From my office in Los Angeles, nearly 5,500 miles from London, I watched with interest the Brexit vote in 2016. I listened to the media and the political elites and heard the polling numbers, but secretly held out one little glimmer of hope that perhaps those who spoke the loudest weren’t right. Was it possible that the people of the UK who were dismissed and underestimated, mocked and looked down upon, shamed and scared, could quietly pull off the impossible? Without well-funded coordination, but with collective faith in their fellow countrymen, they went to the ballot box and shocked their nation – and the world!
World For Brexit has now been established to support the 17.4 million people in the UK who voted to Leave the EU in a free and fair referendum. There was a two-year plan in place to facilitate that yet, three years later, they are no closer to exiting than they were then. It is a terrible betrayal of democracy and should not be allowed to happen – especially there. The appetite for Leaving is only increasing, not decreasing, and many who weren’t in favour of Leaving originally are now at the point where they just want to “get on with it” and implement a full exit. It seems like a reasonable expectation. The voters want what they voted for. Still. And who can blame them?
The Leavers won a fair democratic process. The loser’s consent is not required in order to move forward with the winning side’s ideas. And furthermore, contrary to the opinion of some on the Remain side, just because the vote was 52% to 48%, it doesn’t mean that consensus – or even compromise – is required. That’s not how the democratic process works.
The talking points of those in the Remain camp are primarily based on fear and negativity. They highlight all that is perceived to be wrong with Brexit and generate anxiety along every step of the process. Their narrative is so toxic – as if Leave was a vote against something.
In truth, Leave was a vote for something. Actually a vote for everything. Brexit was a vote of confidence. It was an expression of strength. A belief that the UK could – and should – stand alone as a strong, successful, independent and sovereign nation capable of ruling itself. A vote for a country that is ready to lead, not follow.
The UK is one of the longest-standing democracies in the world and has championed democracy all over the globe. The vote to Leave the European Union was the largest democratic mandate there has ever been in British history. How can the vote of the people be so ignored? The world shows outrage when other countries like Venezuela, Cuba or Iran face political suppression, yet are ignoring it now with the UK vote.
Of course, the UK has not been part of the EU for hundreds of years – only since the mid-1970s. Most UK voters still have first-hand knowledge of being an independent, sovereign nation. Implementing Brexit is not a deviation from democracy, it’s an affirmation of democracy and a return to it. What is a deviation from normalcy is the surrender of allegiance to an unelected body of commissioners over which the governed have no power. Why would anyone subject themselves to people who are appointed, not elected – and to people who can’t be voted out if those they represent are unhappy with their leadership?
Some say that the EU provides stability. The news I hear out of Europe involves rioting on the streets of France and an approval rating of 27% for Macron. Merkel is barely holding her own government together in Germany, a previous powerhouse, and Portugal and Greece and other EU member nations constantly need financial bailouts. It seems to me that the UK is the stabilising force for the EU – not the other way around.
The doom-mongers say Leaving will create economic ruin. If you look at a map of the world, you will see that the EU comprises a relatively small section of land. Once the UK breaks free from the EU chokehold on their economy, the world becomes open to trade with, negotiate with and establish bilateral relationships with. And with no more need to ask permission from Big Brother Brussels to do so. The thought of that should be freeing, not frightening.
Like the Leavers, I believe that a country which is free and prosperous and proud and industrious should not be limited or constrained by its European neighbours, but should embrace the limitless potential that will come globally once again from independence and self-governance.
Thank you, brave Brexiteers, for inspiring us with your boldness in 2016. We hope the support of World For Brexit will embolden you now.
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