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Love thy neighbour? The integration myth

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gay marriageIntegration cannot happen through one community alone, understanding and breaking misconceptions, fear and breaking barriers that exist within different cultures and it is integrating these that the government should be looking to achieve…writes YZ patel

“‘Integration means creating the conditions for everyone to play a full part in national and local life. Our country is stronger by far when each of us, whatever our background, has a chance to contribute. And our communities are stronger when different people not only treat each other with respect, but contribute together. Integration is achieved when neighbourhoods, families and individuals come together on issues which matter to them.”

Those words are not mine but of those from the top, from the department for communities and local government.
You may ask why the government are looking at integration but ignoring the more acute problem of ‘white flight’ which negates the inroads they are trying to make through integration, inclusion and social cohesion.
Integration cannot happen through one community alone, understanding and breaking misconceptions, fear and breaking barriers that exist within different cultures and it is integrating these that the government should be looking to achieve.
White fight is a issue the government has no control over and a issue no government report has ever been made on. Integration must involve all sectors of society and not only one and when you read all the reports on tackling extremism and promoting social inclusion it centers almost exclusively on the Muslim community only and nobody else. There are obvious reasons for this steer but then avoids other more pressing issues.
If the community is then homogenous then who are they integrating into? That is the question the 20 page government report fails to address and is one of the causes of distrust, lack of understanding and breakdown between people who are born in the same country and on the face of it have the same values.
The question is then why haven’t the government done some navel gazing on this more pernicious issue that is facing the United Kingdom as a whole? When people of a different ethnicity move in the natives immediately move out. If we are promoting inclusion and integration then obviously these statistics prove that it is not working.
For whatever reason the denizens want to move to where they believe their social networks are, which aren’t suddenly where they used to be now a different sort have started moving in.  They then resent what they perceive is a ‘foreign takeover’ when this void is filled by others. They exercise their freedom of choice to relocate where these ‘social networks’ have deviated to if indeed they have.
If multiculturalism and British values mean anything then surely the only way to promote this is by accommodating all cultures and living together, breaking down barriers educating the indigenous population that living next to a person different to them is not a issue especially when these people hold the same values, have the same aspirations, speak the same language are born in the same country and more often than not in the same hospital in the same town.
So why aren’t the government asking these questions that would unite and tackle extremism at source? And instead focusing on what is evidently a misguided line of inquiry collectively attacked by all stakeholders it is trying to address.
Britain and its British citizens are one, to be British is not defined by race it is defined by state of mind, the want to assimilate and allowing its citizens to  exert their beliefs without discrimination. It is to give choice allowing the right and defending that right whether it’s agreeable or not.
Unfortunately all that is ignored and falls on deaf ears and it is the reason why Birmingham is a exclusively Muslim enclave..in parts across the Atlantic anyway.
Until segregation and the issues of ‘white flight’ aren’t addressed, the lack of dialogue, questions of allegiance, understanding and communication between white British and other will remain. The inevitable resultant problems and hostilities will ensue.

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