"The Polish Perspective" - A letter from New Europeans' coordinator and local resident Michal Siewniak to the Welwyn Hatfield Times:
In 1998, I started my history degree at the Catholic University of Lublin. I completed my Masters in 2003. During my studies, I had an amazing opportunity to learn a lot about the histories of other countries and nations.
I always 'envied' the UK. Your democracy has such a long and rich tradition.It has been established many centuries ago and I always felt that some of the countries, including my native Polan, will never properly 'catch up'. The maturity of politicians in Britain and quality of the political debate has always fascinated me. Who would have said that I, as well as many other EU nationals, will have an opportunity and privilege, under freedom of movement, to live and work here.
Recent, rather politically turbulent unpredictable times, the failure of politicians to act with respect and dignity reminds me of times back home when the 'language of violence of division' was a norm. Here in the UK we sometimes 'laughed' at the Polish, Hungarian or Italian parliaments. We think that we know better, however it seems today that we too still have a lot to learn.
I hope this is not the end of the 'British democracy'. If it is, I hope that we will all start recognising that it is not only our right, but responsibility to behave in a 'civilised manner' before the fighting, constant accusations, shouting, and booing will escalate further.
Democracy is a GIFT, let's not lose it but cherish and embrace it with all our hearts and minds.
Michael Siewniak, Polish national, 'Polish Brit', proud European and globalist.