Why UKIP is better for immigrants than Labour or the Tories
The mainstream media that has portrayed UKIP as anti-immigrant has spectacularly missed the point. UKIP offers real hope to immigrants in a way that Conservatives and Labour can't understand. Whatever you have heard, many love UKIP's Euroscepticism too, and for good reason
The greatest states have always welcomed the contribution of those born abroad. One of the oldest well known records of the celebration of such contributions on a large scale comes from the Roman Empire.
It awarded foreigners serving in its military Roman citizenship -- a hard-earned and well respected welcome into the Roman nation.
Fast-forwarding two millennia and, with specific reference to the United Kingdom, we now have a large range of immigrant populations which, after decades of failed multiculturalism, yearn for integration.
This is often the case despite having been born here: people who really should be integrated for their own benefit, as well as for the benefit of wider British society.
I have recently published a book on Amazon entitled, "Great British Eurosceptic Immigrant", which not only gives reasons for the British immigrants' patriotism, but provides reasons for immigrants to become natural Eurosceptics.
Below are some of the key reasons I identify for immigrant Euroscepticism, as well as synergies with UKIP.
Let us start with the very definition of an immigrant. Whilst most of the British people have been born here, and as such happen to be British purely accidentally, by God's choice if you will, the immigrants actively chose to come to the United Kingdom and often also to become British.
For that reason, in most cases, the immigrants have elected to sign up to the British way of life, the Anglo-Saxon business model, our love of civil liberties and so on, which is what brought them here.
It is the strongest possible vote of confidence in Great Britain, and a simultaneous vote of no confidence in the "Old Country" -- they got here by voting with their feet. At the same time, European or not, they have elected to come to the United Kingdom over anywhere else in the European Union, which proves that they have not put their confidence in the Brussels-Berlin government but rather in her Britannic Majesty.
The latter allegiance would be especially true for the Commonwealth citizens for whom Elizabeth II already is the head of state. For that simple reason, we can readily assume that such a population will not be naturally Europhile. If anything, it may be rather Eurosceptic.
Labour has long tried to come across as the only choice for immigrants and ethnic minorities, but the harsh reality is that whilst it does a lot to campaign for such votes, it gives very little back to the communities.
It might even be more accurate to refer to Labour as failing these minorities. Ever since the days of New Labour, when the party went after the corporates, professionals, and middle classes, whilst making itself hardly distinguishable from the Conservatives, it has not only forgotten about its so-called white, working class "core", but the ethnic minority voters too.
That is why Ed Miliband won the leadership contest against his brother -- on the back of a promise to return Labour to its far left unionist roots.
Yet the Labour Party's failing of the ethnic minorities is nowhere more visible than in London, where the Labour-governed boroughs are undergoing a rapid and unopposed gentrification which displaces entire ethnic minority communities to Outer London boroughs or even further afield.
These communities are replaced by Labour-voting liberal young professionals, often sponsored by their Conservative-voting parents, with a blessing from the Labour "intelligentsia" of Islington or Hampstead.
The Labour MP Simon Danczuk has perhaps put it best: "Labour has been hijacked by the North London liberal elite".
Many immigrants to the United Kingdom are religious, and many of them happen to be Christian.
The European Union is not perceived as a natural ally of Christianity, which perhaps has been most visibly highlighted in the Pope's speech to the shocked European Parliament, during which His Holiness referred to the Union as a "grandmother, no longer fertile and vibrant".
The complacent eurocrats were caught off guard, yet they have presided over years of Christian neglect.
In particular, EU-wide legislative processes allowed for a situation where one case of a Finnish immigrant to Italy complaining about a cross in a classroom almost caused all school crosses across the continent needing to be taken down, had the European Tribunal not seen sense at the last minute.
Also, many are aware that the European Council of Religious Leaders seriously under-represents Christians and over-represents non-indigenous religions.
Such strategic mistakes already put Christians in the Eurosceptic camp, and whilst UKIP proudly promotes itself as the Christian party the others work hard on their non-denominational if not atheist image, which makes UKIP an obvious Christian choice.
As Sir John Major, followed by Grant Schapps, pointed out, "the immigrants are natural conservatives". Indeed, that is very true as, on average, immigrants are quite religious and family-oriented, as well as likely to set up their own businesses, and hence create jobs.
However, due to the Tories' perceived elitism, conservative immigrants are not all that likely to vote Conservative. Which is where UKIP comes in with its pro-small business and low tax policies, and why the party does so well with the (small ‘c’) conservative ethnic minority communities.
UKIP policies such as cutting EU red tape, provision of business rates relief or enforcing mandatory periods of free parking on local authorities are just what small businesses need.
When you take account of the common perception of Conservatives representing various corporate interests and Labour being anti-business, there’s one clear winner left as far as small businesses are concerned.
But far from attracting solely the entrepreneurs, UKIP also wants lower taxes for the upwardly mobile, i.e. also typically conservative-minded immigrants from the minimum wage to the GBP 45-55,000 per year salary brackets.
Additional weight is added by the fact that these policies have been fully costed and checked by the Centre for Economics and Business Research (CEBR).
Lastly, but not less importantly, just like their British-born counterparts many of our immigrants are growing weary of the growing importance of Germany on the continent which has become apparent since the Great Recession, and which is being exercised via EU structures.
Despite the handouts to the Eastern EU countries, many nationals from that region are particularly cautious of Germany's dominance and hence begin to perceive Euroscepticism as the patriotic stance, even though until a decade or two ago Europhilia would have been recognised as the patriotic outlook due to it being a rebellion against Soviet-enforced communism.
A similar mistrust is apparent also amongst the southern Europeans, many of whom feel enslaved by way of debt obligations to the European Union in general and Germany in particular.
Given that large numbers of British immigrants hail from both these regions, this particular strand of German-EU-scepticism is certainly on the up. But equally, many immigrants from other continents have come to the United Kingdom in pursuit of the Anglo-Saxon business environment and are no fans of the ever-increasing meddling by the European Union with its Franco-German business model.
Now that UKIP has dealt with the multiple allegations and smear attempts, and given its newly-found major party status, it has also become more appealing to the wider public, including the immigrant communities.
After all, proposing a managed migration policy and integration of the existing migrant communities into British society does not make a party anti-immigrant.
Further, fielding a suite of immigrant parliamentary candidates, who in turn become champions of their communities, has also allowed UKIP to reach out to communities which have so often been neglected by the other parties. My Polish community is a perfect case in point when it comes to under-representation in British politics.
London is a great example of how UKIP candidates reflect the ethnic make up of our capital and hence this election will be a great test for our political establishment, as many communities which previously felt alienated will now have a chance to vote for their representatives, often thanks to UKIP.
Despite what the mainstream media have been saying, this is a fascinating general election.
Przemek Skwirczynski is UKIP Parliamentary Candidate for Tooting
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