Tuesday, 7 June 2016

The EU referendum debate is getting out of hand.

Flag of Europe.svg

You'd have to be living in complete isolation from any kind of news or social media contact to not know that the final countdown to the "long awaited" referendum on continuing British membership of the European Union had begun.

With the fanatics throwing accusations of a renewed attempt by Germany to take over our country by the Brexiteers or the threat of a new European war if we leave from the remain camp it's all got a bit silly really.

And the problem is there's been far too much of this nonsense from both sides.

Yet on June 23rd you will be asked to go into a Polling Booth and make a reasoned decision on whether we should leave or stay.

Will the threat of "endless hordes" of European migrants frighten you into voting Brexit or will the need for dealing with Europe's growing problems collectively motivate your vote for a brighter future?

Frankly I despair at the nonsense that abounds in the news, the leaflets beginning to pop through my door, the endless Memes on Face Book and the rantings of the "green-ink brigade whenever I go on-line.

It's not just in the UK. It's not just the "Little Englanders". Most countries have their "nay-sayers" in the form of "Little Danes" and "Little Frenchies" as the far right comes to the fore in European politics.

There is little time left for reason and until now except for one short article a couple of years or so ago I've kept out of the debate. But the time has come to make a stand and say how I think we should vote.

History tells us that heading backwards is never a good idea. Nor is speeding ahead with ideas far ahead of what most people are ready for. We need a steady hand.

The European Union is far from perfect. No country, no institution is perfect either. I'm proud to call myself British and rally to the flag in international competitions.

But Britain is no longer a super-power. We can no longer "go it alone". We need allies, political, economic and military in this ever changing, ever dangerous world we live in.

At the same time we need to protect our hard won rights, our human rights and our workplace rights. These are under threat from the Brexit supporters who would turn against ordinary working people and trade unionists the moment we leave.

With this is mind I welcome the mainstream Trade Unions coming out in favour of the EU, those that don't undermine everything we value. And for what?

Life outside Europe would be tough. On all levels.

The EU isn't perfect but inside surely we can reform and slow down it's expansion that has moved far too quickly.

Outside Britain would be isolated, with perhaps the union itself at risk.

But at the end of the day it's your choice. I hope you join me in voting for the right choice which is to stay in Europe.

But whatever you choose to do, please vote.

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