Is it just me, or is anyone else slightly worried about the number of St George’s flags flying from road vehicles right now?
Well, no. I think it's fun. You don't?
I’ve been looking at the drivers of these flag-waving vehicles, and - OK, I admit this isn’t exactly scientific - half of them are in white vans, and the rest are white, male, tattooed, pot-bellied 35 to 55-years-olds: exactly the type I’ve been seeing on TV for the past month complaining about “our houses going to the asylum seekers”, or that “we’re losing control of our country”. I can’t tell if these drivers come from Barking and Dagenham, where the BNP gained 11 seats, but that borough is just a short drive from where I live, so who knows?
The suggestion is ridiculous, the stereotyping is racist and snobbish and the whole thing is yet another out-of-touch attempt to demonise England's flag by some bigoted, classist idiot sitting smugly up there in Guardian Towers.
Drew, formerly of CEP Cambs and part-time advisor to this blog, wrote to Mr Harker:
Dear Mr Harker,
In answer to your question, I think it is "just you". Pre-1990s, it was hard to buy a St George's flag here and the BNP (BRITISH National Party, not ENGLISH) were mainly waving the Union flag. Do you want that banned?
I do not know a single member of an ethnic minority group who flinches at the sight of England's national flag. There may be a few, certainly people like you encourage it, but the rest is just pure invention on your part.
Post-devolution, we find that there is a heightened awareness of England as a country in its own right. It has certainly got the worst deal from devolution thus far - the lowest public spending, non-democratic regional assemblies, non-representative MPs, etc.
Racism exists, and in large amounts, in Scotland and Wales - and they still wave their flags. Are all, or the vast majority of, flag wavers racists in your opinion? Or does this only apply to ""white van" working class English people?
I have a small St George's flag flying on my house, in protest at New Labour's biased devolution settlement. I am not a racist, but are you saying that if somebody read your article, decided that I was and threw a brick through my window, that action would be justified?
You are the one guilty of stirring up bad feeling.
Your article makes for very unpleasant reading. You make an excellent Guardian contributor, the finest purveyor of priggish, PC nonsense in the UK.
We must all protest at these repeated attempts to demonise our flag. Gruniad writers should stop their priggish and bigoted nonsense, take a look at the issues surrounding uneven devolution in the UK, and start living in the 21st century.
Like Drew, I fly the Cross of St George flag as a protest against this government and its cruel and totally undemocratic actions towards England and ALL its citizens.
The Guardian is apparently a paper which vehemently opposes non-democratic rule.Well, you fine upstanding, caring Guardian journalists, put up or shut up.
This blog is supportive of the aims of the Campaign for an English Parliament, but is in no way connected.