Of course it’s not all the English, not even a majority of them. In fact it’s just a large minority of people who wield too much power due to this country’s ancient voting system. We’ve never had real democracy in this country, the Conservatives have just made the realisation more stark than ever before due to their extremist agenda.
Unless it comes out that the Conservatives rigged the election, there we have it, the powerful minority voted for more misery, hardship and homelessness on the most vulnerable people and to flush nearly everyone’s future down the drain. While I’m sure many of them will just be fine for now, some of the others are in for a cruel hard shock. To be honest, I don’t have much sympathy for them. If they ever need help, I would help them because it is the right thing to do, but whatever plight they’ll find themselves in, is their own fault. Despite our burning hatred of them, we cannot improve our society if we treat our enemies badly in their time of need. If we want to bring in a universal standard of respect and decency, it goes for everyone.
I’ve known for a long time that the divided British class culture is structured on punching downwards. The result is not necessarily surprising. Us, non-privileged people have been treated like a joke for years. There were/are TV programmes designed to mock us (Little Britain, Shameless, Benefits Street etc). The Thing. Newspapers constantly decrying how much of a waste of space we are. (Although they won’t flat-out state it, the neo-eugenists don’t believe we deserve life. You can pry the subtle implications from them but they’ll never out right state it, for now anyway.) The assumption at the Job Centres (from the politicians) is to assume that all unemployed people cannot write or do basic Maths. The job market in turn, is a reflection of disdain within society. It’s so full of useless badly paid crap (like sales jobs selling iffy financial services to people) at the bottom. Nepotism is rife because it’s the only way to get something half decent and the few quality jobs are already earmarked for those who go to schools like Eton.
British culture, especially in England, is currently heavily weighted on how much “better” you are compared to the other person. A person’s worth is tied solely up in their job, in their ability to generate profit, no other trait or role matters. When we have deep inequality and no ladder to climb, the discrimination becomes very brutalistic and entrenched. It’s a nasty pride with an unhealthy obsession with dissecting and controlling the unworthy. They may live unfulfilling lives but as long as someone has it worse, so long as someone else is the target, a symbol for their frustrations then it’s okay. This is what separates us, those of us who are progressive are concerned with creating a better future for all, we want to seek out solutions to problems and implement improvements. Those who are regressive just want a punchbag, to obey their masters without question and to sweep all the problems under a rug. England is a deeply regressive country.
I’ve always been treated like dirt because my family is poor, I’ve had nasty spiteful comments directed at me from “nice morally upstanding middle class people”, they give me dirty looks as if I just punched their granny and I constantly have people treating me like I’m stupid and incapable of even the most basic tasks. Recently, I even had a wealthy woman assault me on the street because I happened to look a bit scruffy that day. (It was freezing and I wanted to wear warm practical clothing.)
I’m concerned also- and have been for years with the amount of political illiteracy in England. There’s way too many people who just don’t know anything about politics. The amount of utter bullshit I’ve heard coming from the mouths of people is just staggering. One regret about having a Politics degree is that everyone assumes they know better than you because of what they have read in the likes of the Sun and the Daily Mail. When I mention my degree, I find everyone tries to “prove” something to me but all they do is end up looking like a dumb smug git. Dear average person of England, I do know more about Politics, IR, Economics, (recent political) History and Political Philosophy than you do. Please stop embarrassing yourselves.
Examples of the horse-shit I’ve been exposed to:
“Oil won’t run out because it refills itself”
“You’re silly, there’s not going to be any crises over clean drinkable water, look our planet is full of water. The sea isn’t going anywhere.”
(Before workfare was implemented) “Stop being ridiculous and hysterical, of course the government isn’t going to do anything like that. You’re just paranoid. Shut up.”
“It’s all the immigrants fault. They took all the money.” You could also put “benefit cheats” aka anyone who claims benefits.
*Rants about Labour being Stalinist communists who will march Poor Little Tories to the gulag* (Because in their 13 years of power they clearly didn’t get around to it.)
Then there’s the endless amounts of horse-shit soundbites from the papers that people parrot as they have the ability to memorize things but have no critical facilities to actually understand what they are saying. Anyone can repeat a big word, knowing what that big word means is another story.
Not to mention the recent high amount of ‘Poor Little Tories and their Sad Sob Stories’. Somehow every Tory supporter has to back up their support with some comment about how they too have “suffered” under the cuts. Each Sob Story goes “But I’ve Suffered Too!!!!!!111!!!! It’s for the greater good, the Tories have saved the economy by making themselves richer at cost of the rest of us. But that’s okay, I’m happy to sacrifice my wellbeing because the economy innit.” They are devoid of any argument and evidence, so therefore they have to use dirty tactics instead. See, the right-wing have a long history of appropriating concepts and twisting their meaning (See the US with Liberal, Socialist etc) and using them against their victims. Tory supporters, by claiming they’ve “suffered” is just an attempt to shut up the voices of those who have truly suffered. They are saying, “I’ve suffered and I’m okay, so you’re just being hysterical.” It’s perverse and frankly disgusting. Simply put, if you’ve actually “suffered” you would not have voted for the Conservatives unless one of your hobbies is hitting yourself with a great big stick every night.
England is a mess, the agenda is controlled by dodgy politicians and the media distorts reality by spewing lies with absolute freedom without any responsibility. Too many people appear to be happy to “suffer” as long as others suffer more. I’m not sure how or if England/the UK will change for the better. It is my suspicion that everything needs to get worse before it gets better. Even then, a sizable amount of people could choose to go full fascist. It’s all destined to crash one day, just a question of when not if. Still, many of us continue to struggle for the future we should have.