Tag Archive | television

The English Language

I went in to England expecting to learn a  dialect of English. Instead, when it came to the areas near small shops and takeaway restaurants, it ended up being more akin to learning the signals given by primates at the zoo. I learned what a high piercing language-less wail meant in comparison to the lower grunting. I began to learn what the different grunts and series of grunt meant – some were sexual, some referred to drugs, and some were just a reaction to new people entering the environment (the latter is higher pitched and more urgent sounding).

Education, Class Status, and England

According to statistics, the vast majority of those living around the poverty line will not attend university. Some populated areas will see as few as one (sometimes not even that) poor child move on to attending university within a given year. This is despite the requirement that they all attend school until they are sixteen to eighteen years old, which one would think would naturally lead to university at least for some.

They simply do not attempt to reach to a higher level and assume that where they are born is where they will remain. This becomes an issue when the majority of them are being born into the ever expanding housing projects that litter much of the English landscape. They cherish and are proud of where they are from, even if it is the ghetto. This is how the proud and loud welfare queen crack addict with a love of canned rap music comes to be, and why she is not in a minority. She revels in being a drug addicted scrounger because that is where she comes from. It is pride.



The Prized Welfare State

The natives of England consider welfare payments to be a prized national gem and mistakenly think that everyone else is out to take this treasure from them. They are absolutely convinced that every foreigner, even those from first world countries, have all traveled great distances just to steal their cherished welfare and role around in wondrous poverty and dependence on government along with the British.

The dissimilarity is built in to the language. In America we consider welfare a failure because so many people are on it, and in England they consider it a success because so many people are on it. The British don’t really understand that difference in language – they just understand that their successful welfare and booming teen pregnancy rates are a treasure bestowed upon them for eating and breathing so wonderfully – and that it is indeed a success in their terminology.


Civilization Televised, Violence Scripted

The presence of CCTV tends to keep the ill-behaved ones in line most of the time. After all, the English do know how to behave when being watched. Do not go into the suburbs or residential areas. More than once I have seen drivers in those areas randomly throw glass bottles out the windows at women and children that they thought not to be of the same class. Or maybe they are all in rival gangs and no one has told me – seriously, the place is reminiscent of a bad prison movie and most of the English I have met would be incredibly proud to be in such a film.

Cultural Assimilation via Global Emulation

I wondered what had happened to the people of my ancestry and for a while I think I fell into a commiserating depression. This was not what I had expected from the land of my roots. Where had the culture gone? All I saw was poverty and people emulating what they saw on American television.
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