The Far Right May Claim It and the Left May Hate It But It’s Still Our Flag

by Neil Bamforth

England’s success in the football World Cup – a semi-final place being beyond our wildest dreams – has resulted in a plethora of English flags. My own has been bravely flying since the World Cup began. This sudden surge of pride in being English has, however, caused some left-wing commentators to spout the most ridiculous drivel.

England’s national flag – a red St George cross on a white background – was once somewhat hijacked by far-right groups. The fact that we claimed it back from them a long time ago seems lost on many who still wrongly associate it with a racist flag.

Nationalism is not an evil unless or until it takes an extreme form such as the Nazis of the 1930’s and 40’s.

In politics, the extreme left is just as bad as the extreme right.

Extremes are bad, nationalism is not necessarily bad.

Pride in one’s country and the flag is a good thing.

Flying the English flag to support your national football team is a good thing. Flying the English flag on St Georges Day is a good thing.

Showing you are proud to be English is a good thing.

Yet left-wing commentators hate it. They claim it excludes people who are not English. Well, obviously it does. And the problem is?

Oddly, left-wing people generally support Scottish and Welsh nationalism yet hate English nationalism. Consistency is clearly lost on them.

In Britain, our governments have always found English nationalism problematic. Why is anyone’s guess?

I am, and will always be, an English nationalist.

I don’t say ‘Great Britain’ if asked where I’m from, I say ‘England’.

I am proud to be British but prouder still to be English.

Occasionally local councils with sizeable immigrant populations have been known to ask people flying the St George flag to remove it.

I am delighted to say people usually decline and leave it proudly flying.

We are all aware that the far right once tried to hijack our flag. We’ve got it back.

If our left had their way they would be handing it back to the far right – and that just isn’t going to happen.

The English flag is ours. It is a part of every Englishman and woman.

The far right may claim it. The left may hate it. Football hooligans may use it.

It matters not. It belongs to us. To our country. To England. Always has, always will.

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33 Responses to The Far Right May Claim It and the Left May Hate It But It’s Still Our Flag

  1. jess Reply

    July 8, 2018 at 11:52 am

    When fascism comes, to America specifically, it will be wrapped in the flag carrying a cross is a well used phrase by no one really knows who. If flags are such a sacred thing, why do people insist on wearing panties in the mode of flags and towels, hats, bikinis etc. The flag does not make the country, it is the people in the country that do that imo.

    • Neil Bamforth Reply

      July 8, 2018 at 12:19 pm

      Correct. I wholeheartedly agree. However, there’s nowt wrong with being proud of the flag of your country….just don’t wear it on your knickers ๐Ÿ˜€

  2. Glenn R. Geist Reply

    July 8, 2018 at 12:12 pm

    Usually attributed to Sinclair Lewis, but he never said those exact words. Lots of people have expressed the fear that fascism will come here under the guise of anti-Fascism, or “Americanism” or some form of patriotism. That flag has waved over horrible things, but we insist on making it sacred sometimes just to cover those things up.

    • Neil Bamforth Reply

      July 8, 2018 at 12:22 pm

      Quite true but it isn’t the flags fault it’s been misused.

      The English flag has been too. Doesn’t stop it being ours and something to be proud of though.

      The flag isn’t guilty. Some of the people are.

      • Michael John Scott Reply

        July 8, 2018 at 12:59 pm

        Each of the fifty states has its own flag, but it’s the American flag people salute, and it’s the American flag that has flown over many a battlefield. So, it should be the Union Jack that represents all of your nation, not the English flag. That’s like the California flag being selected to represent the country, when, in fact, it just represents the state. While I’ve no issues with England flying their flag, should they not also be flying the Union Jack? What am I missing here? Now, after saying all that, I recently went into the license bureau to get my current state’s driver’s license, and when they asked my place of birth I said England. The lady behind the counter corrected me and said no, that would be the United Kingdom. I said ‘it’s England,’ again so I get the whole pride thing.

        • Neil Bamforth Reply

          July 8, 2018 at 3:58 pm

          Wrong! State flags are just that. England isn’t a state it’s a country…just like the USA.

          Great Britain is England, Scotland and Wales combined and the UK is an amalgamation of those plus Northern Ireland.

          England is a country in it’s own right, as is Scotland and Wales.

          Northern Ireland is, perhaps, more problematic but comparing England and it’s flag to a US state is wrong old bean.

          Also it’s The Union Flag. It’s only The Union Jack on board a ship.

          Here endeth the lesson ๐Ÿ˜œ

          • Michael John Scott Reply

            July 8, 2018 at 4:42 pm

            Yes, and no old bean.

            While many call England a country, prompting all which that may typically imply in terms of government, power, and status, it may be more helpful to think of it as a state. While this may not be an entirely accurate comparison, it does gives you a sense for Englandโ€™s status within the United Kingdom.

            England, along with Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland, all make up the United Kingdom. These distinct regions bear some loose similarities to the United States, whereby the fifty states all have their own laws and government, but ultimately are all under the authority of the United States of America and the US president.

            In this same way, while many people consider England, Scotland, Northern Ireland, and Wales unique countries in their own right, they are all still governed under the same kingdom. You get that part Neil?

            With this, they all have their own political power and governing responsibilities. England is unique again though, in that it does not devolve any of its own powers, and is instead solely legislated by the government of the United Kingdom. Likewise, when it comes to the world stage and international politics, it is the sovereign nation of the UK that is recognized, not the four constituent countries.

            And this is why I insisted to the license lady I was born in fucking England! So there ๐Ÿ™‚

            • Neil Bamforth Reply

              July 9, 2018 at 2:11 am

              Absolutely spot on. The government is for the UK.
              A bit of an odd set up really but it kind of works….up to now.
              Acceptable nationalism is catered for by the Scottish parliament and Welsh Assembly. The Northern Ireland Assembly is a bit of a problem at the mo.

              We’ve been demanding an English parliament for many a year…understandably really.

              I suppose we have to be careful though. A complete break up of the union would, at best, be very risky indeed.

              So yes, Great Britain is generally acknowledged as ‘the country’ and has the Union Flag but England, Scotland and Wales are also individual countries in their own right with their own flags.

              Actually I’ve never before realised quite how complicated it is!!!

              Well chuffed you said ‘England’ ๐Ÿ˜€

          • Michael John Scott Reply

            July 8, 2018 at 5:38 pm

            I like to do my research! It is often stated that the Union Flag should only be described as the Union Jack when flown in the bows of a warship, but this is a relatively recent idea. From early in its life the Admiralty itself frequently referred to the flag as the Union Jack, whatever its use, and in 1902 an Admiralty Circular announced that Their Lordships had decided that either name could be used officially. Such use was given Parliamentary approval in 1908 when it was stated that โ€œthe Union Jack should be regarded as the National flagโ€.

            https://www.flaginstitute.org/wp/british-flags/the-union-jack-or-the-union-flag/

            https://www.express.co.uk/comment/expresscomment/436835/It-s-official-We-can-call-our-flag-the-Union-Jack

            https://www.royal.uk/union-jack

            https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Union_Jack

            My fellow Englanders should know their flag histories ๐Ÿ™‚

            • Neil Bamforth Reply

              July 9, 2018 at 2:15 am

              Nice one! I knew that….just figured I was getting too complicated to mention it.

              Yep. It’s relatively recent. Still true though. Flag on land n Jack at sea.

              Mind you…doesn’t really matter much in truth does it?

              You clever sod ๐Ÿ˜œ

  3. Ole Phat Stu Reply

    July 8, 2018 at 3:36 pm

    @MJS,
    firstly, you don’t have 50 states. You only have 46.
    The other 4 are commonwealths.

    The Union flag is only called the Union Jack when it is flown from the jackstaff of one of Her Majesty’s ships. So, given that most English people don’t have such a jackstaff, they can’t fly the Union Jack.

    But it still pisses me off that a large number of Brits don’t know how to fly their flag the right way up!

    • Neil Bamforth Reply

      July 8, 2018 at 3:59 pm

      Nice one old bean ๐Ÿ‘๐Ÿ˜€

    • Michael John Scott Reply

      July 8, 2018 at 4:37 pm

      What? I’m very sorry, but you are incorrect. The United States of America is a federal republic consisting of 50 states, a federal district (Washington, D.C., the capital city of the United States), five major territories, and various minor islands. Now I thank you for the lesson about the Union Jack/Flag, but please don’t tell me about my country. Thanks ๐Ÿ™‚

      • Neil Bamforth Reply

        July 8, 2018 at 5:01 pm

        No idea myself…news to me n all that…mind you Stu is rarely wrong…known him years…still…I dunno…

      • Neil Bamforth Reply

        July 8, 2018 at 5:05 pm

        Yeah. 4 state’s are ‘commonwealth’. Far as I can tell it’s just a name…in all other aspects – laws n so forth – they behave as a state.

    • Michael John Scott Reply

      July 8, 2018 at 5:42 pm

      Wrong about the flag as well Stu. See above response to Neil.

      • Neil Bamforth Reply

        July 9, 2018 at 2:16 am

        He’s getting cocky now ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚

  4. Timmy Mahoney Reply

    July 8, 2018 at 5:11 pm

    Whatโ€™s up with you Brits? Thereโ€™s 50 fucking STATES in the US!! Do your fucking research. Because some call themselves commonwealths, like Virginia, doesnโ€™t mean shit. They are states and historic names donโ€™t change that. 46 states!!! Fuck me.

    • Neil Bamforth Reply

      July 9, 2018 at 2:18 am

      Shout at Stu not me! I didn’t say it! ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚

  5. Caroline Taylor Reply

    July 8, 2018 at 5:22 pm

    Whoa! Itโ€™s getting hot over here. I love it!

    • Neil Bamforth Reply

      July 9, 2018 at 3:09 am

      Ditto ๐Ÿ˜€

  6. Veronica77 Reply

    July 8, 2018 at 7:18 pm

    I’m downright red-faced that two of my countrymen, Ole Phat, and Neil, should know so little about the history of England and the Union Jack. Says a lot about them it does and nowt good.

    • Neil Bamforth Reply

      July 9, 2018 at 3:01 am

      Historically from the early 20th Century the Jack is at sea and the Flag on land.

      As the article is regarding English nationalism I’m uncertain what point you’re trying to make – apart from calling me thick ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚

      History of England? I doubt our editor would appreciate an article as long as War and Peace!!!

  7. Bobbie Peel Reply

    July 8, 2018 at 9:34 pm

    Once again Mr. Bamforthโ€™s ignorance shining brightly in the dark night.

    โ€œNationalism not necassarily badโ€. Youโ€™re confusing patriotism with moronic Little England groups.

    You accuse the left of hating flag of St George just like republicans say democrats hate America. Pathetic.

    England is a country? No Englishman has ever carried an English passport. Ever. Youโ€™re British like a Californian is an American.

    • Neil Bamforth Reply

      July 9, 2018 at 3:07 am

      California is a state. England is a country. England is a country that is part of The United Kingdom of Great Britain & Northern Ireland.

      A British passport is simpler than having 4 different ones. Simples.

      I get your point but you’re confusing states and countries.

      Patriotism and nationalism can very much overlap. The overlap goes when nationalism becomes an extreme.

      ….and thank you for dragging em back on topic!

  8. Bobbie Peel Reply

    July 9, 2018 at 7:49 am

    Countries have governments. Countries are sovereign states with infrastructure and political leaders. England has no such thing. It used to be but not since 1707 when the Act Of Union dissolved English sovereignty and merged itself and Wales with Scotland to create a British State. Scotland and Wales have Assemblies with First Ministers, England doesnโ€™t. A number of Scots and Welsh would like to be independent of England (who wouldnโ€™t) that would take an Act of Parliament. If that happened, then โ€œBritishโ€ would become archaic. The moaning, groaning English would get their country back and Wales and Scotland would thrive.

    • Neil Bamforth Reply

      July 9, 2018 at 11:23 am

      Scotland would be in serious trouble if it gained independence – albeit I sympathize and, indeed, empathize with the Scots desire for independence.

      It isn’t the English govt they hate…there isn’t one….it’s the British govt & many English are with them there.

      England, like Scotland and Wales, has always been a country.

      If you’d claim otherwise in any bar in Scotland, Wales or England you’re a braver man than me!!

  9. Shirley62 Reply

    July 9, 2018 at 8:51 am

    Read this Norman:

    “Countries have governments. Countries are sovereign states with infrastructure and political leaders. England has no such thing.”

    You are thick! Bloody Nationalists. Who issued your passport you silly bugger, and don’t give us that: “A British passport is simpler than having 4 different ones. Simples.” The only accurate part of your statement is the last word and it describes you.

    • Neil Bamforth Reply

      July 9, 2018 at 11:25 am

      ๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚๐Ÿ˜‚…marvellous love.

      Now go and take your meds eh? ๐Ÿ˜˜

  10. Jack Mac Reply

    July 9, 2018 at 11:51 am

    Scotland will have its independence, by fair means not foul. We will not be in serious trouble, we will be glad to be rid of you impoverished thinkers. We will be happy to be a small country somewhere in Northern Europe. Wales will follow suit and maybe even Ireland will see the light and become an even more influential nation as one people.

    • Neil Bamforth Reply

      July 9, 2018 at 12:16 pm

      I’m a supporter of Scottish independence. As a Lancastrian I wish Lancashire and Yorkshire could be independent of the Westminster bubble too.

      I just worry how Scotland would survive? The oil won’t last….there’d be riots if Westminster subsidised Scotland after independence….

      I hope you achieve it and I hope you thrive on it….I just haven’t figured out how you can?

  11. Lilly L Reply

    July 9, 2018 at 12:14 pm

    Someone says something you dislike and you tell them to go take their meds. What sort of dialogue is that. You might come back and say โ€œitโ€™s called humorโ€ but itโ€™s not.

    • Neil Bamforth Reply

      July 9, 2018 at 12:19 pm

      They call me ‘simple’ I say ‘take your meds’…..and? Neither are serious or offensive insults.

      So. What’s your problem love?

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