The EU has been a political football kicked around by politicians for years. Poor leaders and poor policy makers have successfully distracted the public by blaming ‘the other’ instead of taking responsibility for their failures. In Scotland, the SNP thrived by blaming The Westminster Boogeyman, stopping every one of their policy measures. In Westminster, the Conservatives and UKIP have spent years blaming The Brussels Bogeyman, with ‘bureaucracy’ stopping ‘common sense’ On a local council level, failing schools and hospitals have been blamed on the Con-dems and the Tories. People have been fed up of politicians for years, which seems reasonable when we realise our politicians have been failing our people for years. We have become so used to blaming someone else for our ills instead of taking a moment to take any responsibility.
Today’s result, as well as the death of Jo Cox last week, are both as a result of rising intolerance and hate. When our politicians have blamed the EU, or immigration, or The Boogeyman, or whoever else for their problems, we have not called them out. We’ve all collectively shrugged our shoulders and allowed bad governance and blaming to continue. Everyone involved in British politics has been complacent to allow this culture of blame. We have allowed this atmosphere to build to the point of no return and we all need to take responsibility for once in our lives.
We have a demonised working class who have been looking for an answer to their social segregation, and a political class consistently ignoring them because often their own world viewpoint is so far removed. Mainstream politics has been so used to patronising the British working class by calling them racists instead of analysing why they’ve had to embrace the far right. Why have public policies created such rising discontent? Is it merely globalisation or is it technology? Why haven’t our policy makers filled the skills gaps and listened to their concerns?
The biggest shock of today’s result is that it was a big shock for anyone. We’re so accustomed to our echo chambers both online and in our social interactions that we are so strongly disconnected from general British public sentiment. We should have noticed that political footballs and playing ‘the political game’ would eventually have consequences for all of us. We’ve had ample opportunity to call out far right rhetoric and give positive cases for the EU and for immigration, but everyone has been too afraid to do so. To start a Remain campaign one year ago, while the Leave campaign has had a six year headstart, would never have ended for Remain.
We have made our bed and now we must lie in it. We have driven out possibly the most moderate Tory leader who is likely to be replaced by a buffoon intent on putting his ego before the country. The coalition years were like Season 1 of Orange Is The New Black: crappy but paradise compared to the hellhole we’ve got coming up. We are entering a whole new world likely to be filled with more fear mongering, more blame, and more hate. It is about time that we start calling out these attitudes before we lose our nation forever.