While emigration and immigration is inevitable, it must first of all be controlled, and secondly, immigrants to any country must respect local laws and culture, whilst being allowed to preserve their own cultural traditions.
No country can allow uncontrolled immigration or emigration. This is why visas are necessary in many countries for immigration or emigration (or even for holiday visits, etc.). It is also why the USA builds a fence on its Southern border with Mexico, why UK retains passport and immigration controls, and why the German Democratic Republic (East Germany) built the border installations surrounding the enclave of West Berlin and also between the GDR and the FRG (West Germany). How these borders are controlled, of course, is another matter, and for the record mining the borders and shooting people trying to cross illegaly is totally unacceptable.
Once immigrants are in a country, they should be required to learn the local language and respect the laws and cultural traditions of the country. This may happen in some countries with mass immigration, like the United States of America, where becoming an American citizen is something immigrants to that country are proud of. So you have Afro-Americans, Italian Americans, Greek Americans, Native Americans and many other varieties, all of whom, withÂ some exceptions,Â seem to be Americans first and foremost, respecting the Constitution and the cultural traditions of that country whilst preserving their own cultures inside their communities, and that is the key thing.
Where immigration gets out of line and creates real problems is when immigrants do not bother to learn the local language (and this applies to many British immigrants in countries like Spain), and just import their native culture into their new country of residence. When this affects the indigenous population of the country they have emigrated to, it becomes a real problem.
Taken to its extreme this is manifested in the attitude of some Islamic extremists who come to the UK and then demand it be turned into an Islamic state, with Sharia law, which includes stoning to death of women for adultery, and the death penalty for gays.
The wearing of the head-to-toe burkah is unacceptable in public places and should be banned. What is the use of CCTV if criminals and terrorists can hide their faces by wearing the burkah, with men pretending to be women? Women wearing the burkah could be concealing explosives especially in this age of suicide bombers. What Muslim women wear inside their own homes, community centers and Mosques, is of course, entirely up to them; in these places they may wear the burkah or whatever their community allows.
Similarly Britons in Muslim countries should not wear bikinis and skimpy bathing costumes on their beaches, should not drink alcohol in public in places where it is against the local laws or traditions, etc.
The importation of alien drug, gun, knife and gang culture into Britain from the Caribbean ethnic community is also completely unacceptable. While an argument can be made for the legalization of drugs; gun and knife gangs and the associated violence and murders cannot be tolerated. Ethnic communities which tolerate this type of unacceptable behavior must expect the UK police to come down heavily, and to stop and search members of that community, especially teenagers and young people, every time they go out.
Immigrants taking over whole areas and making the indigenous population a minority is also unacceptable. In my area there are public places where ethnic music blares out of loudspeakers and public address systems quite regularly, whilst if the indigenous population sought permission to do the same they would not be allowed to do so. This particular square where this happens is full of ethnic shops and two churches, and the local ethnic community completely take it over and the neighboring park. The local indigenous white population is in a minority. This can feel very intimidating when groups of young people hang around in groups. There have been several shootings and stabbings in the area, involving the ethnic minorities. Also a serious sexual assault and a mugging on my estate.
The overwhelming of the indigenous culture is evidenced by aÂ nearby mosque and community centerÂ frequented by the local Islamic community, a butchers (Hal-al) and many take-aways, all of them also Hal-al. For the local indigenous population who do not wish to buy Hal-al meat products they have to go to the local supermarkets, pubs or cafes.
My father was Greek-Cypriot, and his community also did not make much attempt to integrate into British society. I have an aunt and uncle, now returned to their native Cyprus, who lived here for years and speak virtually no English. I have cousins who only speak English very badly, having lived here most of their lives. My father, who came here before the Second World War, lived in England for decades and only spoke broken English with a heavy accent. This is hardly surprising since all these relatives living in BritainÂ speak only Greek amongst themselves, rarely mix with English people, read Greek language newspapers, go to Greek clubs, and now even watch Greek language TV stations available by satellite or cable.
I don’t care if you’re a Brit living abroad or a British born person with an ethnic background, or an immigrant to this country. You learn the local language, you respect the laws and traditions of the country you live in, and you do not try to impose your ethnicÂ culture and traditions on your adopted home country; you keep them within your own community whilst integrating as much as possible with the indigenous community.
Not to do these things will inevitably create a backlash against all immigration and ethnic minorities, and build up support for extremist political parties like the BNP, English National Party, etc..
Of course immigrants are welcome to this country, though numbers must be controlled. Once here, they and their descendants must learn to speak and read our language and obey our laws and traditions. This includesÂ our minimum wage and trade union rights. Too many East Europeans and others came over here working below the minimum wage, refusing to join trade unions and putting many of our own workers out of a job. We fought hard for decent wages and conditions, and foreigners and immigrants must not be allowed to undermine the things the trade unions have fought long and hard to obtain for the workers.
I’m all in favor of the European Union, and indeed for the single currency and a federal Europe. But this should be on a level playing field like the United States of America, where each State, although having its own legislature, comes under the U.S. Constitution, and where there is more or less a level playing field as regards prices, wages, etc. Of course those in cities will be paid more than those in rural areas because of the higher cost of living, but gross discrepancies such as exist between some parts of the European Union and others are unacceptable. One Union, one Constitution, one method and levelÂ of taxation and uniform labor and trade union laws with a uniform minimum wage throughout the Union – this is essential, and another reason I’m all for a federal United States of Europe with a strong, fully democratic federal Parliament elected by proportional representation.
As to immigrants from outside the EU, be they Americans, Australasians or from Africa or Asia, they must integrate into European and British society and respect our laws and cultural traditions, whilst being allowed to keep their own cultural traditions within their own communities.