Often when I’m thinking about my ancestors, preparing to tell their stories, I wonder about how they reacted to society’s changes, how they heard what was about to happen, and how they felt when it did.
Well the morning after Britain’s EuroRef vote, I know that if they’re anything like me they’ll feel dazed. We’re at one of those key story turns in these isles’ history, 1603, 1649 and 1660, 1707, 1745, 1838, 1901, 1914, 1939 and now 2016.
After all the bile, paranoia and deceit which bubbled up in the UK, after the some politicians’ factless assertions and downright lies about the legal position and [lack of] plan for the future, after the wilful political disregard and trashing of informed expert opinion and advice, and of murder, the day after the election has arrived. It does make me wonder why the hell we bother with election predicting and opinion polls.
This YouTube film is really interesting, I wish this had been shown instead of endless shouty debates: Professor Michael Dougan on the EU Referendum as he spelled out the anticipated timelines in the event the UK votes to Leave in a really clear way.
The Leave campaign were reported on Twitter last night as conceding, Boris Johnson was looking more rueful and tousled than usual and Nigel Farage looked grim. I saw journalists were begging witnesses to this to phone them to report their account so that the news can be driven by 140 characters and a photo.
And now the result has been confirmed as Leave and David Cameron will be stepping down as PM in October.
So what now?
The break up of the United Kingdom I believe. With the SNP having issued a statement about the votes cast within Scotland it is only a matter of time before IndyRef 2 is announced and the nation votes again to stay with either Europe as an equal state or be governed by millionaires in Westminster and treated as a partner they don’t respect but don’t want to lose. Well, that’s my take on it, we’ll see what happens.
Emergency laws will be re-written without normal parliamentary process as our recent legal system is written allowing for EU law. The UK Government had already quietly announced a bill for this Parliament during the Queen’s Speech but not yet picked up by satirists (as far as I’ve seen) chipping back at citizens’ rights, which Amnesty are flagging up.
The rights of ordinary people will be chipped away, and eventually risk being handed to the tender mercies of global corporations through the evil which is TTIP.
To quote Queen Amidala of Star Wars: “So this is how liberty dies. With thunderous applause.”
So already the shock is wearing off, without the enormity of the vast changes ahead sinking in I suspect, and my brain is clicking through various ways of coping, Plan A, Plan Chalk, Plan Cheese, Plan Random.
And at some point soon I will need to buy a TV after I’ve thrown something handy at all the smug faces which are about to parade across it.
But, like my ancestors I suspect, I would like stability, I would like a job and I would like to pay my bills. Some priorities don’t really change that much.
© Lynne Black, 24 June 2016