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It is quite strange watching our leaders wrestle with difficult concepts in public. The Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby -the leader of the Church of England- is no exception. When evidence is considered, the very idea of endorsing open border policies becomes laughable, but for one reason or another it is more common to ignore the blindingly obvious in favour of a comfortable abdication of responsibility. The Archbishop of Canterbury has one hand on the truth, but the other is clamped firmly over his eyes to prevent him from seeing it. Fumbling around like a blind man, he attempts to describe problems facing British society using only what he can feel with his fingertips.

On the 23rd of February 2018, Welby contradicted his predecessor, Lord Williams, by stating that Sharia Law could not be incorporated into British society. Justin Welby said the Islamic rules are incompatible with Britain’s laws, which have also developed over many centuries.

He added that high levels of immigration from Muslim countries can:

"have an impact on the accepted pattern for choosing a partner, on assumed ages of maturity and sexual activity, and especially on issues of polygamy".

The Archbishop is quite correct here. In his remarks, he recognizes that demographics dictate policy and social norms. He recognizes in his own book that large volumes of Islamic migration to the United Kingdom have led to challenges for the British norms as migrant populations seek to impose their own values. As I wrote in these pages a week ago,

Civic nationalism, the very societies around us, are intrinsically linked to the ethnicity of the people who described those common civic values.

Welby is still ruminating on this simple truth.

"The problem is reimagining Britain through values applied in action can only work where the narrative of the country is coherent and embracing. Sharia, which has a powerful and ancient cultural narrative of its own, deeply embedded in a system of faith and understanding of God, and thus especially powerful in forming identity, cannot become part of another narrative.

‘Accepting it in part implies accepting its values around the nature of the human person, attitudes to outsiders, the revelation of God, and a basis for life in law, rather than grace, the formative word of Christian culture."

The Archbishop recognizes that Islamic values are rooted in the people of that faith, just as British values are rooted in Britons. He knows by his own proclamation that reconciling Sharia with the British legal system is utterly impossible. He recognizes that the Muslim cultural norm of marrying children and possessing multiple wives cannot be simply argued away by adherence to British values of tolerance and politeness. Still, he stops short of suggesting the logical next step; that in the United Kingdom polygamy is illegal and therefore such Islamic recognized marriages should not be considered legal by the state. He does not suggest that, perhaps, people who live in the United Kingdom should be forced to obey the law when it comes to the legal age of marriage as defined by Britons themselves.

Welby sees the problem but refuses to say anything coherent about the solution. Worse, just two days later in an article in the Daily Mail, he reverses his position almost entirely to be one that parrots what are essentially socialist talking points about migration and economics.

"Welcoming strangers to our country and integrating them into our culture is important. We must be generous and allow ourselves to change with the newcomers and create a deeper, richer way of life. We also need to support strongly those poorer communities that have had high levels of immigration."

Archbishop Welby, could you explain to us more about how we should not allow Sharia Law in Britain, but also allow ourselves to change with the newcomers?

What deeper, richer way of life are you referring to? What does this deeper and richer Britain look like? What values are we adopting from other cultures? What values of our own are we giving up? There are so many questions that you are leaving unanswered because you refuse to engage your considerable intellect.

The Archbishop also recognizes that throughout the Western world immigrants concentrate in urban areas leading to fragmented and ghettoized communities divided on ethnic and religious lines. He says nothing about how those communities should be supported through their process of becoming culturally enriched, as the indigenous population is replaced and in many places becomes a minority or even absent entirely. What support can be given to working-class families who are driven from the places their ancestors have lived for centuries? Should we just tell them that they are actually experiencing a richer way of life now that their neighbors don't speak the same language or accept that women have rights?

The Archbishop calls for a "re-imagining" of Britain in the wake of Brexit, which he calls divisive. He rails against the lack of progress in the construction of new homes - a problem exacerbated by nearly a quarter of million new migrants arriving every year, and high birth rates from polygamous Muslim families. Is there such a need for new construction to house the Britons, whose birth-rate is in slight decline? No- the need for new houses is driven by the newcomers and their children. Why do we need the newcomers? To prop up the ailing neoliberal system which demands endless growth.

The Archbishop talks about cuts to the NHS, austerity and the creaking education system. He places the blame for this woe at the feet of the wealthy, who should pay more to support the infrastructure. Blaming greed and economics, he said

"In economics we welcome growth and disciplined and properly behaving markets. Equally, human dignity demands that economics is made for people, not people for economics. Unfettered greed is not merely distasteful, it can wreck lives and whole economies, as we have seen.

Jesus spoke of God’s love for the poor, and of woes for the wealthy and complacent. We are a country that can meet our needs and be generous on top to the rest of the world."

Without overtly endorsing the lunacy of the Labour Party, this is an endorsement of socialist economics. Disciplined and properly behaving markets that demand wealth redistribution? Interesting indeed, that it emerges that Jesus was a communist with a firm understanding of Marxist economic theory. It is true that it is the nature of British people to be polite and helpful and this has, to some extent, been the downfall of our nation as we have become so meek that to complain about being replaced in our own lands appears unseemly. Archbishop Welby correctly notes that the NHS, welfare and the education system are struggling but appears to believe that through a wave of the Holy Writ, loaves and fishes will rain across the land emancipating the poor; so long as we raise taxes.

Strange then it is to inform the Archbishop that The Telegraph reported five years ago that each migrant to the United Kingdom -averaged across both EU and non-EU migrants- costs around £8000 each to the taxpayer.

"On average, each migrant consumes between £5,050 and £8,350 per year in state services, including benefits, healthcare, schooling and social services, the Home Office report found."

We know that migration from the continent of Europe proves to be a general net-gain for the country, so is it impolite to suggest that the ballpark figure of £8000 is in fact much higher for non-European migrants? Is it too much of a stretch to suggest that conflating Europeans in the UK with migrants from the Middle East and Africa serves only to obfuscate the issues at hand? Everything the Archbishop worries himself with -education, housing, healthcare- are parts of the British social infrastructure that are driven to breaking point by immigration. His solution is to tax the British people more to pay for the new arrivals- because we lack common British values, evidenced, in his mind, by the fact that a majority of Britons who could be bothered to vote want to leave the European Union. I did not know that British values include bending the knee to Guy Verhofstadt and Angela Merkel.

"Today in Britain we are suffering from a lack of such common values – values that have deep roots in our nation’s Christian history.

There will be great changes regardless of whether they are based on those Christian values or whether we just let things take their course.

But if it is the latter, then the consequences for the poor and needy will be dire, our pride in our country diminished and our contribution to the world stifled. We must use hope to heal for the future. We must be a warm, welcoming nation. We must never crush the new diversity and freedoms.

It is the duty of the Church and of all us to reimagine what it means to be this remarkable nation in the 21st Century."

What new freedoms would they be, Archbishop? The freedom to not be ourselves anymore? The freedom to hate ourselves for everything we are or were? The freedom to welcome our annihilation? That sounds like a suicide cult to me. If we truly are remarkable, is it not the case that there is something about British life that is worthy of protection and conservation for the generations that follow us? If we are led by this church into a reimagining of Britain, then that future is open-bordered, socialist in economics and Islamic in faith. The British culture that was passed to us -this centuries old, imperfect but beautiful culture- will not survive this current century to be argued about by our descendants as we argue about it today.

Archbishop Welby knows that demographic changes are reshaping the nation, but he says nothing about the right of the British people to remain as they are and have been for centuries.

One of the truly great British values is the idea of leaving your fellow Briton alone to do as he wishes. It has been part of our social compact that in exchange for a few tokens, Britons live as they wish without molestation. That centuries-old idea, which predates Locke and Rousseau, rooted in the Magna Carta, is now tossed aside. Instead of his role in society being contingent on his skill and willingness to participate, the Briton is forced to pay more for services that do not function and to support migrant populations who exploit his infrastructure, hate his faith and laugh at his values.

In Britain, we are ruled by a monarch who is styled

Elizabeth the Second, by the Grace of God, of the United Kingdom of Great Britain and Northern Ireland and of Her other Realms and Territories Queen, Head of the Commonwealth, Defender of the Faith.

Where is the shield now? Where is our faith? The leader of the Anglican faith knows that demographic change is the fundamental issue facing not just the British but all Europeans, but he looks away. It is a sin that he prefers the easy answers posed by the globalist left, to make the people pay more because they will not complain too loudly. It is rank disdain for our people and our ways that he says they must change to fit with the newcomer, rather than they with us.

The Englishman has as much right to exist as any other race. It is not xenophobia to say that you do not want to overturn everything that is true about yourself. Justin Welby would do well to recognize that.

Ash Sharp

by Ash Sharp

Editor.