British Prime Minister David Cameron as he speaks in the House of Commons on June 29, 2016 (Home Office / Parliamentary Recording Unit via Agence France Presse Photo)
The day after the vote…
I remember the Quebec Referendums, the 1995 referendum in particular. There was so much fear.
- Would older Quebec citizens get their pension cheques?
- How would Quebecers purchase groceries?
- Could they still use Canadian currency?
- Would the Canadian armed forces still protect them?
- Would Desjardins be the only bank?
- Just how would they pay the rent or make their mortgage payments?
- Would they need a passport to visit friends and family in Ottawa, Toronto and provinces west of Ontario or east of Quebec?
- What would happen to Acadians and other French communities living outside Quebec?
- Would Canada cease to be a bilingual country?
- Could Quebec count on its immigrants to remain in Quebec?
- Would there be yet another exodus of its more affluent population? (This is what happened when the Parti québécois was first voted into office (1976).
- Would Quebecers leaving Quebec sell their home in American currency? Some still do.
These may seem picayune details, but they are not, which is why the Clarity Act was passed. Canada had to made sure no province could walk away from Confederation in a precipitous manner thus creating considerable anxiety, disorder and years of instability.
As it turns out, those who advocated leaving did not have a plan. What would happen the day after the vote?
Countries that have not joined the EU
Not all European countries have joined the European Union. But the countries that did not join knew that the next day would not differ from the day before. Their decision not to join was not made overnight and could not plunge millions of citizens into years of detrimental uncertainty. As for other countries denied membership, they simply remained as they had been.
There is nothing wrong with not belonging to the EU, but the decision to leave must reflect the will of the people.
Countries belonging to the European Union. This map still shows Britain as a member. (Photo credit: Google)
It would seem imprudent for countries to leave the EU overnight and do so after a mere referendum. Important decisions, such as leaving the European Union require more than a referendum. There has to be a consensus. Too many citizens are opposed to leaving the European Union. The referendum showed that nearly half of Britons opposed leaving the European Union. Therefore, there is no consensus.
A “Dangerous Mindset”
After Donald Trump attacked President Obama for not blaming Muslims for the Orlando massacre, President Obama stated that Mr Trump, the Republican presidential presumptive, had a “dangerous mindset.” I believe the gentleman shown in the photograph below also has a “dangerous mindset.”
John Kerry’s Suggestion
John Kerry, the United States Secretary of State, has suggested that Britain could “walk back” its decision. The British Government held a referendum, but there is dissent and a “dangerous mindset.”
Protesters gather against the EU referendum result in Trafalgar Square on June 28, 2016 in London, England. There is still the possibility that the British government will disregard the referendum result. (Jeff J Mitchell / Getty Images)
In short, it may be in the best interest of Britons not to break from the European Union at this point. Not if there isn’t a consensus. Not if the motivation was even remotely racist. And not if there wasn’t a plan.
Love to everyone ♥
© Micheline Walker
30 June 2016