A lot of my time these days, is spent engaging in discussion on Pro-EU and cross-party political forums. Having spent the past few months campaigning to keep the UK in the EU, I have been involved in both sides of the discussion. Be it commenting on the inaccuracies and contradictions of the leave campaign, or the demagoguery style politics of Trumps America. Whilst being very vocal and open about my views, I have resisted when it comes to name calling, this is not an effective way of convincing people to challenge their biases, or reconsider their judgement. However, I have fallen victim, many times, to the abuse and name calling of my politically engaged counterparts.
One of my favourite names, “remoaner”, is a term that I quite like. I’d rather have a moan and get things done, than be a quitter and destroy decades of progress. This isn’t, however, the only name I am called. To quote an angry brexiteer, i’m a “lefty, liberal, elitist snowflake”. I have to admit, I was shocked at first, then confused, then I reaslised, some people don’t really care who you are, as long as you fit their personal view, their biases.
So, am I a lefty, liberal, elitist snowflake? The simple answer is, well, no. Let’s address the first part, am I a lefty? I voted for the conservatives in the last general election (Not a Theresa Supporter), I have liberal views and I don’t consider myself to be a lefty. I am positioned more central in the political spectrum. So, no, I am not a “lefty”. Now, lets talk about the liberal part. Am I liberal? Yes, I have liberal views. I am a member of the Liberal Democrats. Okay, next part, i’ll break this bit up for simplicity. Am I “Elitist”? The simple answer is no. I’m 22, I live in a small metropolis (citation needed) called Torquay in the English Riviera, located in South Devon, a deprived town hit hard by the governments austerity policies. I was born into a family who aren’t politically engaged, who are working class and who don’t like the Tories. So, I don’t fit the bill. I don’t have a degree, I work at an Indian restaurant whilst I reintroduce myself into education and I volunteer as part of a large pro-EU group. So there we have it, the stereotype has been cracked. I’m far from being elitist. So, finally, am I a snowflake? This term has adapted over the years but still has strong connotations to sensitivity, which is used as a retort to folk who usually disagree with the angry Brexiteers. Well, I’m not a sensitive person, I take offense to offensive things like the spreading of hate, racism, homophobia and xenophobia. Does this make me a snowflake? I don’t think so. Is having compassion and caring about fellow humans a bad thing? No.
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So, these terms, elitist, snowflake, liberal, are they bad, do they mean we are terrible people? No. The Brexiteers, the Trumpets, the Le Penner’s, they just don’t like you but that’s okay. Because if we continue to do what we do, regardless of their petty name calling, eventually, they will get bored. Unlike the petulant and childish behaviour of the extreme far-right, our movement has been extraordinary. 100,000 people marched in London to protest Brexit, with no arrests made what so ever. Only a few days after, with a small gathering of 300 people during an EDL march, 14 arrests were made. We have consistently shown our maturity on political matters, giving a voice to those who oppose dangerous political decisions. We can continue to fight poor decisions without having to genuflect to Theresa May and her mental institution in Westminster, paving the way for future generations to prosper, in the EU.