When I posted back on 23rd June about the threat to take the BNP to court over its whites-only membership policy many of you contributed erudite and illuminating comments on what, precisely, constituted 'indigenous' Britishness. One of my favourites was from Costello, quoting Sellar and Yeatman;
"The Scots (originally Irish, but by now Scotch) were at this time inhabiting Ireland, having driven the Irish (Picts) out of Scotland; while the Picts (originally Scots) were now Irish (living in brackets) and vice versa. It is essential to keep these distinctions clearly in mind (and vice versa)."
Now the writs have been issued and we will hear the fascinating legal arguments that m'learned friends will advance.
If, as has been suggested, a race defines itself by language, then the indigenous peoples of these islands, speaking Brythonic in England, lost their cultural identity (but not their genetic dominance) when Anglo-Saxon displaced Brythonic, emerging, with a dash of Latin and Norse French by the time of Chaucer, into English.
It's all nonsense, of course; what the BNP really mean is that if you've got a decent whack of Melanin in your outer wrapping, you can't play. Nothing to do with language, genetics or culture.
And anyway, if people want to form a private club (which is what a political party is) and debar women, or people with red hair, or green-eyed men, or short people, or dark people from membership why on earth should the State intervene? The extension of this to its absurd conclusion is the State regulating the choice of guests at my dinner-table, prescribing an amusing homosexual, a working-class black woman and a handicapped adult to sit at the board each time I host a meal.
I'd sooner join the Ugly Dunces Club than the BNP myself, but if they want to set this rather silly membership criterion, what moral right does the State have to intervene?