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AMERICA V ENGLAND - what offends the Brits.

What is something that only the British would find offensive?

The idea that we should refrain from stopping whatever we are doing (working, playing in a sporting fixture, conducting a high profile criminal trial, Operation Market Garden, even sometimes during sex etc.) at regular, civilized intervals in order to enjoy a cup of tea, preferably with a biscuit or two (or cookie, if you must).

The suggestion that this activity is inappropriate simply because it is not yet lunchtime/the end of the match/ we're being shelled by the 10th SS Panzer Division is simply beyond the pale.

There is always time for tea.

An assumption of service. To most British ears a waitress being greeted with “Hi! Can I get a insert generic tea shop item?” sounds abrupt and rude and we lean much more towards “PLEASE may I have a insert generic tea shop item?”

The former assumes that service will be forthcoming; the latter requests it.

2. An inability to understand the social context of a discussion about the weather. When a Brit. speaks about the weather to a stranger it will be for one of several reasons and very rarely do those reasons have anything to do with the weather. They could be anything from actually wanting to know the time or borrow a lighter but to do that politely you open communication with a “Brrrr bit chilly out isn’t it?” thereby establishing yourself as a fellow chilled soul not a random mugger. Having done this the next step is normally to apologise then make the request; e.g., “I’m really sorry to bother you but you wouldn’t have the time would you?” Or a “Sorry, I know it’s really cheeky but could I borrow a light?” The other times weather conversations are struck up are when small talk is required; e.g. prior to going into a conference, for example, where you have to make small talk but certain topics are taboo. The responses given will allow the initiator to decide if they want to continue the small talk into a conversation or whether they want to drift!

3. Having a hysterically loud conversation in a pub when everyone else is trying to watch the rugby.

Don’t do that. Especially if you’re not local.

4. Not acknowledging someone’s dog(s).

If a British person has a dog with them it is worth remembering that they do not own the dog.

The dog owns them.

We are quite ridiculous about our four-legged family members and insulting or ignoring them is akin to insulting or ignoring our granny. You do that at your peril. (I should add, however, that reaching out to stroke the animal without checking with the owner first is also deeply frowned upon both in terms of manners and intelligence!)

5. Queue jumping.

Don’t go there. If there is such a thing as death by a thousand ‘tuts’ jumping an obvious queue will be the quickest way to achieve it.

6. A bit of an odd one but don’t support the obvious winner. That’s just a bit brash. The British have always, and will always, cheer on the underdog.. Even if they lose we will still comment on them putting up a good fight and award them praise. There is no merit to winning if you were stronger/bigger/faster before the race began!

7. That World War 2 was won by America.

America only joined the fray after Pearl Harbour which happened 7 December 1941. We had been at war since 1939 and Joe Kennedy ( father of JFK) sent word back to U.S.A. not to help as we were a lost cause. Ironically, if your men had read the radar ( English invention ) correctly the attack on Pearl Harbour would not have resulted in such devastation.

I remember sitting in a bar in Boulder, Colorado with some friends one of whom was English. One of the American friends asked us “don't you think it's weird that it's 2024 and the UK is still a monarchy”.

I replied “Don't you think it's weird that it's 2024 and the US still doesn't have a health care system?”.


Being called islamaphobic, anti-Semitic or racist for discussing serious issues that might be demographically and socio-politically challenging to the culture of native Britain and the British in the U.K in order to stifle that discussion. Especially when the British are innately far from the above are actually very liberal and stand for freedom of speech and expression so much more than the average American. SO MUCH MORE.

What should you never say to a British person?

“You spelt that wrong.”

No. We didn’t. Contrary to Microsoft, there is no such thing as “British English”, as opposed to “American English”. There is English. Americans speak English. What you spell is American.

There are plenty of variants of English around the globe, owing to the late Empire, and that’s fine. More power to their elbow.

Suggesting that English itself is a variant… and (implied) a variant of American? No one is quite that dumb or foolish to go there - well - maybe there are.... AND SADLY WE KNOW WHERE THEY COME FROM AS WELL.

We invented the language and we’ll spell it how we damn well like, and remember, it is full of French words that people from the USA spell differently so they CAN pronounce it and easy words like WATER is COMPLETELY beyond so many Americans abilities to grasp and who cannot make the leap between WATER & WAR-DER - which is how they pronounce it and they simply - sadly - cannot make that leap and that, is pathetic. "

What sentence makes many British people angry immediately ?

Well, no sentence makes British people angry immediately, as they generally prefer not to fly off the handle.

But I do think that one thing that they find irritating is constant repetition of variants on You Brits are weak / cowardly / pathetic for not having guns.

I would say the Americans are the cowardly ones hiding behind their guns.

What it does is take, of all the American attitudes to gun culture, one particular, highly aggressive and parochial attitude, and superimposes it on British gun culture, which is a thing, but a very different thing.

For many Americans, guns are symbols of freedom and independence, so not having one is regarded by them as a sign that a person is a coward who isn’t willing to defend what is his (or, less frequently, hers.) The British preference for unarmed police is likewise regarded as weakness, a lack of turgid, throbbing love of independence, or something.

But there are many reasons why Britain doesn’t have a gun culture like America’s.

( yes - we are not fucking loonies )

Britain doesn’t have wilderness. All of the land that superficially looks wild, belongs to someone or is common land, supervised by someone or some thing. So there is no frontier and no wild beasties that you need to defend yourself against, and hasn’t been for a long time.

Britons do own guns; just overwhelmingly not handguns. A handgun ban was introduced after a horrific school shooting and since hardly anyone owned a handgun in the first place, or wanted to, hardly anybody minded not being allowed to get one. The only people who were seriously inconvenienced were target pistol shooters, of whom there are few.

Guns are regarded in Britain as tools, not as symbols. Ironically I think that British non-gun-owners and aggressive American gun rights activists have exactly the same kinds of opinion about each other, each seeing the other as weak: the gun activist sees the Briton as weak because the Briton is defenceless, but the Briton sees the gun owner as weak for resorting to owning a gun in the first place. Britons place more value on defusing conflict by negotiation than on ending conflict by means of deadly force, which (they think) is likely to not end the conflict at all, but make it worse.

Britain has far higher population density than the US. This is related to the lack of wilderness: there are just no big open spaces where you can go off and let fly with your gun without disturbing people. Britons value social order (hence the popularity of the slogan Keep Calm and Carry On) and so anyone shooting off a gun in the middle of the night cannot do so without being a nuisance to others. As a result, there is a cultural preference for balancing personal freedom against public order: the national principle could be articulated as You’re free to do whatever you want so long as it doesn’t annoy people.

So yeah. Nobody likes being called a coward or weak, but British people especially dislike being called that by people who aggressively refuse to understand that British society works very, very differently to their own and how the British system has been working for hundreds of years longer - historically - than ever the USA has and consider Americas culture new and infantile compared to thousands of years of our history.


The Brits also find loud obnoxious Americans to be just that, loud, vulgar and opionated while being one of the dumbest people on the planet. Ask the average American where Paris is - Where our petrol comes from - Who invented the computer - Do we need maths taught in schools - Who has the best medical system on the planet ( America is 38th and NOT number 1,)

The Brits also have style and class whereas Americans think money makes you ' upper class' when we Brits know it is down to breeding and NOT some second hand car dealer - worth millions but STILL WORKING MIDDLE CLASS and NOT upper class just because he is rich.

England has tons of problems but compared to the USA, we win hands down.



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