How do you feel about race relations? Are people just people or do you always have a slight distrust of anyone from outside living in your country? Would anyone be prepared to admit they were racist at heart?
The only reason I ask this is because my home town seems to becoming a haven for immigrants particularly from Eastern Europe.
Peterborough always had an immigrant population with many from Italy, Poland and the Indian sub-continent so much so you never really took notice.
However, now it seems that virtually every other person originates from outside the country and you hear a foreign language being spoken on every street corner.
A few weeks ago I was waiting a bus stop and guy approached me and asked: ‘Do you speak English?’ I couldn’t believe it. I was born less than 10 miles from that very spot.
Now don’t get me wrong I have no problems with people from overseas living here. It makes for an interesting, cosmopolitan city but it’s beginning to get a bit overwhelming in terms of numbers. Even the office where I work which employs 13 people there are 5 nationalities and a sixth (South African) has just left!
My eldest daughter has Lithunaian, Polish and Portugese friends at her school and you would hope that will make her more undertsanding of different lifestyles. That can only be a good thing.
I do have a bit of a problem when we have to respect certain other cultures when that respect isn’t reciprocated. There was a news story about an air stewardess recently who was told not to wear her crucifix because it maybe deemed offensive to other religions – what about their religions? Shouldn’t it work the other way too?
Better still, let’s just treat people as people and respect others beliefs.
There has been some big news stories over here concerning racism on the last two Big Brother series  . I found some of the words used abhorent and was surprised that they are still used any society let alone on live television.
We’ve come a long way in some senses but there still seems to be distrust.
What do you think? Do you think the integration of cultures brings the world together or creates divisions?