Thursday, 18 November 2010

All white on the night

The sky is falling. The end of the world is nigh. Our cosy, ordered, same-as-it-always-was existence is threatened. And people of colour are to blame.

That's the gist of the various articles appearing in the tabloids today, based on the findings of David Coleman, Professor of Demography at Oxford University. According to the highly respected boffin, "WHITE British people will be in a MINORITY in their own country by 2066." Note that the upper case emphases come courtesy of The Sun, so that their readers know what the story is about without having to read it.

Apparently, the soaring immigrant birthrates mean that white Brits are gradually being outnumbered by their non-white neighbours. Obviously, this kind of story is a tabloid editor's dream, so the emphasis is on "record breaking levels of immigration" rather than the "thousands of Brits" who leave these shores "for a better life abroad."

We're entitled to seek our fortune overseas, it's practically our birthright. But God forbid anyone attempts to come to UK for similar reasons. Once again, the inconsistent logic applied to issues around immigration raises its ugly head. The Sun's article references Home Secretary Theresa May's plans to cap the influx of migrant workers, despite the fact that the tabloids are constantly portraying immigrants as workshy-benefits seekers. 

The report also doesn't explain how the significant number immigrants from white Eastern European countries are going to reduce the amount of Caucasian faces in school playgrounds. Nonetheless, the warning is clear - white British people can expect to be the minority by around 2066.

If that hasn't scared you, then consider the fact that "The US, by comparison, is now about 65 per cent white (non-Hispanic) and that group is projected to fall to 50 per cent by 2045." Shocking isn't it? Except, well, the U.S. is a nation of immigrants, and its indigenous (non-white) population have been rendered a minority pretty much since we first washed up on their shores. But that doesn't really support our argument so let's move on before anyone questions the lapses in our logic.

Without breaking the space-time continuum, it's hard to know how Professor Coleman can speak so categorically about the next fifty years of international people movement, birthrates and life expectancy. There are so many variables at play that such long-term projections are borderline nonsensical. That's the basic paradox at the heart of all time-travel stories - as Sarah Connor famously said "The future is not set, there is no fate but what we make for ourselves." But as one of the founders of MigrationWatch, perhaps he's less concerned with the facts than he is with drumming up reactionary scare stories. 

And anyway, surely the uninformed masses should be celebrating. After all, come 2066, they'll finally have the statistics to prove what they've been bleating about for years. Since, in their minds, the needs of minorities always come before anyone else's, they'll be back at the front of the queue in no time. 


  1. Yeah, its not as if reproductive trends are going to change even SLIGHTLY in the next 60 years. Yet more tabloid statistics, where a useful analytical tool can be made to mean whatever they want them to mean.

  2. You've just got to laugh at the barely-literate sun readers with 6 kids whinging about how "them forrins" and "them effnics" don't speak english properly and are "overrunning" the country. I know i have to laugh at them, i'm surrounded by the gits...