If you’re reading this or indeed hearing this. Let me start with the simple thing. Hi. Hello. Welcome to our country. And I mean ours. We share this land together now. We might not have walked on the same land, we might not have walked on the same journey. But our feet now share the same soil and breath the same air. (Watch out for that if you’re in London).
Sometimes it might seem like that’s all we have in common, but let me assure you if you find yourself in a forest of wilderness, hatred and fear. You won’t be too far away from a friendly smile, a sympathetic ear or a cup of tea. A friend.
Some people might scare you.
Some journalists might make you feel unwanted.
Some politicians might seem like they hate you.
But remember that these people are individuals, they have their own fears, their own loves, their own problems. That these people also scare lots of other individuals who were born here. Who have lived here their whole life. Individual humans are not always the nicest people, but we are also capable of great love and great compassion. Never forget that. So don’t worry, for every bigot, there are two friends near.
The United Kingdom is a community. Our community. We have over 200 nationalities residing on our shores. From all over the world. From every continent. I believe that’s something to boast about, and I believe others do, too. For diversity truly makes us richer. If everyone was the same how boring would it be? So my friend, it’s OUR country. Welcome. Thank you for making it a more interesting place to live with your stories and your experiences. Thank you for understanding that we all aren’t perfect here but some of us really try to be better people. I wish you the best and hope you find more of us better people to call your friends.
*Last note* reality television programmes like Love Island are a thing in Britain. Best to get involved so you can nod at people when they talk about it. Even if, like me, it confuses your brain. Try not to judge us too harshly.
Peace and love
Chris Sonnex, London, Director