The following was written by Michael | @mikeypie12
Earlier I was contemplating a suggestion by Scott Benton, a Tory councillor from Brighouse. He proposes that all school children should have to sing God Save the Queen beneath a large Union flag, each day. The @RepublicStaff twitter account were naturally outraged at this as they are not fond of dear Liz, and their ire is drawn at the mere mention of her name. However, as a republican myself, I think this is a truly excellent idea. Infact the sooner it is implemented, the sooner we can all look forward to a republic. If there is one thing that is certain to guarantee the antipathy and rejection of a concept by the next generation it is to teach – or in this case indoctrinate – a concept at school. The people of ‘Republic’ underestimate the sheer natural rebellious antipathy of the child. I recently had a conversation with someone who would almost certainly share the views of Councillor Benton on this matter. The gentleman in question was quite perturbed at my discussion with another regarding Gaelic culture. He was quite insistent that we should focus more fervently on celebrating English culture. Which seems a fair remark. Upon asking him which aspects of the English culture we should celebrate, he stated quite firmly: Shakespeare (reasonable) and Morris Dancing (each to their own). At risk of digression, I am sure that one way of increasing interest and participation in the study of Shakespeare by the wider population would be to stop teaching his work at school. Similar to the mention of long division for most people above schoolable age, the slightest utterance relating to old Will shall be cause for their eyes to passively glaze over, and in more extreme (but not uncommon) circumstances elicit youthful feelings of disgust. It would seem then, that for us republicans, the current propositions of the Tories are most useful to us.
On the topic of songs I find distasteful, I found myself listening to the new theme-song for the latest installment pertaining to another of England’s national treasures who has seen better days, James Bond. I have a confession that I am quite partial to James Bond theme-songs, as am I to any music that causes blood-flow and can rouse me from what would otherwise be my natural unhealthy languorous state, where I would quite contentedly sit uncouth watching twenty-four hour repeats of Ancient Aliens from the History Channel. The song in question however did not make my blood flow. It builds up expectation to the point you are expecting a bassy crescendo only for it to stifle towards an inglorious high-pitched, wimpering volte face, stultifyingly effete. I decided to try and put this out of my mind by visiting the local library to pick up some resources. My recent return to using public libraries is less to do with being cheap or taking a principled stand against Amazon, than a celebration of often overlooked public services and making the best of them whilst they still exist. (For more fundamentalist readers, please do not take this as an endorsement to go and injure yourself deliberately, to appreciate that other noble public service while you still can.) My local library is blessed with a wonderful, albeit typically buried art gallery on the top floor, although recent efforts to rectify this have been made, such as a thinly-veilled lambast of current policy towards spending on the arts, beneath an oversized fern-leaf. I picked up my books, ascended the stairs, as naturally, the elevator was in the process of being dismantled, and looked about a wonderful exhibition by Jeffrey Dennis called Ringbinder. His work contained illustrations of various local landmarks, and focal points of life within the area contained on colourful linen canvas, within bubbles. Apparently this is a paltry nod to Jean Luc Goddard’s self-concious critique of consumerism ‘Two or Three Things I Know About Her.’ The bubbles providing enchanting visual reference points for the abject misery of the locale contained within. A once vivacious industrial heartland that has been torn apart. We’ll tell our children one day, we used to have libraries, and pictures. We used to have James Bond too, but he also passed away during the great class war after a short torturous illness, namely the theme-song.
Everything we’ve grown up with, rightly or wrongly is being destroyed at the seams.
By Michael | @mikeypie12
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