Tag Archives: Britain

British Conservatives Fight Forced Marriages

David Cameron, leader of Britiain’s Conservative Party, pledged to end forced marriages if he became prime minister. He believes the Forced Marriage Act of 2007 does not go far enough to prevent young women from being pressured into marriages against their will in order to please parents. He supports several changes such as raising the minimum age for women who are married abroad, insisting every spouse knows English before arrival, making groom and bride be separately interviewed to ensure there is willingess from both parties to be married, and forcing anyone who wants to get married abroad to register that intent prior to leaving.

We oppose forced marriages, but some of Cameron’s ideas could readily backfire. What if a person on vacation falls in love and wants to get married? It is common among many immigrants for the father to go on ahead, earn money, and then send for the wife and children. The Cameron proposal would hnder that process since the wife(my mother) usually learns English after arrival, not before.

End Education Apartheid In Britain Says Educator

Dr. Anthony Sheldon told a gathering of British educators it was time to end the system of apartheid schooling which enbles those with wealth to attend institutions which enable children to attend the best universities and therefore secure well paying positions in society. He was particularly concerned about the powerful independent sector of Britih education whose students always attain higher scores on tests and push their graduates into the most outstanding universities. Sheldon emphasized the current system whereby a handful of poor children are plucked from poverty and given an excellent education simply perpetuates the overall dismal showing of most schools servicing the poorer people of society. He asked the independent schools to reach out and form alliances with schools in their area which have many poor children in order to bridge the education gap.

Dr. Sheldon’s words are sincere, but ignore the realities of life. Independent schools might reach out to “help” a school in a poor area, but the enthusiasm of year one will have disappeared by year 3. He ignores the issue is not “helping” but creating a new system of education that will benefit all children and will be tuned into needs of 21st century life. In the 21st century, we don’t need “do-gooders” we need to do good for all.

Bush Environment Conference Goal- Pollute On As Usual

The opening paragraph by Leonard Dolye of an article appearing in The Independent expresses European cynicism of George Bush’s attitude toward greenhouse emissions. “For the first time in 16 years a major environment conference opens in Washington hosted by the Bush administration. But no concrete results are expected, and that-say European participants- is the point of this high-level meeting.” Britain is not sending any high level diplomat to waste his/her time at a meeting called by the world’s worst polluter to undermine UN efforts at protecting the environment. It is politics as usual for Bush who is against the Kyoto agreement, against controls over emissions, and standing fast in protection of a status quo which urges polluters to continue their efforts to increase pollution.

This meeting is undoubtedly a Bush attempt to prove to the world he is “for the environment.” The president is a master at using words of the opposition to prove he is for policies he opposes.