Wednesday, 27 February 2008

British Stiff Upper Lip

We British are just terrible at complaining. It is not in our nature you know. Stiff upper lip and all that ? “Don’t want to ‘rock the boat’ old boy !” We grin and bear it. Often you will hear a British person say in a crowd “Sorry” - when someone else treads on their feet and the number of times that we say “Thank you” at a checkout !

We are getting better - well a little perhaps. At least when served poor food in restaurants, we are starting to complain - usually by being offensive and loud - no one has taught the British how to complain with dignity and respect. We are surprised when we do receive good service - then what do we do or say ? Express our appreciation ? No - we do and say nothing !

When it comes to poor goods, services and high rip-off prices we still have a long way to go ! Worse when you look at the government policies that we all suffer - we know that so much is morally and ethically wrong ... but what do we do ? “Keep calm and carry on.” - it is the British way you know !

Quiet resilience ? I think not. More like supine apathy and demoralization. Mediocrity, moral and financial dependency upon the state, criminal, anti-social and dysfunctional behaviour are the more usual characteristics of latter day Britain; smothered by layers of complacency and incompetence.

Remember the ‘Procedural Prison’ ? You are trapped by layers of policies, bureaucracy, a complacent acceptance that this is the correct way; it is established, legislated - “How dare you complain ! You are just a trouble-maker who wants to spoil our ‘game’”.

They have taken my life, my career, my future and my health. I have been subjected to 6 months isolation; my life has been put on hold; my family have been hurt and are suffering. It has cost me a fortune in every sense. I have evidence of collusion, coercion, fraud, victimization, bullying, intimidation and conspiracy. What gives anyone the right to inflict such torture on another human being ?

The answer is your school, LEA, DCFS and Government. In every response to the many letters that I have written, there is the overriding sense of complacency - realize that they have the freedom to break any and all of the rules with the comforting reassurance that you can take your case to either a tribunal or the civil courts ... if your health and bank balance permits it. So, the attitude is, if you persist then justice might be served in the end and after many months; by which time you will have lost everything that mattered.

It is the British way ! We have all suffered from this hindsight accountability process from time to time. It might be an invalid parking fine, billing error, bank error - these happen all the time; no one questions why - there is an acceptance that is the way it is and you can always trudge around filling in forms, writing letters and spend hours on the telephone after the event to try to recover your loss - with no expectation of an apology for that is an admission of liability. The fact is that most of us simply accept the injustice and can not be bothered to complain - “What’s the point ?” So keep a stiff upper lip, whistle, smile and carry on - be grateful that you are British and pay the price !

Advice ? Forget being British ! This is your life. You must fight for all that you are worth. Take control and keep control. Write to anyone and everyone - it might not help you but it might help the next teacher. As I said before; fight with honour and dignity and never ever give in and never ever stop - Don’t Quit !