Here is an interesting fact. Only 14 per cent of people in the UK are “black, Asian, mixed race or otherwise” (ie not white). Yet half – four out of eight – of the candidates vying to take the place of the disgraced British Prime Minister Boris Johnson, as leader of the Conservative Party, and therefore new or new premier, are non-white.
In case you are worried, this article is not about the infighting of the British Conservative Party. Not only do I not know who will win the competition; I can’t even worry about it that much. Conservatives are likely to be politically doomed to be in the 2024 election, regardless of who they choose.
On the evening of July 12, there were only eight candidates left. Three of the others did not obtain sufficient marks to pass the first selection phase. But even all three who did not make it technically belong to the “visible minorities”: Sajid Javid, Rehman Chisti and Priti Patel.
Long live diversity
For which Kemi Badenoch (Nigerian origins, born in England), Suella Braverman (Indian origins, born in England), Jeremy Hunt (English origins, born in England), Penny Mordaunt (same as above), Rishi Sunak (origins Indians, born in England), Liz Truss (English origins, born in England), Tom Tugendhat (same as above), and Nadhim Zahawi (Kurdish origins, born in Iraq).
Most of them are probably secular, but even in the UK there is still a small political price to pay for publicly declaring it. Therefore at least formally three are Protestants, two are Catholics, two are Hindu and one is Muslim. And women are half. Long live diversity, but what does this say about 1) the UK, 2) the West and 3) the world?
About diversity in British politics he says less than it seems: 65 “non-white” MPs represent exactly 10 per cent of seats, while in the general population they are 14 per cent. But this percentage has increased with every election since 1988, and will likely soon accurately reflect the ethnic makeup of the population.
However, are half of the contenders for the next British prime minister “non-white”? For real? How can this be explained, especially considering that the Conservative Party, while occupying more than half of the seats in parliament, has only a third of “non-white” MPs?
It is probably due to that old story that immigrants work even harder, not just to fit in but to emerge, because the hostility of some of the natives makes them feel insecure. And the immigrants who actually manage to emerge, like most of the economically and professionally successful people in any society, tend to think that their success depends mainly on the efforts made. A belief that will naturally bring them closer to conservative political parties, and lead them to strive to emerge within such parties. So there is no mystery, no miracle.
What is striking is that the British white majority, which was still openly racist just a generation ago, now welcomes a list of premier candidates in which half are non-white. Also, none of them are puppet candidates, and the most likely winner is Rishi Sunak. And it is good to all that women are half the size.
Is this transformation also taking place in the rest of the West? Yes, but at different speeds.
In Australia, Canada and New Zealand, “visible minorities” represent about a quarter of the population (24, 25 and 30 per cent respectively), but only New Zealand has a proportional percentage of parliamentarians. Canada has 15 percent of minorities visible in parliament, while in Australia the figure drops to 7 percent. They do better with women MPs: 30 percent in Canada, 39 percent in Australia, 49 percent in New Zealand.
Germany is more or less in the same situation as the UK: 14 per cent of visible minorities in the country, but only 11 per cent of seats in the Bundestag. France is far worse off: only nine out of 577 MPs in the National Assembly are “non-white”, even though they represent 15 percent of the population. Bad also for women in parliament: only 25 percent in Germany and 27 percent in France.
So far the United States is the only “Western” country to have had a non-white head of state (Barack Obama), but it could soon be the UK’s turn. In other respects, however, the United States lags behind: in Congress, non-whites are only 23 percent, while they make up 40 percent of the population. And women are only 27 percent in the congress.
And the show ends here. Apart from Western Europe and its overseas heir countries, hardly anyone is conducting such an experiment in creating genuinely multicultural democracies under the pressure of large-scale voluntary migration.
We can already conclude that these emerging companies are far less turbulent and unequal than the pessimists feared (perhaps with the exception of the United States). It remains to be seen what benefits they can bring in the long term, but so far so good, it seems.
(Translation by Francesco De Lellis)