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Being British
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What does being british mean to you?

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It is to respect your country and the people in it. To respect the beliefs and rules and see it as a second country - if an immigrant. And treat it as you would your own; be prepared to live within these rules. To be able to obtain a passport and to enjoy British culture but at the same time contribute to the society ideology and culture from your background. Many of us are happy to have this input. Feel free to live your culture and live in peace and make friendships with people.
Chris, Bath, United Kingdom

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Being British myself I find that this notion has many aspects. Although I have an Iranian father, I was born and raised here. However, I feel there are still some issues to be considered. I myself have had some difficulty with my name in the past when applying for jobs etc.. However, I am proud to be British in a multicultural society, and feel being British is about integration, tradition and progress. As a nation our economy is booming, and our way of life has improved over the years. We must therefore I feel embrace our identities as British people, look back at our cultures, histories and achievements and blend them into our proud heritage that is being British. Colour, creed and religion are all aspects of modern British identity, so embrace them and work towards keeping Britain a proud nation that continues to succeed in the international world economy, as well as our own nation, building a fair, just and tolerant society.
Shirvin Zeinalzade, Highgate, United Kingdom

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what makes a person British?- Iíll tell you: A free market economy. Individual Freedom Limited Government National Parliamentary Democracy Personal and Family Responsibility The Rule of Law. Strong National Defences.
Peter, Cheltenham, United Kingdom

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Several things: valuing unhurried, charming, (and at times frustrating) eccentric behaviors; displaying and expecting civic responsibility, broad tolerance, and an understanding of a morality common to humanity; fostering lower-case conservativism, cheery optimism, and persistence; understanding that the "small" things in life are the truly important things, and knowing that sweeping, deterministic utopian ideologies always lead to hideous and tragic dystopias; and hoping and believing that when it comes to important, common matters most people are decent most of the time.
James E. Davis, Jacksonville, Illinois, USA

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I am English and British and in many ways proud of this. I do, however, consider myself more of a European and see this as the future rather than clinging to the past. Much of what once differentiated Britons from other races is now almost irrelevant in a modern multi-cultural world. "Britishness" needs to evolve and to take on the best of the immigrant cultures rather than highlighting the differences between ethnic white Britons and the new British subjects. Sadly many people who propound themselves as British display xenophobia at its worst.
Keith Widdop, England, United Kingdom

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Being British is being able to moan about anything and everything, and not truly appreciate anything. The weather, the nhs, the roads, the schools, the crime levels - no one can be satisfied with anything. Oh yeah, and thereís the monarchy. Everyone seems up for ousting them, but I think for once we ought to be proud and more than content with our royal family. They are British - a unified family with moral values.
Shahid Hussain, United Kingdom

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To be British is to be multicultural. The 4 nations that make up Britain, each with their own cultures, the many peoples that conquered us in our ancient history and the many we conquered in more recent times have all contributed to our multi-cultural culture and multi-lingual language
James, United Kingdom

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I was born in Afghanistan and came to Britain (legally) as a child with my parents - I am a British Afghan. I am proud to be British and proud to be an Afghan. I value the cultural and religious diversity of the British society. Being a citizen is about making positive contribution to society and living in harmony with others. We Brits moan too much instead of appreciating the good things that we have!!
Safia, London, United Kingdom

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You ask what it means to be British, and what are the unifying values that group us together. The answer is our sovereign as Head of State. To be British in the UK is to accept cultural diversity that has been brought to these shores largely due to the nationís history. And anyone who chooses to become British and to live in this country does so knowing he is permitted to become part of that society at the goodwill of his host nation. Good manners dictate he acknowledges and respects the culture of his hosts, and makes every effort to intergrate into his adopted society.
Trevor Yang, London, United Kingdom

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As someone born in the UK but with a Polish name, I regard myself as British. To be English you need to be of Anglo-Saxon origin, Welsh, Irish or Scottish people are of Celtic origin, each making up what it takes to be British. "British" is an all-encompassing adjective to describe anyone from the UK, whether English, Bangladeshi, Canadian or Kenyan in ethnicity. The passport is proof of Britishness, but let us not forget that that simple word is what gives the UK an advantage over France, the Netherlands and other countries with ethnic diversity - we have a word which aids integration: British.
Raymond Goslitski, Leuven, Belgium

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