I feel obligated to spread some cheer this fortnight as we meander through Christmas to the New Year, thinking of promises we can make and break. After all, you can turn your life around at any point – it doesn’t take a cold, wet month and a night out on the piss to transform you, I mean, why the hell do people think…
ANYWAY, on to the cheer! A synagogue in Bradford was due for closure, with its members facing a 10-mile pilgramige (of sorts) to Leeds in order to worship. But (and here comes the cheer) the synagogue was rescued by a fundraising scheme set up by the secretary of a local Mosque. Muslims vastly outnumber Jews in Bradford, a city where racial and religious tensions are often high, and this act of kindness and compassion has lead to a close friendship betweeen these different groups. In fact, Rudi Leavor, the synagogue’s chairman, leaves the keys and alarm codes with Zulfri Kahrim of Bradford Council of Mosques when he goes on holiday. A story to warm the coldest of hearts.
On a similar note, recent estimates show that immigrants contribute to around 35% more in treasury taxes than they cost the UK to house, and few use public services and claim benefits. In fact, immigrants have already helped to save our schools and hospitals from deeper cuts (cuts, which I hasten to add, are forced upon us by English politicians). In fact, even Nigel Farage of Ukip, who has been bewilderingly proud of his tough stance on immigration over the years, now insists that the UK has an obligation to let Syrian refugees into the country. He’s changed his tune a bit.
While we are on the subject of politicans having absolutely no idea what the British public want, the debate of the HS2 high-speed railway (now expected to cost around £80 billion) rallies on. Recent statistics however show that regular train use has risen by 20% in the last four years, whereas use of slower and more nostalgic steam trains has risen by 25%. We aren’t in any rush to get anywhere guys, which is just as well.
It’s also Christmas cheer for Greenpeace’s Arctic 30 who are now free, as well as Pussy Riot, the latter of which have still vowed to topple Putin, as if spending most of the year behind bars was going to help them warm to the dictator.
In other music news, Kanye West has vowed not to ‘talk shit’ for six months. Although this will probably last about as long as our own New Year Resolutions, all we can do is hope he is successful.