Sunday, 2 July 2017

Ethnic enclaves in Britain

Another  letter was published in Straits Times on 8th of June:

The original under-400-word letter reads:

===
My thesis supervisor asked, “Do you think multiculturalism is a good thing?” His tone of voice suggested that he did not approve, which is most unusual for a British academic.

My answer: Multiculturalism is great. Public services can be run on religious holidays as we take turns to go on leave.

What is there not to like?

However British children do not start the school day by pledging unity with fellow citizens ‘regardless of race, language or religion’.

Previously school assemblies were required to be ‘Christian’ in perspective, providing some semblance of cultural glue. These days, liberals, humanists, agnostics, atheists, etc have ensured that religion, and especially the Christian religion, is kept out of the classroom.

An elderly friend was furious on learning that her grandchildren were being taught – at school – that divorce is ‘normal’. (What, I wonder, would she think of same-sex relationships being taught.)

Previously most immigrants chose to integrate. We hear accounts of people changing their surnames (hiding their German/Jewish/Polish/etc roots), adopting Anglicized names (my son says I should call myself ‘Susan’) and adopting western dress, even to the point of cutting their hair and removing their turban, just so to find work.

Even Muslim immigrants adapted, becoming vegetarians as there was no halal food. They worked hard and learned the English language. They needed to feed their families.

Multiculturalism became more prevalent in the late 1990s. Two things happened.

‘White flight’ is the phenomenon of locals (of whatever colour) ‘fleeing’ to other areas to avoid being swamped by people of a ‘wrong’ ethnicity.

The vacuum was filled by new migrants, leading to monocultural ethnic and linguistic enclaves.

Women in particular did not learn to speak/read English and instead became dependent on husbands and so-called community leaders in matters of marriage and politics, including their right to vote (by post).

If children did not have a chance to interact with families outside of their own ethnic group in monocultural schools, how are they to learn ‘British ways’?

If university students are unable to use a knife and fork, how are they going to land (well-paid) jobs requiring fine-dining with clients?

Some insist on wearing Islamic robes to interviews, and then claim racism for their continuing unemployment.

Frustration, boredom, drug addiction, criminal behaviour, and then it’s only one small step to being radicalized by someone who promises an alternative to such purposelessness
.

===
Spot the difference. This is the published version:

===
It is not hard to see how someone could be radicalised.

In the past, immigrants to Britain chose to integrate.

We heard accounts of people changing their surnames to hide their German, Jewish or Polish roots, and adopting Anglicised names and western dress.

Some removed their turbans and cut their hair so as to find work. Muslim immigrants became vegetarian, as there was no halal food.

They learnt English and worked hard to feed their families.

When multiculturalism became more prevalent in the late 1990s, two things happened.

Residents in some areas moved en masse to other neighbourhoods to avoid being swamped by people of a "wrong" ethnicity.

This led to a vacuum, which was filled by new immigrants, resulting in monocultural ethnic and linguistic enclaves.

Women, in particular, did not learn to speak or read English, and instead became dependent on their husbands and community leaders in matters of marriage and politics, including their right to vote (by post).

Children did not have a chance to interact with families outside of their ethnic group because the schools were monocultural.

How, then, are they to learn "British ways"?

The isolation brought about by living in ethnic enclaves could provide fertile ground for radicalisation.

===


Saturday, 27 May 2017

Benefits of non-integration

Meanwhile in Australia, some psychiatrist noted that Muslims do not integrate well.

Questions have been asked why is it that previous migrants to the UK had integrated so well, whereas the more recent ones seem to have an issue.

I think welfare benefits have a lot to do with this.

I have heard many immigrants who arrived before the 1990s who, because they were not entitled to any benefits, had to work and indeed worked very hard.

They learned the language, took on any work, bought homes and integrated, because they were here to stay. Some changed their names. Most changed the way they dressed, just so to fit in.

Such changes were insignificant sacrifices in return for free education, free healthcare, and if they continued to contribute to National Insurance (NI), these migrants will have a comfortable retirement drawing a perpetual pension which today is just under £160 a week (£159.55  to be precise, or about SGD282).

All this changed some time ago -- I cannot be sure when -- which allows new migrants to draw the same benefits despite not having paid any NI. Yes. You get something for nothing.

Without the need to strive for a living, it was so easy to just sit back, get lazy and get very bored.

There is no incentive to integrate. The more a claimant is unable to function in the UK, the more resources are being thrown at them, such as interpretation services when they go to the hospital.

When the news first emerged, I guessed that the taxpayer must have been funding the lifestyle of this young man. How else was he able to fly here and fly there at will when he was unemployed?

I will not be surprised if his parents continue to draw benefits despite not living in this country. All you need is someone at your address to return documents to the necessary government departments and LIE that you are still resident in the country.

We cannot be sure if this is the case.

However it has emerged that this jihadist could have been funded by a student loan despite not being a student any more.

Why did his university not alert the student loan company?

Two hypotheses:

#1 British universities are renowned for hating to have to 'police' the immigration status of students. They are actually required by law to submit details about whether students registered for courses actually do attend classes in order to eliminate bogus students. They don't, because they are not the 'border police'.

#2 The university funding is dependent on numbers. If they report a dropout, the university loses the money. The administration might have delayed reporting this until the money is given to the university and they can take their time to return it. Meanwhile the student loan company (a separate entity) will assume that the loan is legitimate and hands out the money. Nobody cares whether the money will be returned as the rules are if they fail to pay within a certain period, the loan is written off. It might be that dropouts would have to repay much earlier. I cannot be sure. Again, it is not the university's problem.

All in, my tax is being used to fund these jihadists in Britain and there is nothing I can do about it.


Thursday, 25 May 2017

Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Manchester Terror

Another day, another city.

Another former cannabis user.

Another previously purposeless life, now snuffed out, but not before taking more than 20 others with him. Members of the perpetrator's family have been arrested.

But let justice roll down like waters, and righteousness like an ever-flowing stream. (Amos 5:24) 
My prayers for you, Manchester, a city of great significance in my life.

Tuesday, 11 April 2017

Who would braid my hair?

My latest letter published in Straits Times (11th April 2017). My original submission here, with the three most important paragraphs (in red) edited out:

I was not surprised at all by the headline 12-year-olds in Singapore spend 6½ hours daily on electronic devices. We have all seen families at restaurants, each engrossed in their own device.

Meanwhile a British newspaper reports that “desperate British parents are spending £70,000 a time” on daughters who had “become hopelessly hooked” on “sexting” (sending naked photographs of themselves using their mobile phones and the internet, see http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-4371936/Parents-pay-70k-send-teens-course-stop-sexting.html).

The trend that disturbs me most is that of a baby/toddler in a high chair with a tablet stuck in front of it.
The carers/parents get peace and quiet, but the children will not eat, or will only allow themselves to be fed if the feeder ensures that their line of vision (to the device) is not obstructed at any time.

How in the world can a real-life carer/parent compete with the all-singing, all-dancing graphics on that digital device?

It troubles me immensely that:
(1)  family time out at a restaurant does not encourage family – particularly husband and wife – to communicate face-to-face;
(2)  the joy of eating is not celebrated which could lead to an abnormal [requested change to "unhealthy"] relationship with food in the future (obesity/anorexia);
(3)  little children become addicted to flickering images on a tiny screen at a time when their brains should and could be encouraged to ‘wire-up’ in the areas of problem-solving, communication, self-control and relationship building.
I write as a parent who refused to let her child watch children’s TV for the first two years of his life.

In some parts of the world, hair is braided intricately by elders. This is a bonding activity. More importantly, as children relax and form a captive audience, sometimes for hours, elders impart the cultural values of that society.

I recall the hours my mum spent getting my hair ready at primary school, and the life’s values she shared during those times.

Now that this task is usually delegated to a home helper, eating out is an alternative to hair-braiding.

Is it wise to let such inanimate electronic devices rob our family of such precious times together?
===

The published version here:

I was not surprised at all to read that 12-year-olds in Singapore spend 6½ hours daily on electronic devices (Glued to screen for 6½ hours; April 2).

We have all seen families at restaurants, each member engrossed in his or her own device.

Meanwhile, a British newspaper reports that desperate British parents are spending £70,000 (S$121,600) a time on therapy for daughters who have "become hopelessly hooked on sending naked photographs of themselves using their mobile phones and the Internet".

What disturbs me most is how often I see a baby or toddler in a high chair gazing into a tablet.

How in the world can a real-life carer or parent compete with the all-singing, all-dancing graphics on that digital device?

It troubles me immensely that:

•Family time at a restaurant does not encourage the family - particularly husband and wife - to communicate face to face.

•The joy of eating is not celebrated, which could lead to an unhealthy relationship with food in the future, such as obesity or anorexia.

•Little children become addicted to flickering images on a tiny screen at a time when their brains should or could be encouraged to be "wired up" in the areas of communication, problem-solving, self-control and relationship building.

I write as a parent who refused to let her child watch children's TV for the first two years of his life.

Is it wise to let such inanimate electronic devices rob our families of such precious times together?

Sunday, 26 March 2017

London terror attack Day 5

There is no Day 4. It was good to have my son back -- safe -- from an overseas school trip.

Day 5: Mothering Sunday in Britain. This is usually the second week before Palm Sunday (third before Easter) where traditionally children return to their mothers' churches. It is now the official 'Mother's Day' in Britain.

One of the first thoughts that crossed my mind as I settled down in church was that there is one mother in Britain who will not be celebrating Mother's Day.

How could she after what her son had perpetrated on the innocents in London on Wednesday?

Is it her fault?

Of course it is, and of course it is not.

Mothers will always feel that it is their fault if their children do not turn out well. That is why we try our best.

It is not her fault because she probably did not have full control of her own life as a seventeen-year-old (ie herself a child) bringing a mixed-blood baby into being. We do not know exactly what her personal and family (if any) circumstances were at that time, and we must not cast stones.

What we can conclude is this: being a single mother is not easy. Being a single mother at seventeen is not something I would wish upon anyone's children.

What we do know, if this newspaper report is to be believed, is that he took welfare benefits from the taxpayer and then returned this act of kindness by killing innocents. I was angry (see previous posts) precisely because I felt complicit in this crime.

Law-abiding taxpayers are facing higher and higher tax bills to fund the activities of some extremists through the very generous welfare system and there is NOTHING we can do about it.

Every time a politician says we must change this system, they are faced with strong opposition from special-interest groups. Usually people from the welfare/disability/charity industry some of which CEOs are drawing incredibly obscene salaries. "Vested interests", "conflict of interests" come to mind.

Some argue that he is not a good Muslim; he may not even be a good terrorist. He was just a madman.

We must be careful we do not let the 'madman' justification stop us from looking at the whole picture.

I believe that we all have a God-shaped hole in our hearts. We yearn to fill it. Some will find God and rejoice. Others turn to sex, or drugs, and then crime to feed the drugs. When left with too much time to reflect in prisons, they then find a God through other devout Muslim inmates.

At some point the British public will have to choose: all these people going to prison for one crime or another, do we wish them to be radicalized by Islamist extremists in prison, or do we prefer that they turn to a God who commands his followers to 'love your neighbour as yourself'?

When we love ourselves because we know that God loves us, then only will we consider the consequences of our action (or inaction) on our neighbours.

For now, Christianity and Christians are often persecuted in this once-Christian country. While we ostensibly have freedom of speech, Christian preachers are convicted when they inform the public of what is being taught in the Christian Bible.

Are we reaping what we have sown? .

Friday, 24 March 2017

London terror attack Day 3

Day 3 level of anger: perhaps ever so slightly lower, and only because I now know I am not the only one who feels similarly enraged.

In my rapid-fire reaction here , I speculated that the perpetrator was a person with some kind of purposeless past. We now know that he had been a criminal and was imprisoned. It has also be said that he was radicalized in prison.

Yesterday I asked if this man had multiple identities. We later learned that he had a name, but he was born with a different English name. Just a few minutes ago, Scotland Yard issued a statement that in fact he was registered by another name and has a few other aliases.

Was he on benefits? We have not been told. When his name was first announced, we were told that he was an 'English teacher'.

No one has come out to say, "Oh! That was my work colleague," or "Oh! He taught my son/daughter English." Did he work? Who knows.

It has been reported that he has children, and these children and the mother will inevitably be in receipt of some taxpayers' money. If the mother claims to be a single parent with a child under five, she gets income support currently at £73.10 a week (tax-free) (Source: https://www.gov.uk/income-support/overview), on top of Child Benefit, Housing Benefit, etc. For each child under 16, she could get Child Tax Credit of "up to £2,780" (Source: https://www.gov.uk/child-tax-credit/overview).

Why was I so angry yesterday? I felt that my taxes have been supporting this person and his families/children. If he had knuckled down to some hard work, finding a purpose in life, he would not have ended up the way he did. Innocent people would not have died.

I was angry because I felt that I was complicit in his crime because of the way the benefits system is set up.