22 APRIL 2000, Page 26

Patriotic and Europhile

From Mr Glyn Ford, MEP Sir: Roger Scruton is his own worst enemy (Don't let Blair ruin it', 1 April). His defence of English patriotism threatens to decimate its own supporters. I consider myself an English patriot and believe that the devolution of power to Wales and Scot- land will help to foster its rebirth. Yet Scru- ton's patriotism carries with it his own idiosyncratic conservatism that repels those like myself whose patriotism is more influ- enced by George Orwell's The Lion and the Unicorn than the reaction of the Salisbury Review.

The European Union is not destroying national sovereignty; it is reclaiming sovereignty that has escaped control of national parliaments. The jobs in Rover would not be miraculously resurrected if the EU disappeared. The problem is that industrial society now operates on a Conti- nental scale, not a national one. I can be proud of being English without hiding the reality that 'institutional racism' within the Metropolitan Police acted as an accomplice to enable the murderers of Stephen Lawrence to escape justice.

My English patriotism wants to live in tomorrow's world rather than yesterday's; to be open, generous and tolerant, and to be proud of what we have achieved, and what we will achieve, as a leading part of Britain and the EU.

Glyn Ford MEP

1 Newfoundland Court, Newfoundland Street, Bristol