense of character, style and manner. Britain will only lose this when the British move away from this and give it up, not because the Muslims have taken over ‘our’ country. We will not lose our Britishness because we will all turn Muslim, we will lose our Britishness when we lose our cool and become uneducated, ill-mannered thugs. Muslims will not rob you of your national identity, you will hand it over in an act of hate and violence. Being British, to most people, is about being liberal and free. It’s about driving on the Left. It’s about the accents. It’s going down to the pub for a pint and, depending on where and who you are, a bag of pork scratchings. It’s about being educated, having a say in society. It’s about working hard and loving harder. Having morals. not everyone that is British will agree and that’s ok, because being British is also something that can’t be generalised. just like being Muslim. it will mean something slightly different to each person and that’s ok. That doesn’t make you any less. In fact, you can even be both! Can I get some ‘oooohs’ and ‘ahhhhs’ in here please? That’s right. Being British, doesn’t actually involve being of a certain religion. If that was the case then the only people that would have that right, would be us Pagans and only the ones that follow deities that were originally worshipped before the Romans brought Christianity over to Britain. What a crazy concept- religious freedom in Britain. Crazy.

So, whoever you are, feel free to show a bit of patriotism. Learn the language (properly, past the curriculum of a ten year old), in fact how about learning all of the languages? Real patriotism to Britain. Learn the National Anthem. Go and support a sports team. Visit the royal family. Give to charity and help the homeless. Help the National Trust. Get to know your neighbours. Cook great food. Educate yourselves on the world and it’s cultures. Britain has been known as ‘multi-cultural’ ever since we decided to take on an empire. Be kind and welcoming to foreign people regardless of whether they’re tourists, refugees, immigrants. Show the world what it REALLY means to be British.

Thanks for reading guys, see you soon x

Solar Farms? Wind Turbines? Coming to a town near you!

This article has been hanging the air ever since last Saturday when George was driving me back to Falmouth, maybe even before that, but it was made certain that day that I needed to write this article. So, as I was leaving Yeovil, I saw a sign for the Crewkerne Solar Park. I felt a little excited all of a sudden to see a solar farm so close to home. Renewable energy is the way to go, in my eyes. I know that the equipment is expensive. In college, I was the ‘green officer’ for our Student Union. Helping our planet is important. I mean, what are the future generations going to do when we’ve used up all of the resources? What will happen to every other species after we’ve used up THEIR resources. What will happen to the Earth when WE are the only species left on it? I’m sure it won’t quite come to that but, these questions do need to be asked. At what point does our planet become one of our main concerns? Whether or not we are the cause of climate change and whether or not  it is natural or unnatural in our planets lifetime for this to occur, doesn’t really matter. We need to do our best, if it is our fault; and if it isn’t, we have to prepare for the inevitable.

Anyway, I’m rambling a bit. I promise I’m not some apocalyptic, doomsday type. When I think about it… Why is renewable energy so expensive? What kind of person is making a crap load of money out of ‘saving our planet’? If that’s even possible and the right phrase for it. i find it ridiculous. These things, in my eyes, should be free. The world should be equipped with various ways to harness natural, renewable energy. This is where I believe that the energy ‘industry’ should be completely globalised. Those countries closer to the equator, for example, should in theory be able to harness a shed load more sunlight than our small island can. And tidal power should also be taken more seriously, particularly for an island surrounded by oceans. This is where I believe my generation and the generations that follow, will need to get creative and hopefully, not be as greedy as those before us (but that’s really just wishful thinking).

I see renewable also being so valuable to the ‘under developed’ third world countries. I see many people moaning about how we aren’t helping the poor in ‘our’ own country. What about helping the poor in our own WORLD. There shouldn’t be poverty. But unfortunately as we all know, the rich must stay rich. If renewables were taken more seriously on a global scale, then maybe some kind of revolution would occur. Maybe things would be different. Industries could grow. Populations could flourish. And with any luck, if the climate change is our problem, then perhaps we could slow down the effects so that future generations could enjoy the land that we have walked on.

It makes me feel happy when I catch a glimpse of a solar panel on someone’s roof, or a turbine in a field because it reminds me that there is hope. It reminds me people do try. The trouble is that not everyone shares this opinion. On the Crewkerne Solar park, for example, there were comments about it ‘being an eye sore’, comments about the inconvenience they would cause. personally, for me, the biggest eye sore is the number of empty fields that surround our towns. What’s worse is when I see trees getting chopped down in order to make MORE empty fields. As for inconvenience, i think the biggest inconvenience would be if we could no longer use our cars because we had used up all of our fuel, or worse- if our tiny little island ceased to exist because of the increasing sea levels. These are petty, first world problems that don’t need to be brought up. I’m sure there is even more moaning when there are suggestions of building turbines. i find these to be beautiful. They look particularly striking against a natural background. I don’t know about the noise but it surely couldn’t be worse than living near any busy transport link or next to a house fully of rowdy teenagers? In fact, I think I’d rather pick the turbines to be honest. So, interms of what the article, where I found out more about the solar park is concerned, I for once, agree with the government. There are more pressing matter that need to be dealt with.

When you compare all of the minor ‘problems’ to the bigger picture, it all seem so silly. If you’re worried about eye sores, get into gardening. Plant pretty flowers for the bees, plant trees. Grow your own food.  Create gardens, forests. Bring nature back. Instead of just moaning about a problem, which is purely your own problem, do something about it. Correct your way of thinking.

Thanks for reading guys, see you soon. x

BTW!

News article on Crewkerne’s Solar Park: http://www.westerngazette.co.uk/Solar-farm-Crewkerne-Merriott-unanimously/story-22951880-detail/story.html [accessed: 20/09/15]

Picture found at: http://www.aecom.com/deployedfiles/Internet/Geographies/Europe/Capabilities/Energy/UK%20Solar%20Farms_main.jpg [Accessed: 26/09/15]

The Evil Lady

Anger fills this space within

My cranium explodes at

The unfairness of your hand;

And you sit there on behalf of my darling

Mother you pretend to know.

You speak vicious tongues,

Spitting out poison you dress in silk-

But I see through the silk.

I see the hatred you work to hide.

Bitterness has formed in the place of fear:

I feel it carving up my bones,

I feel it scratching up my skin,

I feel the familiar dread when approaching ice hearts.

When did you become so cold?

Cold of love, of excitement, of peace?

When did you cease to dream?

Dreaming of castles, and princes, or adventure?

You really aren’t quite what you seem.

Where is your soul?