Hot Potatoes – Citizenship – April 2019

Hot Potatoes – Citizenship – April 2019


Tonight is going to work as follows,
we’re gonna have some prepared panellists questions that we’ve thought about and we’re
going to pose to them. That’s going to go on until about 7:20 at which point we’re
going to open the conversation to the floor so I know some of you’ve already thought
about questions but this is an announcement that you’ve got an extra 40
minutes or so now to think about anything you’d like to ask the panellists.
We’ve got a wonderful roving mic by the name of Tom – all ready prepared, here’s
one we made earlier – and then we’re going to do about 30 minutes questions before
closing up. So I’m going to ask my panellists to introduce themselves. We
know that everyone has a relationship with citizenship but I want to ask you
to introduce yourself by sharing a little bit about your role and how
citizenship comes up most for you in your work and if you want to share your
personal life. Are you happy to open for us Edie? (Edie) Yes, thank you very much can you hear
me at the back? Right just to kick off by saying how pleased I am that Liberal Judaism is
running such a series because I and I think many people are concerned as is
Tom has spoken about the lack of space within the Jewish community to discuss
difficult issues and as we can appreciate the Jewish community in many
ways is quite polarized as the rest of society is and I think there’s a real
fundamental question about where do we get our information from and I think
those are questions about whether we could expect more from the Jewish press
to open up conversations beyond what some might consider quite narrow so a really fundamental question.
I just want to kick off by saying thank you for inviting me but also for
them for organizing this. If I just kick off by speaking personally for a moment
and then I’ll talk about my work at JCORE, so I am the director of the Jewish Council for Racial Equality, we try to provide a Jewish voice on race and asylum issues
doing practical work to support asylum seekers and refugees from offending to
mentoring refugee doctors and campaign to make sure that legislation is correct
and will actually allow asylum seekers to integrate and have the best
opportunity to find a place within the society so I’ll come back to that in a
moment but just to speak personally you could probably tell from my accent that
I’m from the United States, I’m an American citizen though I have lived
most of my adult life in the UK so I’m resident in the UK and I’m really quite
relaxed about that but I realize that being able to say that is a quite
privileged thing I’m not an asylum seeker or a refugee, I haven’t had to
flee though politically the United States in the 1970s who was a place that
many people thought maybe they ought to flee from but nevertheless you know I
can’t compare it to other peoples experience and being a resident not
a citizen of the UK, I am able to participate fully within the political
process, I’m an active member of the Labour Party and participate fully in a
whole range of things so in that respect not having citizenship has has not been
a negative thing for me in this country. Because I’m an American citizen I vote
in the American elections which I think is my duty on behalf of the whole world
considering who now sits in the White House and the one thing that I regret
I’m not able to do in this country is vote and I’m very concerned about the
the current climate in terms of the rise of demagogues, of nationalism etc. and
as a Jewish person this obviously causes a great deal of concern but also as
someone who runs the Jewish Council for Racial Equality that many of the people
we work with inevitably are quite vulnerable. So you have asylum
seekers who are not citizens they do not have certain rights they’re not allowed
to work and maintain themselves which would be a big aid into actually
integrating into this country and being a refugee you automatically are not in a
position even if you do get citizenship to be able to fully participate and with
the rise of populism and the rise of the post- well its not really post-Brexit because we haven’t actually done it yet, the whole world where racial attacks have
increased attempts against Muslims etc. it’s a very frightening time. To end on a
very different sort of and very practical note in terms of refugees the
organisation British Future has done some work looking at whether citizenship
ceremonies can be an a to help helping people integrate and at first I thought
oh that’s a bit strange but people who have come from war-torn countries to be
British and to have that protection of a different nationality is something that
I don’t understand but nevertheless is obviously something terribly important
and there are questions about if you have citizenship ceremonies in such a
way can you actually aid and help people to integrate and into this country and
make it not something that you fear because you have to learn all sorts of
rather strange facts that probably most of the
population don’t know but nevertheless it can be a very positive and rewarding
thing and so thought has actually gone into can you use citizenship ceremonies
as a way of helping people to integrate and find a place and feel that they are
part of Britain. (Charlotte) Lovely thanks you very much Tasnime, can I ask to share a little bit of your thoughts around how
citizenship has related to your public life and if you want to your private
life too. (Tasnime) Well my wife from Lithuania so Brexit looms really and in terms of
looking at what that means for my particular family the answer is nobody
knows what the medium or the long term consequences that will be and on top of
that the children or issue of our of our family are going to look at where is
where as their future gonna be you know is there gonna be a bet placed upon the
UK that is it’s got a captain that can steer it through choppy waters or does
it have a series of people who can apply for the job of captain that can navigate
you through rocky waters and given that we’re on the rocks already the on sissel
no really but in terms of Europe as well how has Europe’s complexion
changed in the run-up to Brexit, looking at Catalan and the Catalonian
issue and how Spain and Europe have sort of just skipped over the ideas of
democracy for a greater project and the fact that there’s a rise of the of
the right wing in Europe on a much more urgent basis than the UK,
then you know that’s not looking like a huge hugely attractive prospect either
and I think it’s unfortunate that actually if we look anywhere in the
world nothing looks particularly attractive when you’ve grown up in the
80s and 90s with a much more optimistic look on life and you got through
the 90s and into the 2000s and you think well how do we get from a high to a
serious depression. Where is there a future where there isn’t conflict looming anywhere
and in that in that context that is where I do the difficult work of
representing people who are accused of the most reprehensible crimes and I
think that’s what that’s probably why that interests me because how you treat
your foe is a measure of who you are not how you treat your friend and that is
the value system that all states need to consider in order to be able to justify
themselves our state’s, it’s the glue that binds us in that the rule of law
which in the UK I guess was established back in the 9th century. Alfred the Great
in his book of dooms but that just meant laws, the fundamental principle
there was that the rich man, the poor man the friend and foe are treated the same
that draws upon Mosaic law principles and the Leviticus, and these
are the concepts that are natural justice for all states to be able to
call themselves states that is with any meaning at all. With
respect to the Shamima Begum matter, the issue isn’t about citizenship
fundamentally it goes even deeper than that, it goes down to the rule of law, in that where a crime is committed or it’s alleged a crime has
been committed we make it our business to bring that person and make them face
justice under the rule of law with evidence being brought about what the
accusations are. We have done this to the to the worst of our foes, we have in in
the Second World War, we have burnt our nation to the point of annihilation and
yet still afforded our enemy the rule of law the bringing of evidence against
them in order to face a process. We have done that with people who are
accused of being ISIS members, we have ministers last year
lamenting that there were 400 returnees of men of fighting age who were in
organisations were terrorist organisations, they were
back in the UK and 10% of them had faced courts and justice. So the question
becomes well how does a 19 year old girl who’s gone out to Syria at the age of 15
by her own admission been groomed with a child, then end up in a position where
she is denied the very fundamental principles that flow from her birth,
where she was in the UK – born, bred, radicalised in the UK on the basis that
a trick of loris is applied in on her to say that actually no she’s
somebody else’s problem and from our point of view that’s human fly
tipping. That’s taking a problem and dumping it on your innocent neighbour and
saying it’s now your fault basically, quite apart from whether Shamima
did right or wrong herself, it’s a question of well, why would we not afford
her and our society the right to examine her and ask her what did she do wrong
and find the portion of the blame and the consequences of the blame precisely.
What are we so scared of from a young girl. (Charlotte) Human fly tipping is quite a phrase
that is gonna stick with me. Danny can I ask you to introduce yourself in
relation to citizenship please. (Danny) Yes, I’m delighted to do so let me say
first of all as the host for this evening I’m thrilled that Liberal
Judaism was once again at the margins in the sense of asking the questions that
many of us don’t like to ask and certainly won’t debate in public. We had
a Hot Potato last month, we’ve got another one tonight and no doubt we’ll have
many more…so I want to pay tribute to Yszi and Tom with the team here who are
putting this series together. Some of you will know that I’ve been a magistrate
for over 20 years in Kingston and I get invited to citizenship ceremonies every
few months and as a I was gonna say inactive member of the Labour Party as
opposed to an active one but as a Labour councillor, I also get invited to
citizenship ceremonies there and I’ve never been to one except last two weeks ago
one of my own staff here who has changed citizenship asked me to accompany him to
a citizenship ceremony, so I went to my first
ceremony at the London borough of Harrow. The mayor who presided over it was not
born in England and she very proudly spoke of her time in England her time in
Harrow and welcome to the borough and its diversity. What struck me about there
were fifty people accepting citizenship and just their variety was amazing
and they all wanted one thing in common and for whatever reason, they don’t state a reason, but they all want to their British
citizenship and they pledge loyalty to Queen Elizabeth and her heirs, sang the
national anthem, had a nice photograph and presume he went home again reassured by
something. So let me say that despite the fact that many people think
I’m very white middle-class establishment male, all those prejudices
which aren’t usually acceptable anymore in left-wing organizations, most of my
grandparents were not born in this country. So my parents were born in this
country, but as I move further
back they were born primarily in the Austro-Hungarian Empire and elsewhere, so
only two generations ago my family my direct ancestors were not citizens of
the United Kingdom. They were probably citizens of the Austro-Hungarian Empire
or the polish bit of the Empire if they were citizens at
all in any sense of the word and they clearly, by the way I should just tell
you my pedigree does go back to 1760 when somebody arrived in from
Amsterdam here, but overall three of my grandparents were born not in this
country and clearly we’re not citizens in the United Kingdom until the United Kingdom
chose to accept them at some particular point by a naturalization process and so
Charlotte likes to wheel me out as the sort of refugee who doesn’t look like
one once prejudiced a refugee and it but it
does remind me from time to time and I seek to remind audience
is that the United Kingdom is made up as most other countries are, is made up of
refugees and made up of people who sought citizenship who who
weren’t born necessarily in the country or didn’t have citizenship when they
arrived and one could look at many countries
I mean accepting small islands but even bigger islands like New Zealand
Australia and realized that the indigenous born populations are quite
small and that means there has to have been a concept at some time that people
arrived for whatever reason they may have been sent there by the British
penal authorities for Australian they may have fled they may have chosen to go
there or whatever reason but they arrived without citizenship of the
country usually and at some point they or their children after them were
accorded citizenship and it seems to me that there are two ways that one really
get is accorded citizenship one is by birth or used to be by birth by the way
it used to be that if you’re born in United Kingdom you automatically had the
legal if I’m wrong you automatically had the right to be a British citizen and I
believe that’s now changed and he can be born in the United Kingdom and still not
be entitled to citizenship and the other way of course was by some application by
which you became a citizen because you were not a citizen of the country you
were living in. I suppose really on one level citizenship didn’t really occur to
me as I said my two parents were born in Britain, I was born in Britain so I got
the passport without really thinking about it I hadn’t really thought about
citizenship per se except as an old lefty I was assumed I was a citizen of
the world and that in an ideal world we wouldn’t need citizenships because
people would we had to come and go and if they found work they’d stayed if they
didn’t find work they’d leave depends on the benefit system of course but
primarily and the people would just in fact be human beings and I accept that’s
not a reality either it may not be an idea and instead not a reality today
that the world is divided into States and those states Accord people’s
citizenship I suppose I began talk
and writing about these issues when with Sean and others I was rather shocked
when we saw mass migration really out of Syria which was a country that had been
quite strong in many ways was suddenly being internally destroyed by civil war
and large numbers of people were landing on a part of which I also felt a citizen
which was Europe they were landing on the continent of Europe or in the
European Union area and suddenly these were people who were seeking initially
and something which we had and they felt they didn’t have they of course were
primarily seeking simply to live to live a decent life and to hopefully be
reunited with their families to work to retire like the rest of us and to be
buried either here or in Syria whether they want to be buried when the time
came it shocked me I suppose that that many people seemed to be completely
relatively relatively indifferent to the plight of these people then as a
continent we and I now accepted whatever the number was very early on but there
somehow this was not a challenge to be able to come but a problem to be removed
and I think Turkey was the arms of partly to remove it if we can dump the
you know if we can persuade turkey to take people then we wouldn’t have to do
wouldn’t have to think about it and it seemed to me that that began in my mind
to think that an individual’s role in any part of the world and an
individual’s role in their country in which they live which is preventing
other people coming and going is a moral Jewish question and I suppose if that’s
what you want to do B is the introduction because I’m trying to abide
by what you asked me to do unusual that’s how I got involved this is lovely
and ladies and gentlemen I realize I haven’t introduced myself
my name’s Charlotte Fisher I’m part of the senior management team at a charity
called citizens UK and we’re very proud to be a partner with liberal Judaism
I work on some of the social justice work that liberal Judaism does now one
of the things that we do at citizens UK which people love or don’t love
depending on where they’re at is we’re quite strict on timekeeping so having
met our wonderful panelists and I hope you enjoying their company as much as I
am I’m gonna make an ask which is Tom I’m gonna ask you to be my timekeeper
from now on if this is okay and everyone after this introduction are gonna have
three minutes to answer are we comfortable with this great because
we’ve got a lot to go through so one of the things that I think’s been really
interesting in the framing of citizenship recently and I think
citizenship has always been framed it has not been one concept throughout time
is a debate about whether citizenship is a right or if it’s a privilege and I
wanted to pose that question and what your thoughts are to the panelists
beginning if it’s okay with has noon yes sure citizenship is a lot more of a
complex issue in a more complex world but where it stems from is of concept in
Latin called juice salt like the law from the soil
almost which is so natural and its rawness is that the idea that you are
because you’re born in a place you are loyalty to the ruler of that place and
they are duty to you to look after you to keep you safe and because of that
relationship you have a right as unavoidable it’s just natural to the
soil that you’re in but all the ways to get citizenship through marriage or
through parentage but that’s the fundamental core principle principle
goes back time immemorial really started to change in the 1700s William Blake who
was looking at these issues and he commented back in back in those days
that previous to that the only way you could get citizenship was to be born in
the country even emissaries of the state if their children outside the state
would not have citizenship but that was then codified in law and similarly
people coming to the country could not have citizenship the only ways for that
citizenship to be removed was if you were engaged in treason and you were
banished which goes back even longer than
some children obviously or if you were engaged in the employ of a enemy Prince
to the state so you you had to be on treason levels basically before you
could have that taken away and that actually stayed pretty much the position
really there’s a little hiccup in the eighteen 18th century when when for some
reason if you were a woman and you married a non Brit then you will
automatically had your citizenship stripped it was a particular particular
time things similar similar situation in the US and the Scots had a bit of a
rough ride of it in the seventeen a one to ten where they were switched from
alien to non alien depending on what Charles was thinking at the time but but
beyond that we we get into the complexities really when we’re dealing
with the breakup of Empire so from the 1940s up until late 60s we have a raft
of legislation that starts defining people as Commonwealth citizens or North
right of abode or not but that theme throughout you couldn’t have your
citizenship stripped unless you were engaged in in treason or banishment
really and that really only changed in Brittany 2002 which is not that long ago
and it changed with a amendment to the Immigration Act section 40 of
Immigration Act it was driven by one case it was the UH Bahamas our case
really so here you have to have a man that the state is looking at and I was
suggesting that there are no criminal laws to deal with him and so a table was
table of amendment to allow for people seen as not conducive the public good
bars who were engaged in behavior that was against the vital interests of
Britain and they could be stripped of citizenship so long as it didn’t leave
them staplers as soon as that law was passed within three days our homes were
stripped of his citizenship however he subsequently won an appeal because he
was left stateless but even then the question was the vital interests of
of the state of the UK that that is guy fawkes level stuff basically you don’t
have to be engaging that sort of behavior before before you can even be
stripped as citizenship albeit left with the citizenship of
another state now the law was changed again in 2006 it was in order to to make
that even easier to get rid of people and Tony Blair actually drove this one
where he said he wants to make the streamlining of the process make it
easier to remove complication from the difference of definitions and so instead
of having the vital interests being the issue it now became conducive to the
public good so long as you burn alive statements so here we then have a
situation where instead of being engaged in guy fawkes level or you know treason
level activity you can have your citizenship strip struck away he’ll now
left with a Home Secretary he could make a decision based upon an unacceptable
behavior now I don’t know if any of you have children but on any given day
there’s unacceptable behavior really and and really the reason it was that it was
it was it was watered down to that level was so that the classification of
extremists could be applied which has no real legal definition and somebody could
be labeled as an extremist and therefore potentially have their citizenship
stripped and that was the that was the experience of a fella called Hill our
agenda he had the unusual privilege of being stripped of citizenship twice he
was originally stripped in 2007 seemed to be left stateless won his appeal and
within three weeks the government had changed the law again so that the
provision of leaving somebody stateless was now not a backstop anymore so
although all homosexuals do for naturalized people more people are born
the UK is to show that their in duties are probably good that they are engaged
in some activity that is not that is against the vital interests of the UK
state and only has to have a reasonable belief that there are reasonable grounds
for believing that the person could apply for citizenship in another
so could we left stateless but with the option to apply somewhere which is quite
quite a you know this is quite a step forward and that’s where we found
ourselves that had a place where in Europe and in the UK where you know
politically were at the foothills of of the 1930s in terms of political
discourse we’ve also eroded our concept of the
rule of law and concept of citizenship to the point where if we don’t you know
if the tabloid press doesn’t like you bad things can happen to you if it’s
politically expedient and that’s a very worrying proposition particularly when
the law has been changed around just a handful of individuals but it has such
an impact upon literally millions of people right now I’m going to intervene
for two things one is I’m gonna take control of timekeeping because I am less
lovely than the very level so the end of three minutes you are gonna hear me know
but I also we were talking about this before and you made a point as me about
the danger of a framing around extremism and what then happens in our public
debate when it’s easier to label other people can I ask you to expand on that
yes sure so earlier on we were talking about the
fact that the legislation was changed with this in order to accommodate the
label of extremism to say if you’re an extremist where you’ve been defined as
extremist however that’s defined then you can have your citizenships taken
away now there are some positive benefits that that’s all not all
negative then it means that through our immigration rules we can block people
who are known agitators from other countries to coming into the UK really
the problem becomes when it’s reversed when you’re taking somebody’s very
ability to eat sleep we have family relations away on the basis of a
ill-defined term and and in the context of where we are in the context of this
discussion and the issue where we have let’s say the BDS movement on one hand
throwing the stones or or labels up at the other sides as Israeli Lobby and
Israeli Lobby throwing stones back both sides are calling each other extremists
they’re doing this on social media doing this all you know in
in tabloid press or normal press even that label sticks doesn’t matter who’s
throwing that label around and in that situation you can find that this tiger
legislation will catch people indiscriminately and randomly in that
crossfire and this is why having labels that are ill defined in law is a very
dangerous very dangerous precedent in terms of extremism itself as a as an
idea it’s authenticated on the idea of the end of history in that we have a
norm that will not change and anything on the fringes are known is extreme now
as we know in the UK you know women didn’t have the right to vote in 1918 we
looked at homosexuality in a very different way in 1960s as we do today in
the exact opposite phrase we there is no such thing as the end of history there’s
no such thing as the end of a defined norm and so to have this to have this
fringe definition which is always sliding as a reason to be able to smooth
somebody from their fundamental rights I believe is extremely dangerous that
framing of the the value of extremist is something Barack Obama writes about too
in his book he says that um we often use it as a negative but sometimes elet’s
were on the right side of history sometimes the women’s movement or other
movements the movements that were extreme were actually the ones that we
look back on and say are valuable and he says he is robbed of his certainty even
in uncertainty Danny can I continue to talk about privilege all right you’ve
gone to these ceremonies you’ve had a look at what it feels like do you think
of citizenship as privileged as right something else well let me just try and
reflect upon it in a Jew in a Jewish sense first of all by in my state
extensive preparation ten minutes before I began I thought well you know what
does the Bible say about citizenship and of course the very famous phrases that
of Jeremiah who says seek the welfare of the city in which you dwell and Jeremiah
of course was an exile Jeremiah Jeremiah is living in Babylon he and all of the
people he associates himself with his tribe if I used that term his people
have been mass exported by the authorities to somewhere else and in
fact as we eventually know of course when the time came for them to return to
their homeland many of them remained and hence we had the very strong Iraqi
Jewish community rose out of Babylon but he says seek the wealth of the city for
two reasons one he says because if you pray for its well-being you you will get
well-being in return so essentially that’s saying something about by trying
to be loyal to the place in which you live it will reward you and by the way
the the rabbinic comment is is you have to seek the world for the government
because otherwise rather like Thomas Hobbes I think it was Thomas Hobbes
everybody will eat everybody else unless the state exists so in some sense the
the the establishment of a state to which you are loyal or a city whose
welfare you you must pray for comes out of that what is what is the well-being
of you and the society in which you live and I think that’s the starting point
interestingly it was taken out when a Jew who was said by a Hebrew prophet
when he was already in exile of course citizenship ISM is a major controversial
issue for Jews which it may not be for other people’s I mean it may be it may
not be but for Jews in particular its associated with the modern State of
Israel on the one hand and associated with the absence of being allowed to be
citizens in many of the so-called civilized Christian and Muslim countries
of the world until relatively recently so that is the background in which
citizenship is a controversial concept in in what it means to be a Jew I would
say wouldn’t I because I’m a liberal that it’s neither a nor be that rather
like the Hebrew Bible says you have rights and responsibilities so
citizenship is bows and a privilege and a right now can it be both
and how can it be both and in watch way can you take away somebody’s right hope
you save some in somebody’s privilege by illegal means on the other means it is a
matter for debate and detail but in essence it seems to me if you’re born in
a country logic would say going back to as one of its original legal meanings
you have the right to citizenship of that country how you then behave and
retain that citizenship may partly be a privilege yes indeed today the home
office it at the moment if you’re born in the UK if you’re a child born to non
British parents and you live to the age of ten you have a right to be British
but you have to pay you have to pay over a thousand pounds
and it’s resulting in a situation where a lot of the member families that I’m
working with are in a situation where the school is saying to the parents
basically we’re going to have to were in an impossible position you have to pick
which of your children do you think has the best chance of getting into
University and pay for them because you need your citizenship papers to get home
fees right they’re not a citizen of any other country and parents are put in
this impossible position and last week the inspector wrote to the Home Office
and said he recommends the abolition of fees and today the Home Office announced
they would not review it but on that theme I’m going back to Jeremiah around
what are the responsibilities of what does it mean to be seeking the welfare
of your city and Edie you made a joke about you feel responsible to vote in
the American elections I wanted to explore a little bit about what are the
responsibilities of citizenship both from the state to the person and also
what are our responsibilities our citizens to the state can I ask you to
open with that well just to carry on from Jeremiah if I
can I mean one statement that we often use is is it good for the Jews and I
think it would be far better we would ask the question is it good for all of
us and and I fear is it good for the Jews is something that is growing in a
sense that hope thinking and it’s so it feeds back into that because
Jewish people like any group of people have to be active citizens they have to
pass that Jeremiah test J terribly important also to pick up from a
previous comment there was this infamous comment made by our prime minister about
if you’re not and I may be paraphrasing so do please correct me but if you’re
not a citizen of a particular country you a citizen of nowhere and then I
think that also has profound questions about well if you not I mean I think
it’s quite finishes but other than that if you’re a citizen of nowhere then you
not have any responsibilities to do any anything anywhere because you don’t
belong and I think that has profound consequences for your ability to
integrate into society to be a part of that society to help that society but we
also have to remember that citizenship is very much something that’s a very
arbitrary thing the the latent and very much missed by Huber Gwyn used to joke
that he lived in five four or five countries but he never moved and I think
you know such is the way of the world that this is you know very much
explained well because where he lived pre pre Holocaust they the the countries
kept changing so it was the Hungarian Empire it was this you know and I I’m
sorry but I don’t know the the exact change of countries but nevertheless
that was his experiences it was probably for not only Jewish people but for many
people pre Second World War but whether it’s a right or privilege I think the
state has a responsibility to do things that actually aid citizenship and as
part of that if you are poor if you are poorly educated your ability to actually
participate society would be very much curtailed and
I think we need to think about when we’re thinking about citizenship we need
to think about social and economic rights and as there is growing
inequality in this country this will fundamentally affect many people’s
ability to actually participate so these definitions of a right or privilege they
get in a sense muddled up because we have to go back to basics and and so
finally to say that we need political education which I think this sort of
event is political education for children and for adults so that we can
actually have a better and more profound understanding of these issues and
finally finally to say that citizenship should never be used as a weapon and
clearly we have seen citizenship being used as a weapon
darling doesn’t mean why are your thoughts about the responsibility of
citizenship and they do it comes back to is it a right and is it a privilege
truly and and if you do it on a very basic level if you’ve worn some way it’s
your right if you’ve come to somewhere and are going through a process of
naturalization that’s always been seen as more of a privilege and so when it
comes to naturalization there are caveats the last in terms of being a
good character being usually a condition in many places and then learning the
language and various other aspects but even if you’re naturalized in the law
now there is a distinction between the quality of your citizenship if you came
to through naturalization or if you came to it through birth and formation even
Begum’s sort of there’s an argument about that but and and even then you
split it down further into where you where your parents from
so were they naturalized or they or do their citizenship from somewhere else we
end up with this with this rainbow patters of different qualities and
grades of citizenship with all the responsibilities that are expected from
every grade of citizen to the state but with a very different feedback
relationship and set of rights that come from the government so for example if if
I were indigenous to the to the UK and I were to commit
crime I would I would go to court rule of law applies be found guilty and get a
prison and that would be in the end of that but if however that crime was
serious enough to warrant let’s say a one-year custodial sentence and I wasn’t
being indigenous to the UK where I’d been naturalized here I could lose my
citizenship and be deported to another country so that then citizenship
argument they you know becomes more problematic because we then it then has
the consequential effect of looking at a two-tiered justice system really where
one punishment for one individual because of the ethnicity another
punishment for another individual because of a double punishment for the
other individual because of that and so they’re on the criminal justice side it
has that impact but also in terms of what is being a citizen really depending
on where your parents are from that is a two-tier or arguably two-tier sort of
quality of citizenship so you know if my parents are somewhere else and I could
theoretically in the future lose my citizenship do I have to pay the same
level of Taxation really I mean you know where is that proportionality at risk
then you know hedge to in terms of the responsibilities back so it’s
complicated it’s gets even more complicated when you have dual nationals
but in terms of what is the precedent of who takes responsibility and frankly
speaking these sort of issues need to be grappled on a case-by-case basis well
the problem that we have is that at the moment and I think this is maybe global
unfortunately we have a system where people and governments are looking at
things on an interest basis on every single situation is what interest do we
want what do we want out of it we’re not looking at things in terms of a value
system really and if we don’t if we don’t start operating on a value system
we roll very principle of citizenship they’re very googley that binds us
together in that in a value system to give an example if you’re a war and you
have an enemy in your shoes your enemy because of who we are we treat that
person back to health really but on an interest-based system
you shoot your name leave them to die the problem then
becomes or how do you absolutely happily trust we identity if you operate
inclusion and interest basis rather than the value lists and the overall gain
three years is action once it without the longest term other are those
societies that operate on bonuses rather nuances questions individuals have no
responsibilities and I’m a bit concerned sometimes when there’s a distinction
made between people and people having different responsibly all have
responsibilities to behave it’s behaving properly if you are if you’re only a
British citizen every time I understand that I have some sympathy with those who
argue if you coming to this country to visit em or as a refugee or anything
else if you’re not a citizen then you should avoid other doors of opportunity
for don’t you should be deported if there are cultural norms in the
society and now then something may be so impressive that he prepared to assist
them but then there are also possibilities that you have sometimes
when I hear about British tourists they’ve gotten naked up to some holy
shrine of some other people and stood outside take the photograph and the
moment they get into trouble you know there is a sense in which we all have a
responsibility to behave properly that begins by learning something whether we
even going from Britain somewhere else or vice versa British culture no better
or worse than any other one of a general rule we have some responsibility to
understand that culture and not be deeply offensive possibly the people who
live there for example you might need to control what you yourself but we could
do in one country or you can do here and I think we haven’t quite T’s then add
enough because I wouldn’t punish somebody I might just deport them so
there won’t be done bad news if you’re a brick you’ve got a prison if you’re if
you’re not a Brit you get deported so they’re different punishments to sue
arguably so I wouldn’t double punish me but I could not double punish people but
it might be different punishments which sounds a bit illogical on one level but
I I’m I’m I’m just not sympathetic people who travel to other people’s
cultures and then want to trash all over them I’m not suggesting in any cases
that we’ve heard about today that’s the case but I think that’s it a factor we
need to think about makes it look more complicated yes although the case you’re
making is about the obligation to obey the law of the land as opposed to wise
citizenship different right so if we’re thinking about if you if someone’s not a
British citizen you might deport them fine but the
question is what if they are a British citizen but they could not be and why is
citizenship so much more important as a basic right that we can build a whole
set of other because I think citizenship involves rights and obligations if
you’re a British citizen it’s met the state to do things for you which if
you’re not a citizen you don’t have the omelet you don’t have the state doesn’t
necessarily is required to do it so it is about a
mutuality that you know about rights responsibilities that’s how I would look
at it can I pick up on that in regards to the Jewish community because there’s
there’s two things that I think are a universal but the Jewish community has
particular experiences of one is I’m thinking about post brexit Jews who have
regained citizenships that were stripped from their families in previous
generations and what that relationship is like to reclaim a citizenship that
was stripped from you I am one of those Jews and the other is the question about
your potential for other nationalities obviously has significance for lots of
groups but it has particular significance for a number of Jews who
can claim right of return under the laws of Israel and I wanted to ask your
reflections I’m gonna ask all three of our panelists and then we we may open it
up for the floor but either your reflections on those more generally but
also what what is happening for the Jewish community in those situations and
one of the things we need to be thinking about and reflecting on and dealing with
Edie are you happy to open that yes I mean I like to see Jewish people all
over the world so I think and and if Jews I mean
so if Jewish people end up in places where they have you know met death and
destruction during the war that in a sense we were reclaiming it and I think
that that can be thought of us as a very positive thing and I I’m you know I’m
not one who believes that every Jewish person should go to Israel and I like I
mean as I say I like and hope that Jewish communities can can thrive
anyplace I think there are really throw any questions about you know dual
loyalty divided loyalty and it’s it’s because of what other people think about
these things rather than I mean rather than just the person who may have this
dynamo but there was an awful lot of baggage and
no matter how long we have been in this country I mean we were talking before
that today some member of the brexit party was asked to not ask that’s the
Marquart I think was kicked out because they talked about the Miliband brothers
ed and David and and Mount Wilson is why do we have to listen to these people
with such shallow roots well I mean that really I think goes to the nub of of the
question I mean you know and made the infamous Mobb by Norman Tebbit many
years ago about the the cricket test so I think there and I don’t know for
people remember but you know which side do you mooch on and things and so I
think we have so much of this now with George Soros being you know we owe doubt
the thought of him the idea of him all the time so I think we have some really
tricky questions over this and and brexit and the man who perhaps sort of
gave us Brexton who now sits in his shed I mean I just wish there had been more
reflection about the the great sort of storm that has really erupted and
certainly this storm has has touched the Jewish community I think greatly but let
us think about it in positive ways as well that maybe this is giving us the
opportunities to engage with things that we have shied away from in the past and
and certainly how we handle this whole question about divided loyalty and
Israel and just finally because Palestinians Israelis and Jews outside
of Israel we all in a sense occupy and perhaps occupy isn’t the
right we’re it but we occupy the same space and I think we need some really
very fundamental and new conversations between ourselves of how we’re going to
negotiate that if we’re going to to move forward so that’s I think another aspect
because there are some tricky things about you know Palestinians also have
rights of citizenship to places that Jewish people claim rights of
citizenship I’m perfect at three minutes as well Danny your reflections on the Jewish
community and both reactions to taking other citizenships post brexit but also
what some of the principles that came and I in the shaneoh bacon Katie means
which is surround the possibility that they can get other citizenships and how
that affects their British citizenship assumptions I’m a British Jew that
doesn’t say anything about my relationship to Israel if I have one and
if somebody wants to know they should have the courtesy to ask me rather than
assume now for some people is now they may feel to be the center of their life
and one day they intend to go there that’s how some Jews think about Israel
fine others think about it I could flee there tomorrow if I’ve applied for
citizenship I can get it and for others it is a religious spiritual even people
at centre but it is not where my citizenship is and so the first thing I
want to do is I want to stop people making assumptions and ask me you know
ask me what I think about Israel or about Palestine or about the Netanyahu
government or about how Palestinians should be treated or the fact I bought
at a Palestinian state and so on and so on you know ask for those questions if
you want to know and don’t make assumptions
that’s the person the second thing is I think we and the dual loyalty by the way
is a is an anti-semitic trope that goes back centuries and some people on the
left and I even don’t understand and need to learn and understand what that
means or why is offensive for Jews in this country to be poked with that type
of dual loyalty stick and we also need to learn something about the fact that
we could live in multiple today you know I look at younger people today and they
they don’t fit into the boxes that everybody wants to put them into so why
should older people and younger people get away with it I say we don’t fit into
your boxes that you older people want to put on us and I’m saying as an older
person I don’t want to fit into the boxes that everybody else wants to put
me into either so I can be a support of Israel and a support of the Palestinians
I can be Jewish and have no connection with Israel I could be Jewish and still
believe the Israelis my son oh man and I could be Muslim and have an affiliation
with Pakistan or I could be Muslim I’d be deeply offended by things that
Pakistan are doing and I can be Hindu and British and support the Indian
cricket team I mean we don’t need to put everybody into that says if you have all
these things you have to line up with all these other things and so I think
that’s the bigger challenge for us today as to people reclaiming their
citizenship if I could I would claim the European citizenship but at the polls
won’t let me I don’t think and I’m not sure I want to be a Polish citizen
really I have to say that I’m very happy with my British citizenship interesting
enough not that I use this as a protest of my loyalty my grandfather fought for
Britain in the first world war against German Jews by the way my father fought
for the Royal Air Force in the Second World War so I’ve never been asked to
fight for my country by the way but a mask too I mean I believe I’m fighting
for my country with everything that I do every breath I fight for my country
because I believe in the decency of British society and I believe in in the
decency that that British society could contribute to Europe if we’re allowed to
stay in about which I’m an advocate and to the world
you know I don’t think United Nations is a perfect organization but we need to be
in it if we’ve got values we can put into it has name I realize I’m putting
you in the middle of a Jewish community we use web rooibos like a kind of
internal might you only not the people that you’re in community with the kind
of people that your mother remember still years ago but there are yeah Dan
Danny refers nice if you don’t ask me the current British state nor does not
ask whether you consider yourself potentially an Israeli citizen it says
something about if you want eligible for it anyway and your client was very
publicly in the news about that is there anything you’d want to say to a group of
British Jews that are thinking about this tonight on that basis well I think
I mean this is this is the dishonesty of government I think in that not only does
it not ask it doesn’t like it when it gets the answer from the Supreme Court
which is when when in 2002 two 2006 and 2014 these you know these
undesirables won their cases instead of the government accepting that this is
the rule of law and this is these are the judges that are tasked with telling
us what’s right and wrong they changed the law to say that what was wrong was
now right and let’s all that process again and that’s fundamentally dishonest
in terms of government at the internet or anyone who who plays the games to say
well we’re gonna ignore the answer just by gaming the actual legislation so I
don’t know if you’ve ever asked permission for that Danny go run seven
old Cambridge and big hedge issue seven old Cambridge and Oxford educated
buffers would happen think they know a lot about the law and be professional
they might be old people who also don’t have input on about music it’s a person
and use their prejudice to make the point I mean we live in a democracy and
therefore if the Supreme Court interprets the law in a particular way
don’t we as a people through our poem and have the right to change now no I
agree with that in terms of fundamentally however when we also used
to have a principle of jumbled double jeopardy that you know you put somebody
through the mill in terms of a criminal prosecution if they found not guilty
then you you know you have to stick with it unless there’s new evidence really
the I what’s happening to certain individuals here was you know the optics
of it that the fact is that they’d gone through six years or five years of
fighting a case been put through the mill and instead of that person’s life
being left alone because it’s all been decided then they were that the game was
changed around them and then put through that process again
so the impact of an immigration type of citizens shipping is often far worse
than a criminal prosecution as though in one case there’s no end to it
potentially given the history in others there’s a finite limit and so I think
it’s not so much that we have this buff buffeting of democracy versus the
legislature although the lawmakers versus they the law deciders but we have
we have a dishonesty fundamental which is apparent in the behavior and
that’s where the rub is in that if the Jewish community needs dance itself do
we do we trust our government to apply this law in a way that it should be
applied well the answer is no community can trust this government or the history
of the governments to actually apply that law fairly and justly with
proportion they can’t you you have to rely on a judicial process at the end to
call that into question and what’s happened here when in terms of the
Shamima banking case is this is a very unique sin or hopefully a unique
scenario but a very limited scenario where a person finds themselves abroad
whilst the stitches are being made and that has a massive consequence her child
died because of it rather than finding yourself
technically stripped or some citizenship and limited in terms of your movement
outside the country but being left outside in the cold when you’re in
transit that that’s a very different prospect I should say I supported a
specific case indeed lawmakers so the the law interpreters and may be wrong or
may be right I mean I think sometimes Supreme Court makes a lot of bizarre
decisions and there it seems to be there for it sometimes I’m not think about on
immigration in particularly in general but sometimes it might be right that the
Parliament says well this is how the existing how that justices believe the
existing law is to be played out we want to change the law seems to me perfectly
legitimate thing today I completely agree with that and until not about
individuals like if we want to look at wrongs or Rights and which is who she
trusts more or less then we will feel fine ills on both sides but in in terms
of in this immigration context in terms of citizenship and Trust for the future
and then on that I would trust lawyers more than politicians watch immigrations
quite worrying proposition and on that statement by a politician
can I open the questions to the floor so am i right in thinking we want people to
raise their hand and then Tom will come around with a perfect now is your moment
ladies gentlemen getting citizenship if you like through your ancestry who are
my son married to European women and actually I think it would be much more
valuable if the citizenship that the living can have is of their descendants
not of their ancestors so you know Danny’s sister doesn’t want polish
citizenship but might we might want the right to seek citizenship of the living
and I just need to be a really interesting thing to see if we could
change that’s what it does exist to a degree in terms of dependence so if you
have dependent families members abroad then there is a naturalized it was a
process whereby you can bring them over within a certain criteria but isn’t it
only one generation yeah so I’m talking about grandparents I mean I think it’s
about living it’s not about the dead it would be really interesting to see
whether it would be more natural justice to the forward I think one of those my
hair really which is that which is that that allows for a fluidity of movement
which which would would open the floodgates to a particular particularly
let’s say wealthy environment so here are people going there and giving
birthdays what the Americans are grappling with at the moment in terms of
what have been it with the we’re sort of they claim that Mexicans are running
over to give birth on American soil and thereby have a sort of anchor whereby
they can drag other family members through three devices so on the other
hand it does seem to me cruel that you see you see particularly in Asia fans
they’ve been here two generations they all live here that all the children have
been born in intervention and if the grandmother left somewhere who has to
fend for herself because somehow the immigration authorities won’t let her
come in because she’s gonna be you know gonna cost us a fortune wears cost is
less than one weapons I should think on anything inspired but I mean that’s not
the issue issues we should be supporting family unity in some sense and I realize
that it’s a theoretical floodgate because everybody could say I’ve got a
family you need your Pakistan or Israel or anywhere else but it does seem to me
that somehow the home office is it seems unable by seeking to be judicial and
they would say fair or they man was safer I think they wanted to be harsh
today was the word and they seemed unable to be compassionate and that
seems to be the biggest challenge how can we have a home office system if
that’s their isolation system which yes bides by law has rules and laws that you
have to follow that can say without massive problem that sometimes we need
to be compassionate well we are home with this implemented policy lost
as a policy that hasn’t changed so when we do there is a certain generation
let’s say that look grow up at certain time which look at compassion and
humanity and the concept of family has been the smallest unit of society and
civilization and I think we’ve got a society now it looks at the individual
and an interest as a more important consideration and being you know
differently for others as hostile hostile to others as are as a policy
framework and I think that that’s that’s where that’s where we have a problem ok
can I just add that I mean one of the big refugee campaigns at the moment is
the right to family reunification and I mean there was all sorts of concerns
that unaccompanied children here are not allowed to be joined by any family
member and if they were then their chances of integrating and becoming
successful in terms of taking control over their own lives would be enhanced
if they were able to be joined by a family member but going back I think we
have to continually ask what other what’s the responsibility of the state
to actually aid citizenship and so you know if you become a you get refugee
status of a sudden overnight you are not equipped with all the tools you need to
actually be able to integrate into this society to be able to find out about the
college you want to go to or the job that you want to have and we have to
constantly put the onus back and that doesn’t mean that we don’t have
responsibility as well but we have to constantly hold the government to
account to make sure that they are putting in place things that are going
to make citizenship and integration and all the things that go with it
a possibility that’s going to be ultimately successful because if you
don’t then you pay for it in in other sorts of ways so it’s you know these
things are constantly before us and we have to battle with them all the time
but we can’t give up and also finally to say that the people who are citizens
because they were born here but we they also have responsibilities as well and
for people to say I’m not political well everybody’s political because not being
political means you out taking a stand on something so I think this is part of
the political education which I think we need to step up much more within the
Jewish community that we all have this responsibility to engage because non
engagement means you are actually letting things happen that should not
happen by your indifference or sitting on the fence so all of these things are
dynamic all the time and I think we have to engage with this there was another
hand saying people are surprised to the Jews like crazy and it seems that the individual has I’m fighting for Brittany or Jews in the
activism of the highest levels when these two human lies to eighteen
hundred’s were established makes me feel that this is not about what’s the
implication society stead of its dealing with its own legal economic and physical
history with Eastern European Jews expresses perfectly and as soon as we
did make commercial applications in we are eternal and this is very unusual
because this is too patronizing people discussing citizenship and British
citizenship specifically without talking about all the ways that lots of British
citizens became citizens through colonialism through being asked to can’t
vote you have to talk about it we can’t talk about it in isolation because it’s
part of what it means to be a British citizen right any any responses from the
kernel well I’ll say that if you look at it if you look at the immigration laws
from roughly 1945 on to 1967 that’s exactly what happens there in that in
that different countries have different statuses in terms of Commonwealth and
what-have-you and they’re given different categories of citizenship or
right of abode or not and that then evolves beyond into 1960 I think one and
five where even the Commonwealth citizens then start getting going
through approaches chromatography as to whether or not there
their actual travel documents were issued by the UK state or whether they
were by governorships and then different change in terms about immigration
control apply to one on the other and how many years you have to be present to
stay but this look this is a political issue citizenship who is a citizen at
the end of an empire a political issue when you’ve got when you’re talking
about the allocation of resources or who you have responsibilities to whether the
taxation systems aren’t coming or aren’t perceivably going to be coming back in
on the on the same proportions so you know the on one view if you look at the
UK and it’s taken all the resources all over the world and it holds duty to its
citizens that’s fine in the theory but then if those people don’t want to
collect later there’s no pot left really yeah all at the same time and and so
these different immigration rules laws were passed and we’ll try and slow that
process down you know that that that is a problem that a states grapple with and
continues to grapple with do ask the Irish about that just in brexit alone
really that’s a major issue but in terms of where all of these ideas come from
about citizenship and who we are where we belong that’s a much more fluid and
problematic concept right now I mean if we want to talk about problems where it
comes from with the wrong right wing frankly white working-class people are
not integrated into this country yeah they are they are the lowest on the
metrics of any standard so where are you know British government has failed to
integrate its own indigenous people when when we as different groups who are
looking out for our particular groupings that that is right and proper this is
that this is the the tapestry of what the B UK is but it also leads to
resentment to with the indigenous population when when they feel that
they’re on the lowest metrics and they’re not they’re not engaging office
whatever political reasons they’re not able to engage and so that that mal
feeling then spills over into a right wing agenda with a particular type of
policy really and I think that that’s something that as as there are community
leaders we should also be mindful of where we are
asking for recognition there should also be the recognition of our neighbors to
make sure they’re not hungry as well and if we don’t if you don’t have that
you will have resentment and any charity organization will know that when a
organization will go into another country to look after a particular body
of people from experience it’s necessary to look after people who are outside of
your particular cause in order to smooth that process over that basic charity
principle is not happening in the UK can I just know I mean I think that’s about
the same as my point about social and economic rights that if we’re going to
extend those to people who are coming here we have to make sure that everybody
has access to those because we all need to be good citizens whether we come from
Poland or Nigeria or we were born in click eaten these things and and you
absolutely right if we don’t do that then we’re inviting resentment and
hostility and and possibly brexit and other things I think there’s a
particular challenge and to go back to something that Danny was talking about
is how what do we do about refugees and you know Britain things that you know it
is the most generous country but the fact is certainly it isn’t the most
generous country but nevertheless compared to other countries and and
certainly the way the United States has turned its back on the whole concept of
Refuge now we have to think seriously about you know what do we make of
refugees how do we make them citizens how do we have some sort of just system
that helps them integrate how do we have a just system that means that we take
our so-called fair share of refugees like other countries so there’s all
sorts of really difficult issues that we have to constantly debate and analyze
together but and hopefully in a more positive way than we’re currently doing
I think I just had a comment I think you won’t end a beginning what I talk about
or all in my view all cans are made up of immigrants for all sorts of reasons
some have been invited some number arrived here a few of the mountains have
been born here there I do think there are many uni monocultural countries left
where everybody was born there in other words you do we see exchanges
of people’s over the generations over the centuries and you’re right history
is important but the danger is that that history that sometimes people are so
embedded in their history they can’t actually see the President or the future
and I know that’s not the point of making I’m just making a slight
different point and you know I sometimes think about the israel-palestine issue
and I think you know actually we just have to accept there are two narratives
and two stories which are different and move on from there and it may be the one
has more power than the other at this point and so on but but to spend ones
time saying you did this to me five years ago and I did that to you 10 years
ago 15 years ago I’m so you I’m not accusing you saying that at all
don’t worry so I just think sometimes history is important we need to
understand how we get here but we also need to deal with the reality of where
we are today where our global world is going to learn citizen but citizens say isn’t equal and
the brightest that you have in different countries as a citizen quite different
so female if your other citizenship say in Saudi Arabia your right would be
quite different okay person and your other citizenship
with me Gandhi your rights would be quite different so I think the treatment
taking citizenship as being just anything and it’s not it’s it’s many
things of many countries I think that’s a perfectly fair point but I sit and
there may be exceptions where we’d all punishments are part every time I have
to give a sentence I hear a probation report so it might be that it’s not
appropriate to send a single woman that Saudi Arabia because of discrimination
against women Saudi Arabia except that completely the point I was really making
was that everybody has an obligation to be a decent person and leave other
people alone unhindered and the challenge is if I go to another country
and where I don’t have any automatic right I haven’t even paid my taxes and
turn up as a tourist and frankly you know I don’t take my clothes off for
some holy site maybe I should be thrown out the country not because I’ve
committed any heinous crime actually I mean I don’t care about idols and
whether I make well actually being naked but we might
be he described been a general sense you know it’s just that there is some
obligation I think on on both citizens and non-citizens by the way to behave
properly but I think if when I go abroad I think in a way I need you know I need
to behave I need to be conscious of what the norms are doesn’t mean I wouldn’t
necessarily buy butter but I might try to rebel against it but there might be a
penalty for me in rebellion against her and I might have to live with that that
much as what I’m saying gone so it’s the people that are are in this country actually their citizenship in there doesn’t given the same rights let me be
tough they should not wear that beforehand I can’t tell you what happens
is and you know there’s this famous state statement which is very unfair but
true one couldn’t you when one bad you know one good you makes it one think
nice effect is one bad you could do all of the people there is ever there is a
rage of the racism in this country which we need to confront in all sorts of ways
but is not necessarily to be tolerant as thought as a people who jeopardized
reputations Simon you know I don’t think of a specific example like the rage of
the public I know has some mild justification by which I mean if they
were Brits doing it they would say lock them up if they were non Brits they’d
say well we can lock them up an expense or we can just deport them now you know
if you you know if I and of course I mean and I was the one I was the Jew who
argued against sending the amber Hamza to Dourdan until because I reminded
people that spite the king who say when – what’s that place Sandhurst
you couldn’t get a professorship in Jordan unless you’ve been approved by
the secret police so I do say there occasions when you don’t deport people
not because you shouldn’t deport them but because you can’t guarantee what
happens I’m gonna get there so I accept that as a possibility but in general I
think people people you know people have to behave properly and they certainly
have to behave properly if their visitors but that makes me hugely
uncomfortable about the responsibility that one person has for everybody of a
similar Janus everyone tonight yes then I and iron and sort of
surrounded by these young people who are very kind of engaged also who groaning
ah you know don’t remember don’t remember the 1990s person one alive in
this kind of you know fear driven society I’m just not seeing increasing
numbers of young voting increasing numbers of young people going out on
protests I’m just wondering where you see the feature of this episode she got the kind of change in public opinion as
I have a new generation comes of age because there are a generation who tell
me what’s truly scary is that the people who are in the power now were young in
the 60s yeah they were the free love and you know peace generation where we’re
going back to 2002 with the Tony Blair’s and the you know the the various people
who open the door to the type of thinking and legislation you know new
labor wasn’t just new labor it was it was truly pernicious a continuation of
say them yeah I mean for me for me in terms of what Tony Blair did actually
achieved he took the fabric of society cut it up and sold it for cash right
that’s that’s basically what what I see his role as as as haven’t been done and
that was to open that up from what from what monetary a done before the
intangible benefits in the intangible importance of the relationships we have
and how look after each other is beyond
calculation it is beyond that and to break that down and think that we can
calculate on a penny by penny basis what we give to one another through state or
through the big society it is to lose the overall picture the benefit of
people wanting to come to this country if we end up with a symbol or a slippery
slope to a Stasi state really where we’re all asked through the prevention
strategies like look at each other as if we’re all extremists of potential
extremists and who would want to come here and who’d want to live here and
we’ll have a brain drain it was really you know beginning to happen and we’ll
have no value to it there’ll be no aggregate value to it to what’s left of
this society really I’m going to outrageously use my chair privilege to
allow myself to answer some of that to better because I won’t refuse
resettlement in the summer of 2015 where and I’ll anchor Dee’s body was washed up
in front cover pages and I had colleagues who were not for my
organization working on other organizations monitoring Isis’s internal
communications and Isis I don’t know how much you know about have an incredibly
elaborate set of they have newsletters they’ve communications and one of the
things that happened in the kind of September 2015 when Brits and and Europe
was turning towards the idea of welcoming in refugees was that Isis got
very upset because they worried that the narrative that actually Europe might be
welcoming would be really undercutting to people that they were encouraging to
think would not welcome them would never accept them and I always my personal
reflection I want to be really clear I’m not representing my own organization
here is that when when we as a nation sent a statement to Shamima Begum that
she’s not really us now we are sending a statement that lots of other people want
to believe to encourage people to believe that young Muslim Brits are not
really us that there is a divide and exactly the same groups that will make
public statements against those groups end up encouraging other people to
believe the messages that they also saying completely inadvertently and
I think it’s a really dangerous line when we draw lines between us and them
because there are lots of other groups of people trying to draw lines between
us and them whatever that means and we end up feeding that message hey Jed
we’ve got room for one more question can I just go so add something to bed I mean
I think – and there’ll be many more than two but two challenges I think which
which are important and is one is to to help the Jewish community widen its
definition of citizen of active citizenship and questions like poverty
and inequality and the health service and everything else because we need all
of these things and the second thing is is this thorny question about
citizenship when it will plan when it relates to Palestine Israel I mean and I
think we all need help without I think the current government in Israel needs
help that they may not see it that way but I think we need to have some new
thinking and I would hope that future generations so help have some different
sort of thinking then we’ve been able to give so far to that yes there are
challenges I don’t have to lose you about Blair but there’s still other
challenges friendly of Tony Blair but I want I mean one the reason I’m involved
is Syrian refugee stuff is because I want us to have a narrative that’s like
Canada rather like Britain if you look at the media and the whole narrative and
the way the Rif array the refugees and asylum seekers and people come into
countries spoken about it’s entirely different now if that can happen in
Canada I know they’ve got lovely polar bears and lots of ice and all sorts of
other things that make easier why can’t it happen here and it can happen here
but it needs people like you to do it and not you personally but you annual
generation to do it but you personally as well
and you know and it the problem is a you know case the case was never made for
immigration the case was ever made why people should be the case wasn’t made
for Europe you know we had a Twitter of a prime minister who remained in his
Shepherds heart before he ever came to be the prime minister who announced he
was going to have a brexit logical air brakes a referendum which was never
demanded except by the right wing of the Tory Party wasn’t even wanted by the
people but we got it they then then he was so stupid he ended up with the wrong
resolve because apparently didn’t want that result according to some and I’m
now current prime minister and I weren’t so much about the leader of the
Opposition about him I have some thoughts and that was played the hand
that she was dealt with very badly but nobody has made the case for Europe for
the last 40 years by the way nobody made the case why if
we’re going to have lots of more wonderful people in this country we need
to make sure we’ve got enough school places you know I’m a councillor and
Barney I’ve got people who haven’t got schools kyvan got place in secondary
schools and it doesn’t take very much if they’re not very bright to think well
hang on a minute that person who by the way he’s brown so maybe he’s only been
here five minutes got the school place because he lived three doors away no
there isn’t the answer but our governments collectively in here
I would agree with you have failed to provide an infrastructure and in which
we could make sure that people welcome and so suddenly when we don’t have
nurses people some say we should have had them here well it’d be gone by then
sorry I just you know I’m for someone but it was beautiful
one last question questions I love this is your positive question
what would you like to see the future generation about the change would you
like to see education beautiful question I’m gonna give all – 30 seconds to
answer and Edie you spoke about political education son starting the
game well we just need it I mean and for adults as well you know with our fast
changing world you know we need to you know it’s beyond sociology 101 we really
and that makes us better citizen so a hundred percent and I’m really pleased
to see there’s some citizenship teaching school we had a fairly interesting
headmaster who introduced discussion or current affairs discussion so I also did
religious education one of the homeworks was prove that your God is right God
right next week really so yeah some and everybody hard
we had some interesting arts but but but the idea that you make your students
read the newspapers and discuss it and debate it every week bound us together
in a way that I haven’t seen in other schools and I think that should be
compulsory I mean I think the dangers would give
you schools everything to do that we failed to do I think the real challenge
for teachers is every time there’s a problem Society sex education let the
teachers do it citizenship let the teachers do it and
they’re over well mister and somehow I think we ought to get back to families
and parents helping helping them helping parent parents and Families some of whom
are struggling with poverty and struggling with jobs or struggle with
mental health we have to try and help them help their children to understand
what it is to be a citizen of the world and that to me is what your generation
of teachers might be able to do before we end I just want to say one word about
hot potatoes and we talked this evening about living in increasingly divided
times and I think often there are two responses to really difficult
conversations one is when it’s difficult we just avoid them and the other is we
have them in a really poor tone and for me liberal Judaism is doing something
extraordinary in modeling how are we going to have the really difficult
conversations and do it in a way that is respectful and decent so I want to first
of all thank our host of liberal Judaism for tonight but there’s two people who
do so much of the work on these conversations behind the scenes but I’m
gonna ask you to join me in giving them a round of applause it’s hominy very special thank you to Charlotte who
march saw these guys through their three minutes with authority five in the case
of the lawyer thank you again to eat eat it has name enter Danny as well for
being wonderful panelists and thank you guys for your questions it was really
superb and lovely to see as well that nobody doesn’t adjust the home for your
Jewish story but at home for all sorts of stories I just wanted to draw your
attention as well to the Flyers on your seats that are for our day of
celebration and coming up on the 23rd of June and and also to our next top potato
which will be in September currently the 19th of September which
will be actually be about Jewish schools and faith schools and their their role
in society a good thing bad thing up to you come along have your paints a a
piece anyway thank you all have a wonderful evening and I’ll see you next
time can we give off replies to my wonderful co-panelists it takes

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