Why I think an EU referendum is a bad idea

I’m not a political person. I don’t know enough about it, nor do I have any desire to become more involved. That might seem like a terrible attitude about something that is so important to the future of our country and the people in it, but there you go. It’s too confusing. I also think that I’m too much of a little fish in a big pond to make a difference. I appreciate that if everyone thought that way we’d be screwed, but it is what it is. So shoot me.

The trouble with politics is that you’re never going to agree with everything a party stands for, and so you’re immediately setting yourself up for disappointment. They will always agree with/vote for/pass law upon something you don’t like. Don’t get me wrong, I do exercise my right to vote, but it’s probably fair to say that I don’t look into it enough to fully understand everything I’m voting for. Because then I would talk myself into and out of multiple political parties and go round in circles. Ain’t nobody got time for that when there’s holidays to be planned and sales to be shopped.

What I do have a strong opinion on is the upcoming referendum. Not the outcome. I haven’t looked into that enough (surprise!) But the actual handing over of a momentous decision to the great British public.

EU referendum

The public are generally pretty rubbish. We vote for dogs to win Britain’s Got Talent. We watch the Brits (which by all accounts was rubbish, I wouldn’t know as I went to the pub) purely to moan about it on social media. We allow the Daily Fail to exist as an actual news delivering vehicle. None of these things are the behaviour of sensible, well rounded, intelligent beings. How then are we expected to know whether staying in the EU is a good or bad idea?!

Removing my tongue from my cheek for a moment, my concern is that people will be voting for (or against) people because of their feelings towards those people, without understanding the consequences or the bigger picture. There’s a lot of hatred for David Cameron, so there will be people who vote to leave the EU purely because he wants us to stay. “I hate David Cameron therefore I will vote the opposite to what he thinks”. Boris Johnson has a following of people who think he’s a great chap, so perhaps they will vote to leave because that’s what he’s campaigning for. “Boris is fun and he was brilliant on Have I Got News For You, so let’s agree with him” There are those small minded people who think our borders are being overrun by illegal immigrants claiming benefits or stealing “British” jobs, and will therefore vote to leave as an act of British defiance. “It’s our country and we need to regain control before the terrorists take over”. I appreciate that not everyone will vote so frivolously, and some people will actually understand the implications of our involvement in Europe and make an informed decision, but the fact remains that a chunk of people have the power to influence Britain’s future in a huge way, without the knowledge that such power requires.

I understand that there needs to be a referendum, and that the only fair way to do it is hand over the decision to the people who will be affected. It’s not a decision that the Prime Minister or his political party can make – there would be uproar.

But I do think there needs to be a helluva lot more education of Joe Public so that we’re all informed on what it means for us. Perhaps employers need to take some responsibility and explain how an in or out decision will affect their company and job roles, so people understand from a real lifescenario what it mayor may not mean for them.

Or perhaps we need to introduce IQ tests prior to issuing a ballot paper. Weed out the stupid ones so we have a chance of the right result (whatever that may be).

Thanks, as always, for reading! x

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