Let me say publicly that DonBoy’s answer exudes a combination of intuitive genius and confidence that make me think DonBoy is going to do big things in his life. -- Steven D. Levitt (Freakonomics blog)
Sunday, July 20, 2003
Meryl Yourish had a piece on British Antisemitism last week. Having just discovered her blog the other day, I sent a reply which she ran:
OK, this is going to be sentimentalism, I admit, but: between the time of your 1930s and 1940s references can be found the Kindertransport, in which British families took in German and Austrian Jewish children including my father, then 7, and my aunt, 12. Saved their lives, all that stuff. So some of the people get some props.
On the other hand, it is true that in general England's civil rights revolution was years later than ours. My family lived in London from 1970-73, and you could really tell that the Brits had a different outlook from Americans, in that we at least had as an ideal "America for all", and the implicit stance in England was that it was, at the core, a country of, well, English people. (This difference is also what some Americans don't get about Israel, and the context in which it lives: just about every country except the USA is ultimately based on being the country of a specific people, as opposed to an open-immigration free-for-all.) Would you believe that there was a TV show called "The Black and White Minstrel Show", which was aired, intermittently, until at late as 1978?
I might also add that you shouldn't count the IRA's co-operation with Palestinians as "British" -- neither the IRA nor the Brits would accept that equivalence.