to think my neighbour might wise to remove his flag?

(88 Posts)
IamMrsElf Fri 03-May-13 14:43:33

I just think in the current climate that it might be ill advised to fly a Polish flag.

I'm not against national pride and patriotism. I don't particularly like seeing the St George's cross - unless it's St George's day.

I just think it might not be a good idea at the moment. Am I being a twat?

IamMrsElf Sat 04-May-13 08:15:41

I haven't looked at a map since school, I think it's described that way from the old Cold War days, the Eastern Block and all that.

MammaTJ Sat 04-May-13 08:27:04

I don't like flags, but if there is a reason for it then I can understand, but do feel they look tacky

Don't go telling the Queen!! Orf with your head. grin

Itchywoolyjumper Sat 04-May-13 09:07:53

I think flag flying has connotations in some countries that they might not have in other parts of the world and I have noticed the English are a bit reticent to have national flags out.
I've recently moved back to Scotland and the Saltire is everywhere in a way that I just didn't see with St George's flag in England and nobody seems to think anything of it.

ComposHat Sat 04-May-13 09:19:34

I live in Scotland and that was one of the first things I noticed when I moved up there. I think there are lingering connotations of the far right with the St George's cross, which the St Andrew's cross doesn't. Also as the dominant partner in the UK, the English don't feel the need to assert their nationality and difference in the same way as the Scots do.

Outside of football tournaments (not a problem in Scotland that one!), I tend to think that someone who makes a point of flying a St George's cross at their house is probably a racist or at best a little Englander type.

If I moved back to England I wouldn't feel comfortable doing it because of the connotations of racism and whatnot. (If anyone did it in Scotland, tried it, they are either brave or daft, as it is a racing cert they'll get their head kicked in.)

inabeautifulplace Sat 04-May-13 09:26:56

"My favourite comment of the past few weeks, a journalist was doing some sort of vox pop thing in the street and asked a bloke what he thought about migration from central Europe.

To which the said idiot responded:

'My granddad didn't fight the second world war for a bunch of Poles'

Erm...I think you'll find he did."

Said idiot is absolutely correct. In 1939, despite having a pact with Poland, Britain chose not to fight for a bunch of Poles. We might have declared war, but we didn't do any fighting for them. We still didn't do any fighting for them in 1945, leaving Russia to terrorise them for 50 years.

As I understand about 15% of the population was killed during WW2, a figure around 100 times higher than the losses suffered by Britain.

Said idiot would be correct in saying that a bunch of Poles fought (and died) in the second world war for his granddad.

Misspixietrix Sat 04-May-13 09:50:12

We didn't do any fighting for them? Didn't we declare war if the Nazis didn't withdraw their Troops? confused. I'm asking genuinely as History is sketchy but sure I remember reading that somewhere.

OP sadly I see your point, I'd be a bit weary for my neighbour too. sad

Misspixietrix Sat 04-May-13 09:53:27

Sorry Inabeautifulplace just re-read your post. Apologies flowers.

TheBigJessie Sat 04-May-13 10:04:09

An England flag on a pub means football, but when I see the England flag on anyone's belongings, my hackles rise, and I tread carefully.

It's a massive sad generalisation, but although you might see Wales' flag, Scotland's flag and England's flag phone covers right next to each other in a shop, the type of person who buys each of those is quite different. Not every person with an England summink is a horrible racist xenophobe, but enough are, that I need to consider it as a significant possibility.

ComposHat Sat 04-May-13 10:14:37

Not every person with an England summink is a horrible racist xenophobe, but enough are, that I need to consider it as a significant possibility

I agree, but it is swings and roundabouts, you'd be fine carrying a phone cover with a Scottish flag on it in England, but would be likely to get your head kicked in if you flaunted a cover with an English flag on it.

Scotland has its share of narrowminded blindly nationalistic ,eat heads too!

limitedperiodonly Sat 04-May-13 10:18:43

Xenophobes aren't exclusively English.

I wouldn't go in any pub that displays an Irish flag any time outside a St Patrick's Day promotion and there are parts of Wales and Scotland where as an English person I would not be welcomed with open arms.

limitedperiodonly Sat 04-May-13 10:19:39

ah, x-post

Itchywoolyjumper Sat 04-May-13 11:51:17

I think its quite sad that people can't express their pride in their nation, I always felt a bit sorry for the people in England who were looked down on for having their flag flying.
That said we have a real problem with sectarianism in this part of Scotland and flying the Union Jack and the Tricolour here are symbols of that so its not just an English problem.
It would be lovely if we could all just say "What a lovely flag, how nice it is that you are proud of whatever you are proud of".

IamMrsElf Sat 04-May-13 13:26:36

Up date: the flag is down now. I did not go and speak to him. Don't know why it's gone now.

It is incredible the different connotations of flying a flag and the amount of feeling it generates.

My mum and dad recently emigrated to the USA and boy oh boy do they love to fly a flag!!

Thanks everyone for the interesting debate.

History: when the Nazis marched into Poland we declared war on Germany, so I think we got into the war to fight for the Polish but also for freedom across Europe. If I'm wrong anyone please correct me.

Thanks to Mike who said I was a twat - that was my DB's response too ;)

inabeautifulplace Sat 04-May-13 14:13:44

"History: when the Nazis marched into Poland we declared war on Germany, so I think we got into the war to fight for the Polish but also for freedom across Europe. If I'm wrong anyone please correct me."

We declared war only on Germany (not Russia, who invaded Poland about a week later). We had a written pact with Poland to provide ground intervention within 2 weeks. We ignored this agreement, and sent some bombers to drop bloody LEAFLETS. Seriously, we left the Polish to fend for themselves in 1939. Then we failed to persuade the Americans to help in 1945, so Russia just swallowed it all up retreating across Europe.

None of these decisions were tactically wrong but it's incorrect to claim that we fought for Poland; we fought for ourselves and ignored Polands pleas for assistance. It is much more accurate to say that Poland fought for us, given the numbers who joined the Allied cause. Many of these people were subsequently killed, imprisoned or exiled by the Communists after WW2.

Sorry for the lecture! An earlier fact I gave was wrong; about 5.75 million Poles, or 16% of the population, were killed during WW2. This compares to British losses of 450000, or 1% of the population. That first fact is one of the most horrible things I've read in my lifetime ,especially so since 5.5 million were civilians.

Also, inabeautifulplace I'm sure you know it is entirely possible that Britain would have lost the war without the Polish. In two very important areas Polish contributions were massive in places Britain was very squeezed. One was intelligence. There is every chance the Poles made the salient difference. Also, in the air war, which Britain was extremely close to losing, Polish Bomber Command had brave, experienced pilots including my late Grandfather. The Polish did indeed fight and die for the Allies.

LaGuardia Sat 04-May-13 15:23:40

Nothing wrong with national pride, wherever you are. Yes, OP, you are.

interestonly Sat 04-May-13 15:25:05

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JollyPurpleGiant Sat 04-May-13 15:27:38

Why would the OP being Scottish explain anything interestonly?

interestonly Sat 04-May-13 15:33:57

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lottieandmia Sat 04-May-13 15:35:49

I heard 'UKIP voters' talking this morning on radio 4. They sounded like thick, nasty bigots. Most people I know are nothing like them and hopefully are still in the minority.

lottieandmia Sat 04-May-13 15:37:39

'My worst thought of the day: coalition government in 2015 between Conservatives and UKIP <goes off to weep>'

Mine too!! sad

JollyPurpleGiant Sat 04-May-13 15:44:14

In Scotland we don't vote for ukip. Or the bnp. The stories I've seen on the news about anti immigrant feeling sound totally alien to me as we just don't have the same fear or hatred of minority groups, at least in NE Scotland.

There is more negative feeling about English immigrants though. That is true.

interestonly Sat 04-May-13 15:55:26

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IamMrsElf Sat 04-May-13 16:24:59

interestonly not Scottish. I'm a mixed bag of Welsh and NI heritage (Grand Parents) but only ever lived in England. I'm your typical, overly worried about causing offense, PC, middle class English Elf.

IamMrsElf Sat 04-May-13 16:26:14

It is interesting that Scotland and Wales have a nationalist party but they are very different from the BNP...

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