THE BLOG
16/03/2015 13:11 GMT | Updated 16/05/2015 06:59 BST

The English; Do We Have an Identity?

Flying the flag is often seen as an honour; a sign of pride, respect and identity. The flag of your country is meant to represent who you are and what you stand for.

But what if it doesn't? What if you don't identify with the flag of the place where you were born and bred? What if it doesn't actually mean anything to anyone anymore? What if it is used by the wrong people for the wrong reasons and eventually becomes offensive?

17 March - St Patrick's Day; a day when the streets of England are painted green. People search their family trees looking for a tenuous connection to a long forgotten Irish heritage. A great grandfather's, friend's dog - born in Ireland and providing the licence to enjoy a guilt free Guinness.

Even those who have no luck, or Irish blood of any kind join in, because they want to celebrate the Irish, embrace their history and enjoy the craic.

On the 23 April, St George's Day, the very same streets will be empty. There will be no parties in Birmingham or Manchester, there will be no Dubliners furiously tracing their family tree for an excuse to drink a Carling. There will barely be a rain soaked flag tied to a lamppost.

Why is that?

If I am being honest, sometimes I struggle to feel an English identity because I'm not sure if one exists.

You see, as a country, England is segregated. We are less a country, more an island of regions, with very little being done to prevent it - instead the barriers are getting higher.

How can we expect people to be proud of their country, move past redundant stereotypes and understand the true essence of what it means to be English when it costs more to go to London for a weekend than it does to go to Spain for a week?

How can we have any gratitude for what we have if we are making it almost impossible for the ordinary folk to see it?

We can't.

Instead, the segregation taunts and incites us to create a rivalry between our own people and those who live around us.

We are fed poison by The Sun and The Daily Mail whose aim it is to delve into the nation's insecurities and provoke anger and resentment aimed at the wrong people for the wrong reasons.

MPs are stealing money, bankers are crippling the country, pop stars are fiddling their taxes yet we're told to blame the people who don't look like 'us', or the vulnerable people who are reliant on benefits.

How can we possibly be proud of a country we are being brought up to hate?

People are paid to be controversial and our outrage keeps them in a job. We are but pawns in their game, manipulated and turned against one another - they provide the distractions and we take the bait.

The internet is one of the world's greatest ever inventions, one of England's greatest inventions, but it is a breeding ground for unchallenged, uneducated lies, smears and hatred that is deceiving far too many people.

Not everything that is on the internet is true. Believe me. The internet is full of shit. Shit and tits.

Yet, it terrifies me to see how many good, honest, sensible people are falling foul to the evil, vicious propaganda which serves only as a way of spreading hate.

We are being turned against one another by spiteful programmes such as Benefits Street and Benefit Britain. Fools; blinded by the delusions we are subject to every single day. Putty in the hands of the media. Falling hook, line and sinker for their agenda.

They print a headline, stand back and watch us implode.

Sex sells, but immigrants sell more - which ironically has probably been a Daily Mail headline at some point.

We are censoring ourselves for the sake of rumours. We are so British that we are scared to be English; a nation assuming offence.

We're yet to meet the colossal amount of demanding foreigners who are so utterly disgusted by England and its flag that they cannot even bear to see it - yet we believe they're real because someone said it on Facebook.

We can't blame people for something they haven't done. We can't look at them as guess that they are insulted. That is insulting in itself.

We are a multicultural nation. People always have and always will travel to our country, to live our lifestyle, to live with our people and to contribute to our society, regardless of their religion or origin. That is something we should be celebrating, not using it as a weapon to harbour our own insecurities.

The English flag is not offensive but it soon will be if we allow it to be used for the wrong reasons.

Being proud to be English doesn't mean asking God to save the Queen - besides you might not believe in the 'greater than thou - worship me' character anyway. You mightn't believe in God either.

Being proud to be English is being proud of who we are.

Not the politicians, not the media, not Katie fucking Hopkins, but the people. Our people.

The farmers, the café workers, the single mums, the nurses, the doctors, the football fans, the taxi drivers, the market stall holders. The white van drivers, the athletes, the bakers, the writers, the filmmakers, the teachers, the vets, the bricklayers, the Northerners, the Southerners, the Hindus, the Muslims, the Jews.

If that is what it means to be English, then that at least is something I can be proud of.