They say the Brexit vote was heavily fuelled by emotion; people voted with their hearts and that’s why we’re leaving. The Remain campaign didn’t have the same ability to pull at the “heart strings” of the people, it was a lacklustre campaign that failed to capture the votes of the population.
For me it isn’t just Leave that have a grasp on the emotional side of Brexit. Trust me, I – a remoaner – am emotional as hell about it. Like many of you, I was born post-Britain joining the European Union. I was born into the EU. The nationalist arguments never worked on me because I always thought of myself as European; I thought of everyone in the UK as European.
Some Brexit enthusiasts claim that we’re taking our country back, as if we’ve been invaded rather than voluntarily stepping into a trading union that has brought Europe closer together than it’s ever been. That claim infuriates me the most; for me we’re not taking anything back, we’re losing something big. On a practical and economical level, but also on an emotional level: I feel like we’re losing our home.
The “will of the people” is an argument that has become particularly relevant again with the idea of a People’s Vote being floated. Claiming a People’s Vote would disgrace the democratic vote of the 2016 referendum seems a tad silly. If Brexit truly is the “will of the people”, let’s find out with a vote. You could argue we already had one, but it’s been two years: a lot has happened in those two years, a lot of information has come out in those two years, and people change their minds sometimes. Especially in light of electoral fraud and Theresa May’s dire Brexit package – not to mention the fact that the BBC recently showed that enough Leave voters have died since the 2016 referendum that the result would now be Remain. Besides, if you truly think that Brexit is the “will of the people”, a People’s Vote shouldn’t scare you so much.
73% of 18-24 year olds voted for Remain, 62% of 25-34 year olds, and the stats slowly move in favour of Leave the older the voter gets. If you are 45 or younger then you were born into the EU and votes for Remain based on age definitely seem to reflect this. It’s just a shame all of those people who feel a strong connection to the EU are being forced out of it – it genuinely feels like are world is getting smaller considering that many prominent Brexiteers are so anti-freedom of movement.
This feeling of unity that many young people find is only strengthened by going to university, not because we’re being brainwashed by biased courses (a tune that has been played a lot by the Leave side), but because of the wider diversity of friends you make from all over Europe. 74% of students voted Remain, which isn’t surprising when you look at the EU’s role in academic progression: roughly 25% of academic research is put out by EU countries. The sense of connection and involvement in the EU is pretty understandable in young people when you look at it through this lens; of course we’re pissed to be leaving, of course we’re “remoaning” all the time.