Carey on migration

Ex-Archbishop George Carey has used the Times to suggest, obliquely, that the BNP should be given a veto over British domestic policy.

He’s worried by the prospect of the UK population reaching 70 million by 2029. This ‘will put our nation’s resources under considerable strain, stretching almost to breaking point the enormous reserves of tolerance and generosity of the British people.’ Of course, the general trend in the UK population is one of growth. Is Carey worried about high birthrates in the country? No: of course, he’s worried about people coming to live in the UK from outside.

Not, of course, that Carey has a thing about migrants. In fact he goes out of his way to clear his throat: ‘we welcome the contribution of both economic migrants and asylum seekers to our lively cosmopolitan culture.’ However, he fears that the BNP will ‘exploit genuine concerns about both overpopulation and the ability of this nation to integrate new communities whose values are sometimes very different, even antithetical, to our own.’

Now Carey doesn’t think very much of the working class and is convinced that the poor labourer is so ‘alienated’ by mainstream politics that he has buried his tear-swollen face in the apron strings of British fascism. Carey doesn’t seem to know that in fact the BNP vote went down in the 2009 local/European elections. Sure, there are scum (and yes, they are scum) who will vote for Holocaust deniers and criminals. But not as many as you might think: in fact, a clear minority. It’s extraordinary that Carey seems to think that this minority should be appeased.

Praising the UK’s liberal democratic values embodied by the judiciary, the Houses of Parliament and the Church of England (surely some mistake?) Carey gives a warning:

Some groups of migrants, however, are ambivalent about or even hostile to such institutions. The proposed antiwar Islamist march in Wootton Bassett is a clear example of the difficulties extremists pose to British society.

Another thing Carey appears not to know is that Anjem Choudary, who leads the marginal Islamist group Islam4UK, is not a migrant. His privileged life in the London suburbs is half a world away from the experience of your average impoverished Nigerian or Iranian refugee. I suspect that part of the reason that Muslims flee Islamic countries is to get away from people like Anjem Choudary. And by the same token the Pakistani who runs from sharia law is hardly likely to want it taken up in his adopted land.

The real point for Carey, though, is not that we’re getting too many migrants: it’s that we aren’t getting enough Christians. ‘But what I am saying is that those who seek to live in this country recognise that they are coming to a country with a Christian heritage and an established Church.’ Although Carey can’t say so, a cosmopolitan Britain is his true fear. It’s the cosmopolitan and multicultural society that has weakened his pathetic, irrelevant and unheeded church.

Now let’s see that by some miracle we got immigration down to Carey’s preferred level of the 40,000 new migrants of the early 1990s. Do you imagine for a second that the far right would thank us, or stop its racist campaigns? No, I’m sorry, but the BNP is not a rational political party that responds to changing circumstances. It is a totalitarian cult. It would fight to have every last migrant sent away. And then it would go after the second generation. And the generation before that. What concerns would we have to address, after the far right and its voters have been pacified by a Britain cleansed of migrant influence? The ‘concern’ of Jewish control of the media, for instance. The ‘concern’ of the drain on the state of the sick, disabled and unemployed. The ‘concern’ of British ‘living space’.

My experiences living and working in cities with big migrant populations suggest to me that people tend to get along better than the Archbishop thinks. I wonder if recent events in court have made any impact on Carey’s conviction that appeasing British fascism is somehow an option.

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3 Responses to “Carey on migration”

  1. willow Says:

    Did you watch BNP wives (or perhaps it was called ‘women of the BNP’ come to think of it) the other day…I think it was on BBC3. Anyone who saw even two minutes of that would never be able to vote BNP.

    It was so bad that I genuinely couldnt watch it continuously and I had to keep flicking off it to breathe. It should still be on iPlayer, you couldnt even make up the awfulness of these women.

  2. maxdunbar Says:

    Yes! I saw it on Sky. Unbelievable.

  3. Julia Smith Says:

    Willow,

    they repeated it this week so thanks for the tip off!

    I still can’t decide which was my favourite bit: the woman who said “I’m not denying the Holocaust, just quibbling the numbers”; the footage of pasty, then sunburnt raw pseudo-Aryan skin at the Red, White and Blue Festival or the Himmler-in-waiting who muttered “fat slag” at the woman berating her in the street, despite being somewhat non-svelte herself. It was amazing.

    I do keep banging on about ridicule being the best weapon, instead of Carey’s insane pandering, but maybe if we could get this turned into a half hour soap to be shown just after Corrie, I reckon we could see off the BNP menace by May.

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