So, the votes are in and the dust has settled. The citizens of England have voted to leave the EU, by a very small margin of 52%. There are lots of messy details to sort out and the analysts on TV are all buzzing. I’m a typical American with a limited global perspective, but I do have some opinions I would like to share.
It Could have Easily been Avoided
The UK had been trying to negotiate with the EU for years on critical issues, such as immigration. But, the EU not only seemed stiff and inflexible, it turned a deaf ear to the issues and challenges facing the UK. I don’t know if it was arrogance on the part of the EU or a sense of being repressed by the UK, but it didn’t end amicably for either party.
As an obvious outsider, I believe the Brexit could have been avoided with some basic respect and flexibility from both sides. I don’t know what pushes leaders into entrenched positions when clearly some compromise is called for. I do know if you back someone into a corner, the outcome is rarely good.
One of my former co-workers James from England told me years ago, “Once you raise your flag and draw your sword, it’s pretty hard to then back down.”
The Will of the People Really does Matter
In my opinion, the Brexit vote comes down to one thing: sovereignty.
The people of England have a proud culture of rugged individualism. With popular phrases such as “Carry On” and “Keep a Stiff Upper Lip”, they don’t expect things to be easy. What they do expect is to have a say in their future. The step they took yesterday was a vote to regain their sovereignty. Only time will tell if they made a wise decision. Will they suffer for their brashness or will they flourish?
America has a similar culture and we are going through our own revolutionary moments right now. Our government has turned a deaf ear to the problems facing Americans and have instead foisted their hand-picked political lackeys upon us. But, America isn’t buying it. We want real changes in our government and we want honest leadership that loves our country. Instead, we have an arrogant duopoly that is for sale to the highest bidder. Our vote is coming in November.
The Bottom Line
The bottom line is that freedom comes at a cost. For the courageous voters of the UK, the cost is economic uncertainty. Courage is always to be admired and freedom is always to be treasured. Three cheers for England!
“There is shock, sorrow, anger and fear among people in the EU’s institutions.”
– Mark Mardell
Feedback is Requested
Anyone from Europe, the UK or anywhere else in the world is encouraged to share your opinions in the Comments section below.