Jump to content

England branded least patriotic nation in Europe as citizens are too scared to fly the flag


Recommended Posts

England branded least patriotic nation in Europe as citizens are too scared to fly the flag



By Steve Doughty

Last updated at 5:10 PM on 19th April 2010




The English are the least patriotic people in Europe, a St George's Day poll found today.


Their fear of being smeared as racist is greater than their enthusiasm for expressing their love of their country, it found.


Only one in ten would happily fly the cross of St George to celebrate their national saint's day.



'Scared': English people said they fear being branded racist if they fly the St George flag


Double that number said they thought they would be instructed by authorities to remove the St George cross if they flew it from their house.


And almost half said that England had lost its identity in the face of European interference and political correctness.


The findings were published in advance of St George's Day, which, as two thirds of those polled did not know, falls on this Friday, 23 April.


They showed that on average, English people rate their patriotism at slightly below six on a scale out of ten, far behind the Scots, Welsh and Irish, and trailing in the wake of the Dutch, the most patriotic people on the continent.


The magazine This England polled nearly 6,000 people across nine European countries to assess their state of patriotism.


Its editor Stephen Garnett said: 'We are incredibly disappointed that English people are afraid of displaying the St George's Cross on our patron saint's day.


'We want to reclaim the flag from extremists by asking as many people as possible, no matter what background they come from, to fly it.'



Patriotic: The English should have pride in St George's Day celebrations as the Irish do with St Patrick's Day, according to Mr Garnett


He added: 'People who love living in England shouldn't feel afraid of showing their pride.

'The more we display the St George's flag, the more we can drown out the voices of the extreme minority and reclaim the flag as a sign of national pride, not racism.


'It was quite shocking to see some of the results particularly the amount of people that don't fly the flag because of fear of being judged.'

Low levels of patriotism appear to be the result of years of association between English nationalism and the St George flag with far-right political agitation and the sometimes thuggish and drunken behaviour of England football fans.


MOST PATRIOTIC COUNTRIES IN EUROPE (level of patriotism marked out of 10)


Netherlands 7.18


Scotland 7.1


Wales 7.06


Italy 7.01


Ireland 6.72


Spain 6.57


France 6.44


Germany 5.81


England 5.80



Despite calls from public figures ranging from Archbishop of York Dr John Sentamu to Gordon Brown for more celebrations of the English national day, there has been clear disapproval from many public authorities.


In 2008 St George's Day parades were banned by local authorities in Bradford and Sandwell in the West Midlands on the grounds they could cause trouble or were 'unhealthy' and 'tribal'.


Last year Mr Brown's instruction that public buildings in England should fly the flag on 23 April were undermined by the production of a European map drawn up in Brussels that wiped England off altogether and replaced the country with a series of EU regions.


The new survey showed that six per cent of English people are scared to show the flag and around 18 per cent are worried that if they do they will be instructed by officialdom to take it down.


Only a third are aware that 23 April is St George's Day and four out of 10 have no idea why he is England's patron saint.


One in 10 of the English are happy to fly the flag, compared with one in three Dutch people willing to fly their own tricolor.


More than one in four English people said they feared being branded racist, but four out of 10 said they would happily express their national pride behind closed doors.


Four out of 10 said they felt England had completely lost its national identity.


The same number said the only time they felt a real sense of patriotism was during big sporting events or competitions, with 53 per cent claiming the World Cup was the main spark, followed by the Olympics.


However, three out of ten said they felt waves of patriotism in the wake of terrorist atrocities in our towns and cities.


While English people put their patriotism at 5.8 out of 10, Scots ranked their patriotism at 7.1, the Welsh at 7.06 and the Irish at 6.72.


The Dutch were the most patriotic European country at 7.18, while the French scored 6.44 and the Germans ranked their love of country just ahead of the English at 5.81.


Read more: http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/article-1267230/England-branded-patriotic-nation-Europe-citizens-scared-fly-flag.html#ixzz0lZWs7wBZ

Link to comment
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now

  • Create New...