Should ex-pat Britons be forced by their host countries to "integrate?" Watch

Prince Rhyus
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Given that there's a lot of debate around immigrants to the UK integrating, should countries like Spain, Portugal, Thailand and the United Arab Emirates take steps to get people from the UK to integrate with the people whose country they are living in?
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xJessx
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Yes I think they should. Maybe it's because I'm a languages student but what really annoys me is when people move to countries like Spain and France and don't learn the language and then wonder why the locals don't speak to them!
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JCM89
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Some places encourage integration. If you emigrate to Quebec then you have to take immersion classes in French.

It seems rather basic that you should have at least a working knowledge of the primary language spoken in the country / province you live. I was amazed to find that the parents of one of my friends don't speak English - they've been living here since 1975 but their children still have to translate for them.
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x01
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Yes why would it be any different for them just because they are british or were.
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Tinkerbee
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No. I lived in Sri Lanka for some years, and shock horror I didn't go around in a Sari, I never learnt the language, didn't enjoy curry and many of my friends were fellow ex pats. When you live in a foreign country it is nice to keep hold of things/customs from "back home".
Maybe this makes me ignorant, but I enjoyed my time there, got along great with everyone and managed to "integrate" in some sense of the word.
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coldfusion
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(Original post by Lizia)
It depends what it would involve. I 100% believe that they should be forced to learn the local language, obey the local laws and follow the local customs in public. If you move somewhere, you should speak the language. The only exceptions I can think of are places where your language is basically the (joint) local language anyway, like British expats in Hong Kong, although I think you should still learn enough to cope should you find someone who doesn't speak English.


I think the worst thing about immigration in this country is that we don't force people to integrate on that basic level. I see so many people in the shop where I work who speak little to no English at all, and it just makes everything ten times harder. They also have no respect for English customs, which just antagonises people and makes them less willing to be tolerant of their lack of English.
I don't think they have a choice in this matter. However i agree that language is vital. Everyone emigrating anywhere should speak the local language.
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Paxdax
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(Original post by Lizia)
I was thinking of the expats in the UAE who seem to think they have the right to disobey local standards of modesty and decency, just because the British viewpoint considers it archaic or sexist.
Since UAE is a de facto slave-state, their little scruples can probably be ignored. Besides, the Arabs WANT westerners there to do white collar jobs.
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Hanelisar
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To an extent, yes. As a forces child I moved to loads of different countries - sometimes for only a couple of years - but we'd always make an effort to meet our neighbours and use the local shops and pick up at least the basics ('hello' 'goodbye' 'thanks' 'two beers please'). And obviously we obeyed the laws. But we didn't immerse ourselves in the local culture, we'd go to the country's British Schools (or American, if there wasn't a British one locally) and we'd meet up with other ex-pats, because you miss home. But then it was a different situation for us because the UK government forced us to these countries. And also we knew we'd be moving back to the UK in a few years and so really had to get qualifications such as GCSEs and A levels (or IB) so as to make the uni application process easier. Which we couldn't have done in the local school.

But yeah, I think you should try and learn some of the language and meet the people, if only for the cultural experience. As for places like the UAE...I think as best you can without completely defying strong personal beliefs, especially if you haven't moved their of your own volition. If we'd ever had to go there then we'd probably have done our best to dress at least somewhat conservatively (no short shorts or mini skirts or strap-tops, and my mum would've made the same apply to my brothers for our familial feminism), and learnt some Arabic.
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maths-enthusiast
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I am glad most Britons here agree they should abide by local customs in morally upright countries.

Another case of immoral westerners being semi-nude

Omanis frown on ‘half-naked’ (western nonmuslim) expats
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numb3rb0y
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(Original post by maths-enthusiast)
I am glad most Britons here agree they should abide by local customs in morally upright countries.

Another case of immoral westerners being semi-nude
Ohnoes, flesh!

No, I don't think they should be forced to conform, nor do I think immigrants to Britain should be. Cultural integration is laudable, but coercion is a terrible way to go about it; all it does is drive more wedges into the community and generate acrimony.
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Diaz89
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Yes definitley they should at least learn the indigenous language as they expect immigrants to do here.
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miv
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"Forced" ? No I think that it's a personal decision to do so. Multiculturalism is ok but when in Rome, do as the Romans do.
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Rogerio134
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(Original post by Prince Rhyus)
Given that there's a lot of debate around immigrants to the UK integrating, should countries like Spain, Portugal, Thailand and the United Arab Emirates take steps to get people from the UK to integrate with the people whose country they are living in?
I love how people react to questions like this when it is british people being forced to intergrate.

No one gives a ****! but when the shoe is on the other foot and people say should Islamic people etc be foreced to do ANYTHING...then they are racists :confused:

Its just a sign that EQUAL RIGHTS is a very slanted and misskewd ideal which really only works for one party and dosent really work for others.

Why should white brits be any diffrent to Muslims etc, its exactly the same thing but because its not a known racial debate then its fine :woo:

Intergration for all or none.
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Aphotic Cosmos
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Yes, absolutely.

Look at the ex-pat community in Spain - most of them don't even bother to learn Spanish. Such arrogance gives Brits a terrible reputation abroad.

I've long maintained that the EU works two ways - yes, we have lots of immigration to the UK through the EU, but we send lots of emigrants out into the EU, particularly the Mediterranean. We expect cultural integration here, but there seems to be this general attitude that it's fine for Brits to piss about and act like idiots either on holiday or living abroad.
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Alasdair
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I don't think they should be 'forced' to do anything. However, as somebody who's lived abroad, I do think you get a much better experience if you get involved with local people...
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Pocket Calculator
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YES. the British ghettos you get on the coast of Spain are ridiculous, and it's hilariously ironic how such places are typically full of people who cite "immigrants" as one of the reasons they left the UK.

likewise, immigrants to the UK should be encouraged to do the same (or admitted on the condition that they do).

When in Rome...
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Prince Rhyus
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Expats are even standing for election - http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti...ion-Spain.html with over 100 having stood as candidates in local elections in 2007.
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she
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(Original post by Tinkerbee)
No. I lived in Sri Lanka for some years, and shock horror I didn't go around in a Sari, I never learnt the language, didn't enjoy curry and many of my friends were fellow ex pats. When you live in a foreign country it is nice to keep hold of things/customs from "back home".
Maybe this makes me ignorant, but I enjoyed my time there, got along great with everyone and managed to "integrate" in some sense of the word.
And you're happy with immigrants to this country doing the same?
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René Artois
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(Original post by Prince Rhyus)
Expats are even standing for election - http://www.dailymail.co.uk/news/arti...ion-Spain.html with over 100 having stood as candidates in local elections in 2007.
Taking part in Spains political system, isnt that the pinnacle of integration?
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Tinkerbee
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(Original post by she)
And you're happy with immigrants to this country doing the same?
Obviously. Why would I have one rule for myself and one rule for others?
My own experiences are the very reason I'm happy for immigrants here to do the same.

The one exception I would have would be language. In Sri Lanka my parents tried to learn Singhalese but most people spoke English and all their work was done in English so it didn't go so well...
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