Exactly one week ago, the UK, which I owe 50% of my blood to, bid an unexpected adieu to the European Union. Although a slim majority voted to leave the EU, a collection of 28 European countries (soon to be 27) formed in 1993, most Brits are less than amused with the Brexit.
Equally bamboozled and disgruntled with the Brexit, I immediately felt the need to compress all of my anger regarding the vote into a singular blog post. The first draft of this post was steeped with exclamation points, politically charged jabs, and a frowny face or two. Lucky for you, I have since revised.
My opinions regarding the vote and how it was carried out, however, have not changed. I still think Nigel Farage, leader of the UK Independent Party and cunning cavalier of the Leave Campaign, is what my mum would describe as “an absolute plonker!” (American translation: idiot, dufus, sly politician that breaks their main campaign promise etc.)
I’m still disappointed that traveling through Europe will be a headache and a half now that the gold letters on my passport spelling out “European Union” will soon be erased. And it still blows my mind that Donald Trump can grow even more idiotic with each passing day. The plonker of all plonkers told the people of Scotland that he was impressed by their efforts to “reclaim their country” by voting to leave the EU when the majority of Scots voted to remain. How stupid can he get? How does he still have supporters?!
Clearly, I still have very strong opinions regarding the Brexit vote and this post is still filled with exclamation points and politically charged jabs but I am now exiting the Brexit conversation and addressing a more pressing need.
Yesterday, on the front of my local newspaper was an article titled, “Effects of Brexit are far-reaching ” (okay, so it’s more of a partial exit from the conversation). The article included a picture of an unhappy looking British woman, who owns a British-themed store in Brattleboro, VT with a pull quote positioned directly below that reads, “I’m ashamed to call myself British.”
I’ve heard a lot of nasty things and witnessed a lot of intense emotions regarding the vote but nothing is more alarming than hearing someone say, “I’m ashamed of my country.”
I understand the frustration, the confusion, the anger, and the resentment but how could anyone be ashamed to call themselves British? How could someone so easily denounce a country revered for its strength and resilience? When did breaking loyalties with one’s home become the trendy thing to do?
Yes, I’m also gobsmacked by the referendum results. I worry that the fate of the UK could easily become one rife with xenophobia and economic instability but no matter what happens, I will always be proud to call myself British because our country is far from a hopeless cause.
I will always support the English football team no matter how badly they lose. I will always scoff at claims that the British people are stupid: that they are self-destructive and wrecked by “buyer’s remorse”.
I realize my last post on Facebook regarding the Brexit was a pessimistic one, but a touch of pessimism isn’t always a bad thing. Giving up at the first sign of trouble, on the other hand, is.
I’m not ready to throw in towel just yet, even if we have quite the mess to mop up. The way I see it, if an artist can make something spectacular out of chaos, we can make something good out of this disaster. It’s up to us to reclaim our national identity. Let’s not feed Great Britain to the wolves simply because we have lost our pride. Our national symbol is the lion afterall.
So all Brits and non-Brits alike, please don’t tear down our Union Jack just yet because if anyone can make lemonade out of bitter lemons, it’s a good ol’ Limey!
Don’t Get Your Knickers in a Twist,