Was Brexit an homage to 21st century version of restoration England, or at least a type of rebellion against loss of sovereignty? Or has the EU got us to kick us out of the EU? Did the UK witness a new form of social demographic and a new format for a dynamic policy on Immigration? Or have we saddled ourselves with an evangelically myopic attitude to it?
One things for sure, I'm not going to resolve all issues here, but I will reference as much of what I'm interested in over the 'B' word - in other words I will set out with complete complicity with the reader just some of the 'B' bullshit that surrounds a non-sequittor of an over-inflated issue! Do I believe that? Not a chance! Let's remember that at least 'immigration popularity craze' had certain qualities to it: it has distracted the UK from hating each other on ethnic, social and sexual political grounds on a domestic peculiarly British front. Even if 'we lost our heads' Trump and North Korea, Syria, Russia and the World Cup still can't make the headlines because of Brexit! So, could it be that it is not what Brexit can do for us it's what we can do for Brexit to remain the dominant (and only) issue of the day!?
If we're to believe all the rhetoric about Brexit, this next 'Reformation' was pioneered in the UK not by some monarch but through the free will of the people. We firmly believe in our constitutional monarchy that trusts us to make a 21st century mature decision without involving the Queen and not in any way compromising her constitutional position by 'telling' us how to vote. We vote as if we're a Republic but we value our Elizabethan era led by Her Majesty as sacred to our democracy. The new EU 'arbitrary aristocracy' is nothing but a relic of the non-monarchical nations of the EU trying to tap into powers that were lost in 18th century Royalty Europe.What? Look, rather than anything so grandiose, I think we at least deserve to know of a secularist or progressive perspective concerning Brexit and not some caricatured Stunt?
A new series of British values that doesn't require knee-jerk reaction but pragmatism without the 'bigotry' of little-Englishman 'burning the EU flag'( well at least that's how some die-hard Remainers might see Brexit). It doesn't involve hatred towards Brussels and Strasburg, but a way to democratize the UK in a way that couldn't have been imagined in Britain for decades; perhaps EU membership enabled us to move forward by way of deregulation? Perhaps our constitution has needed an overhaul that puts the Queen as central to our way of life and the mutual trust that that affords. But I think that 'perceived' over-centralization and debilitating micro-management by Brussels was seen as provocative and not taking our unique traditions and cultural values in to account in decision making.
Yet there is no way to avoid this but the issue of immigration seemed to galvanize the UK, but not in the way that one would have expected.
It certainly hardened attitudes but it didn't heal any pre-existing friction it just gave 'just cause' for some widening of the appeal of pro-Brexit 'consensus' over 'new immigration'. However all the Brexit campaign needed was a slight swing from indigenous and ,crucially, from Asian and African British traditional Labour supporters to vote Brexit to prevail; and Corbyn just sat on his hands. For a socialist to exploit 'immigration panic' to achieve his anti-social democratic 'anti EU pro hard socialist principles' reminds me of a previous era of spin under a previous Labour PM so full of 'spin to win' that his own party 'kicked him out ' and have dined -out on it ever since. That's what got the EU. A double-hit of hard core spin and genuine anger at a nation not being able to 'defend' their own sovereignty let alone their own frontiers. It was in defense of Britain's choice to invite 'commonwealth' immigration after WW2 and in part their revenge 3/4 generations later (since grandfathers or great grandfathers who'd set up shop successfully in the UK) against non-commonwealth Europe that offered an opportunity for proud Britons to lead by example against 'new Immigrants' not permanently committed to the UK. This crystallised a hard won legitimacy and a sense of belonging in Britain from a new demographic but from an older generation one already established in Britain. To many, 'about bloody time!'. Didn't this provide a blue-print of what Britain was beginning to emerge as - a valuable and productive society based upon 'inclusivity? Or was it a phenomenon of social mobility incentivized by a 'just prejudice' against ex-soviet regimes in post Cold War countries in which suspicion remained a factor and upshot of not having had sufficient time to recover from to properly put the Cold War to bed? Eastern Europeans with a zeal to work and then take back and pocket or drain 'British resources' back to the 'mother country' without there being a quid pro quo arrangement that equally attracted British workers in practice to work abroad in the EU, was fixed in the British psyche too.
Perhaps there was a further issue about immigration by way of migration in EU Europe that rankled. Why have a Rainbow nation when 'Eastern Europe in Britain' wasn't controlled, arrived without any preparation, too soon and too prominently? Doesn't Rainbow mean Rainbow!? Weren't Ethnic minorities who were steadfast Brits being put in an impossible position in trying to justify all Immigration' per se or not at all ? How could the EU play the 'race card' by incrimination of generations of Brits devoted to playing a part and making a contribution in and to the UK? How could the UK be so compromised? Wasn't this tantamount to communities being 'blackmailed'? Wasn't there a fear that Britain was importing more disputes over race relations that would be stretched at the expense of stable ethnic traditions and culture being so much a part of the UK already? Didn't this drive people to the polling stations because there was a calm equilibrium with all parties (except Corbyn) in dialogue that was being threatened? How would Eastern Europeans react to a 'new diversity' that was established in the UK that did not involve race conflict but a new homogeneity brought together by tentative mutual recognition and inter-ethnic integration approaching genuine reciprocity? After all, Eastern Europe had little experience of ethnic and multi-racial societies, and there were fears that behind the Iron Curtain remained an dormant and dangerous sub-group of Nazi sympathizers who might launch an attack on all of Britain's communities. Urban communities living and thriving on the selling point of British mutual value and relative wealth of mixed communities rolled-out nationwide. If it ain't broke don't fix it was being threatened. Self-preservation of our way of life had never seemed so definitive to a multi-racial and multi-ethnic society. Or not? You decide.
Fortunately, in spite of Remain worries and external pressures, the UK has preserved its moderation and voted for Brexit at the same time. I voted for Remain but I'm still proud that Britain hasn't turned into a pernicious and vindictive country regardless of who people voted for. But here's a trivial warning about the fickleness of the court of public opinion - the English will be unbearable if they win the World Cup and so 'drunk with pride' that the Scots will never forgive us! Are we really a nation of political maturity, if that is the case?! How hard will Brexit be after the World Cup?