I’ve been generally keeping quiet and not getting into debates about Brexit because, well, so much of what I’ve been seeing on social media in the run-up to the referendum was so so so ugly…
And now, the votes have been counted and… still ugly. Not sure why I was surprised – people who hate the other side aren’t going to suddenly turn nice now that it’s over. Especially not while they’re dealing with disappointment – anger is a natural reaction, and if you strongly believe that Britain should have stayed in the EU, then it’s natural that you react with anger against those who voted to leave.
I didn’t, by the way, but I would have if I was a UK voter.
I’m not here to start a debate about the ins and outs (pardon the pun) but I do want to say this:
I’m pro Leave and I can’t stand UKIP. I’m pro Leave and I’m not English. I’m pro Leave and I’m a foreigner living in the UK. I’m someone who finds a lot of the UKIP rhetoric extremely disturbing, and who hates hearing anti-immigrant scaremongering – as a Jew, I have personal reasons for feeling very very strongly about that. My pro-Leave views have nothing much to do with immigration and everything to do with political sovereignty and with my impression of the EU.
You may disagree with me on these issues and that’s fine. You may think the EU is the most wonderful thing ever, and if you do then of course you’ll be sad at the result. But can we possibly go back to the very British attitude of calmly agreeing to disagree and not the horrible stuff I’ve been seeing, where people tar all Leave voters with one big ugly brush, assuming they’re all stupid and racist? Because seriously, that attitude isn’t really showing much tolerance or open-mindedness.
My husband met a neighbour on the way back from the polling station yesterday. They chatted amicably and talked about why they voted the way they voted – even though they voted differently. From all my time living in this country, this is how I’ve come to expect Brits to behave. I know you can do it. Shall we put the kettle on? It’s apparently National Cream Tea day. Seems very appropriate.