It was surely only a matter of time.
Initially Poles had a warm press and sympathy from the political elites, the employers and the trade unions, and their positive input into the British economy was rightfully stressed.
The political elites ? Check.
Employers ? Check.
Trades Unions. Check. As I've pointed out, a bit of a contrast with times past.
There was always an undercurrent of the less successful elements in British society who saw the massive sudden Polish influx as the cause of their own misfortunes, particularly in the rural areas and small provincial towns where the Polish presence was very visible and there was little experience of a multiethnic society.
I get a bit of an undercurrent of 'primitive yokels' from that too. Perhaps the massive influx into areas where employment was already extremely hard to find and extremely low paid - like rural England, Wales and Scotland - had something to do with it.
Initially these voices remained silent, but a virulent campaign in certain newspapers, Polonophobic in effect if not in intention, has now given these malcontents a voice.
Malcontents, eh ? And Polonophobic to boot !
The traditional Polish community's successful practice of integration without assimilation was also unlikely to work with the sheer numbers.
Well, yes. Nowt to argue with there. The displaced Poles, Ukranians and Latvians of the Second World War have integrated pretty well. But they'd (mostly) just fought a war on our side - and I don't think there were getting on for a million of them.
There is a growing volume of hate crimes now against Poles throughout the countryside and the Government needs to take steps to challenge this.
Throughout the countryside ? What about the cities ?
The Indie don't bother to tell us, but Mr Moszczynski is a member of the Presidium of the Federation of Poles in Great Britain.
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