My instantaneous reaction was shock, before my lips compressed into the cold, controlled anger that meant I would detach from any horror, fury or fear that I might otherwise feel, especially two days after seeing pictures of the unspeakable horrors at Belsen. Instead, my detachment allowed me to note the absurdity of certain things:
- The swastika was left-facing - not the exclusively right-facing one used to represent the Nazi party and the BNP. If you are going to use an offensive symbol, have the grace to get it right.
- The irony of using a symbol that has a huge positive significance in *my* ancestral culture against me - it has been on Hindu and Buddhist temples for millenia. It is derived from Sanskrit -"su" meaning "good", "asti" meaning "to be", "ka" being a diminutive. [Or "tika" meaning "little thing" or "mark"] So a swastika means "to be good" or "good little thing". In my ancestral language, a**hole.
- As repelled as I am by the idea, Hitler adopted it in admiration of the Indian Aryans. Of which, as a Punjabi, I am one. Compare my genetic markers with yours, and you'll find that in terms of what's important in your small-minded, racist, evil idea of "racial purity of the Aryan race", I win.
- If you're going to complain about how "furriners" never learn the English language, do feel free to use it properly: the correct spelling is "Pakis" and the correct grammar is "I hate Pakis".
- Do you ever eat a curry? Shop on Christmas Day at your corner shop? Go to the hospital or the doctor's surgery and see a South Asian physician or nurse? Without multiculturalism, you'd have none of that.