The fate of our nation’s future was to be decided on the 23rd June 2016 but as of yet we have no clear indication as to what is going to happen post Brexit. The Conservatives are leaderless and the parliamentary Labour party seem to be at odds with their leader despite what seems to be staunch grassroots support in favour of him. But what angers me most is the idea of ‘Project Fear’ and how it was almost oxymoronic in its usage, as those who spoke about fear mongering were perpetuating it nearly every time they spoke.
Many Leave campaigners threw around the buzzwords of ‘Project Fear’, referring to the Remain campaigns talk that we as a nation would struggle in a post Brexit society. In fact what we can learn from this referendum is that there was a Project Fear. Project Fear was being sold to us on a daily basis in the form of the immigration debate. I myself am a descendant of immigrants. Immigrants who came in the 70s, who worked extremely hard, paid their taxes and contributed to our economy. I feel sick, that in modern day Britain, we dehumanised immigrants with just one cross on a ballot paper. Immigrants have given so much to British society, and this idea that they come here to take from us is fundamentally wrong. Firstly in order for our NHS to function we need the skills of immigrant health professionals, who are vital in providing health care to our population. Furthermore the immigrants to the UK are less likely to live in social housing and less likely to receive benefits than UK born workers.
I would like to make clear that I am no die hard supporter of the European Union. I ideologically oppose it due to the fact the EU’s Commission is unelected. The individuals who sit on the commission are chosen by their individual governments, it is these unelected officials who hold executive powers over the European Union. To add to this, these unelected officials draft legislation and mediate in the legislative process along with representing the Union in trade negotiations. The non-transparency involved with the commission, in addition to the fact that the union operates more and more like a government is why I ideologically oppose it as it is hindering democracy. Nevertheless I knew the consequences of a Brexit vote and what it would do to our economy in the long run, as well as what would happen to our currency.
With Nigel Farage deciding to resign as UKIP leader along with Boris Johnson who fronted the official Leave campaign deciding not to run for Conservative leadership; we have to ask ourselves are these the people who the British public decided to follow? The truth is that there are major implications of leaving the EU and it is disgraceful that the politicians who led the campaign to leave have bailed and decided they have done their bit. One must question, what doing their bit entails. With the likelihood of inflation soon to rise, those who really are at the bottom of society will be hit hardest as the price of living goes up but wages will be stagnant. Austerity caused by our current Conservative government is what effects everyday lives not EU membership. It was the Tory government who introduced the Bedroom Tax, who scrapped EMA, who abolished Child Trust Funds, who abolished Sure Start Maternity Grants, who increased work hours for couples with children in order for the couples to qualify for Working Tax Credit, who introduced cuts to our police force and it was our current government who increased tuition. We were told by the Brexiteers that we could leave the EU and still access the common market. It has been confirmed to us, post referendum that in order to access the common market we have to respect the basic European freedoms of people, goods, services and capital.
I honestly believe that had immigration not been thrown in and made to be the central issue of this debate then we would have seen an easy Remain victory. Patriotism was to be associated with voting to leave the EU. The immense nationalism took over as citizens who would otherwise probably not vote or participate in general elections came out in the masses and voted to take their country back. This was backed by the increase in voter turnout from the last general election just one year ago. I have always thought that patriotism can be a dangerous word, so dangerous that it can evoke blind allegiance to a cause, no questions asked. The real Project Fear was blind allegiance to anti-immigration. Immigrants aren’t the problem, austerity is.