|Mark in the dark|
Further continuing with this first day's review of Mark Easton's 'Englishness' coverage and still looking in more detail at the three transcripts below, I'll home next on Mark Easton's chat with the sofa surfers at BBC Breakfast.
(Look out for Louise's Katty-Kay impersonation - "Wow!". It's uncanny!)
This wasn't as significantly biased as his two reports.
Though Mark mangled his words at the start into incomprehensibility ("We asked different questions, and one of the questions was how strongly people felt English as opposed to pride") he soon regained his eloquence without saying anything revelatory about why people might say they feel English and British.
And then it was onto the contrast between how ethnic minorities feel about Englishness as compared to how ancestral English people feel about it.
When Louise Minchin asked if any of this mattered Mark, naturally, said "I think it does actually". (Obviously, as he wouldn't have kept on beseeching his BBC bosses for over two years to fork out a shed-load of money on YouGov mass surveys, academic advisors and far-from-cheap-looking, cross-country canal journeys).
Echoing the familiar BBC line, he also argued for it on the grounds of "social cohesion".
That is, to my mind, exactly what he's about here - promoting a very BBC vision of "social cohesion" by arguing for the divisiveness of the concept of Englishness.
That said, I did enjoy Charlie's intervention joking about Mark Easton wearing a suit. It threw Mark Easton for a few seconds. His jokey reply, "It gives me authority!", was funny and true.
As the philosophers and logicians constantly tell us though, beware the Argument from Authority.
Or in this case...beware the BBC reporter in an authoritative suit!
Easton's idea of social cohesion is a policed society which will unite around a set of PC values taught to them in schools and university and reinforced by state-controlled (even where not owned) media, with the BBC to the fore of course. This will require of course severe legal and social penalties for anyone who declines to observe the law-based social cohesion doctrine.ReplyDelete
Contrast with Englishness, which is an entirely voluntary cultural identity open to anyone living here.