Why are so many of my friends taking Britain’s declaration of independence so poorly?
The vote wasn’t all that close — not the sort of vote where a few hundred or thousand people made the difference — in this case more than million people voted FOR independence than voted against it. For the past 20 years, despite protests and warnings from British leaders such as Margaret Thatcher, Britain participated in the experiment known as the European Union. British leaders on the right and left have been frustrated with the continued erosion of sovereignty Britain suffered — so much so that they agreed to hold a national referendum on the issue.
If the British government (smart and well educated people) thought that leaving the European Union would be some sort of ‘end-of-life’ event for Britain they wouldn’t have held the vote — these are not stupid people. The reality is that Britain, like the United States, will thrive as an independent nation. Even President Obama rescinded his prior threat to put the UK to the back of the line — explaining that the US would continue its economic and military partnership with the nation. Suggesting that the people of Britain have lost their ability to negotiate trade agreements borders on the offensive. Non-EU members like Norway and Switzerland both have the same trade deal that ALL EU members enjoy — Britain will likely be able to secure better terms. The idea that the second largest economy in Europe would suddenly disappear is silly — the reality is that Europe needs Britain as much as Britain needs Europe.
Suggesting that the millions of British citizens who voted for independence are somehow mentally retarded, racist, bigoted, or xenophobic is offensive. Stop it. The truth? We should focus on getting our own house in order before maligning an entire nation for wanting the same sort of freedoms we enjoy.